Spirit, Soul and Body: Part 1, the O.T. Witness as to Them

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THE 5:23{EB 4:12{It may be asked, What do we know of their origin? and it is right that we should seek to know the meaning of what God has seen fit to write in His word. Neither intellect nor science can answer this question. These notes from Scripture on this subject have helped the writer; they may also help and interest the reader, if the Lord will.
Man, as God's creature, is made up of these three distinct parts. Like men, the lower animals are said in Scripture to possess both soul and body, but not spirit. In the word of God (Gen. 1), where alone we can read anything of the origin of this present creation, God has been pleased to instruct us as to this matter. " Let the waters bring forth the moving creature that hath life" (or, in Hebrew, "nephesh," soul); and again, in verse 21, " Every living creature that moveth " (or, every living soul-the same word). So also in verse 24, "Let the earth bring forth the living creature (or living soul) after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so." God thus created them by His word living souls (Advil nephesh) upon the earth; and verse 30 tells us that that class wherein there is (nephesh) " soul," includes " every beast of the earth, every fowl of the air, and everything that creepeth upon the earth."
But when we come to man, we read something different. As to all the other animals, God had but spoken and had called them into being. At the fiat of their Creator they had come forth; but He now consults as to the creature that is to have dominion. This is man. Neither the earth, nor the air, nor the sea is called upon to produce him. He is to be made, and made also in the very image and after the likeness of God. " Let us make man in our image, after our likeness." "And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life (n'shahmah ghahy1); and man became a living soul (ghahy nephesh)"-the same expression as we find used of the lower animals in Gen. 1:2121And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. (Genesis 1:21). But what an important and twofold difference I First, man was, as to his body, God's own formation out of the dust of the ground-not, as they were, called into being by a word; second, he was, as and when he was thus formed, the receiver (from God still) of this "n'shahmah" of life into his nostrils. Thus the formation of his body and his inspiration, by which it is said he became a living soul (ghahy nephesh), are by no secondary means. Both are immediately from God; two things which we do not read of any of the lower creatures.
But further, " There is a spirit (rooagh) in man, and the inspiration (n'shahmah) of the Almighty giveth them understanding; " so says Elihu. But that the beasts have " no understanding " David tells us in Psa. 32:99Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding: whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee. (Psalm 32:9), using this same word for " understanding." Again, he also says, " Man that is in honor, and understandeth not (same word), is like the beasts that perish." (Psa. 49:2020Man that is in honor, and understandeth not, is like the beasts that perish. (Psalm 49:20)) The prophet Isaiah also declares that they (the beasts) have not the 'spirit (rooagh). " Now the Egyptians are men, and not God; and their horses flesh, and not spirit." (Isa. 31: 3) With men, therefore, the beasts partake both of soul and body, but not of spirit. As to the spirit ' (rooagh,) in man, it too (as soul and body are) is God's work. The first place we read this word "rooagh, " in Scripture, it is applied to God. (Gen. 1:22And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. (Genesis 1:2)) We read that "in the beginning Elohim created the heavens and the earth." Later, when the creation as it at present exists was formed, we read, " The Spirit (rooagh) of God moved on the face of the waters." Elihu also, who applies this word to the spirit in man (Job 32), applies the same word to God in Job 33:44The Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life. (Job 33:4). This spirit God forms in man. "Jehovah, which stretcheth forth the heavens, and layeth the foundations of the earth, and formeth the spirit (rooagh) of man within him." (Zech. 12:11The burden of the word of the Lord for Israel, saith the Lord, which stretcheth forth the heavens, and layeth the foundation of the earth, and formeth the spirit of man within him. (Zechariah 12:1)) Again, as to this work of God, "Lo, He that formeth the mountains, and createth the spirit (rooagh), and declareth unto man what is His thought."
(Amos 4:1313For, lo, he that formeth the mountains, and createth the wind, and declareth unto man what is his thought, that maketh the morning darkness, and treadeth upon the high places of the earth, The Lord, The God of hosts, is his name. (Amos 4:13)) That both soul and spirit were not confounded, but were known and distinguished, we may learn from other passages of the Old Testament. Hezekiah said that he spoke in the bitterness of his " soul " (nephesh);: but further adds, "In all these things is the life of my spirit (rooagh)." (Isa. 38:15,1615What shall I say? he hath both spoken unto me, and himself hath done it: I shall go softly all my years in the bitterness of my soul. 16O Lord, by these things men live, and in all these things is the life of my spirit: so wilt thou recover me, and make me to live. (Isaiah 38:15‑16)) Job says, " I will speak in the anguish of my spirit (rooagh), I will complain in the bitterness of my soul (nephesh)." (Job 7:1111Therefore I will not refrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul. (Job 7:11)) Job also contrasts soul and spirit; the first being that of every living thing, and the second which is alone in man, when he asks the question, " In whose hand is the soul (nephesh) of every living thing, and the breath (rooagh) of all mankind?" (Job 12:1010In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind. (Job 12:10))
" The beasts perish " (Psa. 49), but as to man, both soul and spirit are IMMORTAL. This, found fully in the New Testament, to which I do not now refer, we find also in the Old. It is written, " God made MAN upright." (Eccl. 7:2929Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions. (Ecclesiastes 7:29)) Of his threefold formation we have already spoken-" Spirit and soul and body." We may now look at what is immortal in him. Job, of whom we have already heard, who spoke of all three, " Spirit, soul, and body" (see Job 10:1,11,121My soul is weary of my life; I will leave my complaint upon myself; I will speak in the bitterness of my soul. (Job 10:1)
11Thou hast clothed me with skin and flesh, and hast fenced me with bones and sinews. 12Thou hast granted me life and favor, and thy visitation hath preserved my spirit. (Job 10:11‑12)
), and lived most probably long before the writing of the book of Genesis, knew himself as one who would exist after death. In speaking of that event, and of the time when the worm should have destroyed this outward visible frame, he says, " Yet in my flesh shall I see God." (Job 19:2626And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: (Job 19:26)) That is, 1, the man Job, the complete workmanship of God, "spirit, soul, and body," "in my flesh I shall see God." For that which is destroyed by death (and even this, as to man, is only for a time) is merely this external shell, the tenement that contains both spirit and soul„2
Daniel also may be referred to: "But go thou thy way till the end be; for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days." (Chapter 12:13) Daniel speaks of Nebuchadnezzar's " spirit " (rooagh). (Chapter 2:1,3), and of his own " spirit" (rooagh). (Chapter 7:15) This spirit, and the soul, and the body, formed the man Daniel, and this man will stand in his lot "at the end of the days;" the body may have long since turned to dust, Daniel still rests, and still awaits to stand in his lot in the end of the days, an end not yet come. The soul departs at death from its tenement. It is not affected by death. " As her soul (nephesh) was in departing, (for she died)." (Gen. 35:1818And it came to pass, as her soul was in departing, (for she died) that she called his name Ben-oni: but his father called him Benjamin. (Genesis 35:18)) Here too Ecclesiastes is clear as to the future of the spirit, speaking now of man, and without doubt on the matter: " Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit (rooagh) shall return unto God who gave it." (Eccl. 12:1-71Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them; 2While the sun, or the light, or the moon, or the stars, be not darkened, nor the clouds return after the rain: 3In the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble, and the strong men shall bow themselves, and the grinders cease because they are few, and those that look out of the windows be darkened, 4And the doors shall be shut in the streets, when the sound of the grinding is low, and he shall rise up at the voice of the bird, and all the daughters of music shall be brought low; 5Also when they shall be afraid of that which is high, and fears shall be in the way, and the almond tree shall flourish, and the grasshopper shall be a burden, and desire shall fail: because man goeth to his long home, and the mourners go about the streets: 6Or ever the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken, or the pitcher be broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern. 7Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it. (Ecclesiastes 12:1‑7))
It is by means of the body that the varied feelings and emotions of man manifest themselves. Some of these are ascribed to the spirit in Scripture, some to the soul, some to both soul and spirit. Thus the spirit (rooagh) is troubled (Gen. 41:88And it came to pass in the morning that his spirit was troubled; and he sent and called for all the magicians of Egypt, and all the wise men thereof: and Pharaoh told them his dream; but there was none that could interpret them unto Pharaoh. (Genesis 41:8); Job 21:44As for me, is my complaint to man? and if it were so, why should not my spirit be troubled? (Job 21:4); Dan. 2: 1), revives, or is strengthened (Gen. 45:2727And they told him all the words of Joseph, which he had said unto them: and when he saw the wagons which Joseph had sent to carry him, the spirit of Jacob their father revived: (Genesis 45:27)), is anguished (Exo. 6: 9; Job 7: 11), is endowed with wisdom (Exo. 28: 3; Deut. 34: 9), is jealous (Num. 5: 14), is sorrowful (1 Sam. 1:1515And Hannah answered and said, No, my lord, I am a woman of a sorrowful spirit: I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but have poured out my soul before the Lord. (1 Samuel 1:15); 1 Kings 21: 5), is contrite or humble (Psa. 34: 18,19; Prov. 16:19;29: 2319Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud. (Proverbs 16:19); Isa. 57: 15;66: 2), is broken (Psa. 51:17,1917The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. (Psalm 51:17)
19Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering: then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar. (Psalm 51:19)
; Prov. 15: 13), is overwhelmed (Psa. 142:3;143: 43When my spirit was overwhelmed within me, then thou knewest my path. In the way wherein I walked have they privily laid a snare for me. (Psalm 142:3)), is faithful (Prov. 11:1313A talebearer revealeth secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter. (Proverbs 11:13)), is hasty (Prov. 14:2929He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding: but he that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly. (Proverbs 14:29); Eccl. 7:99Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools. (Ecclesiastes 7:9)), is haughty (Prov. 16:1818Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. (Proverbs 16:18); Eccl. 7:88Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit. (Ecclesiastes 7:8)), is wounded (Prov. 18:1414The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity; but a wounded spirit who can bear? (Proverbs 18:14)), is patient (Eccl. 7:88Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit. (Ecclesiastes 7:8)), is grieved (Dan. 7:1515I Daniel was grieved in my spirit in the midst of my body, and the visions of my head troubled me. (Daniel 7:15); Isa. 54:66For the Lord hath called thee as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth, when thou wast refused, saith thy God. (Isaiah 54:6)), errs (Isa. 29:2424They also that erred in spirit shall come to understanding, and they that murmured shall learn doctrine. (Isaiah 29:24); Ezek. 13:33Thus saith the Lord God; Woe unto the foolish prophets, that follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing! (Ezekiel 13:3)) It learns too the humbling lesson that there is nothing under the sun for the " spirit " of man, but only " vanity and vexation." (Eccl. 1:14,17; 2:11, 17, 26, 4:4, 16; 6:914I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit. (Ecclesiastes 1:14)
17And I gave my heart to know wisdom, and to know madness and folly: I perceived that this also is vexation of spirit. (Ecclesiastes 1:17)
9Better is the sight of the eyes than the wandering of the desire: this is also vanity and vexation of spirit. (Ecclesiastes 6:9)
Of the soul (nephesh) we read that it departs from the body at death (Gen. 35:1818And it came to pass, as her soul was in departing, (for she died) that she called his name Ben-oni: but his father called him Benjamin. (Genesis 35:18); 1 Kings 17:21,2221And he stretched himself upon the child three times, and cried unto the Lord, and said, O Lord my God, I pray thee, let this child's soul come into him again. 22And the Lord heard the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived. (1 Kings 17:21‑22)), as we have seen the spirit does in Eccl. 12:77Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it. (Ecclesiastes 12:7); that it blesses (Gen. 27:4,19,25,314And make me savory meat, such as I love, and bring it to me, that I may eat; that my soul may bless thee before I die. (Genesis 27:4)
19And Jacob said unto his father, I am Esau thy firstborn; I have done according as thou badest me: arise, I pray thee, sit and eat of my venison, that thy soul may bless me. (Genesis 27:19)
25And he said, Bring it near to me, and I will eat of my son's venison, that my soul may bless thee. And he brought it near to him, and he did eat: and he brought him wine, and he drank. (Genesis 27:25)
31And he also had made savory meat, and brought it unto his father, and said unto his father, Let my father arise, and eat of his son's venison, that thy soul may bless me. (Genesis 27:31)
; Psa. 103:1,21<<A Psalm of David.>> Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. 2Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: (Psalm 103:1‑2)), it loves (Gen. 34:3,83And his soul clave unto Dinah the daughter of Jacob, and he loved the damsel, and spake kindly unto the damsel. (Genesis 34:3)
8And Hamor communed with them, saying, The soul of my son Shechem longeth for your daughter: I pray you give her him to wife. (Genesis 34:8)
; Song of Sol. 1: 7; 3:1-41By night on my bed I sought him whom my soul loveth: I sought him, but I found him not. 2I will rise now, and go about the city in the streets, and in the broad ways I will seek him whom my soul loveth: I sought him, but I found him not. 3The watchmen that go about the city found me: to whom I said, Saw ye him whom my soul loveth? 4It was but a little that I passed from them, but I found him whom my soul loveth: I held him, and would not let him go, until I had brought him into my mother's house, and into the chamber of her that conceived me. (Song of Solomon 3:1‑4)), knows anguish (Gen. 42:2121And they said one to another, We are verily guilty concerning our brother, in that we saw the anguish of his soul, when he besought us, and we would not hear; therefore is this distress come upon us. (Genesis 42:21)), has appetites or tastes (Lev. 7:18,2018And if any of the flesh of the sacrifice of his peace offerings be eaten at all on the third day, it shall not be accepted, neither shall it be imputed unto him that offereth it: it shall be an abomination, and the soul that eateth of it shall bear his iniquity. (Leviticus 7:18)
20But the soul that eateth of the flesh of the sacrifice of peace offerings, that pertain unto the Lord, having his uncleanness upon him, even that soul shall be cut off from his people. (Leviticus 7:20)
; Num. 21:55And the people spake against God, and against Moses, Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? for there is no bread, neither is there any water; and our soul loatheth this light bread. (Numbers 21:5); Deut. 12:15,20,2115Notwithstanding thou mayest kill and eat flesh in all thy gates, whatsoever thy soul lusteth after, according to the blessing of the Lord thy God which he hath given thee: the unclean and the clean may eat thereof, as of the roebuck, and as of the hart. (Deuteronomy 12:15)
20When the Lord thy God shall enlarge thy border, as he hath promised thee, and thou shalt say, I will eat flesh, because thy soul longeth to eat flesh; thou mayest eat flesh, whatsoever thy soul lusteth after. 21If the place which the Lord thy God hath chosen to put his name there be too far from thee, then thou shalt kill of thy herd and of thy flock, which the Lord hath given thee, as I have commanded thee, and thou shalt eat in thy gates whatsoever thy soul lusteth after. (Deuteronomy 12:20‑21)
; Job 6:7;33. 20; Psa. 78:1818And they tempted God in their heart by asking meat for their lust. (Psalm 78:18)), has lusts or desires (Deut. 14:26; 126And thou shalt bestow that money for whatsoever thy soul lusteth after, for oxen, or for sheep, or for wine, or for strong drink, or for whatsoever thy soul desireth: and thou shalt eat there before the Lord thy God, and thou shalt rejoice, thou, and thine household, (Deuteronomy 14:26) Sam, 20:4; 1 Kings 11:3737And I will take thee, and thou shalt reign according to all that thy soul desireth, and shalt be king over Israel. (1 Kings 11:37); Psa. 42:2;84: 22My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God? (Psalm 42:2)), hates (2 Sam. 5:88And David said on that day, Whosoever getteth up to the gutter, and smiteth the Jebusites, and the lame and the blind, that are hated of David's soul, he shall be chief and captain. Wherefore they said, The blind and the lame shall not come into the house. (2 Samuel 5:8)), abhors (Lev. 26:4343The land also shall be left of them, and shall enjoy her sabbaths, while she lieth desolate without them: and they shall accept of the punishment of their iniquity: because, even because they despised my judgments, and because their soul abhorred my statutes. (Leviticus 26:43); Zech. 11:88Three shepherds also I cut off in one month; and my soul lothed them, and their soul also abhorred me. (Zechariah 11:8)), thinks (Esther 4:1313Then Mordecai commanded to answer Esther, Think not with thyself that thou shalt escape in the king's house, more than all the Jews. (Esther 4:13)), sorrows (Lev. 26:1616I also will do this unto you; I will even appoint over you terror, consumption, and the burning ague, that shall consume the eyes, and cause sorrow of heart: and ye shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it. (Leviticus 26:16)), is vexed (2 Kings 4:2727And when she came to the man of God to the hill, she caught him by the feet: but Gehazi came near to thrust her away. And the man of God said, Let her alone; for her soul is vexed within her: and the Lord hath hid it from me, and hath not told me. (2 Kings 4:27); Job 19:22How long will ye vex my soul, and break me in pieces with words? (Job 19:2)), is bowed down (Psa. 57:66They have prepared a net for my steps; my soul is bowed down: they have digged a pit before me, into the midst whereof they are fallen themselves. Selah. (Psalm 57:6)), is troubled (Psa. 88:33For my soul is full of troubles: and my life draweth nigh unto the grave. (Psalm 88:3)), faints (Psa. 107:5,265Hungry and thirsty, their soul fainted in them. (Psalm 107:5)
26They mount up to the heaven, they go down again to the depths: their soul is melted because of trouble. (Psalm 107:26)
; Jonah 2:77When my soul fainted within me I remembered the Lord: and my prayer came in unto thee, into thine holy temple. (Jonah 2:7)), is relieved (Lam. 1:11,16,1911All her people sigh, they seek bread; they have given their pleasant things for meat to relieve the soul: see, O Lord, and consider; for I am become vile. (Lamentations 1:11)
16For these things I weep; mine eye, mine eye runneth down with water, because the comforter that should relieve my soul is far from me: my children are desolate, because the enemy prevailed. (Lamentations 1:16)
19I called for my lovers, but they deceived me: my priests and mine elders gave up the ghost in the city, while they sought their meat to relieve their souls. (Lamentations 1:19)
), is in bitterness (Job 10:11My soul is weary of my life; I will leave my complaint upon myself; I will speak in the bitterness of my soul. (Job 10:1); Isa. 38:1515What shall I say? he hath both spoken unto me, and himself hath done it: I shall go softly all my years in the bitterness of my soul. (Isaiah 38:15)), is weary (Jer. 31:2525For I have satiated the weary soul, and I have replenished every sorrowful soul. (Jeremiah 31:25)), sins (Mic. 6:77Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil? shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? (Micah 6:7)), and therefore needs atonement (Exo. 30:15,1615The rich shall not give more, and the poor shall not give less than half a shekel, when they give an offering unto the Lord, to make an atonement for your souls. 16And thou shalt take the atonement money of the children of Israel, and shalt appoint it for the service of the tabernacle of the congregation; that it may be a memorial unto the children of Israel before the Lord, to make an atonement for your souls. (Exodus 30:15‑16); Lev. 17:1111For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul. (Leviticus 17:11); Num. 15:2525And the priest shall make an atonement for all the congregation of the children of Israel, and it shall be forgiven them; for it is ignorance: and they shall bring their offering, a sacrifice made by fire unto the Lord, and their sin offering before the Lord, for their ignorance: (Numbers 15:25)), has to be afflicted while it is made (Lev. 16:29,3129And this shall be a statute for ever unto you: that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, ye shall afflict your souls, and do no work at all, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger that sojourneth among you: (Leviticus 16:29)
31It shall be a sabbath of rest unto you, and ye shall afflict your souls, by a statute for ever. (Leviticus 16:31)
), so also it needs redemption (2 Sam. 4:99And David answered Rechab and Baanah his brother, the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, and said unto them, As the Lord liveth, who hath redeemed my soul out of all adversity, (2 Samuel 4:9); Psa. 34:22; 49:8, 15; 71:2322The Lord redeemeth the soul of his servants: and none of them that trust in him shall be desolate. (Psalm 34:22)
8(For the redemption of their soul is precious, and it ceaseth for ever:) (Psalm 49:8)
15But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave: for he shall receive me. Selah. (Psalm 49:15)
23My lips shall greatly rejoice when I sing unto thee; and my soul, which thou hast redeemed. (Psalm 71:23)
), salvation (Psa. 35:33Draw out also the spear, and stop the way against them that persecute me: say unto my soul, I am thy salvation. (Psalm 35:3)), and conversion (Psa. 19:77The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. (Psalm 19:7)) These lists, which are not exhaustive, may serve to illustrate what, in chief, is attached to, or emanates from, both soul and spirit.
From the fact that Scripture nowhere asserts that the beasts have "spirit," also that we have the passages quoted insisting upon the contrary, as well as from a careful comparison of these two lists, I think it is clear that the " spirit " is the higher part in man. It (rooagh) is also spoken of the Spirit of God. Man becomes LIKE the beasts, if he has no understanding, as David says, and it is "the inspiration (n'shahmah) of the Almighty" (Job 32) (not given to them as it was to man) that is the secret of this understanding in man. The understanding, therefore, is connected with the " spirit " in man, and not with the "soul."
I find the word (nephesh) " soul" used for the whole man just as it is often used now, in Gen. 12:5;14. 21; Exo. 1:55And all the souls that came out of the loins of Jacob were seventy souls: for Joseph was in Egypt already. (Exodus 1:5); Num. 15:27,2827And if any soul sin through ignorance, then he shall bring a she goat of the first year for a sin offering. 28And the priest shall make an atonement for the soul that sinneth ignorantly, when he sinneth by ignorance before the Lord, to make an atonement for him; and it shall be forgiven him. (Numbers 15:27‑28), and in other places, but I have not found (rooagh) "spirit" so used for the man. How fitting, therefore, that we should find in scripture, as we do, that sin, atonement, redemption, conversion, and salvation; are all connected with it, not with "rooagh," but with "nephesh," the soul, for it is the man, spirit and soul and body, that has sinned, and that needs this power of God to be put forward in grace on his behalf.
Gathering up from what has been said of both soul and spirit in the Old Testament, it is not difficult to see that the eternal existence of man is taught in it, and was accepted long before the light of the New Testament, as to these things, shone out in all its fullness. If man is blind, he cannot see it, and then he may go so far as to deny (as some have done, and do still) that it is there. Even in his blindness he may teach that man does not exist forever, but there it shines, God's truth, nevertheless.
There is a solemn word in Mal. 2:1616For the Lord, the God of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away: for one covereth violence with his garment, saith the Lord of hosts: therefore take heed to your spirit, that ye deal not treacherously. (Malachi 2:16), where we read a final exhortation to the " spirit " (rooagh) which was led away through the " desires " (Gen. 3:66And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. (Genesis 3:6)) and " affections " (1 Tim. 2:1414And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. (1 Timothy 2:14)) of the " soul." " Therefore take heed to YOUR SPIRIT, that ye deal not treacherously." " Vanity and vexation of spirit" ought to turn the man to God, ought to lead him to take heed, and to look above the sun for what he fails to find beneath it. But to deny the immortality of the soul or spirit, and the resurrection of the body, or, in a word, the eternal existence of the man whom God has formed, is thus to deal treacherously" with ourselves and with God, and leaves still all the "vanity and vexation" there. " COME UNTO ME, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you REST." (Matt. 11:2828Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28)) Blessed words, my reader; words of life and light, coming from Him who " made man upright;" words sounding amid all the wearying vista of this life for every poor sinner who will " take heed."
H. C. A.