True Discipleship Part II. The Disciple’s Character
4. Present Your Body
Week of April 28, 2013
Scripture: 1 Cor. 6:19 – 20
Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
Goal of this Week’s Study:
The Participant will be able to submit his / her body to Christ’s lordship in order to glorify God.
The Text: Paul, writing to the church in Corinth, exhorts them to recognize that the disciple’s body is not their own, but the Lord’s.
I remember as a young man in our home group, our leader David Blackistone speaking about this text. He said:
We struggle with surrendering ourselves to God. We attempt to surrender our spirits to God and we tell Him “We surrender all”. I have discovered a simple way to present the members of my body: “lord, here are my eyes, I give them to you. I want them to see only the things you want them to see. Help me always look at the things You want me to look at and avoid the things that you don’t want me to look at.
Here are my hands. I present them to You. Work through these hands to do what You want to do, not only my desires but Yours O Lord. Here are my feet. Guide them to go where you want them to go. You are Lord, and you are Lord over me”.
That illustration assisted me with the difficulty of presenting my body as a living sacrifice through which he could work. I discovered that by offering a particular part of my body would greatly assist me in glorifying God in my life.
For example, the stomach is a means. He has provided for me to live, but not be a glutton, so He can help me control my eating habits. James 3:6 says:
And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell.
The tongue is a fire – but if I present my tongue to God – I am more sensitive in speaking that which our Lord desires, and, the way He desires me to speak. Same with ears, eyes, etc.
This week we will look at the relationship between the physical body and our spiritual life.
Gen 2:7 states: then the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.
God intends for the body to perform three essential functions:
1. Identification as a unique person – the way you look
2. Participation in the world – the way you act
3. Communication with others – the way you relate to others
Give an example of how your body enables you to be involved in the world through these three functions:
Read Genesis 1:27 – 28 – list the verbs that express 3 different things God intended for human beings to do in the world.
God expects all of us to be fruitful and multiply, to subdue the earth and to rule over living creatures. Your physical body makes you feel at home in the created order.
One way to gain discipline over your body is to strive to change your character according to God’s will by God’s grace. The Holy Spirit can help change your character when you are in Christ. Who are you working to put off the old person and put on the new?
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV)
1 – Write down a behavior I want to work on:
2 – An action I will take to put off the old self
3 – An action I will take to let the Holy Spirit make me more like Jesus
The question we must ask ourselves is that in every area of our lives will we surrender fully unto Jesus or unto ourselves. We will allow the “flesh” to master our bodies, or the Holy Spirit. This week is a practical one in that we can look into some very practical matters:
How we eat, how we exercise, in addition to our spiritual disciplines begun in part 1 the Disciple’s Cross. We know that Jesus wants a life fully devoted / invested / surrendered to Him i.e., a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1)
Committing to Christ’s Service
How will you use each part of your body as you present it to God for His glory?
With the Holy Spirit’s empowerment, you can change habits of the old life that are ultimately harmful and yield all of your life to Jesus, not just part of it! Remember that on this journey – we are saved by Grace, and we are sanctified (set apart) by grace!
Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 ESV)
The World’s Way
• Eph 5:17 – 18
• Gal 5:19 – 21
• Col 3:5
The Spirit’s Way
• Eph 5:18
• Gal 5:16
• Col 3:1- 3
What God said to Me:
What I said to God:
Praise – Confess – Ask