“Who am I?” That is a question we often ask ourselves. We sometimes follow that up with, “What is wrong with me, or us?” The Christian worldview tries to properly answer these questions based on what the Bible teaches us. Over the next several days I want to discuss what the Bible says about the nature of our being and the implications of the fall and what the solution is.
The Bible speaks of us as being composed of body, soul, and spirit. For example, Paul writes, “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians 5:23, NKJV). The Bible speaks of the Word of God as being able to pierce to the division of soul and spirit (Hebrews 4:12).
When the Bible uses the word soul it most often uses the Greek word psyche from which we get our word “psychology”. The soul is the core of our being. We often describe it as mind, will and emotions. This is where we feel love or where we make decisions. The body is how our soul communicates with the outside world. The eyes may see a beautiful sunset and as a result we may have the feeling of awe at such a beautiful sight. We enjoy a good meal thanks to the smells and taste of the food. The awe in the sunset and the delight in a good meal are felt in the soul. Our body interacts with the world and allows our soul to react.
Our spirit on the other hand is our connecting point to God. God intended our spirit to communicate with Him. The body communicates the physical world with our soul and the spirit communicates the things of God with the soul. For example, Paul writes, “The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,” (Romans 8:16, NKJV). And Jesus tells us, “God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth” (John 4:24, NKJV). Events through the spirit produce an effect in the soul just as events that are communicated through the body do. One of the difficulties we face is that sometimes our soul mistakes a physical event such as beautiful music or a lovely sunset with spiritual events. We are not always able to discern the difference.
We’ll pick up from here next time.