What God Has to Say about Our Bodies: How the Gospel Is Good News for Our Physical Selves – Sam Allberry

What God Has to Say about Our Bodies: How the Gospel Is Good News for Our Physical Selves by Sam Allberry
Also by this author: Why Does God Care Who I Sleep With?
Published by Good Book Company on June 29, 2021
Genres: Non-Fiction, Christian Life, Theology
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"God's eternal plan for us involves our body. We can't write off our physical life as spiritually irrelevant." --Sam Allberry
There's a danger in focusing too much on the body. There's also a danger in not valuing it enough. In fact, the Bible has lots to say about the body. With the coming of Jesus, "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us"--flesh that was pierced and crushed for the sins of the world.
In What God Has to Say about Our Bodies, Sam Allberry explains that all of us are fearfully and wonderfully made, and should regard our physicality as a gift. He offers biblical guidance for living, including understanding gender, sexuality, and identity; dealing with aging, illness, and death; and considering the physical future hope that we have in Christ.
In this powerfully written book, you'll gain a new understanding for the immeasurable value of our bodies and God's ultimate plan to redeem them.

I have read both theoretical and practical Christian books about the body, but I have never before read a book that combines both focuses so well. In this book, Sam Allberry presents a theology of the body and explores its implications, explaining why our bodies matter, how different life issues related to the body affect us, and why we should submit our bodies to God, their creator and redeemer. He builds his perspective from within the framework of the gospel story, addressing our bodies through the lenses of creation, the fall, and redemption. Throughout the book, he writes about issues such as gender identity, male and female differentiation, bodily pain and suffering, and the reality of death, and he addresses all of these things with clear arguments and great compassion.

One chapter also includes a section on body shame, and I found that tremendously helpful and encouraging, since he writes about this for everyone instead of treating it as primarily a women’s issue. Regarding current beauty ideals, he says, “Today we all collude in upholding an expectation of beauty that is virtually fantastical. No wonder we view our bodies as increasingly flawed. We’re not comparing them to the best of our species but to the best of our species’ imagination.” After this introduction, he shares a raw, personal story from a male friend of his, and he also shares some general examples from other men. This section is brief but has a big impact, and I’m grateful for Allberry’s choice to address this from a male perspective, which is so rare.

What God Has to Say about Our Bodies: How the Gospel Is Good News for Our Physical Selves is amazingly deep and comprehensive, as Allberry covers a variety of issues in a fairly brief book. He writes with compassion, grace, and insight throughout, and regardless whether or not someone agrees with all of his conclusions about sensitive social issues, he expresses his convictions with clarity, love, and a high view of the dignity of the body. I greatly appreciate his loving apologetic for a biblical view of the body, and his attention to practical issues, personal struggles, and the ways that we can experience God’s presence in our bodies as we look forward to their eventual resurrection in a new, redeemed earth.