What is BETTER than PHYSICAL EXERCISES? "But reject profane and old wives' fables, and exercise yourself toward godliness. For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come. This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance.” (1 Tim 4:7-9)
In this passage, Apostle Paul compares Christian service to an athletic regimen as he speaks of doing exercises that has godliness as its end result. Instead of wasting time on useless myths, we should exercise our minds, intellect and will power towards attaining godliness. Such exercise involves reading and studying the Bible, prayer, meditation, obeying God’s Word daily, fellowshipping with other believers, and other acts of Christian service. Stock says, “There is no such thing as drifting into godliness; the ‘stream of tendency’ is against us.” There must be exercise and effort from our part!
Paul compares two kinds of exercises: ‘physical exercises’ and ‘exercises to attain godliness’. Physical exercise has certain values for our bodies, but these values are limited and of short duration. Godliness, on the other hand, is good for our spirit, soul, and body, and is not only for our time on earth but for eternity as well. Godliness yields the greatest joy in this life, and it holds the promise of great rewards in eternity.
Let us understand that discipline in godliness affects both our present and future lives. Let us put at least as much effort into our spiritual lives as we do in our recreation and hobbies – this will make such a great difference! Physical exercise is important, but spiritual exercise is even more essential. Both discipline and devotion are needed to make a winning athlete and an effective Christian!
"Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified." (1 Cor 9:26-27)