Part 2 – Soul: Mind, Emotion, and Will
After the LORD surveyed the earth, which was in darkness and void, the seven days of creation came into play, and the existence of humanity began with one particular rule: not to eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. It all started when God formed the first man in His image and likeness.
(Go back to Part 1: The Spirit of Mankind)
“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.” Genesis 2:7, while in NASB, it was recorded like this: “Then the LORD God formed man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living being.”
We can tell that a human being is the same as a human soul and the dust of the earth is to a living being or Soul. It must come from the dead Soul and then become a living soul. In the Book of Genesis, God created man in His image; in the image of God, He created him, male and female. He created them in Genesis 1:27. “And in the day they were created, He called them “man.” Mark 13:19. The word man here is not gender-specific but gender-neutral; some termed it Agender.
Male and female He created them, and He blessed them. And on the day they were created, He called them “man.” Genesis 5:2.
Two examples that we can reference the genderlessness from the Bible. According to Genesis 2:7, God did not make a body and put a soul into it but used the dust of the earth and formed it, then called it man after He breathed the gift of life. As Brevard Childs writes, man became a living soul from a biblical perspective that a person “does not have a soul, but is a soul.”
If God’s Will and Purpose for humanity is to multiply and replenish the earth and subdue it, how will it happen without interaction with the opposite sex?
Sylvester Stallone and Sandra Bullock’s movie Demolition Man brings back my memories of the film about the cryogenically frozen cop for centuries and the future cop in a crimeless generation met.
This generation can have babies without physical contact just by sitting face to face and doing some wiring. So they can keep the population growing. Just thinking about how it works, imagine life without sex can save humanity!
Will that work for our salvation?
Let us go back to the Garden of Eden, where life began. Adam was tempted by Eve after the adversary, the father of lies, deceived her.
We need to unveil that this event of lies and deception in the garden is not about the literal fruit but the physical fruit that brought the knowledge of good and evil.
Others can judge us for bringing make-believe movies into these teachings, but there is a possibility that it could happen, maybe not in our generation but in the future. Some animals are asexual and do not need a male or a mate to give birth. They are created to give us something to think about and seek the truth behind that story.
Why did God allow Adam to sin, which made the beginning of the sinful nature of humanity the wages of sin is death and souls that sinned died?
God gave us free will, free to think, to decide, and to act and react, but all these things happened not because God planned it but by the misuse of the freedom of will could be the cause.
We can make arguments that sex is essential for childbearing.
Is that what the creator’s original plan was? Is it a creation with a genderless body? There are God’s creations that can multiply without physical contact with the opposite sex, like; sea horses; they do not need a female to produce offspring. Female sharks can reproduce without having sex, and there are many more. It is called Asexual. Asexual reproduction means reproduction without sex involved.
Parthenogenesis is a process in which wild female animals can reproduce without a mate. If God had kept Eve inside Adam’s body, the plan could go for generations before the man could have committed sins against Him.
God’s plan and purpose are written in His heart.
Do we know exactly what it is? Or we will never know it. Can humanity grow if Adam avoided the temptation? Do we keep our perfection if sin did not come to the world? Will human nature be a divine nature?
We can come up with many questions, but it will be human thinking and reasoning. It is the glory of God to conceal a thing, and it is up to you to ask of your kingdom, your domain, to search out a matter.
See how great God the Father is.
He wrote these things to exercise our free will to ask, seek, and knock, and He will never interfere. The truth will set us free; what a great God we have.
A living soul also refers to a living being with three major divisions; mind, emotion, and will. As Ray Stedman wrote, “the cry of the Soul is the mind which can be found in the book of Psalms along with Proverbs, which is the emotion, and Ecclesiastes as the cry of the will.
All three express the cry of man’s Soul. The primal need of the human spirit is faith because the man was made to believe in God, but the cry of the human Soul is for hope.” Psalms reach a person’s mind and give the impression that humans are full of bitterness, struggles, and discontentment, and death ends the existence of man without hope of the afterlife.
We must bear in mind that the psalmists deeply think about how they feel and what people feel, not essentially the absolute truth. When feelings arise, they should not be mistaken to be a discernment of the truth.
We can feel that the enemies we are trying to avoid are the people around but later, we realize that they are not but ourselves. So our feelings can be misleading.
We cry for something and then find out that it is not what we should be seeking but –the power to defend against the pressure of the oppressor, the true enemies in this troubled world. Living a life of faith gives us the key to God for help.
Our souls are designed to worship God, and God used the Psalmists to touch our emotions through hymns to get our emotions. It then makes the difference between the world and the Word of God.
They are an emotion that teaches us how to be honest before God. To worship with Honest Heart is lifting God’s glory to the highest. It is His delight to see His children making an effort to connect with Him.
It is a joyful sound singing Psalm praising and glorifying Him. We must remember that our refuge in times of trouble is God alone. We can lean on Him, and He will never leave or forsake us; no harm will befall us, and no disaster will come near your tent. (Psalm 91).
The Soul makes us think a religious thought. Our emotions feel like a blessing, and our Will makes our actions a reaction well-mannered, disciplined, and in line with good works. Our emotions must always be felt in the very presence of God since our emotions are in conjunction with our relationship with God.
If there is a problem in our life, the Holy Spirit within knows it, but we must ask and not hide it because He knows. If we feel mad, say it. If we are upset about something, express it. If we are resentful, bring it out. To be upset with Him is foolishness.
We should not have a one-way relationship with God that we only come when we need refuge but must also show or express our gladness and joyful act. This is what worship with our Soul is all about.
Honesty and truthfulness to God, who alone can reform our body and renew our heart, and with total submission to His Holiness, He will send troubles and problems to go away.
He will change our behavior and attitude to live worry-free lives, and our moods will be consistently loving and caring and no more resentful.
We will be a changed person full of His grace.”Does God have a soul?”
We believe that God created us in His image and likeness, and we also believe that we are souls with borrowed vessels.
Throughout the Bible, people are referred to as having a soul (Psalm 62:5; 104:1; Luke 1:46).
Since we are created in God’s image and likeness, we can say that God has a soul. The Scripture says that God has a soul-Leviticus 26:11, and God grieves- Genesis 6:6; Psalm 78:40; Judges 10:16. God describes Himself as having a soul, as written in Jeremiah 5:29, Jeremiah 9:9, and Amos 6:8. In Jeremiah 32:41 it says, “I will rejoice over them to do them good and will faithfully plant them in this land with all my heart and with all my soul.” (NASB); “Shall I not punish for these things? Says the LORD: shall not my Soul be avenged on such a nation as this—King James 2000 Bible?”
Scripture refers to God as having a hand or a face with the same qualities as a human. In Noah’s time, God regretted making human beings on the earth, and His heart was grieved Genesis 6:5-6. Though the Scripture refers to God with human behavior and character, we should not interpret those passages so quickly when applying human qualities to God.
Consulting with the Holy Spirit through Prayer and meditation day and night may reveal the key to a revelation that He alone can give to those He has chosen. Therefore, it is essential to analyze if the given Scripture is a description of a figure of speech or if it is a prescription that we must believe and follow what He wants us to do and continue seeking His truth; he will set us free from any doubts. However, we must first believe, or else seeking Him could be meaningless, and the best way to do it is to know ourselves first regarding our spiritual maturity.
The Soul of man can either serve God and fully submit to Him or give in to sin and therefore allow wickedness to control our daily lives. The Bible is prominent when Jesus said that God is Spirit and we worship Him in spirit and truth. Notice the difference regarding spirit. God is a Spirit, and ours is a spirit with small “s.”
This has something to do with when Adam fell into sin, his perfection was diminished, and it had passed through generations. We always hear, “we are not perfect, not to make mistakes.” Can we avoid it? Of course, we can. Not all sins cannot be avoided. We still have the freedom of will to reject deceit and temptations.
Although our souls are dead to sin, we can still have a living spirit. We can still have time to transform our wickedness into righteous deeds. If Jesus Christ is in us, the work of forgiveness is at hand; all we need is to ask. Remember that the spirit is the highest component of the human part and works directly in worship and prayers to God—John 4:24; Paul to the Philippians’ “For we are the circumcision, which worships God in the spirit, and rejoices in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.”—Philippians 3:3. Paul described the Trinity in this passage “We- is the Soul; God- is the Spirit and flesh as we already know is the body.
Regardless of what we learned outside of accurate spiritual studies, for example; psychology, philosophy, prose, poetry, and other sciences; the knowledge acquired from these studies, including knowledge of religion, and apart from what our souls search and convictions, we still have to ask so many questions such as, “What does our Bible say?” What does God’s Word say about our body, Soul, and spirit? Why are there so many doctrinal views that differ from one another? Why are there so many versions of the Bible, yet we believe in one true God?
Is it for financial gain? Is that to draw more people into their congregation if they have their version? What about the most crucial factor, our spiritual profit?
Our souls must be on guard with what is going on in traditional churches, their teachings, and how they practice what they preach, and the most important thing is to watch our spiritual walk, our own progress, and awareness, not to fall for glib talkers.
Talkers that deliver good inspirational talk reach our minds, and we mistakenly feel that it is a spiritual blessing that makes us shout out loud through our mouth but not from our heart, then we are just making a noise; when we jump up high, feeling happy but without the of the joy of the spirit, it is just an exercise of the body; and if we interact with wrongful reactions, then it is just an excitement brought by the Soul.
Soul represented by our mind, feelings, and emotions can easily be mistaken as a spiritual blessing. If we are not aware of the difference between a spiritual blessing and entertainment, we can be misled by our bodies.
Both may lead to the same reaction, but we can discern the difference through true worship that brings spiritual blessings from the Spirit of God and therefore makes our Soul give in, and then the spiritual blessings can be felt with gladness. Sometimes, this happens when the speaker’s motive to celebrate the Word is to please himself and not God.
A faithful servant of God can be discerned, and the manifestation of a normative blessing cannot be manipulated by fleshly desire. Our Soul is separate from other created beings, like the souls of specific animals and plants. We have a soul that gives in to the Spirit of God.
A Human Soul is a part of a person but not complete if the spirit is not present inside the body that we call flesh. The spirit makes a person a person, and we call it the essence of a person. The Soul is the part of us that makes us who we are.
Our behavior, attitude, and maturity are all properties of the Soul managed by the Holy Spirit. Therefore, any misdeed in our walk can be charged to us. We walk by faith and not by sight, and any lies, deception, and temptation are all the Soul’s responsibility.
Prophet Ezekiel was evident that the Soul that sinned died. Therefore, do not let the desire of lust dictate our souls. The destination of our souls at the end of our journey here on earth is either heaven or hell. Complete happiness with God in the new earth or condemnation in the lake of fire.
Continue to Read Part 3: Interchangeably Use for Flesh