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Has Your Health Become an Idol?


I want to take a moment to talk about how we can take a good thing, such as caring for our bodies through exercise and becoming healthy, and make it a sin. This is really a matter of the heart. We can take good things given by God and make them sinful. For example, the enjoyment of God given rest is not evil, but it can become the sin of laziness. The enjoyment of proper self-respect can become the sin of pride… In this same manner, we can take the gift of exercise or making healthful choices and make it an idol.

When this happens, it isn’t a sin that just develops overnight. It may even start as a legitimate love that has proper placement and is God-rooted but can quickly be turned into an idol if we are not careful. This happens when our desire that was rooted in Christ ceases to exalt Him.

When I use the term idol, I do not mean a carved image that you worship, but rather anything in your life that you love more than God. Anything you desire more than God. Anything you treasure more than God. Anything you want more than God. Colossians 3:5 states, “Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.”

Do you love the feeling you get after a workout more than you love God? Do you desire to see a number on a scale more than you desire God? Do you treasure the body that you have more than you treasure God? Do you want to make every healthful decision you can more than you want God?