The Human Spirit


| 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

Man is a spirit being whether he is a believer or not. Man is not a soul as speculated by some religions. Sometimes man is referred to in the Bible as a soul; however, what it simply means is that the seat of his personality is in his soul. It does not mean that he is a soul.

With the spirit man connects the spiritual realm; with the soul he connects the intellectual realm and with the body (physical senses) he connects the physical realm.

The mind is not the human spirit and the human spirit is not the mind. The mind is one of the components of the soul. The human spirit in man is referred to in the Bible as the inner man, the inward man, the new creature, the new man, my spirit, the heart and the belly. Sometimes the words heart and belly used in the Scripture do not refer to the physical organs. These words are used to convey a thought. Note how we use the word ‘heart’ today. We talk about the heart of a matter. What does it mean? Does it mean that a matter has a heart? No, it means the most important part of that matter, i.e. the very core. The human spirit is the main part of man – the core of his being.

While there is a thin line between man’s spirit and his soul, it is the man’s soul that makes him conscious of himself. Even after death the spirit and soul of man are still intact. It is the soul that makes the man conscious of his environment and himself even after physical death. In the spirit realm, man looks very similar to what he looks like in this life. In the realm of the spirit, man’s soul is still intact because he can remember things, and still have emotions. Consider Luke 16: 19-22, for example, in which Jesus narrates the story of Lazarus and the rich man.

A man who is not born again has a dead human spirit. A dead human spirit does not imply a non-functional spirit. It means that his spirit is cut off from the Life of God. His spirit is dead to God and alive to Satan. His spirit is dead to God in the sense that he does not have the Life and nature of God in him. He is alive to the devil and will quickly respond to the devil’s urging.  There are some who contend that the human spirit of an unbeliever is dead in the sense of annihilation. If this is the case, how then do some of them practice witchcraft, occultism and spiritualism? When the Bible therefore talks about death in this regard, it does not mean annihilation, but cessation.

Cessation means to be cut off. An unbeliever’s spirit is cut off from God’s Life and that is why he is dead. He is dead to everything that concerns God and alive to everything that concerns the devil.

Hobart E. Freeman in his book “Every wind of doctrine” said that the inner man is connected to the body by the “Silver cord.” Though there is no Scripture to support this argument, I still believe that there is a point of connection between man’s spirit and his body. Do you have the Life of Christ in your spirit? It’s not about the Church or denomination you belong to.


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