So I can’t answer this question about Christians and yoga without putting it in its theological context and that is the theology of God’s common grace. Every human being experiences God’s grace everyday. Because God loves us, because He’s a God of tender, faithful mercy, He allows bad people to do good things, fallen people to make wise contributions, so that life would be livable for us.
Let me give you one of the clearest examples of common grace that we all experience: that selfish people, who don’t love God, have no reason to do anything else but love themselves, generally, are willing to obey traffic laws. You know, if God would remove His grace, the most dangerous thing you could ever do is get in a car and drive, but God restrains us. God gives a surgeon, who repudiates the Lord, the ability to discover things in the human body that bring healing to thousands and thousands of people. So, I’m always going to be in this tension where I will need the wisdom of people. I will be blessed by the wisdom of people who don’t love God, who don’t serve Him, who don’t know Him, who, in their lives, believe things that are not true.
So it is with yoga. Yoga is two things. It’s [an] errant philosophy and it’s something really healthy you can do with your body; and you just have to be able to distinguish the difference and I can tell you how I would do that. I think it’s very important, when you have young children, for those young children to be regularly examined by your most often unbelieving pediatrician. He is skilled and at the science of human development. He knows what should be happening in the bodies of those children in their physical and mental capacities; and he’s going to be very helpful to you. But I would not look to that physician for parenting help because that pediatrician doesn’t have a biblical model for parenting and he’s not going to offer me the kind of counsel that I need.
So I can benefit from the physical regimen of yoga, because that stretching of the muscle system can be a very healing and health-giving thing, without buying into the philosophy of people who designed that system. God is willing to give them wisdom about things in the human body for the betterment of our lives.
And so, that’s what you’re always doing. You’re always matriculating this world. That is an example of God’s common grace, discerning when you can participate and when you must withdraw. And that’s just not a yoga thing. That’s [an] everyday thing for all of us.