Jan. 14, 2018 – Sanctity of Human Life Sunday Text: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20
Dear Friends in Christ,
What do you think of when you hear these two words – body language? You might think of non-verbal communication where are body language speaks to if we are happy or sad, mad or compassionate, giddy or gory. You might think of the 1980’s game show “Body Language” that was a form of charades. You might think of that girl or guy and well, you know. Where does your mind go when I say – body language?
The Apostle Paul is going to speak to us today about body language. It is Sanctity of Human Life Sunday and God our Creator has given us all a body. He has breathed life into our bodies. He has sanctified and saved our bodies. He wants us to use our bodies for His glory.
I am not going to stand in the pulpit today and piously point my finger. I don’t want you to sit in the pew pompously either. We are not going to surround Paul as he tells the world how horrible they are when it comes to use of the body. See, Paul wasn’t writing to pagans. He writes to Christians being influenced by a pagan world. We need to take this personally. The Holy Spirit will lead us to an understanding of . . .
The Corinthians used improper body language when they thought their bodies were actually their own and therefore they could do whatever they desired. We have modern day Corinthian thought. “I have a right to do what I want with my own body” and “My body, my choice.”
Again, let’s not just point; let’s take it personally. We use improper body language to justify pouring too much liquor into our bodies or eating to excess or sitting on our backsides instead of getting our hearts pumping or having sexual intercourse outside the bonds of marriage. “Hey, it’s my body! I can do what I want.”
What are we doing with our body language? Society seems to think hook-ups and hang-ups and friends with benefits is the norm. But recent studies seem to show the opposite. Human beings are having less sex. We can look at that two ways. Good if it is the young and the unmarried. Bad if it is husband and wife. Our technological society shows that human interaction is waning. We would rather be intimate with our devices. Those movies of year’s past are coming true!
Paul’s body language is very clear: “You are not your own” (v. 19). You are not your own because you have been bought. You are not your own because you have been bought with a price. The price for you was high: God’s own blood shed in the person of Jesus. You are not your own, because that blood cleanses you from all your sin. God dwells in you.
If you ever doubt your value or wonder about your purpose in life, remember Paul’s body language and take it personally! In Baptism, the Lord united your body with His. God bought you, cleansed you, and declared you holy. Once we see how God values us and how He made our bodies holy then we can use them properly. Our body language will speak of His glory. “So glorify God in your body” (v. 20b).
Allow me to speak to our young people and singles here today. Sometimes the Church sees you as just raging hormones and zits. That is part of who you are but you are so much more. God created you and knit you together in your mother’s womb. God created you and then in Baptism united you with Jesus. He purchased you with His blood and declared you His most holy place, where His Spirit is pleased to dwell. You can make good, God-pleasing decisions. You can glorify God with your body language.
The same goes for our husbands and wives. Let’s take us back to our marriage worship service where the Pastor said this: “The union of husband and wife in heart, body, and mind is intended by God for mutual companionship. Marriage was also ordained so that man and woman may find delight in one another. God also established marriage for the procreation of children.” You, too, can make good, Biblical, God-pleasing choices and glorify God with your body language. If you have children, you then pass on a God-ordained model.
Listen to God’s body language. We are not to become monks but to use our bodies in ways that are pleasing to God. We live in our ever-changing world but we don’t succumb to their immorality. When they say: “Go ahead put that drug in your body.” Listen to God’s body language: “I made your body for the Lord, to be united with Jesus.” When the world’s body language says, “You have a right to do what you want with your body,” listen to God’s body language: “Your body is not your own, for you were bought with a price.” When the world and sometimes even the church say, “You can’t control your body, go ahead…be safe,” listen to God’s body language: “You’ve been united with me. I live in you. I will help you. You can glorify Me with your body.”
May the Lord help us all with our…BODY LANGUAGE. Amen.