Shared April 19th, 2015
And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise, Luke 23:43. Matthew 10:28 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
In our last exhortation, we ended on the discussion relating to the soul and the Old Testament. The question was, “Do you know that in the Old Testament, “soul” sometimes refers to the entirety, the whole person so that it even says in Genesis, “and man became a living soul” (Genesis 2:7)? Let us pick it up here by looking at this other example, Genesis 35:18, which says And it came to pass, as her soul was in departing, (for she died) that she called his name Benoni: but his father called him Benjamin. “Her soul” refers to the person.
These verses tell us something, that sometimes soul (nephesh in the Hebrew) is simply the whole person. That is why the Bible says, Ezekiel 18:4, 20, “The soul that sinneth, it shall die”; it is obvious that this is referring to an individual, a person in his or her whole personhood.
So where am I going with all this? Well, all that I am saying is that why be too isolated, get too technical with these terms? Soul can be a very general term as we just saw. It can refer to or speak about the immaterial part of man or it could also encompass the entirety of a human. Sometimes the Bible calls that immaterial part of man “spirit” as in “The spirit of a man that is in him,” (1 Corinthians 2).
You see, among Believers, it has been customary to conceive of man as consisting of two, and only two, distinct parts, namely, body and soul/spirit. Somehow the tripartite view made its appearance, asserting that human nature consists of three parts, body, soul, and spirit.
As I said in previous exhortations, there are many Christians on either side of this issue. However, I would like to state that ultimately only one of these views of the nature of man is correct. Furthermore, the danger is that one view can lead to errors, which in turn will spawn and cause others to spurn the Bible. Some of these “foreign” teachings are in part established not only from Scripture (the truth of the Gospel) but also from philosophy. The best way to deceive is to mix up the truth with a scattering of lies, satan’s main approach.
I started it all by saying there was a reason why I stated in one of my earlier exhortations that I believe the Bible teaches soul/spirit and here it is. The question to pose a trichotomist is the following, “When one dies which part goes to heaven?” You know what? Their answer is always soul and spirit. So then the next question is as follows: “If both of them go together, how do you separate them?” You really can’t. The Bible is amazing in its depth and truth.
Beloved, before I end, I would like to say that I don’t know about you but whether you believe in a dichotomy of body, soul/spirit or, trichotomy of body, soul and spirit, remember this: offer your body as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable unto God (Romans 12:1), thank God for saving your soul (1 Peter 1:9), and make sure that wherever you are, you are obedient to the God’s Word and do worship this same God in spirit and truth (John 4:23-24).
Proposed prayer: “Dear Father, Your Word is amazing. Because it is Your Word. Thank You for its truth and its accuracy. You have said that You are not willing for any to perish but for all to come to a saving knowledge of You so please help me share it with those who do not know You whilst encouraging those who know You but need uplifting. Thank You, in Jesus’ name. Amen.”