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Opinion | Nov 24, 2018

Beautiful Body; Ugly Spirit

A FOREIGN-based humanist wrote an article criticizing the creation story of Adam and Eve which is narrated in the Holy Bible. In his opinion, the story is contradictory and inconsistent. The author did not understand why the Bible gives two different accounts of the creation of one man. Certainly, several other people share the same uninformed view.

Now, scriptural verses of Genesis 1: 26- 27 say: “Then God said, 'Let us make man in our image, after our likeness….So God CREATED MAN in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” And then Genesis 2: 7 says: “Then the LORD God FORMED THE MAN OF DUST from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature”.

You see, the problem many students of secular scientists and philosophers have is that they take the Bible, read and content-analyse it as they do thesis, dissertation or textbook. They do not realize that the key which locks a door also opens it. The Spirit of God that inspired the writing of the Bible also inspires its reading, understanding, interpretation and application. A person can be a Bible scholar and yet fail to clearly understand its truth if he or she is not carried along by the Spirit of God. It is high time secular intellectuals stopped handling the Bible as a scientific material and respected it as the Word of God.

Many educated folks know a great deal about things around them, but know very little about themselves especially their spiritual part. Genesis 1:26- 27 reveals the creation of the spiritual part of man, that is, the spirit man while Genesis 2: 7 talks about the formation of the physical man, that is, the body. This tells us that a human being is a spirit being and lives in a body. The life of the body depends upon the life of the spirit. And we know that the spirit was created but the body was formed.

Interestingly the terms “created and formed” regarding the making of man is also repeated in Isaiah 43: 1 which says, “But now thus says the LORD, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.

And it is written that God created man in His image, after His likeness. This tells us about God's communicable nature which He shared with man and woman. It is His righteousness, holiness, purity, love, faithfulness, gentleness, justice, kindness, glory, dominion, goodness etc. It is this image and likeness of God in man and woman that makes us beautiful in the sight of God.

The temptation of Adam and Eve to sin was an attack to make them filthy and ugly spiritually. Indeed, sin is a reproach and disgrace. Sin makes no one beautiful; it makes people ugly and horrible. Thus, currently, everyone who is in bondage of sin and practices sin is not beautiful on the inside. Their spirit man is filthy and ugly because of sin.

Over the years, many men and women have been deceived to pay greater attention to the beauty of their bodies. They spend huge sums of money to enhance only the beauty of their bodies. Of course, we should bath at least twice a day, use relevant cosmetics, dress and smell well. After all, the Bible compliments physical beauty.

However, these days, hundreds of people have adopted strange methods of body beautification. They surgically add and subtract many things to their bodies, using all manner of products just for them to appear beautiful. Little do they know that a person can look beautiful on the outside, but look filthy and ugly on the inside. You can have a beautiful body, but an ugly spirit. A beautiful body may be pleasing to humans, but to God it is a reproach. God is pleased with a man or woman with a beautiful spirit.

It is for this reason, the apostle Peter wrote an exhortation, saying: “Do not let your adorning be external – the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry or the clothing you wear – but let your adorning be THE HIDDEN PERSON OF THE HEART with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious. For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves…” (1 Peter 3: 4- 5).

Now, a person can never have a beautiful spirit as God made Adam and Eve in the beginning unless they are healed of the disease of the soul – sin – by grace through faith in Christ Jesus. It is only the gospel of the Lord Jesus that has superior power and authority to clean us of our spiritual filth and ugliness. As we hear the messages of Christ's suffering on the cross, and believe in Him, our spirit man is washed. O, yes, we are beautified on the inside.

Certainly, an unbeliever can have a beautiful body, but can never have a beautiful spirit. However, a child of God has a beautiful spirit and can have a beautiful body also. It is important to conclude that if we wash and iron the dresses which clothe our bodies, we can equally wash and iron the garment that clothes our spirit. Righteousness is the garment that clothes our spirit, and we can wash it with the Word of God and iron it with the Holy Spirit.

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FROM James Quansah, Kumasi

James Quansah
James Quansah, © 2018

This author has authored 52 publications on Modern Ghana.
Author column: JamesQuansah

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