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The Immortal Soul?: “Soul” Biblically Defined, Part 2

biblically defined

In the previous article, we observed that the concept of an immortal soul, capable of existing independently from our physical bodies, did not originate from the Bible but rather from Greek philosophers. In this post, we will explore the biblical perspective on the soul. This preliminary study is essential before examining passages often misinterpreted to suggest that the Bible endorses the inherent immortality of the soul and its ability to exist apart from the body.

So, here is our methodology in this, and the following, articles. First, we’ll examine the Bible’s description of the soul. Second, we’ll observe the usage of the term “soul” within the biblical context. Third, we’ll analyze various passages often cited as evidence for the soul’s ability to exist independently from the body. The goal is to allow the Bible to speak for itself without imposing traditional Platonic ideas upon the text.

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Immortality, Misconceptions, Word Studies

The Immortal Soul?, Part 1

Immortal Soul

As Paul nears the end of 1 Timothy, he writes

He alone is immortal and dwells in unapproachable light. No one has ever seen Him, nor can anyone see Him. To Him be honor and eternal dominion! Amen. (1 Tim. 6:16 BEREAN)

Paul’s point in this passage is “not that God is the only immortal being but that he alone inherently possesses immortality.”1 We know there are other created beings who are immortal (angels, demons, etc.), but God gave them immortality. God, by His very nature, is immortal – no one granted it to Him. 

By extension, most people assume that humans are also immortal by nature. The immortality of the human soul is a widely held belief, often seen as self-evident. This assumption permeates both secular and religious worldviews. It is a foregone conclusion that the human soul is immortal, and this is rarely, if ever, questioned. Nevertheless, the Bible is clear that God did not create humans with immortal souls. 

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in 1 Timothy, Immortality, Misconceptions

The Strange Story of Two Yahwehs

Two Yahwehs

In the first century AD, every Jewish child grew up knowing the Shema: “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is One” (Deut. 6:4 BEREAN). This verse stresses that there’s only one God. But strangely, in the New Testament, Jesus’s Jewish followers didn’t seem bothered by the idea of Jesus being God’s Son alongside God the Father. They remained unperturbed by the potential tension of acknowledging, for lack of a better phrase, “two Yahwehs.”

If we dig deeper, we’ll see that the real issue isn’t about two Gods. It’s about how we understand monotheism today versus what the Bible’s perspective on monotheism is. Subtle clues found in 1 Timothy 6:13-16 offer insight into the nuanced Jewish concept of monotheism.

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in 1 Timothy, Theology

When Does Ministry Become a Business?

When Does Ministry Become a Business?

Julia is a well-known Christian YouTuber and blogger. Her mission is to leverage the reach of the internet to edify believers with God-centered, Christ-exalting content. When her subscriber count hit 100,000 she was advised by her cousin to monetize the channel and start earning ad revenue and seek out sponsors.

Now Julia has nearly half a million followers and several revenue streams besides ads and sponsors. First, she has a special subscription option that enables people to access some of her content early, as well as suggest ideas for future videos and blogs. People who pay for an even more premium subscription also get some kind of free merch once a year, along with an opportunity to ask her questions in a livestream she does every couple months.

When her sister admonished her to think more carefully about whether it’s biblical to force people to watch ads before receiving spiritual guidance from her, she got offended. ‘How dare you judge me, when the Bible clearly says that you shouldn’t muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain! Besides, people don’t have to sign up for the premium stuff, and they can get an ad blocker if they don’t wanna watch the ads. Or if they don’t like it, they can go listen to someone else! It’s a free country.’

Julia has bought into the lie that, as long as you don’t maintain an extravagant lifestyle, you’re incapable of mismanaging the relationship between money and ministry.” — Adapted from SellingJesus.org

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Money

New Testament Examples of The Dorean Principle in Action

Dorean Principle in Action

“Tom follows in the footsteps of many seminary leaders who have gone before him since the seminary was founded in 1892. He has inherited a system and structure that is typical of nearly all seminaries around the world: students must pay tuition if they want to receive spiritual guidance and biblical teaching. Sometimes at night he thinks about how nice it would be if professors could simply be like missionaries and raise support, freeing themselves to teach without charging students money. Or why couldn’t there be more bi-vocational professors who support themselves with another job like Paul did and offer their services to the seminary for free? But then he shakes his head and laughs at how impossible his idealistic musings are. The seminary has been operating the same way for too long. Tradition can’t be broken.

Tom, like most, is well-meaning and wants to do the right thing. But he’s also still largely ignorant of the biblical teaching on money and ministry. He has believed the lie that obeying God is an ideal fantasy, especially when it involves breaking with tradition. While Tom is impressed by the size, age, and influence of his seminary, God is not impressed. Nor is God impressed by its lack of fundamental obedience to the command to freely give what they have freely received. Tom is also a coward, fearing man more than his Creator. And if he’s willing to admit it, he doesn’t have faith that God would provide enough support for the seminary professors. He doesn’t even believe that the professors themselves would have enough faith to even attempt to raise support. In the end, Tom’s God is too small to overcome these obstacles to true obedience.” — Adapted from SellingJesus.org

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Posted by Eddie Lawrence in Money