Although in appearance, we’re seen as one entity, but because we are made in the image of God, we are more complex than we could imagine. The bible, on occasion, speaks of the soul and spirit as separate. However, soul and spirit works together more completely, than being independent or separate. Think of the spirit as nourishment for the soul in the same way that the bone marrow nourishes the bone, while the bone supports the bone marrow.
Hebrews 4:12 – For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two spirit edged 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.
The outer level is the body, followed by the soul and the core is the spirit close in proximity to the Holy Spirit. Following is a discuss the function of the soul to understand its importance and then discuss the spirit in detail.
The soul is basically our mind, our emotions, and our will. It is who we are as human beings. But it is also used to express God. As written in Luke 1:46-47, Mary’s Song, “And Mary said: My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.”
I became interested in this hypothesis even more, when one day while driving and doing errands, I had the following experience.
I had several errands one day and a certain errand took me out of the normal path. I told my husband of my errands, but failed to mention the one that took me out of my way. I knew that I failed to mention this one to him, because I didn’t want anything slowing me down with a further explanation. The last stop was the one furthest away. As I’m nearing my destination, a thought from nowhere and seeming persistent in showing me that by omitting my whereabouts, I was lying. Lying is considered a sin.
I hadn’t thought of this omission as a lie, but there it was. My mind, or soul, didn’t consider this until my spirit had brought this to my mind’s attention. My spirit received this conviction via the Holy Spirit which could in turn nourish my conscience or soul.
The spirit is the only way to connect with God, and we can only use the spirit if we believe in God and receive Him through Jesus with the gift of salvation.
This verse demands us to walk with our spirit and that means living a life according to the spirit and not our soul. The way of the spirit is the way of God. The spirit came to us through Jesus Christ. He lived amongst us and became human and for this reason, he has given us the gift of connecting with God through our spirit, situated at the core of our being and closest to the Holy Spirit sent from God.