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Winning a battle on "enemy's turf"Adiusa3-12-13  9:30 pm
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Registered user
Username: River

Post Number: 8093
Registered: 9-2006

Posted on Monday, February 25, 2013 - 7:38 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Jon Rittenhouse said something that I have been struggling with a long time, namely the phrase, body, soul, and spirit.

He said that he thought soul and spirit could be used interchangeably.

I tend to agree with this assumption as I just can't see how this would work any other way.

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Username: Rocky

Post Number: 57
Registered: 3-2012
Posted on Monday, February 25, 2013 - 11:35 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

If they are interchangeable why does Hebrews 4:12 speak of them as divisible and why would there be two Greek words and two Hebrew words for them? Don't know just asking ... I do know that I experience my emotions and thoughts differently than I do the Holy Spirit's presence and prompting but not sure I understand it...still being taught....
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Username: Chris

Post Number: 1747
Registered: 7-2003

Posted on Monday, February 25, 2013 - 6:26 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Personally, I think Hebrews 4 is likely using a technique usually referred to as "a piling on of terms". In other words, using a number of synonymous or nearly synonymous terms to make a point. It's basically just saying the Word of God pierces all the way into our deepest parts. Others strongly disagree with this position, but Norman Geisler's survey of the many places the Bible appears to switch between these terms interchangeably has definitely swayed me towards a bipartite position.
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Username: Colleentinker

Post Number: 14300
Registered: 12-2003

Posted on Monday, February 25, 2013 - 10:09 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I agree with your conclusion, Chris...the way I understand it is that we have two main "parts": material and immaterial. The body is material. The spirit/soul is immaterial. Whether or not they are one or two separate things is almost a moot point, because they are not physically "measurable".

So I can think of the person as having a material part which goes into the grave upon death, and an immaterial part where the Holy Spirit communicates with me; this part goes to be with the Lord Jesus upon death. In the case of an unbeliever, the immaterial part still goes back to God, but He knows how to keep it for the second resurrection when the person receives judgment.

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Username: Cloudwatcher

Post Number: 649
Registered: 5-2009

Posted on Tuesday, February 26, 2013 - 9:03 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Do animals have souls and only humans have souls and spirits?

(spirit being the part of the immaterial that communicates with God and can have faith)
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Username: Nowhitehats

Post Number: 78
Registered: 4-2010
Posted on Tuesday, February 26, 2013 - 10:04 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I currently belief there is Biblical evidence for making a distinction between soul and spirit.


Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Thessalonians 5:23 ESV)

spirit = pneuma (immaterial, who you are at the core)
soul = psyche (immaterial, mind/thoughts, will, emotions)
body = soma (physical, flesh/bone, soft/hard tissue including brain)

When a person believes and trusts in Christ they get a new living spirit and Christ's Spirit becomes united with their spirit (1 Corinthians 6:17).
Between now and then, believers are renewing their souls or minds (Romans 12:2).
When Jesus returns, those in Christ get a new body (Philippians 3:20-21).

In my experience and one of the most confusing things upon my new birth was not having immediate change in my thoughts and emotions. I had a new spirit but was troubled as to why my understanding seemed stuck in neutral. Not knowing I had an immaterial spirit that was new at the core caused me to look to my feelings to gauge how I was relating to God. I was still living under law and it was killing me emotionally. I believe the reason for this is that I needed to learn the truth of my identity in Christ. Finally learning this truth changed (renewed) by thinking and created an anchor for my soul (Hebrews 6:19). It is because of this that I see the spirit and soul as two distinct parts.

It also explains why Christians still sin after being saved - because of the power of sin and unrenewed thinking, their souls are drawn to walk after the flesh and not after the Spirit. Thankfully, this sinning doesn't change the state of their new living spirit - which is and always will be one with Christ!
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Username: Punababe808

Post Number: 318
Registered: 4-2012
Posted on Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - 10:52 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Some people use the words, body, mind and spirit. Makes it easier today understand.
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Username: Adiusa

Post Number: 12
Registered: 4-2012
Posted on Tuesday, March 12, 2013 - 9:20 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


Angels=soul+spirit or maybe just spirits


"Benefits" for the distinction of the 2 immaterial parts:
1) Distinction between animals and humans. Humans ONLY are able to communicate with God and can have faith, as Cloudwatcher said. It also defeats the evolutionary view that animals can evolve in humans.
2) We are created in the image and likeness of a Trinitarian God. If we can distinguish between Father, Son and Holy Spirit we should distinguish between body, soul and spirit.

One explanation that bothers me and is in favor of a human=body+soul/spirit (dichotomy) is the explanation from CRI website
"The trichotomist view is typically used to support the idea that God communicates mystically with our spirits and thus bypasses our intellects." (reference to the charismatic manifestation of speaking in tongues). And that the benefit of a dichotomy is: "The teaching that man is two parts or unified dichotomy of body and soul, I think, avoids these errors and is most faithful to Scripture".

Now, I do not subscribe to a Pentecostal agenda, but I had experienced a few charismatic manifestations that indeed bypassed my intellect.

I feel weird even in trying to defend this view. I don't want to be looked at as a person with an agenda, since the main view in the evangelical circles inclines toward a dichotomy and is anti-charismatic.

One thing I know is what happened to me was undeniable proving a trichotomy and charismatic manifestation. I don't even have to be a theologian able to further defend it with scripture, to be convinced of this. I could give it a shot though.

In my case, my born again experience was profoundly spiritual, because my intellect could not come to terms over the issue of the Sabbath. See my next post "Winning a battle on "enemy's turf".

God Bless,

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