Thursday, February 23, 2006
Bodily Exercise Profiteth Little
Lots of thoughts, folks. Lots of them. Loads of them. Thoughts about unpopularity. Thoughts about sweaty armpits. Thoughts about gravity. I'm going to let the thoughts spew out on this in no particular order. First, Spurgeon. He smoked cigars. He defended them on many different occasions, and didn't ever really quit, despite the urban legend, made-up-story about his seeing an advertisement on a tobacco shop that said, "Smoke the cigars that Spurgeon smokes." Nice story, but no cigar. He had a lot of health problems. Is it possible smoking cigars and his rotund profile could have been cause? I've never thought smoking cigars sent anyone to Hell; however, they might just make you smell like you've been there. That gets me to D. L. Moody. Moody spoke and wrote a lot about the fullness of the Spirit. And R. A. Torrey wrote a book about Moody entitled, Why God Used Moody, that dealt again with the fullness of the Spirit. One of the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22 is "temperance." That's self-control. You notice that it says, singular, "fruit of the Spirit." You either have all of them or none of them. You are either filled or you're not. If you aren't temperate, then at that moment, you are not filled with the Spirit. Was Mr. Moody temperate? Do you know Proverbs 23:2? "And put a knife to thy throat, if thou be a man given to appetite." The Bible speaks specifically about this one, doesn't it? With Spurgeon, we could say that the medicine of that day didn't deal with the health risks of cigars. From what I can gather, cigars are far less unhealthy than cigarettes. Moody was a little more husky than Spurgeon, but these two needed to learn the push-away, both of them. You know, push themselves away from the table.
I recognize that some out there can't quite get laughing at all this. I am speaking about Spurgeon and Moody. Really though, I could start naming more than a few modern preachers who have more chins than a Chinese phone book. For one.....I'm not going to say. You might like this though. A husband let his wife's birthday go by, so he promised that he would get something for her the next day. She said to him: "All I know is that tomorrow morning when I get up, there better be something in the driveway that can go from 0 to 200 in less than four seconds." She got up the next morning and looked out the window. There was a wrapped package in the driveway. She put on her robe and walked out to get it. She unwrapped it. Inside was a bathroom scale. He probably didn't see her for a week after that. And then one eye began to unswell and open just slightly. This can sound like a cruel subject. People are very sensitive. It's much easier to preach against something else that someone else does that's really bad. However, here are five possibilities for the overweight: (1) Your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, so you sin against the Holy Spirit. (2) You can't help others because of this gigantic beam sticking out of your eye, or at least a tent at your midsection. (3) You die younger and lose years of service. (4) Your service is less effective because you are literally and metaphorically bogged down. (5) You lose respect with people of which you could be a better leader. By the way, right now I want you to stop using moral equivalence. Stop thinking things like, "Well, you drink pepsi, and pepsi's bad for you." So you think that's an excuse for that inner tube around your waist? Only some more thoughts.
1 Timothy 4:8 says, "Bodily exercise profiteth little." In its context, I don't think it is saying that it profits a little bit. I believe it carries a temporal understanding, as in, bodily exercise profits for a little time. Bodily exercise won't result in you living forever. It isn't as important as godliness. Godliness goes on for all eternity. However, it does profit. Not much can be said to truly profit, but God says this does, and it does at least while you're on this earth. Hmmmmm. What other time while you are on this earth should you be concerned about except when you are on this earth? If it profits while you are still here, it will profit. So, two words: diet and exercise. Just some thoughts. No one is waiting in line up at the track.