Summary: Everything we do aids the health of body, mind and soul. It all ties in to the two great commandments of loving God with your whole being and your neighbor as yourself.
A farmers son, who was about to begin his studies at medical
school said, "Dad, when I get to be a doctor, I think I'll specialize in
obstetrics." The old man shook his head and responded, "Likely
you'll be just wasting your time son. Chances are, soon as you begin
making money at it, somebody else'll find a cure for it." Ignorance
can be the basis for a lot of humor. A pastor was once visiting an
elderly woman in a nursing home, and as he talked to her he noticed
a dish of peanuts on the stand by her bed. As he talked, he helped
himself to the peanuts. After a while he noticed he had eaten a good
share of them and he apologized. The old woman said it was all
right because she didn't like peanuts anyway. The pastor was
surprised and asked, "Why then do you have them sitting here on
your stand?" She replied, "I just like to suck the chocolate off
them." Ignorance can be bliss,
but revelation can be gross.
Ignorance can be funny, but it is no fun when people risk their
own health and that of others out of ignorance. Ignorance is
probably the number one enemy of health in this world. Medical
missions has been a major part of the churches mission to the world
because pagan darkness leads people into so many practices that
destroy them body, mind, and soul. The Christian world has
compassion for the whole man, and so with the light of the Gospel
goes the light of the knowledge to bring good health. In our advance
Western culture we have overcome most of the problems of pagan
ignorance, but ignorance is still alive and well.
Back in 1928 women were working for the US Radium
Corporation painting radium on various articles like luminous clock
dials. They were instructed to moisten the brush in their mouth.
They became ill, and one even reported that her hair glowed in the
dark. Their health was damaged by ignorance, and we all know of
the modern problem with asbestos and chemicals of all kinds. There
is no way to know just how devastating human ignorance is to the
health of human lives. What we don't know is hurting us all the
time. But what we do know is helping us constantly to overcome the
ignorance that hurts us, and experience the health God intends for
us to have.
Feeling good is a good feeling and a feeling that God's Word says
is good. Here in the shortest book of the New Testament, with only
219 Greek words, and one of these words is health. It is the same
word Dr. Luke uses in Luke 5:31 where he quotes Jesus saying,
"These that are whole need not a physician." To be whole is to be
healthy, and when you are healthy you don't need the doctor. The
implication is that when you are not whole or healthy you do need
the doctor. Jesus, therefore, puts His stamp of approval on the
ambivalent feelings we have toward doctors. The poet put it-
When I am well and feeling fine,
And not a pain or ache is mine,
I brand the Doc the King of ills,
And laugh at all his sugar pills.
There is no merit, I contend,
In any dose you recommend.
Your punk advise is but a joke,
Designed to keep the people broke.
But when I'm sick and full of aches,
And get the shivers and the shakes,
Or when my stomach starts to rock,
I call upon my friend the Doc.
I praise him then and think him great,
And take his doses by the crate,
Until I'm fully cured--and then,
I tell him he is a joke again.
We are glad they are there, but we hope and pray we don't need
them, , for not needing them means we are feeling fine, and this is
the way we should want to feel. It is the way John wants his friend
Gaius to feel, and in wanting that he shows us-
I. THE CHRISTIAN ATTITUDE TOWARDS HEALTH.
It is an attitude of admiration. It is the ideal state of life, and is
the state in which God created Adam and Eve, and the state of the
risen and glorified humanity of Jesus. It is the state of perfect health
that is the goal of God for man. It is perfectly natural then that
John would pray for his friend to enjoy good health. That is the one
goal of life that all men have in common. Feeling fine is a fine
feeling, and nobody doesn't like feeling fine. Adam was made so
healthy that even after the fall he lived to the age of 930. His son