(Ver 1.2) This is Part 1 of a very fundamental and rudimentary essential Bible Subject for every Christian to study, learn, understand and be able to share in an instant with all others in the world! Who is Jesus Christ? Is Jesus the most important person mentioned in the Bible or any other book available to read? If He is, then why is He so important? Many today in the world in other religions simply call Jesus just another human originator of a new religious system that died just like other religion founders like Mohammed or Buddha. Others in certain religions recognize Jesus to be nothing but another prophet of God like Moses, Mohammed or Joseph Smith. There are even many people in the world today that read from the Bible and believe Jesus to be far from divine. Are any of these the truth? Was Jesus just an ordinary man like me? If He was then I believe that I am one of the biggest fools in the world for following Him. Today we will explore just the Bible verses that teach us who Jesus really was described to be. We will be specifically focused on some of the revealed names of Jesus in the Bible and what they relate to us. Later in this series we will also look at the recorded words and claims of Jesus and see who He professed and claimed to be. I hope and pray that you have a very open mind to receive the truth as written and inspired by the Holy Spirit from the Bible. We will be exploring the basics of Bible truth that are the essential foundation for God’s grace and our salvation through our faith in Jesus Christ.
INTRODUCTION TO THE QUESTION “WHO IS JESUS?”
Jesus asks His disciples two very simple questions in the book of Matthew. And their answers to these questions will determine much more than you can imagine. At this point in time when these questions were asked to the disciples by Jesus they had been with Him for a long time following Him from place to place. They had witnessed many very significant things done by Jesus and heard many teachings from this man they called Rabbi (John 1:38). We will begin this section with reading in Matthew 16 and verse 13. Please observe the first question:
Mat 16:13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?
Why would Jesus even need to ask anyone who He was? There were a lot of people that obviously heard of Jesus but why would it be necessary to ask these people know who Jesus is? Anyone can know of someone but that is totally different than knowing them or knowing who they are, isn’t it? So who is Jesus? Jesus is asking those that were closer to Him than anyone else “who do men think that I am?” This is the question that is still very valid for today. Jesus could come to you and ask the exact same question. What would you say to Him? Perhaps you would need to go and take a survey in order to find out what men said about Jesus. Today, it is much simpler to just go and search the internet and see what people are writing about Him. Then notice how very wide and diverse the answers were.
Mat 16:14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.
The disciples answer “Some say Jesus was John the Baptist”. Other men claim Jesus was Elijah. Still others claim Jesus to be the prophet Jeremiah. Even other men claimed Jesus to be just another one of the prophets but did not know which one. What a diverse set of possibilities for the identity of Jesus. However there is a common theme to them all. They were all calling Jesus a human man acting as a prophet but there was not any majority agreement to which prophet he was. This is still the most popular belief today in most false religions. The general consensus is that Jesus was simply a prophet or holy man like many others; Muhammad, Buddha, John Smith or even the Dalai Lama. This would place Jesus Christ on their exact same level of humanity but is this, the whole truth? Is this all that Jesus claimed to be? Let’s see the second question being asked by Jesus then and now:
Mat 16:15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?
Now Jesus changes the question and makes the question very personal. The question has substantially narrowed from “who do OTHER men say that I am” to “who do YOU say that I am”? Jesus was making a point by asking these two questions in succession. Jesus is teaching them that it does not matter what other men think but it does matter greatly what we think individually. Wow, I don’t know if you just got what God said there or not but it was very substantial. What Jesus is saying is that someone else’s opinion of Him is not going to help you or save you. Let’s look at their answer and see if anything changes.
Mat 16:16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.
Peter answers the question of the Lord with an amazingly new and different perspective to the identity of Jesus. Two things are directly stated by Peter and you need to notice that neither of these stated beliefs of Peter is denied by Jesus. There was no rebuke from Jesus for any of Peter’s answer. In fact the opposite is true if you read down into the next verse. Jesus praises Peter and tells Him this answered revelation came from His Father and not from any man. That is a very significant amount of information to learn from. Jesus teaches us that there are at least two possible sources for knowledge and only one source is praise worthy. The knowledge originating from God is implied to be very good and noteworthy and the knowledge coming from ignorant men was judged as not important. Did you see that? Who is your source for who Jesus is? Is it God or is it a man? It would be extremely wise to figure this out now before it is too late.
Peter could have gone along with the majority wrong opinion. Peter could have chosen to conform to the religious crowd. Peter could have listened to popular peer pressure. Certainly the popular human concept is still what is taught today by many. But I believe that there still exists a God that can reveal the truth to anyone that asks Him and seeks Him with their whole heart.
What were the two God revealed things about Jesus that Peter gave as an answered reply? The first was that Jesus was the Christ. Wow, what exactly does that mean? Many of us have heard the combined named “Jesus Christ” but this title “Christ” was not the last name of Jesus. And you better also know that “Jesus Christ” is not something you say when you slam the door on your finger. Let’s look up the Greek word translated as “Christ” and learn:
From G5548; anointed, that is, the Messiah, an epithet of Jesus: – Christ.
I want to begin with the definition and say Christ is an “epithet” for Jesus. What is an “epithet”? An “epithet” is a word that is used to describe the person being referenced. It is an adjective description. If you understand what an adjective is then you should already understand that an adjective is used to distinguish one man from another. If there is only one Jesus for example no one would need to say “Jesus Christ”. But since there were and still are others then this is one way to make Him uniquely important to the conversation.
Here in this definition is a new connection to a Hebrew word being established along with a meaning of someone that is anointed. The literal definition of the Greek word G5547 translated as the adjective “Christ” means “the anointed one”. Jesus is called “the Christ” by Peter and Jesus does not deny it. This title Christ is only significant because of Old Testament prophecies that were fulfilled when Jesus begins His ministry. The Hebrew word being connected in this Greek word definition is H4899. In order to connect the Hebrew word “Messiah” to the Greek word G5547 translated as “Christ” we need to do some homework and search for the title in the O.T. If you do this you will find one key “Messiah” prophecy in the book of Daniel. If you go and read Daniel 9:25-26 you will find the verses that I am referring to. It would take a very long study to try to explain just these two verses so that will not be covered today. But I do want you to notice the Hebrew word that was translated as “Messiah’. This Hebrew word is H4899 and it has the following Strong’s definition:
From H4886; anointed; usually a consecrated person (as a king, priest, or saint); specifically the Messiah: – anointed, Messiah.
As you can observe in the definition this word has the exact same meaning as the Greek word G5547. We can therefore conclude that these two words are equivalent in both languages. I also want to point out that this word can apply to more than Jesus Christ. Any king, priest or even a saint can be anointed by the Spirit of God and this tends to lead some to say that Jesus was just another anointed man like so many others. In that regard if that was the only criteria being analyzed that would be a true statement. However, Peter did not stop talking with calling Jesus “the Christ” and he mentioned another quality that must also be considered.
Do you remember the second statement that Peter made? Go back and reread it if you did not recall that Peter said that Jesus was the “Son of the living God”. Wow that description makes Jesus unique and unlike any other anointed human born on this planet. Jesus had a great opportunity to rebuke Peter for this statement if it was a false claim but Jesus very clearly did not do it. This means that Jesus was confirming His identity to be the “Son of God” with His praise for what Peter had just spoken and because He said that this had been revealed to him by God, His Father. We will talk more about Jesus claiming to be the “Son of God” as we continue in this lesson series. But, Jesus claiming to be “the Son of the living God” is one of the most important things for anyone desiring to be a Christian to learn and believe by faith. I will tell you very plainly right now that if you do not believe that Jesus was the Son of the Living God then you are not a Christian and you are lost and going to hell. This is a very plain and simple truth found in 1 John 2:22-23 so please go and read it.
INTRODUCTION TO THE SIGNIFICANCE OF NAMES
I’m going to shift the focus for a moment to teach briefly an introduction about another very relevant Bible subject concerning “names”. This rabbit trail subject should be a Bible study series all by itself but an introduction will help our study of who Jesus claimed to be and should provide a great benefit to us by us understanding His names. Almost everyone in the Bible was given a name not by chance but rather the name given to them reflected a situation, quality, circumstance or characteristic of something very specific about the person. For example, these given names could have been a reflection on the circumstances surrounding their entrance into the world. Perhaps you remember in Genesis 35:18 when Rachel gives birth to her last son. She called the boy child by the name “Benoni” and this name meant “son of my sorrows” and then she died. But his father named him “Benjamin” which meant “son of my right hand”. God gives such great significance to names in the Bible and these name meanings are often overlooked and ignored but they all have a divine purpose. I will also say that if Benjamin would have been called by the name given of his mother then this would have changed his entire life and who he was tremendously. But since Benjamin was given a name change and a very different positive name he was blessed and favored.
Let’s go over a couple of other significant name changes that made a major difference for those people in the Bible to prove the significance of this subject. The man Abram was selected by God and given a promise by God in Genesis 12. The Hebrew name “Abram” means “high father”. Yet God changes Abram’s name to “Abraham” that meant “a father of a multitude” and it was only after this name change transpired that the promise began to be fulfilled. There is a revealed law of God found in the Bible that as long as the earth endures seed time and harvest will never cease (Gen 8:22). This divine law teaches the concept of cause and effect. In other words for every observable effect (harvest) God teaches us that there must be a cause for it (a seed sown). Some seed sown transpired to cause the promise to be made manifest to see the harvest and I am convinced that God’s name change to Abraham was a major role for this event occurring. Perhaps you will understand that statement as you continue to learn the God given facts of the Bible.
I’ll give you at least one other significant Bible name example. You may recall reading in Genesis 32:29 about Jacob wrestling with an angel. Jacob we are told prevailed against the angel and again as a result, the angel changes Jacob’s name from Jacob to Israel because of this victory. The name Israel obviously came from God and from heaven and you need to know this. When God gives a man a name it usually causes something good to occur and this is just another example. The name Jacob meant “heal catcher” and this name described the circumstances of his birth. But the name “Israel” is a Hebrew name that means “he will rule as God”. I’ll say this again, when God gives you a name there is a great seed that was planted to bring about a divine harvest and this is so very important to understand.
Modern names of people are really no different from Biblical names of people and they often reflect who a person is and what kind of person they present themselves to be. For example I was eating at a restaurant and my server’s name was named “Tisha”. I looked up the name’s meaning on the internet and it meant “joyful” and “happy”. This name meaning fit the personality of the lady very accurately.
What I am attempting to teach you is that it maters what the name of a person is in the Bible and even in the world today still. I am also trying to teach that it matters who gives a person the name and why it was given. In other words why and where the name originates from is critical and the name can certainly influence the outcome on a person’s entire life greatly. Let’s examine the Hebrew word that is translated as the English word “name”. This word’s meaning may shed some additional light of confirmation upon the significance of “names” in the Bible:
A primitive word (perhaps rather from H7760 through the idea of definite and conspicuous position; compare H8064); an appellation, as a mark or memorial of individuality; by implication honor, authority, character: – + base, [in-] fame [-ous], name (-d), renown, report.
This Hebrew word means an “appellation”. This word means the act of giving something or someone a name. Then notice the next statement “a mark or memorial of individuality”. Wow that is a very important definition. God and people name things to mark them as being different from other things that may even be similar in appearance. For example any normal family with identical twins will always give each child a different name. This unique name separates one identical twin from the other. When a parent wants a specific twin they will call their name and this should bring the one called. Clearly names matter because it causes a separation from others to occur.
Then notice in this Hebrew word there is an associated implied meaning of any given name. According to the definition a name can carry the positive implication of “honor”, “authority” or it can even denote personal “character”. This positive truth can also be taken from a negative antithesis truth perspective. A negative name given to someone can cause them a negative outcome in life like dishonor or even bad character. I’m trying to teach you how things work in the spiritual realm. If you call your kids stupid then they will become more stupid. If you call your kids lazy then they will become lazier. Whatever names you have placed on your children are all seeds to mold their lives either building character or destroying their character.
I’ll end this introduction to the significance of names in the Bible with this truth. There are so many significant names given to us in the Bible that we often overlook the lesser names mentioned only a few times. For example in Genesis 5 there is a genealogy given to us by the inspiration of God concerning the first eleven men. This genealogy begins from Adam the first man to Noah and then to his son Shem in succession. The name Adam means “man” and the name Noah means “comfort”, the name Shem means “name” and this. Let’s just go through all of the names for review:
If you take the meanings of each of these 11 names given to us in the Bible and combine them into a sentence, you will find the Gospel of Jesus’ coming into the world and one of the primary reasons for His appearing. Here is the sentence using the Hebrew name meanings:
Man (has) appointed mortal sorrow; (but) the Blessed God will come down teaching (and) His death shall bring the despairing comfort (by or through His) Name.
I hope that you are beginning to see how Jesus is even mentioned indirectly here in the names of two prominent Bible men (Adam and Noah) and 9 other relatively obscure men in the Bible. This hidden reference to Jesus using only the names of men certainly is beyond chance or random occurrence. This information had to be placed there by God’s design and plan and this teaches us plainly that God even uses names in the Bible to inform us of things that are very important for us to learn and know. I will give credit for the majority of this information to Chuck Missler and you can find it on his website. I added the name of Shem to what he taught because this should have been given. Remember this prophecy using the 11 names because this will be readdressed in this Bible study later. Let’s move on to the specific name of Jesus next.
INTRODUCTION TO THE NAME OF JESUS
We will continue our Bible study concerning “who is Jesus” with a statement being made to Joseph from an angel sent from the Lord. In this statement is the name of the male child to be born to Joseph’s wife Mary. This name comes from God just like the name of Jacob came directly from God through an angel giving it great divine significance and purpose.
Mat 1:21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.
I want to reemphasize this point that the name of “Jesus” came directly from heaven and not from Joseph or Mary or any other human. This fact gives the name of Jesus a divine reason and purpose for being given. The next thing that you need to know is that the name “Jesus” is an English transliteration of the Greek name “Iēsous” being written in the book of Matthew. A transliteration is nothing but a man’s attempt to transfer and preserve a name from one language’s alphabet to another by using similar sounding vowels and constantans. The problem we begin to encounter very quickly is when we realize that the man Jesus was not English nor was He a Greek. Neither of these names would be correct based upon the nationality of Jesus. The genealogy of Jesus given to us in Matthew and Luke both prove that Jesus descended from the Hebrew nation a descendant of Abraham and David. Therefore the name of Jesus should be a Hebrew name and this is exactly what we discover when we look up the Greek word in the Strong’s dictionary:
Of Hebrew origin [H3091]; Jesus (that is, Jehoshua), the name of our Lord and two (three) other Israelites: – Jesus.
You should be able to quickly recognize that the Greek word name has a Hebrew origin. It is also apparent that the name of Jesus was not a completely unique name and that there were other Hebrew men that were also given this famous name. But we still need to ask the question why did the angel tell the man Joseph to name the child Jesus? In order to answer that question we need to revert further to the original Hebrew. Let’s look up the name H3091 and find its meaning:
From H3068 and H3467; Jehovah-saved; Jehoshua (that is, Joshua), the Jewish leader: – Jehoshua, Jehoshuah, Joshua. Compare H1954, H3442.
The English transliterated name for the Hebrew word H3091 is “Jehoshua” or “Joshua”. This name literally means “Jehovah saved” in the original Hebrew meaning. This Hebrew word is made from two Hebrew root words being combined together. The first word is H3068 meaning “Jehovah” and the second being H3467 meaning “saved”. “Jehovah” is simply one of the key names for God found within the Old Testament. The name Jehovah is used by God in over 5000 verses. The name Jehovah (H3068) simply means “Self Existent or Eternal One” and was most often translated as “LORD”.
The Hebrew word H3467 simply means “to save”, “to deliver”, “to free”, “to be made safe”, “salvation” and even “to get victory”. This part of the definition goes along with the statement made to Joseph in Matthew 1 if you will recall the angel said “you shall call His name Jesus because He will save His people”. We can learn from the meaning of the name that Jesus was the hidden fulfilled prophecy of the genealogy of Genesis 5 using the 11 names of Bible men. Remember this prophecy predicted that “the Blessed God would come down teaching and His death gives the despairing comfort through His name”. The despairing are simply humans that were held captive prisoners within the darkness of this world. The Name of Jesus was the God given name that men were required to believe upon and we will talk abut this more in the series as we go. This is exactly what transpired. The name of Jesus shows us by its definition that He was the Jehovah God that delivers and saves His people. This is now the second Biblical confirmation that Jesus was God in the flesh that came down to the earth. Let’s move to new name given to Jesus and study a further confirmation.
JESUS = GOD WITH US!
We are now going to explore another name given to Jesus in the Bible. This name will be the third conformation that Jesus was God in the flesh come to the earth from heaven. I will first give you the name found in the Greek New Testament. This name is found in a verse of Matthew 1. Please read it very carefully not overlooking any of the words in the stated scripture.
Mat 1:23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
First consider the beginning of the verse where God declares a “virgin” will be with child. A virgin simply means an unmarried daughter and this clearly implies that she has never had sex with any man. Right there that gives us the first impression of a supernatural conception. Next the Greek words translated as “be with child” simply means that she is pregnant in her womb. Next the author (God) says she will bring forth (birth) a son. Here is where we get to the good stuff. God say “They shall call his name Emmanuel”. Wow, this is a very meaningful name that was being bestowed upon Jesus. Of course this name is meaningless if you don’t know what the definition of the Hebrew word being given to us is.
What we have just witnessed in this verse is a very vital principle (rule) that God teaches us to how to understand selected parts of the Bible. I have already been using this principle when I taught on the meaning of the name of Jesus earlier in this Bible lesson. This principle given to us by God is the simple fact that names have meaning and that these meanings have significance to indicate something important about the one being named. This principle also teaches us very directly that we need to go back to the original language meaning in order to insure the significance.
Perhaps you missed it again. The name “Emmanuel” in this verse is just another Greek to English transliteration. This Greek word (G1694) was also a transliteration from the Hebrew original name H6005 which was transliterated into English in the Old Testament as “Immanuel”. This is further confirmation that what I did for the name of Jesus going back to Joshua was very legitimate. Finally I want you to see in this verse the Greek word (G3177) that was translated into “interpreted”. This Greek word literally means to “translate” from one language into another. What God is doing is confirming the fact that names have meanings and these meanings have purpose as I have already stated. Let’s go back and research the original prophecy that this verse in Matthew is quoted from:
Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
This verse quite literally says that this will be a “sign” given by the omnipotent God. This Hebrew word (H226) that was translated as “sign” can mean “evidence” or even a “monument”. In other words Jesus will be the visible proof for the name being given to Him. So what did this name ‘Immanuel” given from God mean? You read it in Matthew but it was not given here in Isaiah because you are assumed to already know Hebrew if you are reading the Old Testament because it was written to Hebrews. This is a reason that God wrote the meaning out in the New Testament because it was predominately read by Gentiles who needed to learn more about this old language.
If you knew the Hebrew language then you would find that “Immanuel” means “God with us”. If we break down the Hebrew root words found within this name we should start with the ending syllable “el” which is the short form for one of the prominent names of God in the Old Testament “Elohim”. The short form name “el” for God is used in almost 150 other names in the Old Testament and that is an interesting study all by itself. Then go back to the beginning syllable of the name “Im” and this means “with” or even “in”. Now look at what remains in the middle “man”. Put them together it could read something .like “God in the form of man” which could also means “God with men”.
Do you understand these God given principles? I’ll say it one more time, names have meanings in the Bible and these meanings are important especially based upon who gives the person this name. Any name given to anyone by God is of the ultimate importance since God is supreme. Based on Isaiah 7:14 and Matthew 1:23 God comes down from heaven in the form of a man to be with us, to walk among us and to live like us but as a higher example. So far we have found 4 witnesses in the Bible that claims Jesus to be God in the flesh but there are more. Let’s examine another name of Jesus.
GOD THE WORD BECAME FLESH
All Bible truth is found only by searching and studying the Bible with the Holy Spirit’s help to reveal it to us so we are able to see it clearly. This is why the Bible is not understood by even many Christians. They are not studying, not searching or not praying and asking God to open their eyes to the truth and lead them into it. We are going to need to search to find the names of Jesus in order to discover who He really is. I’ll give you three verses to read next and then talk about them:
Rev 19:11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.
Rev 19:12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.
Rev 19:13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.
Did you see the two names of Jesus given to Him by God? First there is the one called “Faithful and True” and this can only be a name for the divine God since every human can and will fail us. Then in verse 13 He is called by the name “The Word of God”. It is this name “The Word of God” that I want to focus upon next. But both of these names prove that Jesus was God in the flesh come to the earth as a man. How do they do that you ask? Well again you have to study and read the Bible to find the answers. The real answers don’t fall on you like a piece of ripe fruit from a tree that you are laying under doing nothing.
The book Revelation was written by the inspiration and revelation of God through a man named John. John wrote other books of the New Testament and we need to go back to the first book in order to find the answer to who “The Word of God” represents. Read these next two verses to begin with from the first chapter of John:
Joh 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Joh 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.
God is the primary subject of both verses and the verse begins with the statment “In the beginning was The Word”. This statement is talking about Jesus indirectly since Jesus is called the Word of God in Revelation 19:13. Jesus is being indirectly called the Word again with a direct association of the Word for the theme of God being the primary direct subject. The Word was with God and the Word was God. If you know anything about the laws of mathematics you understand that if A=B and B=C then A=C. Therefore if the Word = God (John 1:1) and Jesus = the Word (Rev 19:13) then God = Jesus by undeniable mathematical proof. I’m not going to go through every verse in this chapter of John because that would take too long but I will give you 4 more verses for you to read:
Joh 1:10 He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.
Joh 1:11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not.
Joh 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:
Joh 1:13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
Joh 1:14 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.
These verses begin with “He was in the world”. Who is He? This is talking about Jesus in conjunction to the primary subject still being God. Then notice what it says, “The world was made by Him”. Again this is a combined reference to the Spirit of God, the Word of God and God the Father because these three revealed personalities are all the same God (1 Jn 1:5:7). Only God created the world. You can go back to Genesis 1:1 and read this plainly. In the beginning “God” (Elohim) created the heavens and the earth. Now remember God says in Isaiah Immanuel (El = Elohim) is coming to be with us.
In verse 12 God tells us that if we believe on His name He will give us the power to become the sons of God. Why am I teaching you all about the names of Jesus in this lesson? I’m teaching you this so that you might believe in His names in order to be saved. I am teaching on the names of Jesus to reveal Him to be God in the flesh. Did you read verse 14? More importantly did you actually see what it says in verse 14? It says The Word (THE WORD = GOD verse 1) was made flesh and dwelt among us. God dwelling among us is just the name “Immanuel” again written out in definition form. Jesus is declared to be God with us in the form of a man (flesh).
God directly connects John 1:1 with Genesis 1:1 by the same three simple words “In the Beginning”. Whenever God does something like this it is not an accident or chance occurrence. God is telling us they are about the same themed subject. In Genesis 1:1 it said “In the Beginning God” and in John 1:1 it said “In the Beginning was the Word”. This is God’s hidden way of saying “I am the Word and I created the world”. You see there is another hidden reference to Jesus found in Genesis 1:1. I have written about this before in other lesson but it fits very well with what God is saying here that I will repeat it.
Gen 1:1 In the beginning (the A-Z) God created the heaven and the earth.
The fourth word of the Bible in Genesis 1:1 was omitted by the translators because they did not know what it meant. This fourth untranslated word was technically not a word at all but rather the first and last letters of the Hebrew alphabet. Uh oh, that should turn some light bulbs on in your brain if you have read the Bible very much. Genesis 1:1 should read in the English “In the Beginning the A-Z God created…”. The A-Z God is another hidden reference to Jesus because Jesus said in Revelation 1:11 “I am the Alpha and the Omega”. Alpha is the first letter of the Greek alphabet and Omega is the last letter in the Greek alphabet. In other words Jesus was saying in English “I am the A to Z”. This is exactly who Genesis 1:1 said created the world that we live in. Wow, this is great stuff if you open your eyes of your heart and let it in. I guarantee you that it will save you from hell if you begin to believe it.
This is really not that complicated but Satan does not want these truths to be known. Satan perverts the truth to change Jesus from being divine (God in the flesh) to being only a man (a descendant of Adam) or a prophet to defeat you. Satan does everything in His power to blind the minds of people so that they cannot see the obvious truth of God’s Word in order to be saved (2 Cor 4:4).
I have gone over multiple truths in this Bible lesson that declares Jesus to have come from God in heaven. Not only this but that Jesus was God in the flesh. The Bible says let every word be established in truth by the mouths of two or three witnesses (2 Cor 13:1). I have given you double that with at least 5 to 6 witnesses that Jesus was the God of creation come to the earth in the flesh. We started this lesson with Jesus asking us all “Who do you say that I am?” We then went into the significance of names in the Bible and I introduced you to a hidden prophecy of Jesus coming into the earth in the flesh in the genealogy found in Genesis 5.
We then went into three of the primary names given to Jesus in the Bible, 1) Jesus, 2) Emmanuel and 3) The Word of God. The name of Jesus was the Hebrew name, Joshua and we found that Joshua meant “Jehovah Saved”. Therefore Jesus was this God named Jehovah that came down from heaven to save His people just as was prophesied to occur. We then talked about the name “Immanuel” and that this meant “God with us”. We then talked about Jesus being the Word of God that came in the flesh and it was this A-Z God that created the world that we live in. If you are still wavering and doubting after all of this evidence then I don’t know what else to say that will help you. Go back and reread your Bible and all of the verses that I just gave you. Study the names of Jesus until you have them memorized.
This was only Part 1 in the series of lessons on “Who do you say that I am?” I will be going over more scriptural evidence for Jesus being God in the next lesson in this series. I want to thank you for being open minded enough to read this lesson and I pray that God will help you to see Him in all His glory. Help me spread the word of truth to your friends. Tell them about my website. Send them links to my lessons. Please, help me spread God’s Word so that we can reach the lost world. Jesus is coming back very, very soon. The timing cannot be that far off based upon current world events transpiring. We need to reach everyone that we can and help everyone that we can so that none will perish. Thank you for your prayers of support, because they are very needed and valuable to me. God bless you and keep you until the next time. Always remember the correct answer to the question “Who do you say that I am” is “You are Jesus the Christ, the Son of the Living God, my Savior, my Lord and my God”. God Bless you!
If you would like to continue reading in this series you may go to “Part 2” now.
(Ver 1.1) This quick Bible lesson is the answer to a very common Bible student’s question. We usually all have very similar questions when reading the Bible, so I will answer this question from one person and believe that it will help others that were not brave enough to ask the question. I find it interesting that people will ask you questions as long as you give them the answer that they wanted to hear. But if I say something new or controversial that God has taught me from the Bible, the responses can be very diverse and unexpected for a Christian. I have had some people unfriend me or just stop talking to me because I didn’t agree with what they viewed as the only truth in the Bible. If we are not open to learning something new and greater from God we will all remain in a stagnant state of ignorance apart from what He desired us to know. Today, we are going to analyze the information given to us by God surrounding the story of two brothers. Regardless of what you already think that you know about this story please leave your pre-conceived expectations behind and focus only upon what God says in His Word. Be open to the Holy Spirit and be led by only Him.
The question asked by my reader was concerning the story described in Genesis 4. It appears from reading these verses that one brother’s offerings were accepted by God and the other elder brother’s offerings were rejected by God. Why was that? This subject has been preached by many people and most of them have not seen the fullness of what the Bible actually says so they draw wrong conclusions using insufficient information and teach people about things that do not directly apply to the actual story. For example, one preacher that I recall hearing taught that Abel’s offering was accepted by God because it was a sacrifice of shed blood and Cain’s offering was not. He used this as a type of Jesus the coming Lamb of God that was going to shed His blood for all people. Well that was an interesting and creative approach but that just doesn’t make total sense to me based upon other scriptures that I know on the subjects. I certainly understand the association and how he took the leap to bring the two stories together but is that what God desired us to learn from this story? I have found at least 4 popular human explanations for why God rejects Cain’s offerings. Here are the four popular theories listed in random order:
- The Absence of a Blood Sacrifice from Cain.
- The Poor Quality of the Offered Sacrifice of Cain.
- The Heart Issue of Cain’s Attitude Giving the Sacrifice.
- The Sovereignty of God.
All of these are legitimate ways to look at the story from a student’s viewpoint of the text. However, we should not attempt to say that any one of these is more important than the others because they are all contributing factors. The story of Cain and Abel quickly becomes a war of human opinions and my opinion is as totally worthless as your opinion. Therefore, we need to learn God’s opinion. What does God say about it and how do we even begin to find it in the Bible. That is the number one reason why people do not understand the Bible correctly. They read an isolated passage in Genesis 4 and ignore the whole rest of the Bible. That is a crazy way of studying the Bible. I heard one preacher say we should only study one book of the Bible at a time and I thought that was a foolish way of studying a book that was designed the way the Bible was written by God. The Bible is progressive revelation. What is hidden at the beginning is uncovered at the end. Therefore we cannot understand any of it without taking into account what is written in every part of the Bible about the subjects that we are studying. If you don’t have a good Bible software program on your computer get one. There are many that are free and I recommend one called eSword. Then search the Bible for the subjects found in Genesis 4 like the names of Abel and Cain and read what God says about them. For example, Abel is only referenced directly a few times but the statements describing him are infinitely important to why God accepted his offering and not Cain’s. Get your Bible search software and let’s get started with the story of Cain and Abel.
CAIN AND ABEL TWO OFFERINGS, ONE GOOD RESULT
We will begin by going through the verses in Genesis 4 to gather the factual information to help us to understand what is expressed by God. We will turn to the second verse in Chapter 4 and begin to read there:
- Gen 4:2 And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.
Cain was the firstborn of Adam and Eve. That fact is interesting but not significant for this Bible lesson. Abel was revealed to be a keeper of sheep and we all know lambs come from sheep. Thus we have the foundation beginning for the belief in the assumption theory number 1 concerning the blood sacrifice, but we won’t go there. Cain as you can see is a ground laborer and that is just another name for a farmer. Let me ask you, how would a farmer of crops give God a blood sacrifice of something that he does not possess? I think that is a problem right from the beginning. Are we expected to give from what God has given to us or does God expect us to give what we don’t have just to please Him? A mindset of religious works would demand that we must do specific works of the flesh in order to be pleasing to God and I do not believe that is the revealed nature of God. I think you should think about that for a while before you answer.
- Gen 4:3 And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.
Pay very close attention to the phrasing of the story. Every word has significance. God informs us that in the process of time Cain brought to the Lord an offering of the fruit of the land. You do understand that it takes time for crops to produce? Crops are not an overnight miracle. Since Cain was a farmer this description sounded pretty good until we actually read about what Abel did in the next verse:
- Gen 4:4 And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering:
As you can read both brother’s offerings took time. Animals are not an instant miracle either. A lamb can take 150 days to be born. Therefore both offerings presented to God could only come after time. There are certain keywords given to us by God that are important. The term “firstling” and “fat” are two keywords that have significance to describe Abel’s offering to be remarkably different than his brother’s. The term firstling means the first born and that is significant. The term “fat” literally means the best. Here is where we get the foundation for assumption theory number 2, the insufficient quality of the offering of Cain. Abel brings God the firstlings of his flock and the fat thereof. The absence of any adjective qualifiers describing Cain’s offering implies them to not be special. Then notice that it says God had “respect” for Abel’s offering.
- Gen 4:5 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.
As you can see God had no “respect” for Cain’s offering. Here we can also read that Cain’s attitude was not very positive. He becomes angry and depressed and those seem to support the theoretical assumption number 3 that Cain failed God expectations with his wrong attitude. You can quickly see how each theory has a basis for beliefs and why they are taught in churches. The only theory that I have not touched on is assumption 4 concerning the principle of the sovereign choice of God. There are endless numbers of Christians that place everything that happens in the world in the hands of God’s design, purpose, will, and plans and they leave nothing out for us to do or for any contribution of Satan or evil spirits to be involved. I call this the response-less devil and human theory. No matter what they do it makes no difference because God’s will is always done. These types of Bible teachers go with theory 4 so that they do not have to teach any human responsibility or accountability. These types of teachers also have to attribute every evil in the world to be a gift from God. I was on Facebook the other day and I saw a very ignorant statement. This person said God sent the storms so that He could prove that He was the only protection from the storms. That sounds very religious but that is not my God and people really need to read the whole Bible. I’m not going to go there fully but I will show you a few verses that counter this wrong belief concerning the sovereignty of God.
GETTING GOD’S COMMENTARY ON CAIN AND ABEL
Here is where I’m going to start the main lesson on the story in Genesis 4. My approach will be to use God’s commentary on the subjects and not just the words found in Genesis chapter 4 alone. We are going to depart from the popular 4 theories of assumed interpretations and begin to see what else God says on the subjects of “respect” and “Abel”. I picked the subject of “respect” to begin because it is a major part of the reason that God is accused by men of making a sovereign choice. The Bible very clearly says that God had “respect” for Abel’s offering but for Cain’s offering God had “no respect”. What is “respect” and how or why does God respect one but not the other? Read what Peter says about God in Acts and learn how this verse applies to our story of Cain and Abel:
- Act 10:34 Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:
The Greek word that is translated as “respecter of persons” in this verse means to have partiality for one individual and not for the others. It would be like a teacher in school picking one child as their favorite and the others are not treated equally. Being partial clearly is a conscious decision to show bias, prejudice or preference for one human and not do the same for another. This would be like two men walking into your church. One is dressed in rich apparel and the other is dressed in rags. The ushers could treat both men the same and be like God or they could take the wealthy looking man to the front and sit the raggedy man in the back of the church and that would be an example of being a respecter of persons. Showing favoritism would be preferential treatment for one while exhibiting inferior treatment for the other based solely upon their appearance. According to scriptures in the N.T. God is not a type of God that respects one individual over ANY other. We can clearly read that here in Acts but it is also found in Romans 2:11, Ephesians 6:9, Colossians 3:25, and James 2:9. That is 5 verse witnesses in the Bible that teaches us the truth about God and you should not ignore them.
It appears that we have a scriptural battle raging where one verse in the O.T. says that God had “respect” fighting with 5 other witnesses in the N.T. that says God does not do that. Here is a great opportunity to learn that the Bible does not ever contradict itself. It is only a human’s wrong interpretation or understanding that causes the conflict in their mind. However, pay closer attention to what God respected. Both men gave God offerings over extended times but God saw one offering as good and the other as potentially not so good for an unknown or an unstated reason. Notice in Genesis that God had no lack of respect for either men but rather only for their offerings. God is stated to be love in the New Testament. Did God love Abel more than He loved Cain? You see I do not believe that is true. However do not confuse God’s hatred towards your sin to be the same His love for you. God can hate what you do and still die to save you because of His love. Let me give you one more verse about God’s lack of human respect variance that just might help us:
- 1Pe 1:17 And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:
Here is an excellent verse that will apply to what we have just read in Genesis 4 about Cain and Abel. God says that He does not respect any specific individual but that He does judge their works. This is a commonly ignored verse in the Bible. This was written to Christians but it does apply to all of the people of the earth, past, present and future and it definitely has an application to what God says about Cain and Abel. If God does not respect a person or an individual but rather will show respect for their works what was it about Cain’s works that were rejected and Abel’s works that were accepted? Doesn’t that change the perspective of the story significantly? That is what we are talking about in the story, right? The fact that both men gave an offering and one was pleasing to God and one was not, that tells me a lot. There are three basic ways to judge a person’s work. A person’s work can be judged for what they did, how they did it or why they did it or a combination of all of these three.
Did you know that you can do the right things at the wrong times or in the wrong ways or even with the wrong motives and still be found guilty before God? It goes back to a question that I used to ask job applicants during the interview process where I worked. I always tried to ask them, “What matters more the end result or the methods used to achieve the end-result”? You see in every business if the end-result was the only thing that mattered then we could all lie, cheat, steal and rob to get the job done. Recently in the news Lance Armstrong came out in public and said that he had used banned substances to achieve his 7 bicycle race victories. He clearly viewed the end-results to be more important than the methods to achieve them and now he is paying the ultimate price. This was probably not the wisest thing that Lance ever did. What I am teaching you, is that matters how you do something and why you are doing it, more than it does getting it done to God.
Learn from the lesson of Lance Armstrong and let’s see if this modern story applies to the life of Cain and Abel. We can clearly see both Cain and Abel gave an offering to God. But, what caused God to judge one offering to be different from the other? There are not very many verses in the Bible about Cain and Abel but there is at least one that you need to see. If you did the search in your Bible for the name of “Abel” you have already found my next Bible verse to learn. God lists the name of Mr. Abel in the Faith Hall of Fame and his name is forever preserved with the heroes of the Bible like Moses, Abraham, David, and Joshua to name a few. Let me show you what God says about Abel:
- Heb 11:4 By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.
Did you see it? God says the sacrifice that Abel offered was “more excellent”. So clearly sacrifices of lambs are better than fruits? But is that what it really says? What did God say directly before that statement? Doesn’t God tell us of Abel’s motivation and methods? How did Abel offer this more excellent sacrifice? God says Abel offered it “By Faith”. The implication given by God is that there was a factor missing from the offering of Cain and this factor was his faith. You see if you read down in Hebrews 11 you will find a revelation that directly applies to the story we read in Genesis 4.
- Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
Without faith it is impossible to even try to please God. Is that not the reason why Cain’s offering was rejected? The absence of faith means God will not be pleased with anything that we do and it really does not matter what you are bringing before the Lord. Get out of your religious box and see the truth of God’s Word. Many people today go to church and think that God is pleased because they showed up. That is crazy thinking my friend. If you are not going to church in faith you are failing. I’m not going to teach you the entire subject of faith today; that would be a very long complex subject that has many parts to it. If you don’t know about faith, go read my Bible lessons on that subject. Faith is one of the top three Bible subjects that you need to learn before Jesus comes back. Why? Because Jesus said this:
- Luk 18:8 I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?
The way I read His statement, He is looking for a people with faith that pleases Him when He returns. So when you so dearly ignore the subject of faith in the Bible you just might find yourself to be more like Cain and less like Abel and that is not a good place to be. What company do you wish to associate? Which example do you wish to demonstrate to Christ? Your name could be with the others in the Faith Hall of Fame. It is really up to you more than you think. If you wish to be pleasing to God then you need to learn the subject of faith.
Since God has been talking about the subject of sacrifices in Genesis 4, is God still looking for a sacrifice from His people today? Maybe you need to go and read further in the book of Hebrews past chapter 11 where Abel was mentioned. God speaks a lot about this subject but I’ll only focus in on 2 verses that apply to the church:
- Heb 13:15 By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.
- Heb 13:16 But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
Did you notice what these verses said? They are speaking of sacrifices but not the blood types like an animal or a lamb. No, God is saying offer up the sacrifice of praise unto Him. Wow, that is very strong isn’t it? It appears that God still desires us to make a sacrifice but with the fruit of our lips. Uh oh! What did Cain offer God? Was it not the fruit of the ground? What are your lips made out of? If you did not know it, your lips are made from the ground also and these produce fruit for God. Why did God reject Cain’s offerings of fruit but still desires the fruit from our lips? I pray that you are learning something new. God just got through talking to you about the whole long subject of faith in chapter 11 and now in chapter 13 He connects that with your sacrifices which are still required. Do you believe that whatever sacrifices you give to God that you better do them in faith to be accepted? I seriously think that would be a great idea. What did we read in Hebrews 11:6 that pleases God? Without “faith” it is impossible to please Him and therefore faith pleases God. Even though you are doing something that could please Him like praising Him with the fruit of your lips, if you are going to do it without faith it will not be found pleasing.
I just did a quick Bible lesson on the importance of your faith and giving God your sacrifices today. There is more to the story of Cain and Abel than this, but that was the message from the Lord for you today. Abel through his faith in God was called righteous and his name is mentioned in some elite company. If you think it is too late for you to be added in this group I believe you are wrong. Thank you for reading my Bible lesson. May the love of God become known to you in new ways that are beyond your natural comprehension! If you have any Bible questions that you like for me to see if I can answer please provide them in a comment and as I am led by the Spirit of God I will address them. God Bless!
(Ver 1.1) This Bible lesson is a response to a good question that I received from a reader. This is a very easily misunderstood topic in the Bible and I have addressed it at least in part in several other Bible lessons but this is a more direct topic discussion on the subject. When I first started writing this response I thought it would be a quick and easy Bible lesson to do. I very soon realized the broad scope of information on this subject in the Bible and it quickly grew way beyond what I could feasibly address in one lesson. This question is also potentially complex because of the very common misunderstanding that surrounds it. I am going to have to overcome all of the false teachings that have already gone out on this topic and that is going to be challenging. The subject of the human soul is mentioned directly or indirectly in literally thousands of different verses. The Bible is covered with parts of this subject throughout and there are so many verses that I cannot even begin to list them all. I will attempt to list the verses that I feel are important to help introduce the subject and focus on those. I will learn based upon the follow-up questions and comments that I receive, if there are other lessons that need to be added. Please feel free to leave your questions and comments and I will address them as I am led. I’ll start by giving you a dictionary definition of the word soul. I do not agree with this definition but it is at least a starting point:
|soul – Noun
This definition of the soul is a result of the confusion behind the word’s popular usage. It is literally a muddled attempt to define something that they know nothing about. Let me start by saying that I agree with parts of the definition but certainly not the entire wording or the connection of the stated phrases. The soul is definitely an immaterial part of a human; however it is not the spirit of a human as it is commonly assumed. Both people and animals have souls but animals do not have spirits as we will observe from the Bible shortly. The soul of the human is not the immortal spirit of the human and we will see scriptures that will confirm that also. The soul of a man or a woman is related to their identity from a non-physical aspect or perspective. We could call the human soul their personality and that becomes a much closer definition to what God reveals of the soul in His Word. This dictionary definition also leaves out many other parts of the soul that are not mentioned, unknown or just ignored. We will soon see some of these as I continue to go through the Bible lesson.
Even Bible translators struggled to know and understand how to accurately translate many of the original language words on this subject in the Bible. For example the Hebrew word H5315 which is commonly translated into “soul” is found in 682 verses of the Old Testament. If you study the original language translation closely you will find this same Hebrew word H5315 is translated into several different English words because of the pre-established confusion. Here is a list of some of the popular ways that this Hebrew word was translated in the O.T. 1) soul, 2) souls, 3) creature, 4) life, 5) one 6) yourself, 7) body, 8) beast, 9) person, 10) mind, 11) heart, 12) breath, 13) will, 14) ghost, 15) appetite, 16) pleasure, and 17) desire to name some of the basic words used by translators. That was not a complete list but we should be able to see from this diverse set of definitions this Hebrew word could be potentially all over the board. We need to learn which words being used to describe the soul are correct and apply to the subject and which words do not? Technically I will tell you that each English word in this list has a linked association to the subject and thus the reason for the wide misunderstanding. I personally believe that many of the translated verses use very inadequate choices of English words to describe what is being communicated by God and perhaps I will attempt to go through a few of these examples to demonstrate what I mean. This subject is a Bible basic truth that is essential to correctly know and understand. You may already think that you know everything about this subject but I would challenge you to read the whole lesson to ensure that what you think you know agrees with what the Bible actually says. In this Bible lesson I will attempt to answer the following reader questions on the subject of souls:
- WILL YOU DO A MESSAGE ON THE MEANING OF SOULS?
- WHAT THEY ARE?
- WHAT HAPPENS TO THEM AFTER DEATH?
- AND CAN A SOUL BE EATEN UP AND DESTROYED WHILE ALIVE?
In addition to these questions I will also address what the soul of man is not. I will begin this lesson by stating the subject of the soul of man is popularly confused with the subject of the spirit of man and we saw this in man’s dictionary definition of the word. People want to take a dictionary definition for a word that God defines to be something else and that is a foolish approach to trying to understand the God of the Bible. Often in churches and on the internet the term soul of man is used in error interchangeably for the term spirit of man causing a general misunderstanding for the body of Christ. What I have observed is that many people because of this confusion believe that they are the exact same things just called by two different names. Every time the soul is used instead of the correct term spirit or vice versa, it just makes it that much harder to understand which is which. For example, have you ever heard anyone speak of God saving 6 souls in church last Sunday? I will guess that you have. Do you know exactly what they were talking about? Did you also know that Jesus did not come to die to save your soul? Uh oh, I think I just put some people into shock. But that is the problem because people do not know what a soul really is. This will become much clearer after you know what a soul is defined by God to be. Let me give you a New Testament verse to help prove my introductory point:
- Jas 1:21 Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.
What does God say in this verse? Does God say your soul is already saved? If you can read you will find that is not what is stated. God tells the church to receive the engrafted word which is ABLE to save your soul. That is a future tense conditional promise. If you receive the Word meekly the Word is able to make your soul whole again. Once you begin to learn what a soul is verses like this will make so much more sense. Knowing the basics of truths just opens the door for knowing the more complex truths of God’s Word. I hope you can see my point from this verse. God states your soul is not saved yet, but it can be if you continue in the Word.
GOD”S CREATION OF THE TRIUNE MAN
I never switch these two terms soul and spirit casually since I try to be a very detailed oriented person that likes to call things by their specific correct titles for clarification to what I am saying. If I speak of the soul then I am speaking of only a soul and if I speak of a spirit then I am only talking about a spirit and they are definitely not the same thing. Also I would like to say that my reader asking a specific question about “souls” may have intended the question to be about spirits but did not know the difference. I run into this frequently and I will touch on both subjects in this lesson to help everyone learn the differences between spirit and soul. In order to understand the human soul we need to understand the full created human composition and structure in the correct order of importance. In order to understand this original human composition we need to back up to the account given by God concerning creation and see what He has to say on the subjects. I do this to establish the foundation for the pattern transition that took place between the triune Creator God creating the triune man in His own image and likeness. I pray that you already know what a triune being is. If you do not understand that God is a triune being go to my Bible study on that subject and read it, I’m not going to prove the trinity of God fully in this lesson. We will start with Genesis 1 and read concerning the revealed creation of man at the end of day 6:
- Gen 1:26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
Notice this verse begins with the title of God and this is the Hebrew word H430 that is used in over 2000 verses in the Old Testament as His divine name. From the frequency of usage you can tell that it is a very common Hebrew name for God but what you need to know about this name is that it is also a plural name for God. Hebrew words can either be singular or plural and this name is definitely a plural form of the Hebrew word H433. Next, notice what the plural God says “Let US”. God speaks of Himself in another plural pronoun form through the word “US”. These are just two clues to the trinity of God. But I said I wasn’t going to fully teach that part of the subject, but I just did an introduction to challenge you to think. God then says “let us make man”. So God is speaking of man as being a new part of creation that did not previously exist. The next part of the verse is the main part that I wanted you to see.
The Hebrew term in this verse translated as the English word image means “a figure of”. A figure of something else would be like a created statue or a sculpture that represents something else which is greater. For example, the artist Michelangelo created a sculpture of David and while the sculpture was great it was not as great as the original David. I personally believe that what God was saying is that the original man was a precise representation of the greater God. I believe the angels in heaven could look at the created man and see a lesser view of the Supreme God. This clearly states that Adam was not God but yet had the image of his Creator upon him. Now take the Hebrew word translated as “likeness” and know that this word means Adam was a similar instance, example, illustration, pattern, design or a model of the Supreme God who created him. In other words what God was, the man must also be in a lesser form. You see man is definitely not omnipotent, omniscient, or omnipresent as God clearly is, however what was present in Adam had to resemble the pattern of God or he was definitely not made in His image or His likeness. I believe that God was a triune being and that this means man would also have to be a triune being. I believe that whatever qualities that God possessed the man must also have a lesser version of that feature. Therefore we need to understand who and what this Creator God is, what qualities He has revealed to us, in order to know who and what the created man is and what he centrally consists of.
- Joh 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.
We know from reading scriptures that God is a Spirit first and foremost. At least 31 times in the Bible God is referred to as the “Spirit of the Lord”. At least 22 times in the Bible God is called “Spirit of God”. At least 7 times in the KJV Bible God is called “Holy Spirit”. At least 89 times in the KJV Bible God is called “Holy Ghost” and that is just a common mistranslated way to say “Holy Spirit”. God is conclusively revealed to be a Spirit by the overwhelming evidence of scripture. Therefore man must also be a spirit being or man was not made in the similar image or likeness of God. This is where most people begin to struggle to understand the basic human composition. You see I previously stated that Michelangelo created an image of David and we all know that the created image was stone and the other was flesh. So clearly a created image does not have to be made from the exact same materials to be a good representation. That is true, but we just need to learn some more facts instead of isolating one truth in the Bible thinking that is everything that we need to know. It is also clear from simple observation that humans are outwardly flesh based carbon creatures because this is what we can see and touch. However, God also called man a likeness of God and that additional word changed man to be a pattern of God. Since we cannot verify the existence of the human spirit with our senses there is no evidence from a natural perspective in this world to support its existence. But, we should also know from reading the Bible that God is not a man (Num 23:19). Therefore, God is not a flesh based carbon unit. How then can man be made in the likeness and the image of God if God is a Spirit and man is only a created human body? Those are excellent question to consider and to find the answers in the Bible.
Here is another interesting point about God. God is described to be invisible in Colossians 1:15, 1 Timothy 1:17, and Hebrews 11:27. If God a Spirit is invisible are there any components of the human man which are also hidden and invisible? I believe that there is and we will find out why very soon. People in the world seek to know the external temporary body and neglect to seek to find the truth about the more real eternal internal invisible spirit. The majority of the unsaved world believes a human is only a physical body, a soul and nothing else. In thinking in these terms they believe man does not differ from all of the created animals of our planet in any way. In fact they have been deceived to believe that man simply evolved from these lower forms of animal species and that is not supported scientifically, by DNA evidence, any missing fossil linkage, the Bible or any other evidence but people still believe a fool’s theory. There is no evidence supporting this deception of evolution. Creative fiction taught with authority causes the majority of the acceptance of lies.
- Gen 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.
Here is where I think it might be good to introduce you to a concept that is important to know about humans and animals. You see if you do a deep study of the original Hebrew word (H5315) that was translated into “soul” and the many other various words, you will find that this word has application to both man and animals equally. Why is that? For example here in the first chapter of Genesis is the first mention of the Hebrew word but it was translated as “life” instead of soul in this verse. God is definitely teaching us that created animals have life or AKA souls. I believe that this is an example where the translators would have been more accurate if they used the word soul instead of the word “life” but they both do apply. Since created animals breathe air and have a similar form of life as men on the earth they both must possess the same type of “soul life”. However, there is another truth in the Bible that is also very important to know about the difference between human souls and animal souls. In several verses in the O.T. the term soul is joined together with another Hebrew word that means “dumb”. In these verses a “dumb soul” or “dumb life” is referring to animals as being non-speaking living beings on the earth. This fact distinguishes created man to be a completely separate class of being and a different type of soul than the created animals simply because of the existence of “speech”. This significance or dissimilarity will become more evident as we continue to dig deeper into the truth. Men speak words, words have power and authority and this feature reveals man to be like God where the created animals are not. We may get into this more later, but if not just remember what I said. Let me take you to a very important verse to study about this subject of the soul of man:
- 1Th 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.
This Bible verse clearly identifies all of the key parts of the basic created human composition. The three main components are listed in their proper order of sequenced priority. This order is from the greatest or most important human feature descending to the least important part of every human. Not very many Christians put humans into this order but that is what God says, learn it. This verse declares every human is to be first, a spirit that second has a soul and third lives in a physical body. Spirit, soul and body represent three different realms of human existence that require our attention and God’s attention according to this statement. Consider the declaration being made by God closely. God says He desires that your whole being be made holy and then He lists three separate areas for this act to take place. Did you see what God just said? God just told you that you were designed to be a triune being and that you definitely have a spirit using the exact same Greek word that was proclaimed as God’s Holy Spirit in many other verses. The fact that God chooses to use the same word for spirit to describe Himself and man makes man the likeness of God. Do you understand that point?
Right here in this single verse we have just confirmed the existence of two unseen features for the created man being made in the image and likeness of God. Using this foundational information we understand that the human spirit is not the human soul, the human soul is not the human body, the human spirit is not the physical body and all of these in the vice versa. To emphasize this point again I’ll restate it using basic math terms. The human spirit is not equal to the human soul, the human spirit is not equal to the human body, and the human soul is not equal to the human body. These are very simple truths and this is very profound information for us all to learn. Each component is a separate and distinct part of the whole man and that is why I never use the terms soul and spirit interchangeably. This triune pattern revealed as a whole man is the repeated design from the trinity nature of God. Like I said before I’m not going to teach the subject of the trinity of God in this lesson; I have other lessons on that subject. Therefore, if you still do not understand that God declares Himself as One God in the form of three unique titled personalities then you are in need of knowing the truth.
Perhaps this will be a good time to introduce confirmation for the location of the human soul. I just stated that the soul and spirit are the unseen parts of humans and we will need to find Bible verses to help establish this or we should change to believe what the Bible does say. Even though we do not yet fully know what the soul is, we can still learn where it is located to help us understand the subject. I’ll give you a verse that helps to point us to the location of the human soul.
- 1Pe 3:4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.
Here we have the Apostle Peter writing about a part of the human that is reported to be of greater importance than the outward human body mentioned in the preceding context verse. God through Peter says that this internal part of the human composition is hidden from natural view. This simply means it is not perceivable with the five physical human senses. Clearly there is a part of humans that is invisible which is very similar to the Spirit of God. What part of man do you believe this is speaking? I believe it is speaking literally of the human soul and the human spirit. In this verse it points us to the core of a man called his heart. But we will need additional verses to confirm this belief. Let’s go back to the Old Testament and review a verse that might help clarify this location for the soul. Please read this next verse and if you would like, look up the Hebrew word definitions to expand your knowledge and understanding of what is being communicated:
- Psa 103:1 A Psalm of David. Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name.
Begin by understanding the Hebrew word (H5315) translated as “soul” is the same word that we previously defined to be at the least 16 different English words. We should be able to then look at the next most important Hebrew word and find H7130 which is translated as “within” means the center of something. In other words the center of an apple is the core. The center of something means something else surrounds it. In my apple example, the skin of the apple surrounds or covers the internal parts. That is the concept being communicated by the Spirit of God in this verse in Psalms. Therefore the soul of man is an internal component and not an external quantity. This again points us to the center heart. Do you understand that? Perhaps you do and perhaps you don’t. Using the list of 1 Thessalonians 5:23 human components we can see that the human soul was mentioned second. I also said that this list was given to us in the order of importance. Either way the soul being in the middle of the other two words means it is surrounded by something else. However that is not exactly the best description of the three components of man.
Do you understand what a bull’s-eye target is? This target is a series of concentric circles with a center circle usually given the highest point achievement to hit. This type of target is popular in shooting sports, darts, archery and other types of recreational activities. Don’t let the word concentric cause you difficulty. Concentric only means every circle has the same center point. I personally believe the human composition of man is like this target design. For example, in 1 Thessalonians 5:23 God lists the center circle of man first called his spirit, I believe this represents the bull’s-eye. The bulls-eye is the ultimate goal that God and Satan are after. The spirit center circle is followed by the next circle called the soul and finally the outermost circle would be last, called the human body. You will find this concept throughout the Bible and it is important for us to understand. Let’s go back to Genesis again and see another reference commentary to the creation of man:
- Gen 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.
In this single verse is found all of the three stated created triune components of man revealed for us in 1 Thessalonians 5:23. Every part of the specified composition of a man is mentioned here in this verse but they are easily confused or missed. By contrast, in this verse God shifts the order of the mentioned priority to reveal more essential information concerning creation. Understand that God’s order of mention always teaches something, reveals something, or states the sequence of importance, precedence, priority or authority. You see in many secular schools there has always been the classic debate held about which came first the chicken or the egg? The debate begins with a conclusion that a chicken always comes from an egg therefore the egg must have existed before the chicken. However, the opposing side of the debates begins with this counter argument and states where did the egg come from? Since the egg comes from a chicken the chicken must have existed first in order to produce the egg. Thus we have a classic circular reasoning debate without end and without any clear winner. However, God reveals by His phrasing exactly which came first here in His Word and ends the debate. I guess people want to debate because they do not desire to believe in the Bible or the existence of a great creator God and thus they produce man made logic to explain away the truth.
This verse in Genesis starts with the revealed fact that God first created the complete mature body of the man from the dust of the earth. What was the first created part of the man? By definition it is the body. Without a physical body there are no humans, man or woman. When the body of a human baby is formed from the union of the female egg and the male sperm cells that action produces the body for the human spirit and before this occurs there is no human spirit and if you can read you will see that is what this verse in Genesis is teaching. After the man’s formed body was produced by the work of God’s hand, what happened next? The Bible says God “breathed” into his nostrils (body). Let’s stop there and interpret this verse based upon what we have previously learned about God. In John 4:24 we learned that God is an invisible Spirit and therefore God does not breathe air like a natural human being takes in the oxygen based atmosphere into the lungs and then exhales the carbon dioxide mixture back out. In fact, have you ever read any verse that says air exists in heaven? I personally believe air is a created substance and therefore the creator existed before air. Therefore God did not need air to exist. Surely you can see that spirits do not need air to be a spirit or to have life. If God does not breathe air what then is God saying to us here to us in Genesis 2:7 that he breathed into Adam?
This is the introduction to the potentially complex part of the discussion on the human composition. We learned from reading in the New Testament in 1 Thessalonians 5:3 that man is definitely a spirit first and foremost. But here in Genesis 2:7 God creates the man’s body first and so far there is no mention of any direct spirit either God’s or man’s. Where then did this spirit mentioned in 1Thessalonians 5:3 come from? Are spirits created by God from nothing or do spirits originate from another spiritual being? Did you ever ask yourself why God a Spirit is called by the direct title of “Father” repeatedly in the Bible? In fact over 200 times in the Bible God is revealed by this title. In order for any being natural or spiritual to be labeled a father they must procreate to produce a child. What is the basis of procreation? Naturally speaking it is sex, but how is that related to a spirit like God? How does God procreate? According to Genesis 2:7, God breathed and man became. Analyze what natural human breath is. Breathing is a process of inhaling or the intake of air followed by exhaling, outtake or exit of the air? That process of breathing represents air flow or more specifically air movement. So if God created natural things to give us pictures into spiritual things what does God breathing into the nostrils of the man represent symbolically and spiritually? I believe that God breathing out from His Spirit and into the body of the man was God’s Spirit moving from God into the body of His creation to become Adam’s spirit. What else can it be? This would answer the question where the spirit of man came from. Let’s look at a verse that Jesus spoke when teaching His disciples to pray:
- Mat 6:9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
Here Jesus says to pray “Our Father”. This does not say “My Father”. The term “Our” is a statement of inclusion not leaving the disciples out. If God was their Father as well as the Father of the Lord Jesus then this is important information to remember. This verse in Genesis 2:7 that I have been using to teach specifically says that God blows something out from His Spirit that enters into the body through the nasal air passage of the man to cause life to be first observed. The nasal air passage is just one human gate to the body of man. Gates can be two ways or one way. In the case of the nose and mouth these are two way gates that allow air in and out. Please allow me tell you briefly about a testimony of a man that I knew. This man died as a teenager and went to hell. This man was about to enter into hell when a voice spoke from heaven and he ascended back to the earth. When his spirit came back into the room where his body had died, he remembers his spirit entering back into his body through his mouth. It seems that there is a direct connection between the air passages and the internal invisible spirit of the human that resides in the body. I haven’t proved that yet, but maybe I will get to that part later. If not and you want to know where this is in the Bible you can ask a question.
Here is a basic simple question, was the body of the man Adam living or alive before God breathed? If you are smart you must agree that Adam’s body had no life before God breathed. If it was not alive then it was technically dead. Isn’t dead the antithesis to being alive? I am simply using the term dead to mean there was no life present until God breathed. Here is another very interesting point to observe from the creation account in Genesis; ask yourself, why didn’t God breathe into any of the nostrils of any of the other created animals to cause them to become alive? Have you ever thought about that? Actually I should ask did you notice that God did not breathe into the animals. What this proves is a basic fact that man was not created as an animal and did not originate from the animal class of species. It conclusively proves that man’s life came directly from God’s Spirit and that makes man a very unique and a very special created being.
What does the Bible say is the reason for the life of the flesh or the body of a man? Realistically there is more than one answer to that question but I’m going to focus in on only one part of the answer for now. We are going to interpret the Bible using the Bible so that we can understand what God is saying in Genesis 2. Read this verse and tell me what it says and why it applies to what we just read about in Genesis 2:7:
- Jas 2:26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
This verse clearly says that when the human body dies, the spirit of that man departs, exits, or leaves the body. To be more precise this verse says if there is no human spirit, then there is no human life! This verse is the stated antithesis of what occurred in Genesis 2:7 and it teaches us what happened to the man in that verse to cause life to enter his body. The man’s spirit had to have come from the Spirit of God in order for the man’s body to become a living being. Are you getting the connection? Where did the spirit of man come from? The spirit of man could only come from the Spirit of God and this is not that complicated and it must be this way for every human. Spirits come from the Father of Spirits and this is told to us by the verse in Hebrews 12:9. Go read it and see what it says. I’m spending a lot of time on the spirit of man component because this is the most important part of every human being. The spirit of man is the eternal part that never dies, never ceases to exist and will be judged someday standing before the throne of God. The human spirit is the part of the man that was made in the direct image and likeness of the Creator.
Earlier I told you that the human soul is not saved yet and that God has given us His Word to save our souls. Therefore, the human spirit is the only component of God’s salvation that was reconciled back into relationship with God’s plan of salvation. You see at the point of salvation your physical body does not change one bit. You have the exact same body before receiving salvation as you do after salvation. Remember the order of priority given to us by God? God thinks about you internally to externally in that precise order. When God offered you salvation He did it through a preacher proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This Gospel message should have included the message of the identity of Jesus as being God in the flesh and His voluntary sacrifice to die for our sins. But it did not end there, Jesus was then raised from the dead and that act was the key difference between every other human death and when we believe on all of this that Jesus accomplished that saved our spirit and God’s Spirit enters into our body to witness that we are now again His children.
- 1Co 6:17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.
To be joined with the Lord is a marriage covenant phrase first given to us by God in Genesis 2:24. After receiving the Lord Jesus as savior the Spirit of God becomes one spirit with your spirit and you are conclusively saved by His Grace through your faith (Eph 2:8). Therefore, God’s Spirit joined with your spirit is the result of salvation. The rest of you still needs to be saved and I’ll show you why next when I begin to describe the human soul.
INTRODUCTION TO THE SOUL OF MAN
I needed to spend considerable time upfront emphasizing the spirit of man because that is not the soul part of the human composition. The spirit of man comes from the Spirit of God, but the soul of man does not. Ok, I probably just confused most of you with that statement. Let’s spend time analyzing what the soul of man represents. I do not currently know of one verse that accurately describes all of the parts of the human soul. If you know of one, share it. I will go through and give you some verses that list specific parts of the human soul and then we will need to put the pieces together to define the whole
- Pro 2:10 When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul;
Here we have two references to two different parts of the human composition. The heart of man can normally be viewed as the spirit of the man and the soul is the Hebrew word H5315 that I have been focusing upon in this lesson. Wisdom goes into the spirit (heart) of man. Let’s define wisdom as being, knowing what to do when you don’t know what to do. I believe we could also define wisdom as being, saying the right thing when you think you don’t know what to say. Wisdom directs good words and good actions to come forth from a man, but the lack of wisdom causes a man’s acts and words to appear foolish. According to God wisdom is what we all should be trying to obtain. But, God also says knowledge is a positive ingredient for our soul. Therefore, ask yourself how do you get knowledge and where do you retain this knowledge? Do you believe that knowledge is tied to your mind and your memory? If you agree with me that getting knowledge is a part of your mind’s function, then the soul of man contains your mind. Let’s consider another verse that brings in a new aspect of the soul:
- Pro 14:10 The heart knoweth his own bitterness; and a stranger doth not intermeddle with his joy.
This verse is easily missed because of the translation error. The term “own” here is the Hebrew word H5315 that should have been made “soul”. This is one of those poor examples of Bible translations that I referred to earlier. Change the word to soul and reread it. The heart (spirit) knows his soul’s bitterness”. What is bitterness? If you look at the entire verse you will hopefully see bitterness is being defined as the antithesis of joy. What is joy? Joy is a human emotional state. It represents a very happy moment in life. Therefore, bitterness could be the opposite the sad, discouraged, disappointed times of life. What we are observing is the inclusion of the human emotions into the soul realm. So far we have found the mind and the emotions to be two parts of the soul.
- Pro 15:32 He that refuseth instruction despiseth his own soul: but he that heareth reproof getteth understanding.
Here is another interesting verse about your soul. What is the main subject of this verse? If you did not know God is focused on the human soul in this verse. We can see from the last word in the verse that God is talking about us getting understanding? How do you understand anything? Isn’t that with your mind again? People get knowledge and then they can grow to understand what they know with their minds and that is an intricate part of the human soul. However, God introduces us to a new aspect of the human soul called choice. The right of human choice that we all possess is called our human freewill. If we refuse to take instructions we have made a negative choice and God says we despise our souls. This is an act of a vile person, an ignorant person and it is not a positive description to be associated. What we have learned from this verse is that the human soul is comprised of their will or right to choose. We could go through many more confirming verses but that was a quick introduction to the three main human soul sub-components.
WHERE DOES MAN GET HIS SOUL?
The human soul is one sub-realm in the triune whole design of man (spirit, soul & body). We previously looked at God as being the source for man’s spirit, but where did man get his soul? The soul of man is comprised of three main specific entities called 1) the mind, 2) the will and 3) the emotions. These soul items were created patterns, models and qualities that God possessed but they were not God’s personal mind, God’s personal will, or God’ personal emotions present in man. In other words man was an independent spirit possessing an independent soul, an independent mind, an independent will and an independent set of emotions all being separated from God’s soul. Did you know that God had a soul? Ask yourself does God have a mind? If yes, then ask does God have a will? If yes, then ask yourself has God ever displayed any emotions? If yes, then God has a soul and man’s soul was modeled after God’s. However, the created man did not come preloaded with all of the knowledge of God, the understanding or the wisdom of God after creation. The created man was not fully packed with all of the memories of God. The created man was not told anything specifically about the will of God except “do not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil or you will surely die”. This was one of the only details of knowledge revealing the will of God that the man possessed. Therefore the man was not pre-conditioned or pre-programmed to do the will of God. How would the man even know what death was? There is no way that he had ever seen death or experienced death because God created everything very good. Adam did not find out what death was until after he sinned and his son Cain killed his other son Abel and that was the first recorded natural death that occurred in the Bible.
What I am attempting to teach is that the created man did not auto-magically possess the full knowledge of God, the thoughts of God, the ways of God or the emotions of God. He could learn these from walking with and listening to God but they were certainly not automatically transferred to his soul when he was given God’s spirit life. I view the human soul to be an empty large container in need of filling. A human learning something is their empty mind being filled with knowledge. Consider a new born natural child. Does this new born baby possess all of the knowledge of their parents directly from birth? Can they speak intelligently about the facts of life or the experiences of their parents? Obviously a child is an empty container in need of an education and individual and personal experiences of their own in order to grow up and mature. Why would you think that Adam and Eve were different than any new born babies in need of the same? Let me let you in on another Bible pattern. The Bible teaches us that Adam was made in the image and likeness of God in Genesis 1:24 but these two same exact words were used to describe Adam’s new born son named “Seth” in Genesis 5:3. What I am attempting to say is if one pattern is not identical to the other pattern then God just must be confused to use the same words. No what God is teaching us is that the same image and likeness that Adam was created with was also transferred down the life chain to every human descendent that came from Adam. Let’s move on and talk more about the soul.
Consider the human mind to continue our soul analysis. The human mind is comprised of both mental reasoning facilities for thought processing and knowledge retention capabilities also called our memory. Memory is used for human learning and for experience and information storage, which demands there is also recall capabilities later for these memories to be reused for other decision making or expression. Perhaps I need to stop and verify the existence of God’s soul using scriptures. Start by looking at Jeremiah 5:9 and Jeremiah 9:9 to see the Lord speaking directly of His personal soul. This is the same Hebrew word used for man’s soul an animal’s soul, etc. I think verses like these confirm that God is in possession of a soul. Let’s consider what God says about the “mind of Christ” in 1 Corinthians 2:16 and we will certainly verify from this verse that the Lord God also has a mind. Now consider the prayer that Jesus taught to his disciples to pray in Matthew 6:10. Jesus said to pray “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is done in heaven”. Therefore, God definitely has a will. We really haven’t fully defined what a will is, but this is the inward desire part of the spirit being. I also said that the will was the part of a being that possessed “the right of choice”. The inner desires usually help to determine the choices that a person makes. Therefore, the will is another factor for decisions. We are just going through a few of the key components of the soul to verify their existence in God. Now consider the mind’s thought process for thinking and read Isaiah 55:8 and you will see a direct connection being made by God where He says “My thoughts are not your thoughts”. God basically declares we both have minds that think but you are not thinking like I think. If you continue to read in Isaiah God says “Your ways are not my ways”. This again states the will of God to be separate from the will of man. God was clearly saying the choices that you make are not the same as the choices that I would have made. Are you learning anything about the related and connected parts of man’s soul to be like God’s soul? Let’s move on to the emotional part of the soul of God. Does God have emotions? What are emotions? Sadness, anger, joy, disgust, fear and surprise are all common emotional qualities found in normal humans and I did not attempt to give the complete list. Does God ever display any of these qualities? Read Exodus 4:14 to begin and you should quickly see that “the anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses”. It appears that God does possess emotions. Nehemiah 8:10 states the “joy of the Lord is our strength”. Clearly God displays joy and anger to name two emotions. I could give you other verses but that is enough to confirm that God has a soul and that man’s soul was modeled after it.
We can read in Genesis 2 that the created man definitely had extreme thought and reasoning capabilities and he must have possessed incredible memory abilities in order to name all of God’s created animals. Modern scientists still do not know exactly how many species exist on the planet but it is estimated to be between 9,000 and 10,000 different types. Let’s see how long it takes you to come up with original names for each one of these groups and then remember them all. Where did Adam get these names? Notice in this chapter that God brings the animals to Adam and says “whatever the man calls it that is what it will be called” (Gen 2:19). This statement implies that it was an independent man only naming operation that transpired. God would direct the animals across Adam’s path and Adam would use his independent reasoning abilities to name them all. This teaches me that Adam used his own personal mind, thoughts and reasoning abilities to name all of the animals and God did not contribute His abilities or thoughts into Adam’s mental thought process. There is no stated time for how long this took Adam but the fact that it happened is good enough for me. I want you to see that it is clear that Adam must have had a desire to name the animals or he would not have done it. This displays the unique quality of drive, initiative, curiosity and desire; in other words Adam’s human will was a contributing factor in this Animal naming process. Therefore the second part of the triune soul called the human will was a confirmed factor that Adam had to possess. The fact that Adam did something without being told to do it demonstrates not only intelligence but also his freewill choice and the right to make a decision.
Consider all of the mentioned components of the soul of man; each component of the human soul has some significance in the story of Adam in Genesis 2. God says in Genesis 2:6 that he formed the body of the man from the dust of the ground and then breathed a spirit into his body and Adam became a living soul. This confirms that the soul of man exists only after the spirit is introduced. This makes man the unique part of God’s creation. You can see that every animal has a soul but without any spirit. The fact that Adam shows interest in God’s creatures demonstrates a unique human quality that is unlike any creature that was displayed before Adam. No other animal looked at Adam to attempt to name him. What God was teaching Adam by parading His creation before Adam was the fact that there was no one else like him on the planet. God showed him the whole of his work in this world and nothing that God created on the planet was Adam’s equal. That is why God created the woman because God says it was not good for the man to be alone. That statement by God proves Adam was an independent being separate from God. Adam has demonstrated the three qualities of the human soul in this chapter. This was just a quick introduction to the topic of where did Adam get his soul. I tried to show you that Adam’s soul came as a designed pattern for God’s soul but it came void of God’s divine soul fullness. I hope you understand these quick points, I just don’t have the time to explain them in greater detail right now.
SOUL VS. SPIRIT BEFORE AND AFTER DEATH
I am now going to provide further confirmation that the soul is not the spirit and the spirit is not the soul and give you evidence that they both still exist after death. You may have heard me say this before but it is always a good practice to find at least 2 verses in the Bible that impart the same truth. When we locate two verses in two different books of the Bible that demonstrate the same truth, we know this is a truth that God has firmly established by the mouth of 2 witnesses. I think we have covered this fairly well but there is more to it that needs to be studied. Previously I believe I stated the soul and the spirit to be hidden unseen qualities of a man. I linked the soul and spirit to internal parts of the human not connected to the physical body and that is potentially a controversial statement since everyone knows the human brain is the container for the mind. Or at least that is what people think in error and we will talk more about this soon. Let’s go to the New Testament and see what God reveals on the subjects of soul and spirit:
- Heb 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.
We are going to continue with the mind part of the soul. In this verse God declares His word to be a sword of division capable of dividing the human soul from the human spirit. Spirit, soul and body are all technically mentioned in some form in this verse. Joints and marrow are body sub-components just as thoughts and intents are soul sub-components. The spirit is directly mentioned in this verse to be separate from the soul. But why then does God mention the heart at the end of the verse and not the spirit? What is the difference between heart and spirit? Here is where we get into more potentially complex discussions. The Body as you recall is the outer layer component to the inner concentric circles of man. The body layer is followed by the middle circle layer of the soul ending with the center circle layer of the spirit. So the heart of a man is that which lies underneath the outer layer. I believe the heart of a man normally refers to both his spirit and his soul together and I will try to explain this as I go.
Many people confuse the spirit and the soul to be like Siamese twins joined together at the “S”. This verse appears to imply this relationship but it also clearly says that they can be separated, detached, parted, or divided revealing them to be unique separate human qualities. Consider what is not directly stated here. If the word of God says the soul can be separated from the spirit, this would tend to show that they are normally always linked together. In other words where the spirit goes, the soul will surely follow. I then want you to consider why it takes the Word of God to separate the soul from the spirit? Is there anything more powerful than the Word of God? I do not know of anything that exists that is more powerful than the Word of God. God spoke the world into existence and that is enough proof for me but I’ll give you Hebrews 1:3 for you to research. You may not understand that the soul and spirit are normally linked but this is actually a very true statement and I will show you verses that confirm this belief shortly.
Earlier I stated the soul is a triune structure consisting of the “mind”, the “will” and the “emotions”. This verse in Hebrews lists two of these three parts leaving out the emotions. The “thoughts” of man are linked to the human mind’s functionality. You think and therefore you are. The “intents’ of the soul mentioned in Hebrews 4:12 are the parts of you that produce purpose, drive and ability and these give you choice. You mind is a very complex designed part of your being. I could spend a lot of time on this subject but that would be a better separate lesson. Know the soul is the location for your thoughts, your memories, your reasoning, your desires, your emotions, etc. Also understand that God says that your thoughts and intents are for your spirit and not for your body. This brings me to the next part of the lesson question. What happens to the human soul after the death of the human body? I’ve already shown you Bible evidence that states the spirit departs when the death of the human body occurs. Therefore, that leaves us to decide does the human mind just cease to exist after death? That is what some ignorant Bible teachers claim; they call this belief the doctrine of “Soul Sleep”. They define the state of soul sleep to be an unconscious state of existence that is experienced by the spirit until the judgment day and suddenly they are all awakened by God and are back to normal. This belief practically denies the existence of heaven and hell and ignores a lot of the truth in the Bible that counters this belief. It is a very foolish belief that cannot be fully confirmed with all the scripture. For example let me give you something that Jesus taught on the subject of the soul and spirit:
- Luk 16:19 There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:
- Luk 16:20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
Read this story told by Jesus very carefully and give it vigilant consideration. This information is a real literal historical story known by Jesus and not a parable as many fools claim it to be. If it was a parable Jesus is going to state two obvious lies and one of them is found here in this 20th verse. Jesus called the beggar directly by the name of Lazarus. If this was not a real man named Lazarus then the story has become a work of fiction, a make believe account, and a fabrication of unimportant information. If Lazarus does not literally exist Jesus would not have given us his name to make himself a liar. What I am doing is countering a false teaching that attempts to explain away this real life story to make it a parable. These soul sleep teachers have to do this in order to support the rest of their false doctrines. You see the popular approach to discrediting any conflicting verses in the Bible that disagree with your belief is to explain them away using human reasoning. This is a very common technique for deception. They will take the truth and change it into a lie to help support the other lies that they claim are also the truth. Ok, let’s continue with the information from Jesus.
- Luk 16:22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;
Notice that both men are stated to die a physical death and that their physical bodies are buried in the earth. Then notice the wording that is used here to tell what happens to them. What was carried away by the angels? Did you happen to notice that the body in the ground was not them? It was the real man that was being carried away and it was their bodies that were being buried. Here we have the separation of the spirit from the body. We have a very clear separation of the internal unseen man from his seen body. Are you making any connections here? Since the body of man was separated from the spirit of man at the time of death what happened to the soul? Does the soul cease to exist? That is the problem with what is being taught in many ignorant churches, they are ignoring what the Bible says on the subject to believe more untruths. We are about to find out from words spoken out of the mouth of the creator God what happens to their souls so pay attention to what God says:
- Luk 16:23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
- Luk 16:24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.
- Luk 16:25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
Use basic logic observing what is literally stated for us to learn from. We can understand easily that everyone mentioned here is dead, right? Abraham is dead from reading Genesis 25:8. Lazarus we just read has died and is with Abraham. Finally the rich man in hell was also a dead man from the same story that Jesus was using as an example warning. These are three dead individuals that have all departed leaving their bodies on the earth. Notice that Jesus mentions Abraham another real man and this is the second lie that Jesus told if this story is not a literal account that actually happened to Abraham. We cannot hear a story of a real named man and conclude it to be anything but a lie if it did not actually happen. No this is all an actual account given by Jesus stating the literal truth. Then notice everyone that is mentioned can see, think, feel and talk. We can easily understand from what is stated the rich man in hell literally feels the torment of the flames. He sees Abraham and Lazarus a far distance away from the flames and asks for a drop of water to cool his tongue. The key word that I want you to focus on is found in verse 25. Abraham looks at the rich man and tells him to “remember”. A memory is nothing but the recollection of real past events that were personally experienced. I can’t remember what you did yesterday because I don’t know what you did. We all have memories either good or bad and these are an intimate part of our mind and our soul. Therefore, the soul of man is definitely present with the spirits of all of the men after death. The rich man was still able to remember, to think, to reason, and to see and speak. Without the soul and the mind none of this would have been possible. There are many other things to learn from this story but that was the key points that I needed you to see in order to understand the existence and location of the soul after death. Let’s look into another Bible story that is applicable to learn about the soul of man.
- Mar 9:2 And after six days Jesus taketh with him Peter, and James, and John, and leadeth them up into an high mountain apart by themselves: and he was transfigured before them.
- Mar 9:3 And his raiment became shining, exceeding white as snow; so as no fuller on earth can white them.
- Mar 9:4 And there appeared unto them Elias with Moses: and they were talking with Jesus.
Here we have another literal story that happens while Jesus was physically present on the earth. Jesus takes three disciple witnesses with Him for them to tell us what was about to occur. These disciples observe Jesus being transfigured and suddenly two men appear with Him. Notice, who these men are that join Jesus on the mountain. Elijah did not die and was raptured up but Moses certainly died by reading Deuteronomy 34:7. Did you know that the O.T. law of God prohibits talking to the dead? Uh oh! That is a problem until you realize Jesus was actually speaking to two living men and not dead ones. The fact that Moses’ body had died does not make Moses a dead man. The spirit of Moses is alive and present hundreds of years after his physical death. Then notice the mind of Moses is still intact with his spirit since he is clearly able to hold an intelligent conversation with the Lord. That is so important to learn what is being taught in the Word of God. Spirits still have souls and these reside with their spirits after the body has died. Let’s look at another verse that will assist us with this truth:
- Rev 21:4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
Let’s shift our focus to a prophetical verse about the future. Here in this verse God declares that He will wipe away every tear. Who is this that God is wiping away their tears? Probably a better question would be “Why do they have tears to wipe away”? If you read the preceding context you will discover that God is wiping the tears from people. Not just any people, because these are the people of God that God lives in eternity with. That means two things that are very relevant to answer the soul questions. First the presence of the soul is confirmed in the future tense because the tears that are flowing represent the presence of their emotions. Tears normally flow as a result of hurt, pain, sorrow, sadness or other related emotional conditions. There is also the term “tears of joy” and that might also apply to what is being stated here. Remember that I told you the soul was comprised of the mind the will and the emotions. Every one of these subjects is implied to exist in the eternal man. Why do people cry at funerals? They cry simply because they can, but not only that they cry because they love and remember their friend, spouse, child, parent or other relative that has departed. Therefore, memories play an important role in why tears are present. Emotions play a role in the existence of tears. Finally the human will plays a role in shedding tears because I have seen many choke them back to keep them from flowing. What this does is to help confirm that the soul of man will never cease to exist.
I have just given you three great examples of man after death on the earth that still possess their souls with their memories, thoughts, wills and emotions all being implied present with their spirits. The soul of man is an eternal part of the human composition and it will never cease to exist. That brings us to the last part of the question; what about the soul here in this life? You see there is another popular lie from Satan that is taught even in modern medical universities that when a human brain flat lines with no activity that the body is clinically dead and the plug should be pulled. Is that what Jesus said? Is that what the Bible teaches? How does that belief line up with the truth found in God’s Word? Didn’t the spirit of man still possess the mind even after his spirit left his body? What I am saying is that your mind and your memory have nothing to do with your physical brain cells. None of the dead men in Luke 16 had any physical brain cells and every one of them could still see, speak, think and remember like they were in their bodies and probably better. I didn’t give you the full story in this lesson but you can go back and read it to see that the rich man in hell remembered his brothers that were left behind on the earth and he desired (used his will) that they be warned not to come to the same place of torment with him. If this man remembered his life here on the earth, then every man after death can still remember his life in the past. Here is another ending point for the rich man, not only did he remember his brothers on the earth he knew who Abraham was and Abraham had died long before he did. You are going to know a lot of people after you die that you have never seen before. This is just very basic knowledge based upon the Bible. I pray that you will see it.
WHY DOES MENTAL ILLNESS EXIST?
How then do we resolve life’s soul issues? What are the source causes for mind problems? The existence of emotional and mental issues in this life is certainly present. Why are there lapses in memory such as amnesia or Alzheimer’s disease where the recollection is lost? Why are their mental hospitals and physiatrists to try to help people with unstable normal thought patterns and emotions? I’m not going to spend a lot of time addressing this subject because it could potentially be very long and very complex. I will however point you to a few Bible stories that will help begin the understanding process for why these types of things occur in the natural realm even when the soul is not literally tied to the physical brain cells. Let’s start this part of the lesson with this scripture verse:
- 2Co 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
Did you see who God claims to be the source for mind issues? The god of this world is a title given by God to the devil and Satan. He rules the night and the kingdom of darkness of this world. Darkness is nothing but the absence of light. Since God is light, the loss of God represents darkness. Now consider what blindness represents? Can you see in the dark? Have you ever been in a cave and they turned the lights off? The darkness is so thick there that you feel like it engulfs you. Naturally speaking, blindness is the inability to see illuminated objects clearly or at all. Since the mind is an internal human component, how does Satan blind a person’s mind? Did you even know that the human mind had vision? Perhaps you have heard of the mind’s eye? This concept is the visualization of concepts, ideas, knowledge so that they are clearly understood. What God is saying is when a person has been blinded in their minds by Satan, the information enters their ears, but does not pass deeply enough to remain planted. It is very much like the parable of the sower where Jesus said the birds of the air come quickly to devour the Word of God that was planted in their hearts. You really need to give this information serious thought. I’m not going to talk about this in great depth because I am running very long in this lesson already. Just understand that if Satan can blind your mind then that is an area of the soul that is open for attack by a foreign spiritual being. Let’s see if we can verify some of these concepts using other verses in the Bible. I will continue this part of the lesson with the confirmation that the process of thinking within our minds is linked to the spirit of man and not the natural body or brain:
- Mat 9:4 And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts?
Jesus looking at some people knew their internal unseen thoughts and asked them a question that was very revealing to what we are studying. Jesus clearly is speaking of the soul thought realm and he leads us to these thoughts being attached to their spirits and never mentions their physical brain activity. Do you think the creator God knew what He was talking about here? There is no reference to the body anywhere in the context. Little clues like this are hidden in the Bible in some of the most unlikely settings. Truth is concealed so well in the Bible that it is easily overlooked by the casual reader. Everyone is focusing on what Jesus is doing while ignoring what He just said.
- Pro 23:7 For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; but his heart is not with thee.
Again God connects the location of the thought process to be within the center of the man called his soul and spirit and not within the physical body, the brain or the external natural realm. The heart of man is not the physical blood pump organ, it is the center or core of the human like the heart of an apple is the center of the piece of fruit. I’ve said this before but for those that need to hear it again that was for you. This is the basics of God’s truth found in the scripture and that is what is needed for your understanding of the subject of the soul. Now let’s observe what the Bible says about the cause of human mental issues:
- Luk 8:26 And they arrived at the country of the Gadarenes, which is over against Galilee.
- Luk 8:27 And when he went forth to land, there met him out of the city a certain man, which had devils long time, and ware no clothes, neither abode in any house, but in the tombs.
Let us perceive what is happening in this Bible account of the Lord Jesus. They are passing through a part of the country to a town called Gadara. They encounter a man that is far from normal. Physically speaking he has issues, but mentally speaking he is off the charts and can be labeled crazy or a mad man. He wore no clothes and lived in tombs. These are clear signs of a deep mental illness but they are attributed to the presence of devils. What we are going to discover by study of the Bible is that demons, devils, or unclean spirits cause the majority of the mental issues found in the people that Jesus encountered.
- Luk 8:28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beseech thee, torment me not.
You can see from this statement that the man is unaware of the presence of the devils. He does not ask to be delivered from them and is directed by the demons to ask Jesus not to torment them. The reference is to the man, but the thought for the spoken words surely originates from the demons. Clearly this man is possessed of devils. These devils can manifest vocally and take over the voice of a human speaking through his body. This is normally not an ordinary human voice and can be easily identified to those that are spiritually aware.
- Luk 8:29 (For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he brake the bands, and was driven of the devil into the wilderness.)
- Luk 8:30 And Jesus asked him, saying, What is thy name? And he said, Legion: because many devils were entered into him.
- Luk 8:31 And they besought him that he would not command them to go out into the deep.
You can see that Jesus understood that the devils were present and He had commanded them to come out of the man, but that was not the end of the conversation. It is obvious that the demons did not depart on the first command and asked more questions. Jesus then asked for their name. The man replied “legion” because there were many devils in his body tormenting his mind. It would be like having a thousand voices in your head and each one driving you into a state of madness and that is what was happening to this man. I’m going to skip down to the end of the story since that is the important part to understand about the subject of mental illness. After Jesus cast the tormenting spirits out of the madman this is what occurred:
- Luk 8:38 Now the man out of whom the devils were departed besought him that he might be with him: but Jesus sent him away, saying,
- Luk 8:39 Return to thine own house, and shew how great things God hath done unto thee. And he went his way, and published throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done unto him.
Here we can see with the absence of the devil influence being present the man had returned to a sound and stable mental state and wearing clothes. The new normal man wanted to follow Jesus, but Jesus instructed him to go back to his former house and live like a normal man like he did before he went crazy. We have just witnessed a full circle of mental illness that went through the stages of first being normal, then becoming crazy and finally a full recovery with spiritual deliverance to again being normal. The fact that the devils were present during the crazy times proves that they were the cause for the mental illness. The man starts out as normal, but does something that allows the devils access to enter him to take over and control his mind, he then goes crazy until Jesus comes by and delivers him. This deliverance only occurred because of the power and the authority that Jesus used to solve this man’s abnormal situation. Let’s move to another story found in the Bible that is also related to mental and physical instability:
- Mar 9:17 And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit;
Again we see the presence of a spirit being related as the cause of an abnormal human conditions. This stated dumb spirit is not the human child’s spirit even though that is also certainly present since the boy is physically alive. Read the next verse to see what this spirit causes to happen in this boy’s body and mind:
- Mar 9:18 And wheresoever he taketh him, he teareth him: and he foameth, and gnasheth with his teeth, and pineth away: and I spake to thy disciples that they should cast him out; and they could not.
Is any of this description normal human behavior for a child? I seriously do not think we can call any of this foaming at the mouth, seizures, gnashing of the teeth, and shriveling or shrinking away normal human behavior. If you took this description to a physiatrist without explaining where you got the information from the Bible they would probably request an immediate meeting with this person very fast. I believe it is a clear account of a mentally unstable individual. I’m not going to go through the entire story because you can do that for yourself. What you will find is that Jesus casts the devil out and the child returns again to normal human behavior.
What we learn from these two simple stories is that mental issues are largely originated from evil spirits being present in the bodies of the humans. When the evil spirits depart or more specifically are cast out, normalcy returns and humans can resume their lives. What we discover is that the human actions of an individual can be controlled by or at least certainly influenced by the existence of evil spirits. That was a very quick overview of soul issues and deliverance. Deliverance is possible still today because Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.
I believe this has been an incomplete discussion of the full subject of the soul given to us by God in the Bible. However, in this lesson, I have demonstrated to you from the Bible that the soul is not the spirit and the spirit is not the soul of a human. A human being is a spirit that has a soul and lives in a body here in the natural realm. I have also shown you that man was created in the image of God and that God is a Spirit and that He has a soul and these were the patterns for man’s spirit and soul. I have given you more than adequate evidence from the Bible that states the soul of man does not cease to exist after death and the separation of the human spirit from the body. We have seen more than enough verses that teach us the soul and the spirit exist separate from the body. Finally, at the end of this lesson I showed you how the soul realm was within the realm of influence of evil spirits. I believe I gave sufficient evidences to prove that mental illness is caused by demonic possession. There are probably another thousand verses in the Bible on this subject. It would be good for you to go and see if you can find them if you truly desire to know more about this subject from the true authority. If you run across verses that you do not understand you are welcome to ask me questions and if I know anything I will share it. I hope and pray that you learned something that you did not know before on the human soul and triune composition of man. I thank you for your time to study the Bible and may God bless you with the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Christ Jesus (Eph 1:16).
(Ver 1.1) Too many Christians like to ignore the hard stuff. Stuff that is just too tough to think about or to attempt to explain. I have found that God is not intimidated by the difficult questions. In fact He has given us a huge book full of information that contains ALL of the answers that we are seeking. Everyone is seeking to know who they are, why they are here, what purpose does their lives serve in being here. These are in fact the basis for all other questions that we can probably think of. Because people don’t know who they are and why they are here, they spend a lot of time searching for their answer in the wrong places, with the wrong people at the wrong time. It is an amazing extended effort in frustration.
So what are some of the Hard Questions of Life that we should be trying to find out the answers to in the Bible? Here is my top 10 list:
- Who Am I?
- Why Am I here?
- Is There a God?
- Who is God?
- Why is there so much Evil in the World?
- Why doesn’t God do anything to Stop Evil from happening?
- Is God causing the Tornados, Hurricanes, Earthquakes?
- Is there a Devil?
- Is there a Heaven and a Hell?
- Is there anything after Death?
These are just some of the most important questions that I can think of to find the answers to. Maybe you can come up with some more good questions to ask God. If you can please give them to me in a comment. I can think of some related questions that I didn’t really include in my list, like “Did God take my Child in that car wreck?” or “Did God take my mother with cancer?” There are really a lot of personal questions that we are all faced with from our life’s past that we do not understand.
Unfortunately, we all want easy simple answers to every question, not realizing that there are many factors that are uniquely individual to everyone. You see many people may experience the same thing, but how they got there could be completely different than somebody else. So God’s answer to me for a question might be a little different for His answer to you for the exact same question. People like to look at the external and God is primarily focused on the internal aspect of your heart. Life is a completely complex system of interrelated dependencies. Everyone’s life is similar, but yet uniquely different.
So how do you find these answers to the Hard Questions of Life? I have to admit that finding things in the Bible can be work. If you want an easy answer to your problem, I would suggest that you go try a religion that offers a simple inoffensive message of enlightenment and hope. If you want the truth I would say you are not here reading this blog by chance or accident. I do not have all of the answers to every complex question, I just know the one that has all of these answers. You can know Him also, He will speak to you and help you to find the answers that you are seeking. God is actually for you and wants you to be successful in this life. God desires a relationship with you, for you to know Him and for Him to know you.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. If you want or need help with a difficult question, I will do my best to try to point you to answers in God’s Word. Just please understand that every answer is not simple and many times God’s answers are completely different than what you want to hear, but yet they are always intended to help you see something that you need to change inside of you. God Bless You!