What did Paul mean when he said physical exercise profits very little?


1 Timothy 4:8

KJV - 8 For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.

Clarify Share Report Asked February 11 2022 Mini Anonymous

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Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
I would say that Paul's emphasis in the cited verse was not speaking of physical training in an absolute sense, but in a comparative sense with what follows it in that verse (that is, godliness or spiritual training).

Physical exercise is beneficial for the human body in this life. However, spiritual training that prepares Christians for the eternal life in God's presence that awaits them after their temporal life on earth will be over is of far greater value, since its benefits will be endless.

This is made clear in multiple translations of this verse that can be found on the biblehub.com website. For example, the English Standard Version expresses it as, "For while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come."

February 11 2022 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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