The Living Word – Body, Soul, Spirit

The Word

As a young believer I was always taught that the Bible was written by men that were inspired through the Holy Spirit and that every word was specifically recorded as God’s plan and design…..And that is true.  But I did not fully understand that The Word is God and that he is actively sanctifying me each and every time I read or hear The Word!  I thought that it was a one way conversation.  God –> to Me (based on what I needed at that moment).  One way communication through the print on the pages.  That made sense to me.  When each of us independently read scripture, we often times find different little nuggets that we each can apply to our own individual lives.   

But it’s so much more dynamic than that!  I now understand that I can relate with God in an ‘interactive’ way and his written word can teach me all things!   Let’s cover a few scriptures here to support my previous statement first:

2 Timothy 3:16:  All scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. 

So I have been interpreting this all my life, through my understanding, that as we read the Bible and we remember to ask the Holy Spirit for enlightenment and understanding that He would actually grow our faith through enhanced learning. God –> Me.

Recently as I was working through my Bible Study materials for the day, I read Hebrews 4:12-13:

For the word of God is alive and active, Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.  Nothing in creation is hidden from God’s sight.  Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account”.

I then searched in my study bible and saw a notation that, in this scripture, the author of Hebrews was associating the activity of the Word with the activity of God, which in a sense are associated.  As I pondered this I remembered John 1:1-5 scripture: 

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it”.

“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”
‭‭John‬ ‭1:14‬ ‭

It’s with these additional verses of scripture that I realized that it’s actually an ‘interactive’ communication with God when we are reading the bible. As a Christian, with the gift of the Holy Spirit in me, as I am reading the scriptures that were planned specifically, perfectly, and completely by God the Father, and inspired by the Holy Spirit, it is also through Jesus (referred to as The Word) that discerns and judges the thoughts of my heart. As I am reading and internalizing The Word, The Word is reading me, my thoughts, and my heart! It’s a cyclical process, on-going, back and forth, bi-directional: God <–> Me.

I also spent some time trying to further understand Soul and Spirit. How does The Word divide my Soul and my Spirit? Without further study, I can’t even understand the difference??? Then I found an interesting article, that is supported by scripture, and a chart that helped me further understand the difference. I have more to explore regarding the fact that Adam and Eve were created in relationship with God (with Spirit) and that with sin, they lost that. The result is that we were born of sinful nature through Adam, and when we become Christians we then receive the Holy Spirit and are again in relationship with God.

I’ll update the document more as I explore more.  If you have comments, please feel free to let me know your thoughts too!

Body, Soul and Spirit – Explained

These three terms – Body, Soul and Spirit – are words that most of us have heard before, yet many do not understand what they truly mean.

In this teaching, we will explore the meaning of each (Body, Soul and Spirit), and how these 3 states came into existence.

We will also examine the 3 terms: Formed, Made and Created, and understand their relationship with “Body, Soul and Spirit”.

Sections in this Biblical Teaching:
1) What are we made up of?
2) Body – Formed
3) Soul – Made
4) Spirit – Created
5) Conclusion

1) What are we made up of?

We as human beings are composed of a range of Chemical Elements by mass. (Body)

– The human body is approximately 70% water (H2O).

– Around 99% of our bodies are made up of six elements: Oxygen, Carbon, Hydrogen, Nitrogen, Calcium, and Phosphorus.

– Of the remaining mass, about 0.75% is composed of five elements: Sodium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Sulfur, and Chlorine.

– The remaining elements of the body exist in trace amounts (very tiny amounts).

All of these Elements can be found in the Earth’s Crust.

The Bible says that we “Christians” are:
– Formed of the Earth
– Made of Soul
– Created of Spirit

(Isaiah 43:3) For I am the LORD thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour:…

(Isaiah 43:7) Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him.

Formed, Made and Created are not synonymous, they all have different meanings.

(1 Thessalonians 5:23) And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Neither is Body, Soul and Spirit synonymous, they each distinct from one another.

Most humans (Natural man) only have 2 of those 3 parts. Body and Soul.

(Genesis 2:7) And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

Dust + Breath of Life = A Living Soul {All living Organisms}

Physically, humans are no greater than Animals.
Natural man can operate only by 5 senses. Everything a natural man can learn or understand comes through the senses of: Sight, Hearing, Smelling, Touch and Taste.

Humans “attain” Spirit when they confess Jesus Christ as Lord, and believe with their heart that God raised him from the dead.

How does one become a Christian? »

2) Body – Formed

Body

As I mentioned before, all of the Elements that make up the Human Body, can be also found in the Earth’s Crust.

The Bible says that God formed man from the earth:

(Genesis 2:7) And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

This is how our human bodies were “put together”. God used the elements of the earth, or “dust of the ground” to shape this marvellous body we have.

יצר
yâtsar

yaw-tsar’
through the squeezing into shape; to mould into a form; especially as a potter; figuratively to determine (that is, form a resolution): – X earthen, fashion, form, frame, make (-r), potter, purpose.

The word “formed” in the Bible is translated from the Hebrew word “yâtsar”.
Yâtsar means “to fashion/mould out of something that already exists”.

From Genesis 2:7: “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground…”
The word “man” here is “âdâm”.

אדם
‘âdâm

aw-dawm’
To show blood (in the face), that is, flush or turn rosy: – be (dyed, made) red (ruddy).
That is, a human being (an individual or the species, mankind, etc.)

The meaning of the name/word Adam is: ‘Man; earth; to be red’.

Our Physical bodies all return to the earth one day. This is a natural law.

(Ecclesiastes 3:20) All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.

(Genesis 3:19) In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

When we die, are physical bodies go back to the earth.
This goes for all living organisms, humans and animals alike.

3) Soul – Made

Soul

The Body is a “Host” or “Vessel” for the Soul.
Once God formed the Body, he “made” the body into a “Living soul” by breathing the “Breath of Life” into it.

(Genesis 2:7) And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

The words “soul” is translated from the Hebrew word “nephesh”.

נפשׁ
nephesh

neh’-fesh
Properly a breathing creature, that is, animal or (abstractly) vitality; used very widely in a literal, accommodated or figurative sense (bodily or mental): – any, appetite, beast, body, breath, creature.

The soul is what gives a body life, it’s vitality.

The phrase ”breathed into his nostrils” is the figure of speech condescensio.
God put life into Adam, making him a living soul.

“‛âśâh” is the Hebrew word for “made”.

עשׂה
‛âśâh

aw-saw’
A primitive root; to do or make, in the broadest sense and widest application: – accomplish, advance, appoint, apt, be at, become, bear, bestow, bring forth, bruise, be busy

“‛âśâh” is “a substance required or which the thing made consists”.

The soul is nothing more and nothing less than what gives a body life.
It is sometimes referred to as someone’s “Life-force” or “The spirit of a man”.

Soul is not Spirit, and has nothing to do with whether you are a Christian or not.
Once someone is breathing, living, they have a soul.

(Genesis 1:30) And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to everything that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.

The word “life” here is “soul”, translated from “nephesh”.
This verse says that all living things have a soul.

(Genesis 1:20) And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.

(Genesis 1:21) And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.

(Genesis 1:24) And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.

In both verses 21 and 24, the word “creature” here is again “soul”, translated from “nephesh”.

The Hebrew word “Chai/Chay” means “moving” life or “moving” soul.

חי
chay

khah’ee
Alive; hence raw (flesh); fresh (plant, water, year), strong; also (as noun, especially in the feminine singular and masculine plural) life (or living thing), whether literally or figuratively.

In the above verses, the word “living” is translated from “chai”.
“Nephesh Chai” is always used in the Bible as a living soul, in contrast to a “dead” or perished soul.

Where is the soul located in man?

(Leviticus 17:11) For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.

The Bible tells us that the soul is in the blood.
Thus, soul life is passed on from parent to offspring through their bloodlines.

God does not need to breathe soul again into every newly born creature. It’s passed on through the generations.

Soul life is not immortal; it is either passed on through generations, or perishes when a person dies.

4) Spirit – Created

spirit

We have looked at what all living organisms are composed of. Body and Soul.
So what is Spirit about?

Let’s look at the first verse of the Bible:

(Genesis 1:1) In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

“To create” means, “to bring something into existence from nothing” or “to bring something into existence which never existed before”.

In Genesis 1:3, God did not create light, it already existed before this point.

(Genesis 1:3) And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.

God only called “light” into existence/focus here.

—————
This Topic explains more about what in the first verses of Genesis:
Genesis 1:1 – What happened in the Beginning of Time?
—————

Let’s see what God “created” in these “7 days of his work”.

(Genesis 1:21) And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good.

Here is where God is now finally creating something new.

Their physical bodies were formed out of the waters and the earth, but what is new here, is “Soul”.
This is the first time God created “Soul life”.

God then uses this new “Life Force” called Soul, to “Make” all living creatures.

Let’s look at these verses to explain a little more:

(Genesis 1:24) And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.

(Genesis 1:25) And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and everything that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good.

(Genesis 1:26) And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

Paying close attention, God does not “Create” again here, he simply Forms and Makes these new types of life.

But why?
This is because Soul was already created in verse 21, and didn’t need to be created again.

Let’s see what God does next.

(Genesis 1:27) So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

Here we can see that God is ending his “days of work” by finally creating 1 new thing.
This is, creating man in his own image.

What is God? What is his “image”?

(John 4:24) God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

God is Spirit.

“Genesis 1:27” is where God creates Spirit in Man. His image.
Thus, finally man became Body, Soul and Spirit.

The animals did not get a Spirit, only Man.

Spirit is what we Christians use to “communicate” with God. We use it in prayer and manifestations.

As seen later in Genesis, Adam and Eve lost that “Spirit Connection” with God through their sin.
Thus, the generations of Adam (natural man) also do not have that Spirit.

However, because of what Jesus Christ has done for us, we are able to receive that Holy Spirit again, and have connection with God.

In the older scriptures of the Bible, before Christ’s accomplishment, what those Prophets of God had, was “Spirit upon”, something different from what Christians have today.
It was not permanent as ours is now.

Our Spirit is what goes to heaven when Jesus Christ returns, not Body or Soul.

5) Conclusion

To Conclude, we have seen that:

All living things are:
– Formed of the Earth
– Made of Soul Life

Christians also have something “extra”, they are:
– Created of Spirit

The Physical Body returns to the earth (dust) upon dying.

The Soul is passed on (shared) through progeny from Parent to Child, or it perishes at death.

Our Spirit returns with God at the time of Jesus Christs return.

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