John Wesley was an 18th-century Anglican priest and founder of Methodism. He also cared about people’s bodies. Through his sermons and writings, he often advocated a holistic approach towards spiritual and physical health, emphasizing vigorous exercise, fresh air, and healthy diet. Wesley also had a particular care for the disadvantaged in society and wanted to make sure that all had access and understanding to the medical advice of the day.
In a letter written in 1778 to Alexander Knox, a theological writer, Wesley wrote….
“It will be a double blessing if you give yourself up to the Great Physician, that He may heal soul and body together. And unquestionably this is His design. He wants to give you . . . both inward and outward health.” John Wesley
In another text, John Wesley writes that
“Salvation is “not just going to heaven, but a present deliverance from sin, a restoration of the soul to its primitive health.” John Wesley
John Wesley on Holistic Health
This week, the Church Health Reader is featuring an interview (at link that follows) with Randy Maddox, Professor of Theology and Methodist Studies at Duke Divinity School, on John Wesley and his holistic view of health.
I’ll also provide a more complete essay written by Randy Maddox titled John Wesley on Holistic Health and Healing where Maddox writes in more depth about Wesley’s view of the interrelatedness between spiritual, emotional and physical health.
Stay close to God…… and have a great day!