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“The Redemption of Our Bodies”

“If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the Lord that healeth thee” (Exod. 15:26).

The promise of immunity from Egypt’s diseases was given to the children of Israel soon after they left their captivity. Yet, this promise wasn’t based simply on supernatural intervention; it was based also, maybe even especially, on the natural laws of health. If they followed what the Lord commanded them to do in the area of health and sanitation, as opposed to what their captors did (for instance, while the Egyptians used human excrement for medicinal purposes, the Hebrews were to bury theirs outside the camp), they would be spared the ailments that afflicted the Egyptians.

Even here, then, we can see God’s concern for not just the spiritual well-being of His people but for their physical well-being, their health, as well. This idea also is found in the Hebrew word shalom, commonly translated as “peace.” Yet, the word conveys a deeper sense, that of a completeness, of a wholeness and a fullness that involves the total person, physical health included. The first use of the word shalom in the Old Testament appears when Jacob, inquiring about Laban, the grandson of Abraham’s brother, asks: “And he said unto them, Is he well? And they said, He is well . . .” (Gen. 29:6). In both instances, the word translated “well” comes from shalom.

Of course, it makes perfect sense that God would care about our physical health. After all, He created us as physical beings. Before sin, before the Fall, we were already in the flesh. We were made as fleshly beings. Our fall wasn’t to the flesh; it was a fall in the flesh. Our bodies aren’t evil, or bad, the prison houses for the soul or the like (as some religions have taught). Our bodies are wonderful gifts from a loving God who created us in His image and who wants us to enjoy our physical existence, at least as much as possible in this fallen world.

Thus, this quarter we are going to look at what’s often been a neglected aspect of the wonderful truths God has given us as a movement, and that is the health message. The Lord revealed these principles to us for the same reason He died for us, because He loves us and wants what’s in our best interest.

Of course, we all are mortal, we all face sickness, and, unless Christ comes in our lifetime, we all die. Nothing is going to change that now, and certainly not healthful living. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do our best to take care of ourselves; that doesn’t mean we aren’t under a divine obligation to take care of our body temples. As Paul expressed it: “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1 Cor. 6:19, 20, NKJV).

This quarter’s lesson on healthful living, written by the General Conference Health Department in Silver Spring, Maryland, USA, was produced with the desire to help us enjoy all the shalom we possibly can now, until that final day in which we receive, once and forever, “the redemption of our bodies” (Rom. 8:23, NIV).

Contributors from the Health and Temperance Ministries Department of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists were Allan Handysides, Kathleen Kuntaraf, Peter Landless, Stoy Proctor, and Thomas Zirkle.


No. Study


April 3 Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow! (Mobile)


April 10 The Power of Choice (Mobile)


April 17 Celebrating Spiritual and Physical Fitness (Mobile)


April 24 The Water of Life (Mobile)


May 1 The Environment (Mobile)


May 8 Faith and Healing (Mobile)


May 15 Rest and Restoration (Mobile)


May 22 The Atmosphere of Praise (Mobile)


May 29 Temperance (Mobile)


June 5 Integrity: Wholeness and Holiness (Mobile)


June 12 Optimism: Happiness and Healing (Mobile)


Juen 19 Nutrition in the Bible (Mobile)
13 June 26 Social Support: The Tie That Binds (Mobile)

Giardina Sabbath School Study Helps

Jerry Giardina of Pecos, Texas, assisted by his wife, Cheryl, prepares a series of helps to accompany the Sabbath School lesson. He includes all related scripture and most EGW quotations. Jerry has chosen the "New King James Version" of the scriptures this quarter. It is used with permission. The study helps are linked from each lesson and links to the whole quarter's Helps are provided here. in two versions: wordprocessing as anRTF, DOC or WP file and HTML (Web Pages).

Last updated on May 2, 2010

Editorial Office: 12501 Old Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, MD 20904.

Principal Contributors:
Allan Handysides
Kathleen Kuntaraf
Peter Landless
Stoy Proctor
Thomas Zirkle
Clifford R. Goldstein
Associate Editor:
Soraya L. Homayouni

Publication Manager:
Lea Alexander Greve
Editorial Assistant:
Sharon Thomas-Crews
Pacific Press Coordinator:
Paul A. Hey
Art Director and Illustrator:
Lars Justinen
Concept Design:
Dever Design

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