The False Face of Spirituality
I want to take you on a journey to find, if possible, where the seat of the spirit and the seat of the soul reside. In many passages of Scripture there seems to be a blurring of the spirit and soul, yet in other Scriptures there seems to be a clear indication of their separateness and where they lie. In those that have a blurring, I think you will find that the blurring results from the dominance of HaShem’s spirit and the hypostasis that results there from.
First let us look in Deuteronomy where Moshe wrote:
29 The secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed
belong unto us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law. (Deu 29:29
And in Isaiah 6: 9,10, Isaiah wrote:
And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not.
Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed.
It seems that man is spiritually blind to certain eternal truths, at least until the time of unveiling. Only in the last few decades, has there been an explosion of knowledge. YHVH Elohim told Daniel in chapter 12:4 of that book:
But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.
We have to ask ourselves why? Then, where does the essence of ourselves exist within our individual bodies? To answer this is to know where the seat of the soul and the seat of the spirit are located? When we know this, we can view more clearly those things represented as spiritual. First, we have to know humankind is a tripartite body consisting of body, soul, and spirit. However, just as G-d is One as YHVH, Yahshua, and Ruach, humans are not split into a trinity of sorts. We are one organism/human that manifests different roles according to the situation. When I need to be a nurse practitioner, I do not act in the role of a sister or musician. Similarly, when G-d chose to come down to man as an earthly being, He came as Yahshua; a tangible human form who was tempted in every way but remained sinless. This role was manifest to teach us the spirit of His Torah. The writer of Hebrews says:
Heb. 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-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.
If we explore further we see there are several scriptures that imply that emotion is a function of the soul. In Isaiah 26:9 we read:
With my soul have I desired thee in the night; yea, with my spirit within me will I seek thee early: for when thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.
In this verse we are told that desire, is an emotion that comes from the soul, and that the spirit seeks to communicate, that is to connect us with the eternal dimension YHVH Elohim.
Isaiah later wrote when describing the Messiah:
42:1 Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles.
In this verse, Isaiah tells us that delight, an emotion, is a function of the soul. YHVH’s soul is pleased, and His Spirit is “put upon” or connected (communicated) to the Messiah.
Yahshua spoke of the function of the Ruach haKodesh (Holy Spirit) in John 16:13. It reads:
13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come.
The purpose of the spirit then is seen as that which connects us to knowledge. The Ruach will guide us to that which is truth. The Spirit is a guide to convey to us, that which is true, and to deliver to us that which He hears from the Father.
And in 1 Cor. 15:45 Sha’ul explains to us as it is written:
And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.
From this and from Gen. 2:7 we know that YHVH made Adam from “the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” In 1 Cor. 15:45 we are told that Yahshua haMashiach was a “quickening spirit” the source of eternal life.
From these scriptures I think you will have to agree with me there has to be a big difference between soul and Spirit. Each of you, as an individual, your very own individuality, comes from your soul. It is the seat of your individuality, your will, emotions, and your desires. You are a soul.
Now, let us explore the Spirit. You have heard me say that the spirit decides your destination in the world to come. When you die, your body goes back to the earth and your spirit determines where your soul goes. We know that some will go to their father haSatan and others to their father YHVH Elohim. Because their spirit is that of their respective fathers. They arrive in the next life either to Heaven or to Sheol. The soul is the seat of that individuality of yourself; the reservoir of your emotions and the spirit will determine its destination.
Elaborating on this concept, when humans are born they have a soul; the life force within us. That soul was dominated by the spirit of haSatan. In another context, this is known as original sin. In that unregenerate state
we were are referred to in the scriptures as the “living dead.” To be regenerated, to come alive, and to be set-apart on the road of salvation we must be born from above, that is, of the spirit of G-d. Let me take this a little further. In John 3:15 John wrote: “And no human ever ascended up to heaven unless that human came down from heaven, including the Son of Man who is in Heaven.” Ask your self, what can this possibly mean? Have I ever been in heaven? If so why don’t I recall it? The answer is that your soul was in heaven before it resided in your body. We were subsequently born on this earth with a “neshamah” a soul that is dominated with the spirit of Satan until we respond to the call of G-d, reborn by His Spirit, and become living beings. Therefore, it is important to us to know what the Spirit is within us. How do we know we have G-d’s Spirit? It is not by the standards of much of what is being passed about and taught as “Quote” “Spirit Filled.”
So, what is the spirit? How do we define it? If the soul is the seat of the emotions then the spirit could be described as the conduit that connects us to the source that directs knowledge into our memory. It is the source of our thoughts and consciousness of everything around us. When the brain dies both memory and consciousness cease in this earthly plane. Could the brain then be the seat of the Spirit? Our emotions act upon the brain, the seat of the Spirit. If we have desires (emotions) that are unhealthy, they inform our spirit and we act based on this information received from the seat of the soul, our emotions in one of two ways. If we have a G-dly Spirit we will reject those that are unhealthy and sinful. If our spirit is that of haSatan we will accept and entertain them.
Do we realize that every thought and image we see is being recorded? How someday we will have to answer for all of these bytes of information stored somewhere in the heavens. Have you considered that the Spirit is an energy source that communicates between the Father and us? In the Bible, the Ruach, in earthly manifestations is described as a cloud by day and a fire by night. Both results of energy being expended.
In the Messianic Scriptures on Shavuot or Pentecost, the Ruach haKodesh (Holy Spirit) is described as “cloven tongues like as fire.” How many have paid attention to the word tongues in this passage. A tongue is a communicator. YHVH Elohim’s spirit comes to live with the Believer’s soul the seat of emotion. The Believer’s brain, the seat of the Spirit, provides a communication link between this body we now inhabit and the eternal source of truth. The brain is the seat of the Spirit and it provides us with a means to learn, to store knowledge. It is the link for our thoughts and images to be stored away for that day when we will answer for every idle thought and action. The brain, our collected intellect allows us to make informed decisions. To think abstract thoughts, to cogitate, to rightly divide the word of YHVH, it is the seat of our decisions for good or evil. The brain is also the organ that allows us the opportunity to communicate with YHVH Elohim constantly and it is the organ whereby He communicates with us.
Much of what is passed off, as spiritual behavior is nothing more than soulish behavior. Much of what is deemed non-spiritual, by soulish people, is in fact spirit filled behavior. People who describe themselves as Spirit filled or Spiritual believers including those who speak in unknown tongues, work themselves into trances of ecstasy, engage in bouts of senseless laughter until exhaustion sets in, who in engage in fervish physical activity or dancing until they drop, or who practice unintelligible babblings are engaging in soulish behavior. In reality, this behavior is the antithesis of what the Bible teaches is truly Spirit Filled behavior. Such individuals would have you think you are second class citizens or not fully indwelt with HaShem’s spirit because you don’t engage in soulish behavior as they do. They say, you need to work, to arrive at the spiritual perfection they profess, when in fact it is they who are not Spirit filled at all. Sha’ul warned such people not to engage in abandon and to exercise restraint, for G-d is a G-d of structure and order. How is it that if a person is overcome with G-d’s Spirit he/she can control it, exercising when to speak in tongues, etc. if in fact this soulish behavior is of G-d? If they are a believer it is because The Spirit is the vehicle whereby we control our emotions and therefore our desires and proclivity to sin. The soul is subject to G-d’s Spirit. It is that Spirit Filled part of us that is divorced from or dominates the soulish desires we all have.
Spirit then can be seen as that part of us that dwells in the Word of G-d, adores His Torah, loves and lives it. Our spirit if of G-d always makes time to study G-d’s Torah and is never satiated. It is our connection with HaShem and His instructions to us. It is worship and praise according to His parameters, and is the highest calling for anyone. All else is soulish and restricted to that which G-d allows HaSatan to use in those who choose to reject G-d’s Torah. Remember that HaSatan is the prince of the power of the air and is wandering about this earth like a lion to devour who he may. He is the spirit who is now at work in the sons of disobedience. So when someone claims to be “spirit filled,” a red warning flag should be raised. Whose spirit! His time is limited. Remember when someone tries to intimidate or belittle you by their supposed superior spiritual behavior, by default you can know this is an individual who has placed G-d’s Torah beneath their soulish driven mind. fear not for “But you belong to G-d, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world” (1 John 4:4).
Rabbi Tamah Davis-Hart