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Chapter 1 - Human Anatomy
Knowing how we are made can help us understand how we should live - Anonymous
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. - 1 Thessalonians 5:23
If we want to know how to walk in the Spirit, we should first consider the three main components of human existence, the body, soul, and spirit. The body is something we are very familiar with. We are born with it and haul it around with us until we die. Often it deteriorates significantly before actual physical death.
The soul is something a little more difficult to understand as it is not observable such as when we see the body in a mirror.
The Hebrew term for 'soul' is nephesh and it is found more than 780 times in the Old Testament. It is not always translated into English word 'soul.' The KJV uses 28 different words to translate the word. Nephesh, therefore, signifies different things, depending upon the context of the verse.
Similarly, in the Greek New Testament, the original word for 'soul' is psuche, found 103 times. Our modern word 'psychology' derives from this Greek term. 'Soul' may signify merely an individual person, his life, or the mental and emotional facilities that can exist apart from the physical body.
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. - Hebrews 4:12
Here we have a indication of the difficulty in separating an understanding of soul from spirit. Both the words soul and spirit refer to parts of human existence that are immaterial. It can be confusing especially when contrasting the material with the immaterial to see the distinction.
It can be helpful to consider the soul as where the mind, emotions, desires, and affections reside.
Did not I weep for him that was in trouble? was not my soul grieved for the poor? - Job 30:25
(For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;) - 2 Peter 2:8
And my soul shall be joyful in the LORD: it shall rejoice in his salvation. - Psalm 35:9
If we consider just the body and soul, we can see material and immaterial components. It is when we try to differentiate the spirit, that it becomes more difficult.
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