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Why should I treat my body like a temple?

Our bodies were created in the image of God. They are a gift from Heavenly Father to allow us to experience mortality and continue to become more like Him. This knowledge influences the way we treat our bodies and how we feel about Heavenly Father and ourselves. When we treat our bodies as temples of God, we obtain physical, emotional, and spiritual blessings.

Prepare yourself spiritually

Prayerfully study these scriptures and resources. What does the Spirit inspire you to share with the young men?

Genesis 39:1–21; Daniel 1:3–21 (Joseph and Daniel show respect for their bodies)

1 Corinthians 6:19–20; D&C 93:33–35 (We are the temple of God)

D&C 88:15–16 (The spirit and body are the soul of man)

D&C 130:22; Moses 6:9 (We are created in the image of God)

Gordon B. Hinckley, “Great Shall Be the Peace of Thy Children,” Ensign, Nov. 2000, 50–53

David A. Bednar, “Ye Are the Temple of God,Ensign, Sept. 2001, 14–21

Videos: “The Mormon Mustang,” “Chastity: What Are the Limits?”

Let the young men lead

A member of the quorum presidency (or an assistant to the bishop in the priests quorum) conducts the quorum meeting. He leads the young men in counseling together about quorum business, teaches them their priesthood duties (from the scriptures and the Duty to God book), encourages them to share their experiences fulfilling their duty to God, and invites an adviser or other quorum member to teach a gospel lesson. He could prepare by filling out a quorum meeting agenda during a presidency meeting.

Begin the learning experience

Choose from these ideas or think of your own to review the doctrine from last week’s lesson and introduce this week’s lesson:

  • Remind the young men about what they studied in last week’s lesson. Do they have any questions or insights about what they discussed?
  • Show a picture of a temple, and invite the young men to write down words that come to mind as they think of the temple. What are the opposites of those words? Ask the young men to share what they have been asked to do to treat their physical bodies like temples of God.

Learn together

Each of the activities below will help quorum members understand that their bodies are sacred. Following the inspiration of the Spirit, select one or more that will work best for your quorum:

  • Assign each young man one of the scripture passages in this outline. Invite the young men to study the passages and summarize in a sentence what they learn about why our bodies are sacred. Ask them to share what they can do to keep their bodies and minds clean.
  • Invite each young man to read a section of one of the talks suggested in this outline. Then give the young men a few minutes to each prepare a brief lesson about the sacredness of the body. Encourage them to use a quotation from the talk along with their own personal experiences and testimonies.
  • Read as a quorum 1 Corinthians 6:19–20 and D&C 93:33–35. Ask the young men to make a list of the ways our bodies are like a temple of God. Invite them to discuss some of the challenges youth face in keeping their bodies like a temple. What can they do to overcome these challenges?
  • Divide the quorum into pairs. Assign one individual in each pair to read Genesis 39:1–21 and the other to read Daniel 1:3–21 (for pictures of these stories, see Gospel Art Book, 11, 23). Ask them to look for ways Joseph and Daniel showed respect for their bodies and then share with each other what they find. How can they follow the examples of Joseph and Daniel?
  • Invite the young men to look at the table of contents in For the Strength of Youth and identify which of the standards relate to keeping their minds and bodies clean. Divide the quorum into groups, and have them search these sections and find answers to the question “Why should I treat my body like a temple?” Invite them to share what they can do to live these standards.
  • Show one of the videos suggested in this outline. Invite the young men to identify and discuss the analogies used in the video to explain the importance of keeping our bodies clean. What can they do to encourage each other to live the standards taught in the video?
  • Ask the young men to use the “Dress and Appearance” section in For the Strength of Youth to answer questions such as “What are the Lord’s standards concerning modesty?” “Why is it important to follow these standards?” and “How does our modesty show respect for the sacredness of our bodies?”

Ask the young men to share what they learned today. Do they understand the sacredness of their bodies better? What feelings or impressions do they have? Do they have any additional questions? Would it be worthwhile to spend more time on this doctrine?

Invite to act

The young man who is conducting concludes the meeting. He could:

  • Bear his testimony about the blessings that come from treating our bodies with respect.
  • Plan with quorum members to work together to complete the “Physical Health” section of Duty to God (pages 31–34).