Blaming Our Bodies When the Problem Is Us

Evangelicals often have a very Gnostic view of sin. Gnosticism was an early heresy which taught that we are good spiritual beings trapped in a irredeemably wicked body. Similarly, rather than seeing ourselves in holistic terms, today we often compartmentalize the components of body and spirit to the point we isolate one from the other.god-in-the-dock C. S. Lewis exposed this erroneous thinking in his own inimitable way:

`You are always dragging me down,’ said I to my Body. `Dragging you down!’ replied my Body. `Well I like that! Who taught me to like tobacco and alcohol? You, of course, with your idiotic adolescent idea of being “grown-up”. My palate loathed both at first: but you would have your way. Who put an end to all those angry and revengeful thoughts last night? Me, of course, by insisting on going to sleep. Who does his best to keep you from talking too much and eating too much by giving you dry throats and headaches and indigestion? Eh?’ ‘And what about sex?’ said I. `Yes, what about it?’ retorted the Body. `If you and your wretched imagination would leave me alone I’d give you no trouble. That’s Soul all over; you give me orders and then blame me for carrying them out.’ (God in the Dock, chap 7)

Lewis’ point is clear. The problem is not merely that we are flesh and blood. The primary problem is spiritual. Our Lord Jesus taught (Matt 10:28) that we are both body and spirit, that we are never to think of one to the exclusion of the other, and that we are to understand ourselves in complete, holistic terms. The great theologian Pogo summed it up:Pogo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cross-posted at www.theologyforthechurch.com

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