Back in 2015 or 2016 I heard the Lord say to me one night while I was bringing my concerns to Him that I would be a “testimony” even in my body. I knew what He meant. But I did not grasp the full effect of that statement at the time. However, it is becoming clearer all the time. For years now I have been “preaching” to the Church through social media regarding this issue. The Bible says that in the last days people (Christians) will turn to view their physical bodies in a “religious” way. Meaning they will turn all their “religious” attention away from spiritual realities and towards physical realities alone. The apostle Paul saw this ahead of time when he wrote, “Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared, who forbid marriage and require abstinence from foods that God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving,” (1 Tim. 4:1-4). Let me break that down: Some Christian’s will turn their attention away from the eternal/spiritual priorities found in God which He has called us to be about, and they will begin to worship their bodies instead. They will focus their priorities on religious asceticism regarding the “health-care” (whatever that may mean) of the physical/temporal instead. But the one who by faith trusts God with their body and eats anything with thanksgiving has God’s blessing.
It was 2015 and we were at a “Good Friday” service at our church. There was a large wooden cross up front. The pastor urged the congregation to seek the Lord and to surrender, on that cross, anything which we needed the Lord to take from us. We had pieces of paper to write any struggle, bondage, addiction, burden, grief, etc. which we were carrying that needed to be surrendered on the cross and literally nail them to that cross. It was a very heavy night for me. It was emotionally and spiritually exhausting due to the weight of grief I was carrying, feeling like I, myself, oversaw the care of, or was called to be responsible for my own body/health. That night after fasting and praying I had officially given it up. My body was officially surrendered and nailed to the cross. This was necessary for me to do, and it was an act of faith. However, I still struggled to “practice consistently” or “walk in this truth.” It took time and support. And I can still struggle or be triggered by “diet/fasting/exercise” conversations from those around me, especially Christians. In other words, it has been a process, but with supernatural breakthrough.
So, why specifically is it that “Christian’s” worrying/fearing about their physical health is such a trigger for me and which I’m deeply passionate about? Because God has convinced me, by His Spirit and according to His Word, that this topic, “physical health” for the child of God falls under God’s responsibility. There are so many Psalms, including Psalm 91, and so many statements in the New Testament which imply God’s care of, or responsibility for, our physical health/body. But He has also made it clear to me that Satan, years ago, got his foot in the door of the church by moving our attention to the physical over the spiritual. Our priorities became our physical wellbeing over our spiritual wellbeing. We started listening to the world and the world’s ways of dealing with the physical and we fell in line with them. We began acting like children of the world instead of children of a good Father. And the Lord has made it truly clear that this subject is a foothold and distraction taking away from our faith and dependence upon Christ and His Word for all things. Therefore, sorry if this offends anyone, we now respond to health concerns the same way as the world does and it is a distraction. Yet, this is not a “rebuke” to any individual Christian, since we are all on a journey of growing in our faith and trust in the Lord. But it is certainly a rebuke to Pastors who are leading the flock of God and who are called to be “mature and examples” to the flock. Side note: I must add, whatever your own conscience, by faith, has decided to do regarding your own health is between you and God. My point is a much larger one and is regarding pastors and the Church as a whole in America.
An interesting thing happened the other day. My wife was looking at a site online which was listing a myriad of meds or vitamins which people have taken, or normally take, which have seemed to help prevent someone from getting “C____D.” (You know this word). Among these items were these four things, Fluvoxamine, Melatonin, Vit. C, and Vit. D. These four I have been taking daily since 2016 for OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). My question to God is, did He sovereignly work in a way, because my whole health has been surrendered over to Him, that He knew my body would need these certain things to help prevent me from getting “C____D”? I do not know for sure. But it is interesting that from the very beginning of 2020 I have been calling the Body-of-Christ to not fear, to continue to gather in prayer and worship, and to trust God with our health. And in this way, we would be a testimony to the world that God is great, mighty, in charge, and our literal salvation every day in this life, and in the one to come, for all things.
So now, “If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the world, why, as if you were still alive in the world, do you submit to regulations— “Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch” (referring to things that all perish as they are used)—according to human precepts and teachings? These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in promoting self-made religion and asceticism and severity to the body, but they are of no value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh” (Col. 2:20-23). This is a rebuke to the Church in America where we are now beginning to fear certain foods, not eat meat, over-focus on health and fitness, because we are focused on the temporal, perishing, dirt-bag, physical body which is nothing more than a “jar of clay” according to the Word of the LORD.
Since, “we have this treasure [the power of the Holy Spirit] in jars of clay [dirt-bags], to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us” (2 Cor. 4:7). “I appeal to you therefore, brothers [and sisters], by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice [surrendered on the cross], holy [set apart for His use] and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind” (Romans 12:1-2a, emphasis mine). “Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel [jar of clay] for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work” (2 Tim. 2:21) So, any Christian who is willing, by faith, to entrust their temporary house, “vessel” of clay, into the hands of the almighty God for complete care will not regret it and will be cared for by God!