What We Are Made Of
What are we made of? The typical answer is “dirt.” It is true; God did form us from the “dust of the ground” (Genesis 2:7). However, there is far more to us than soil.
God formed Adam during the sixth day of creation. Our creation was unique in several ways. Humankind is the only thing in creation made by God’s hands; everything else, He spoke into existence (Genesis 1:1-25).
Also of note, God has a conversation concerning our making. Genesis 1:26, “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.”
Who is God talking to? The answer to this question is in what He says. “Let us make man in our image…” God is speaking to Himself. More specifically, it is the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit discussing the creation of man.
Mankind is created in the image of God. What is God’s image? A brief look at God gives us an answer.
The Holy Spirit – we see what He is by His name – this Person of the Godhead is Spirit.
The Son – The Son of God is the physical manifestation of God, God in the flesh. The Son is the body.
The Father – The Father is the thinker, the decision-maker. He is the soul of God.
We are created in God’s image – we have body, soul, and spirit. Just like God has.
How do these three things, body, soul, and spirit, work within us?
Our spirit is the thing inside of us that deals with God and the great questions of life. Is there a God? Why am I here? Is there life after death? Why is there so much evil in the world? The spirit is what springs up these questions throughout life.
The body is precisely that – our body. It is often called “the flesh” in the Scripture. Our body consists of the five senses and is what we use to operate in this world.
The soul consists of how we think, our thoughts, our decision-making process, and, to a deeper extent, our emotions.
These three things, the body, soul, and spirit, interact with each other to form who we are.
When our spirit does not discover the answers to life questions or refuses to accept certain solutions, the soul and body tend to look elsewhere for answers or shove the questions from our thought process (out of sight, out of mind).
When the soul attempts to answer the question, “Why am I here?” Often, we do so by immersing ourselves in the family or a career, or some other worthwhile thing, thus finding purpose. The soul causes people to flock to religion when it comes to the “Is there a God?” question, looking for an answer. Religion, however, is not the only place the soul looks for an answer. Some will turn to nature, and others will put themselves upon the pedestal meant for God. After all, we must “look out for number one.”
On the other hand, the body attempts to answer life’s questions with an “if it feels good, do it” attitude. This state of mind leads to sex, drugs, alcohol, food, and other endeavors. None of these activities answer the great questions of life. Still, for a while, even if it is only a few minutes, it brings physical pleasure and temporarily relieves pressure. The irony of these activities is that, once the carnal gratification is over, the activities bring more problems driving us further away from understanding our purpose.
Here is how the spirit, soul, and body are supposed to work together. Once the questions of the spirit receive answers, the soul starts prioritizing opinions based on the answers the spirit believes. Those opinions of the soul then cause the body to act.
For example – let us say that one of the answers to the question, “Why am I here?” is to be a good parent to my children (some of the spirit’s questions will have more than one answer). The soul, in turn, places being a good parent in a position of a priority compared to the rest of the answers to the spirit’s questions. Then, the body forces itself to go to work (possibly to a job the soul hates) to fulfill the purpose outlined by our spirit.
Because of the soul’s hatred for the job, the soul may cause the body to look for better employment. But, we do not leave the rotten job until we have the new one because the body and soul are attempting to fulfill the purpose given to us by the spirit.
Space prevents me from going deeper into this subject. Still, in summary, the body acts following our soul’s priorities. Those priorities are established by the answers that our spirit believes.
If our spirit believes the wrong answers, then our priorities are out of whack, and then our actions do more harm than good.
One must find the answers to our spirit’s questions with the truth. If it is not the truth, it is a lie. Do not base your life on a lie.
John 17:17, “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.”
* * * * *
With houses of worship still under restrictions across much of the nation, the editors of the Baltimore Post-Examiner are inviting an array of spiritual teachers to share insights from the ages along with words of comfort and encouragement. These timely messages are not exclusive to any particular faith walk and will be included in our ongoing Spirituality series.
Preacher Tim Johnson is Pastor of Countryside Baptist Church in Parke County, Indiana. His weekly column “Preacher’s Point” may be found at: www.preacherspoint.wordpress.com