A physical body is given to each of us by our loving Heavenly Father. He created it as a tabernacle for our spirit to assist each of us in our quest to fulfill the full measure of our creation. Our bodies allow each of us to experience the great plan of salvation that He has designed for all His children. He wants us eventually to become more like Him and return to live with Him.
Our Bodies and Spirits are from God
God, is the Father of our spirits. (Acts 17: 28-29 in the Bible) We lived with Him in heaven before we were born. “Furthermore we have had fathers our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of our spirits and live?” (Hebrews 12:9 in the Bible). When He created us physically, we were created in the image of God, each with a personal mortal body. (Genesis 1: 27 in the Bible) This is our Heavenly Fathers work and glory. “For behold, this is my work and my glory to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.” (Moses 1: 39 in the Pearl of Great price) The spirit provides the body with animation and personality.(Job 32: 8 in the Bible)
Our Bodies are Referred to as Temples in the Scriptures
Our physical bodies in which our spirit resides is referred to in the scriptures as a Temple. “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destory; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are” 1 Corinthians 3: 16-17 in the Bible). Paul the apostle also said, “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” (1 Corinthians 6: 19-20 in the Bible)
Our Magnificent Physical Bodies
The marvel of our physical bodies is often overlooked or underappreciated. Who has not encountered feelings of low self-esteem because of physique or appearance? Many people wish their bodies could be more to their liking. Ponder the magnificence of what you see when you look in the mirror. Ignore the blemishes and look beyond to see the real you–a child of God, created by Him in His image. Each organ of your body is a wondrous gift from God. Each eye has an autofocusing lens. Nerves and muscles control two eyes to make a single three-dimensional image. The eyes are connected to the brain, which records the sights seen. Your heart is an incredible pump. It has four delicate valves that control the direction of blood flow. These valves open and close more than 100,000 times a day–36 million times a year. Yet, unless altered by disease, they can withstand such stress almost indefinitely.
Think of the body’s defense system. To protect it from harm, it perceives pain. In response to infection it generates antibodies. The skin provides protection. It warns against injury that excessive heat or cold might cause. The body renews its own outdated cells. The body can heal its cuts, bruises, and broken bones. Its capacity for reproduction is another sacred gift from God. The body constantly regulates the levels of countless ingredients, such as salt, water, sugar, protein, oxygen, and carbon dioxide. Regulatory controls are managed without our awareness of these amazing realities.
Our Test is for Our Spirits to Learn to Control Our Physical Bodies
Our spirit acquired our body and became a living soul to experience mortality and the associated trials and testing. Part of that testing is to determine if the appetites of our body can be mastered by our spirit while in the body before death. When we understand our nature and our purpose on earth and that our bodies are physical temples of God, we will realize that it is sacrilege to let anything enter that might defile our body. It is truly irreverent to let even the gaze of our precious eyesight or the sensors of our touch or hearing supply the brain with memories that are unclean or unworthy. Our Creator put appetites in our bodies to perpetuate the human race and fulfill His great plan of happiness. Thus, we have appetites for food, for water, and for love. When we truly know our divine nature, we will want to control such appetites. And we will focus our eyes on sights, our ears on sounds, and our minds on thoughts that are a credit to our physical creation as a temple of God. In daily prayer, we should gratefully acknowledge Him as our Creator and thank Him for the magnificence of our own physical temple. We will care for it and cherish it as our own personal gift from God.
Dallas Jones is the local leader in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Some of the article was taken from article by President Russell M. Nelson in the New Era Magazine August 2019. For a more detailed discussion call (231) 383-8359 or send an email to [email protected]