The Sanctity of the Body

When we acknowledge God’s ultimate sovereignty, we are also acknowledging God’s control over everything that is in the created universe, regardless whether it is seen or unseen. He has the ultimate control to change, to shape, and to set in its place, every particle in the created universe so that the world will be how it is. This includes the make-up of our bodies.

However, if we were to strip away the façade that God had given to every created being, we will likely find that every single object in the universe – from the largest of stars to the tiniest speck of dust – is made of the same fundamental element [1]. Now, if we were to stop there and look at our very existence from that point of view, we will quickly find ourselves with a gloomy worldview that equates our short time on earth with any other speck of dust floating through deep space.

But is that it?

The mere physical existence of objects cannot explain the consciousness that living beings have. To elaborate on this point, we compare the differences between a living person and a dead one. Though they both have the same physical composition, they are in fact, different.

The “life” that transcends the realm of space-time into the realm of the divine unknown, transforms dust into being.

The difference between the two is ‘life’ [2] – something that transcends the realm of space-time into the realm of the divine unknown. It is this ‘life’ that transforms dust into being; with the ability to interact and a possibility of passing.

Much has been discussed about the sanctity of ‘life’ and what it will become when it departs its physical vessel. However, I would like to stress that it is the transcendent-nature of ‘life’ that allows for a special connection with the Ultimate Reality that moulded it into being. This nature connects with the Maker in the most intimate manner that cannot be fully comprehended in human-terms. For that, great reverence should be attributed to the Maker and for all the ‘life’ that He has created. Yes, this includes the lives of animals.

But the Lord said, “You have been concerned about this plant, though you did not tend it or make it grow. It sprang up overnight and died overnight. And should I not have concern for the great city of Nineveh, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left—and also many animals?” – Jonah 4:10-11, NIV, emphasis added.

With the sanctity of life established, we look again at the body in which this life was placed upon. If indeed we recognize that ‘life’ bridges the Ultimate Reality and the limited physical universe, we will also be able to acknowledge the significance of the vessel in which ‘life’ was given.

That said, this bodily vessel of ‘life’ is not just an “entrapment of the self”, but a representation of the transcendent life in physical form. Hence, this bodily vessel should not be mistreated or abused. Neither should it be treated with disrespect or be subjected to harmful surgeries that will eliminate the function of any part of the body for self-satisfying purposes. When ‘life’ has not departed to the eternal realm of the Ultimate Reality [3], the physical body encapsulates one’s entire eternal existence in the Ultimate Reality in physical form; living, breathing, and learning to be a better soul.

“The physical body encapsulates one’s entire eternal existence in the Ultimate Reality in physical form.”

The Christian doctrine took it a little deeper as to say that the body is the Temple of God where the Holy Spirit dwells (1 Corinthians 3:16). In context, the physical body is a vessel of not just its own ‘life’, but the Spirit of God in which it is united with (1 Corinthians 6:17). For this reason, anyone who ‘destroys’ the physical body, destroys their relationship with the Ultimate Reality (1 Corinthians 3:17).

Like it or not, you are not your own.
Treasure your body.

Footnotes:

[1] – This fundamental element in question is still being debated by many physicists. In the past, this was said to be the atom. But in recent decades, different theories such as “M-theory” or “string theory” both have their own idea of what constitutes the most basic unit of matter. However, whatever it may be, it can be said that all items in the created universe are made from the very same fundamental unit of matter.

[2] – Some argue that only the soul that has a connection with God because the term “life” is too vague and it may encapsulate other lifeforms such as bacteria and the like. However, I would argue that ‘life’ at that level has its own purpose of existence and is also different from mere lifeless matter. Before any breakthrough in science can “created life”, I will argue that bacteria-life is also a being that was breathed by God. On that note, it is this breath that draws the connection between that being and the Maker.

[3] – or, before one dies and their soul returns to the realm of eternity.

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2 thoughts on “The Sanctity of the Body”

  1. said, this bodily vessel of ‘life’ is not just an “entrapment of the self”, but a representation of the transcendent life in physical form

    Indeed!
    We are the outward manifestation of inward reality. And if Jesus Christ is in you, one spirit with you, then you are As HE IS….just by being you…just as you are….not by trying to be like Him.
    Bless you!

    Like

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