Have you ever had one of those “duh” moments as you were studying God’s Word? I did last night at Bible reading. 1 Timothy 4:8 was mine. “For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.”
I’ve seen, read and heard sermons on this before (have I mentioned I have a wonderful preacher?), but last night is when the light bulb turned on. Yes, exercise can be good for a person. Yes, it can improve your health. Yes, it can make you feel good. Yes, everyone needs to move their bodies. Yes, it does make you stronger (physically). Yes, you can buy new clothes because your old ones don’t fit. Yes, you will be complimented on your physical appearance. Yes, if you are not careful Satan will come knocking. He will fill your mind with thoughts of wanting to be beautiful on the outside, desiring the compliments of men, wanting the newest, trendiest clothes, and then you are hooked. Exercise will be on your mind continually and there won’t be room for anything else!
But Paul says to Timothy that bodily exercise profits little. Wait a minute, just a little? Does it not help with all kinds of health problems, like diabetes and possibly some cancers? Does it not add years to your life? Of course it does, but our physical bodies will still die one day. No matter how “healthy” we eat or act, death will still happen (Hebrews 9:27).
Paul also states in 1 Timorthy 4:8 that “godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come. Godliness [having great reverence for God] is good for this life and that which is to come.” If I study God’s word and obey it, my life will be good on earth and will be greater in Heaven. We all need to study God’s Word more (myself included). It has the words of Life (John 6:68-69). It is more important than anything else. It has been said, “True success is living your life and going to Heaven. True failure is living your life and going to Hell.” We must do all we can to get to Heaven; the alternative is not worth the little bit of fun we think we are having here. Heaven will surely be worth all of our efforts to get there. A place where there is no tears, sorrow, death or pain (Revelation 21:1-4).
Exercise can help us to be healthier, but in the BIG picture, studying God’s Word and doing what He says will keep us alive forever. “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:14-16
By Kristina Odom
Kristina and her husband, Justin, serve with the church of Christ in Fairfield, IL where her husband is the preacher. Kristina is a stay-at-home mother to their three kids.