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Paula Gooder - Body: biblical spirituality for the whole person

SPCK ISBN 978 0 281 07100 5 Price £9.99

You can’t judge a book by its cover! This book is not quite what it seems at first sight. The title and the cover suggest a gentle reflection of holistic spirituality. The book itself is a robust and careful biblical study on the place of the body in Christian thinking and practice. 

Gooder contests that the use of the term spirituality can extenuate the idea that being spiritual has nothing to do with our bodies. To move beyond this, somewhat Greek philosophical idea of the body, the author takes the reader through what the Bible has to say about the Christian life being a body-affirming and embodied state. 

Gooder suggests that keeping body and soul together in our thinking helps us to have a healthier view of our bodies now and in the future. If our bodies are not a prison house for the soul, and if our eternal future is not a jettisoning of the body like a short-lived booster rocket into a free spirit future, then we begin to get a handle on how God views our bodies. 

It will involve some patience to work through this book but if you do, you will never look in the mirror the same way again.

John Woods is pastor of Lancing Tabernacle

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