Day 1: Thursday, February 2, 2023
THE TRIUNE NATURE OF
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 KJV
According to the Bible, mankind is distinct from all the rest of creation, including the animals, in that he is made in the image of God. Scripture refers to God as a triune being: Father, Son and Spirit. In the initial creation of man, God said,
“Let Us make man in Our image, and according to our likeness.”
Image refers to man’s outward appearance. The account of man’s creation reveals how his triune nature came into being: And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being -more correctly, a living soul. In a way that is not true of any other creature, man reflects the outward appearance of God. So, man is three parts — body, soul and spirit. In the most explicit example from Scripture of these divisions, the Apostle Paul writes:
Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ
(1 Thessalonians 5:23 NASB).
Man is an intricate unity as well as being a three part being. For this reason, whatever happens in one part of a man’s being has repercussions in other areas as well. For example, it is well known that a healthy, fit body is conducive to an upbeat attitude in the soul. The Book of Proverbs states that
“a man’s spirit will sustain him in sickness”. “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine”.
Psalm 32 describes how unconfessed sin caused David’s “bones to grow old”, his “vitality to be turned into the drought of summer”.
Genesis 1:26-27, Hebrews 4:12, Romans 12:1-2
- With your own understanding, how will you describe man?
- How does the Bible describe the body, soul and spirit support your answer with scripture?
- What is the distinction between these three elements of our personality?
- What is the interrelationship between the soul, spirit and body? How does each one operates?