The Challenge of Purity

Challenge Youth Conference 2015

Purity In Body

by Reed Swindle

“It’s my body, I can do whatever I want to with it!” This rationale seems as strong as any. I eat everyday and for the most part, I get to choose what I eat. I like cheeseburgers and I do not like onions. I like pizza but I don’t want veggies on it. I can go to any restaurant and order it however I want it.

“It is my body, I know what I like to put on it.” For the most part, we chose our own clothes in the morning. Some of us may have some help from time to time making sure it looks good but we can chose our own style.

“It’s my body I can choose to play sports or march in the band with it.” We can make choices about how we use our time and energy. We can make choices about things we like and do not like to do with our bodies. Why then are there limitations in the Bible on what I can do with my body?

In 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 Paul tells the Corinthians that they are the temple of God. “Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.” The repeated use of the word “you” is important. Here the word “you” is plural. This means he was talking to all of them. All of you are the temple of God.

But, when you get to 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 a very similar passage is found. There is one slight difference. “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.” The repeated use of “you” and “your” here is singular. YOUR body is the temple of God. YOU were bought at a price. Glorify God with YOUR body and YOUR spirit.

You may be wearing the skin that shapes your body but the reality is clearly different. If you have decided to follow Jesus by being baptized, then you have made a choice and a promise. You chose to “give your life to Jesus." You promised to live like you believe He is the Son of God. By choosing to follow Him, you chose to follow Him fully--completely.

There are times that we may not really want to follow Him because that means we may or may not be able to do things we have a personal desire to do. There are times we have the option of breaking our promise.

If you gave your life to Christ, then your body is not yours any more. It is His.

About Reed Swindle

Reed has worked with young people for 15 years as a Youth and Family Minister in Tennessee, Alabama, and Texas. He graduated from Freed-Hardeman University with both a Bachelors and Masters degree. He is currently the pulpit minister with the Foote Street Church of Christ in Corinth, MS. He is married to Bridget and they have 2 children Roman (5 ) and Scarlet (2).