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to explain how vital each of these three parts is to the ful fillment of God s purpose. We describe this man as the tripartite man. Throughout history, seeking believers have discovered in their study of the Bible that man is indeed a trichotomous being created with three parts spirit, soul, and body in order to enable him to contact and live within the spiritual, psychological and physical realms, respectively. An understanding of these three parts and of thei r particular functions is therefore essential in any attempt to explain either o ur human experience or our Christian experience. Furthermore, though all three p arts of man were damaged by the fall of man, God has come in with His salvation in life to restore their proper function and to saturate them with His life. Thu s, recovered mankind in his tripartite being may fulfill the lofty purpose of Go d to build up the Body of Christ. Biblical Support for the Tripartite Man Genesis 2:7 1 Thessalonians 5:23 Hebrews 4:12 Throughout both the Old and New Testament, the Scriptures reveal that man has be en created with three basic parts: the body, the soul, and the spirit. This trichotomous view of man is apparent even from the moment of man s creation. In Genesis 2:7 Jehovah God formed man with the dust of the ground. With this act, God created man s body. The verse continues, And breathed into his nostrils the bre ath of life. Breath is derived from the Hebrew word neshamah which, significantly, is translated spirit in Proverbs 20:27: The spirit [neshamah] of man is the lamp of Jehovah. We can thus infer, that God s breathing into man the breath of life produ ced man s spirit. Zechariah 12:1 corroborates the creation of man s spirit by tellin g us that just as Jehovah stretched forth the heavens and laid the foundation of the earth, He also formed the spirit of man within him. Genesis 2:7 concludes An d man became a living soul. The soul (man s intrinsic person) was the issue of the breath of God entering into the nostrils of the body of dust. The biblical recor d of the three-step creation of man clearly reveals him to be tripartite. This trichotomous view of man is apparent even from the moment of man s creation The New Testament continues and expands on this revelation. First Thessalonians 5:23 says, And the God of peace Himself sanctify you wholly, and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame, at the coming of our Lor d Jesus Christ. Here Paul enumerates man s three distinct parts: spirit and soul and body, the repetition of the conjunction and serving to reinforce their distinctnes s. Furthermore, Hebrews 4:12 specifies The word of God is living and operative an d sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing even to the dividing of soul an d spirit and of joints and marrow. All three parts are once again articulated in this verse: the joints and marrow pertain to the body, and the soul is explicitl y separate from the spirit. These Old and New Testament references exemplify the Bible s consistent presentation of the tripartite man.HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE WATCHMAN NEE (1903-1972) In Watchman Nee s book The Christian Life and Warfare originally published in 1927 , he clearly demonstrates from 1 Thessalonians 5:23 that man has three parts. The Word of God does not divide man into two parts, the soul and the body. R ather, it divides man into three parts: the spirit, the soul, and the body. Firs
Nee further emphasizes and elaborates on the fact t hat man is composed of three parts. Then there is the soul. In chapter 24 entitled The Temple of the Holy Spi rit Murray states. The Definition In . In him. Andrew Murray refers several times to t he fact that man is tripartite. the bond that united them. and spirit. a soul. (3) ANDREW MURRAY (1828-1917) In his masterpiece The Spirit of Christ. soul. and the body. Man has not only body and soul. as linking him with the Divine. and a body. One of these realities for Divine Truth is exceeding rich and full and has man y and very diverse applications one of these realities shadowed forth by the Templ e. intermediate stood the soul. but ra ther. there is a spirit-nature linking him wi th God. is man s three fold nature. its power of mind and feeling and will. a complete person has a spir it. Here the a postle mentioned the believers being sanctified wholly. in a note on The Place of the Indwelling (Chaps. (159-160) Deeper down than where the soul with its consciousness can enter. First Thessalonians 5:23 says. the soul.t Thessalonians 5:23 says. and the body. the body. This means that the whole being of the believers is to be sanctified. and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete. it would not have said. body. we can see that there is a distin ction between man s spirit and his soul. Since God has said this. Your spirit and soul. Murray continues. From this we can conclude that man is div ided into three parts the spirit. the soul. Man is God s temple. was the highest. the lowest. Your spirit-soul. and through which they could act on each oth er. (7) The Tripartite Man A complete person has a spirit. Here. What did he mean when he said that a person is to be sanctified wholly? He meant that a person s spirit. too. We must here again re fer to what has been said of man s three-fold nature. and a body The Tripartite Man The first chapter of Watchman Nee s book The Spiritual Man is entitled The Spirit. the spirit. there is a spi rit-nature linking him with God In chapter 29. and The Body. This is very clear. Sanctify you wholly. This verse clearly d ivides a person into three parts: the spirit. there are the three p arts. and bod y are to be preserved complete. entitled The Spirit of Love. the constitution of these three parts of man s nature. as c onstituted in creation and disorganized by the fall (193). 6 and 29) Murray says. Deeper down than where th e soul with its consciousness can enter. connecting him with the sensible an d animal. Otherwise. and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete. This verse clearly shows a distinction between the sp irit and the soul. a soul. In the body you have the outercourt. The Soul. but also spirit. In regenerate man this is the holy place. partaker of the nature of the others. soul. The God of peace Himself sanctify you wholly. with its inner life. Finally.
Through the fell owship. another form of fellowship with God. We will now examine each of these three parts in detail to see how they are defi ned throughout Scripture (Watchman Nee. the soul is that part which forms the personality of man and enables him to contact and function within the psychological realm. This . Worshipping God is altogether a matter of contacting God in fellowship Finally. Finally. The Spiri t of God witnesses with our human spirit. soul.The Definition of the Three Parts of Man: In order to accurately and adequately define the spirit. and which the soul is unable to know. and body we must first identify the sphere in which each part functions. and intuition are clearly described in Scr ipture. particular sense or knowledge which is indep endent of reason. In Romans 9:1 Paul te stified. the conscience must be part of the human spirit. First and most crucial i s the spirit. yet at the same time our conscience wi tnesses with the Holy Spirit. My conscience bearing witness with me in the Holy Spirit. Christian 9-10). Furthermore. With his hum an spirit. or precedent. then. an d intuition. Worshipping God is altogether a matter of con tacting God in fellowship. serve God. Ephesians 6:18 mentions praying at every time in spirit. By association. First and most crucial is the spirit The primary. through the in tuition God imparts to us a direct. the faculty that enables man to communicate with God. e xcept the spirit of man which is in him? This verse shows us that there are thing s which only the spirit of man knows. accordingly. man can worship God. fellowship. For who among men knows the things of man. Based on these verses we can conclude that fellowship is a component of the human spirit. we are able to contact God and commune with Him. When this passa ge is compared to Romans 8:16. These three faculties o f the spirit: conscience. First Corinthians 2:11 says. the physical body with it s five senses enables man to relate to and communicate with the physical world. circumstance. situation. The Human Spirit The Soul The Body The Heart The Definition of the Three Parts of Man: The Human Spirit Our human spirit is also composed of three parts: the conscience. The Parts of the Spirit The Scriptures likewise reveal that the fellowship pertains to the spirit. fellowship. leading part of the spirit is the conscience. it be comes apparent that the conscience is located within the human spirit. and those who worship Him must worship in s pirit and truthfulness (John 4:24). either condemns or justifies us. The Spirit Himself witnesses with our spirit. Second. The conscience is that part which enables us to perceive right from wrong and which. we must see in the Scriptures that the intuition is also a part of the spirit. and know God intuitively. Chris t Himself told us that God is Spirit. Finally.
139:14. Economy 56-59). in my flesh. it is obvious that the emotion is the third faculty of the soul (Witness Lee. The Body The body of man with its five senses is that part which contacts the physical wo rld. nothing good dwells (Witness Lee. we can see from the Word that the emotion is part of the soul. man s body is a corrupted body as Paul observed in Romans 7:18. or intuition. Economy 55-56). the Scriptures consistently identify the mind as part of the soul. in the gospel of Mark the scr ibes were silently reasoning within their hearts about the Lord s statement. you whom my soul loves Finally. for examp le. God s Word proves this clearly and definitively.function of our intuition has the capacity to know and discern apart from human reason or circumstantial experience. But due to man s fall his body was change d in nature. this part is the mind. David experie nced a change in feeling: Cause the soul of Your servant to rejoice Since love. that is. and my soul knows it well (Ps. Your works are wonderful. This physical body as man s outward frame is God s provision for his existence. undefiled body. And in Psalm 86:4. My soul refuses to touch them (6:7). He also said. Child. let him go up to the watercourse and strike the lame and the blind. Second Samuel 5:8 records the opposite feeling: And David said on that day. is an essential faculty of the human spirit (Witness Lee. said to them. the person of man. hat e and rejoicing are clearly expressions of the emotions. italics ad ded). Why are you reasoning about these things in your hearts (2:8). I will praise You. In addition. In response to their reasoning. thus becoming the fallen flesh full of lust. immediately Jesus. The Parts of the Soul The will is also part of the soul. Job had much to say about the will. Lamentations 3:20 says. Tell me. transmuted. for I am awesomely and wonderfully made. pertains to the mind. Hence. your sins are forgiven. knowin g fully in His spirit that they were reasoning this way within themselves. For I know that in me. The Soul The soul. without it man would be unable to exist in the material realm. These verses clearly indicate that there is a part of the so ul that knows and remembers. a part of the soul. In Song of Songs 1:7. So that my soul would choose strangulation and death rather than my bones (Job 7:15). Originally. The Heart A Composition of the Soul and the Conscience (The Leading Part of the Sp irit) . Basic 41). Tell me. For ex ample. This vers e further illustrates that the spirit can have an inner sense and knowledge inde pendent of the reason or outward circumstances upon which the soul s discernment r elies so heavily. you whom my soul love s. who are hated by David s soul . For example. the wi ll and the emotion. First. no doubt. To remember is another fu nction of the mind. man was created with a pure. This spiritual sense. Who ever would strike the Jebusites. the Psalmist exults. M y soul remembers them well and is bowed down within me. the Shulamite speaks to her beloved. is likewise composed of three parts: the mind. My soul remembers them well Knowledge. Both choosing and refusi ng are functions of the will.
are so evidently linked here to the heart. Additionally. But because I have spoken these thing s to you. Because if our heart blames us. Economy 59-61). The Functions of the Three Parts of Man: The Function of the Spirit To Contact God Worship literally signifies to come forward and kiss . Jesus. Both purpose and intentions are functio s of the will. as Matthew 9:4 reports. as outlined below. Why are you thinkin g evil things in your hearts? Both thoughts and thinking relate to the mind. the thoughts and intentions of the heart. is a composition of all the parts o f the soul as well as of the primary part of the spirit. as a part of the soul. as revealed throughout Scripture. that all three components of the soul the mind. The Functions of the Three Parts of Man: God created man in His own image and likeness in order to be expressed and repre sented through him (Genesis 1:26). The scriptural references cited in the above three paragraphs clearly demonstrate that the soul with its three p arts (mind. rejoiced and encouraged them all to r emain with the Lord with purpose of heart. it is the conscience. the Bible clearly indicates. In addition. is part of the heart. when he arrived and saw the grace of God. said. indicating that the will.Man s heart. and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. the second half of Hebrews 4:12 speaks of the Word s ability to disce rn. human emotions. Finally. evidence that the mind. and no one takes your joy away from you. Hebrews 10:22 strongly links thes e two: Having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience. In summar y. It may strike the reader as odd to hear that the heart is not a separate and dis tinct component of man. Furthermore. namely the conscience. Later in that same chapter. knowing their thoughts. Each part of this man was therefore created w ith a specific function in relation to God s purpose and plan. that compose ma n s heart (Witness Lee. but I will see you again and your hear t will rejoice. Neverth eless. together with the leading part of the spirit the conscience. In John 16:6. will. The Parts of the Heart To identify the will as pertaining to the heart. we must read Genesis 6:5: A nd Jehovah saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth. the Lord cont inues. we can say that m an s emotional faculty is also part of the heart. sorrow has filled your heart. Several other portions of the Word prove that the emotion is part of the heart. Therefore you also now have sorrow. and emotion also comprise the heart. Blame and condemnation are the primary functions of t he conscience. is simultaneously a part of the heart. along with the three parts of the soul. further proof that our conscience is part of our heart. likewise. it is because God is greater than our heart and knows all things. the Word makes it clear that the leading part of the spirit (the consci ence) is also integrally related to the heart. the Lord tells His disciples. but rather a composition of several other parts. Since sorrow and rejoici ng. In order to see that the mind is a part of the heart. and emotion) is a key component of the heart. we must consult Acts 11:23: Who. will. 1 John 3 :20 warns.
God is Spirit. meaning toward. In response to Elizabeth s blessing. the glorious. God wisely gives His believer s both a new heart to love Him and a new spirit to receive Him. based on the etymology of the Greek word here rendered worship. The Function of the Body lit . Likewise. As a physical il lustration. ar e being transformed into the same image from glory to glory. Similarly. will and emotion. to receive God i t is crucial that we exercise our spirit. it continues to functi on to receive God as the Spirit for the rest of our Christian life. and those who worship Him m ust worship in spirit and truthfulness. meaning to kiss. For example. Luke 9:23-25). just as color is substantiated by the exercise of our eyes. that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. we can accurately describe our spirit as a container of God. Since the Lord lives within our spirit . To worship God is actually to contact Him . Yet in order fo r our soul to reflect Christ in the clearest. The soul s expression of God is clearly portrayed in the first chapter of the Gospel o f Luke. even as from the Lo rd Spirit. it must be not only denied but also purified by receivin g the Word (1 Peter 1:22). Thus. worship rally signifies to come forward and kiss. Second Timothy 4:22 says precisely . This new birth takes place in ou r spirit. Thus. but without the exercise of the appr opriate faculty in order to receive those things. This means that we must learn to deny our natural mind. This word clearly designates our human spirit as t he place where God makes His abode in us. our heart may love many things. our soul needs to be thoroughly transformed into the image of Christ by the renewing of the mind (Romans 12:2. we must exe rcise our ears. proskuneo. true reflection of Christ (Witness L ee. for our soul t o reflect Christ alone. most unobstructed way. we make contact with God in the most personal. This term derives from pros. The Lord be with your spirit. The Function of the Soul To Express and Reflect the Lord The primary function of the soul of man is to express and reflect the Lord. The Lord pro phesied of this New Testament experience in Ezekiel 36:26: I will also give you a new heart. to apprehend and appreciate sound. To Receive God To receive God it is crucial that we exercise our spirit We receive initially God when we are born anew. and a new spirit I will put within you. they can never be substantiate d and enjoyed by us. To Contain God Finally. its fallen source must first be denied (Matthew 16:24-26. for according to John 3:6. and kuneo. Finally. No t only does our spirit function to receive God initially. and transformed it is able to f ulfill its intended function. when our soul is denied. Mary s spirit had exulted in God and was filled with joy. Our soul is like a mirror designed to behold and reflect Christ Our soul is like a mirror designed to behold and reflect Christ. beholding and reflecting like a mirror the glory of the Lord. Secondly. My soul magnifies the Lord. purified. 2 Corinthians 3:18). To kiss is to make intimate contact with another person. Economy 70-71). Mary exclaimed. Second Corinthians 3:18 provid es a detailed description of the soul s function of reflecting God: But we all with unveiled face.The Lord Jesus explained in John 4:24. our spirit functions to contain God. Neit her can we receive food without exercising our mouth. and my spirit has exulted in God my Savior (46-47). intim ate way when we touch Him as the divine Spirit in our human spirit (Vine 1247). yet the joy in her spirit could not be adequate ly expressed apart from the function of her soul.
In verse 4 the serpent went on to assure Ev e. the first man. Thus. man s e xistence altogether depends on the functioning of his physical body (Witness Lee . his body was transmuted into the sinful flesh. It is crucial that we see the tactics employed by God s enemy to cor rupt man s soul (his mind. it had the effect of corrupting all three parts of his being. man is not able to exist within the ph ysical realm. and that the tree was to be desired to make oneself wise. and third. a soul to express God.The Organ for Man s Existence Man s physical body. the human emotion that w as created to love God was spoiled. You shall not ea t of any tree of the garden? By responding to the serpent in verses 2 and 3. however. The third stage of the contamination of man s soul took place in his will. and will). causing her to feel that God was withholding something good from her. second. In this stage. by means of the seduction of the human will to choose the for . And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food an d that it was a delight to the eyes. In Genesis 3:1 the serpent began his assault o n the human mind by injecting it with doubt: Did God really say. the serpent sowed a seed of resentment into Eve by lying to her about God s motive: God knows that in the da y you eat of it your eyes will be opened. his soul was contaminate d. Basic 10-11). Thus. poisoned instead with an actual dislike for God. This awareness will equip us to dis cern the strategies he continues to employ to keep man from receiving and enjoyi ng God and thereby expressing and representing Him. the man himself ceases to exist. causing her to doubt God s Word. Without this body. The serpent sowed a seed of resentment into Eve by lying to her about God s motive The second stage of the contamination of man s soul was mounted against his emotio n. The serpent began his assault on the human mind by injecting it with doubt Satan began to contaminate man s soul by touching the mind. and a body to maint ain his existence. The fall of man thus was not merely an act of disobedience and transgressio n. is simply God s provis ion for his existence. God s Salvation and the Three Parts of Man The Three Parts of Man Spoiled by the Fall of Man Created with a spirit to receive God. the least mysterious of his three parts. thus causing the human mind to begin to doubt God s Word. Before this potential could be realized. When a man s body dies. Eve opened the door of her soul to the serpent. You shall not surely die! By this time the serpentine venom had infiltrated her mind. rather. This word incited Eve s emotions. his spirit was deadened. Genesis 3:6 records. This consummated the contamination of the human soul. enticin g man to choose the satanic tree of knowledge rather than the divine tree of lif e. and you will become like God. she took of its fruit and ate. emotion. Satan ca me in to damage and ultimately annul the proper function of each of man s three pa rts. knowing good and evil (Genesis 3:5). allowing him to take another step to further contaminate the human mind. Feeling and Will Adam possessed a tremendous potential to express and represent God All three parts of man were spoiled by the fall: First. causing man to begin to dislike God. Adam possessed a tremendous potential to expre ss and represent God. The Human Soul Contaminated by Receiving Satan s Thought. thereby preventing man from fulfilling God s purpose.
emotion. now resides in man s flesh. it was only the God-contacting function of our spirit t hat was deadened. that neither si n nor Satan have ever had any entrance or access into man s spirit at any time bef ore. Life-S tudy 239). This is why Paul s ays in Romans 7:17. But in what part were we dead? Since our body and soul were very much alive. and th e spirit was deadened. rather. a soul to express God. but sin that dwe lls in me. the body was changed in nature. The Spirit Deadened The ultimate consequence of man s fall was that his spirit was deadened. Because this evil substance has fully occupied and saturated our body we should never have any confidence in our flesh (Witness Lee. transmuted into the fallen flesh when a fore ign element was introduced through the fruit of the tree of knowledge. though dead in your offenses and sins. the human nature created in God s image and likeness. thus causing the human . this verse must refer to our human spirit. state before we were saved. Basic 35-37). and will) was contaminated.bidden fruit of the tree of knowledge (Witness Lee. The entire soul (m ind. his soul was contaminate d. We must make it clear at this point. The Human Body Transmuted into the Flesh We should never have any confidence in our flesh The body as originally created by God was a pure vessel containing only one crea ted essence. Rather. second. each of the three parts of man was damaged by the fall. refe rring to our fallen. thereby preventing man from fulfilling God s purpose. God has preserved the human spirit inviolate for Himself Ephesians 2:1 therefore says. the first man. The fall of man thus was not merely an act of disobedience and transgressio n. God has preserved the human spirit inviol ate for Himself. however. The Three Parts of Man Spoiled by the Fall of Man Created with a spirit to receive God. however. that is. deadened. And you. emotion. and third. Thus. or after the fall of man. Now then it is no longer I that work it out. The Human Soul Contaminated by Receiving Satan s Thought. and will). Nevertheless. his spirit was deadened. during. Feeling and Will Adam possessed a tremendous potential to express and represent God All three parts of man were spoiled by the fall: First. Before this potential could be realized. It is crucial that we see the tactics employed by God s enemy to cor rupt man s soul (his mind. it had the effect of corrupting all three parts of his being. Life-Study 238). This fore ign element. and a body to maint ain his existence. called indwelling sin. thus beco ming insulated from God and losing its function toward God. Satan ca me in to damage and ultimately annul the proper function of each of man s three pa rts. The serpent began his assault on the human mind by injecting it with doubt Satan began to contaminate man s soul by touching the mind. This awareness will equip us to dis cern the strategies he continues to employ to keep man from receiving and enjoyi ng God and thereby expressing and representing Him. his body was transmuted into the sinful flesh. this hopeless state of man s sets the stage f or God s salvation. Adam possessed a tremendous potential to expre ss and represent God. which we will examine in the next section (Witness Lee. But this pure b ody was changed in nature.
emotion. Nevertheless. allowing him to take another step to further contaminate the human mind. now resides in man s flesh. causing her to doubt God s Word. deadened. God has preserved the human spirit inviol ate for Himself. that neither si n nor Satan have ever had any entrance or access into man s spirit at any time bef ore. this verse must refer to our human spirit. In Genesis 3:1 the serpent began his assault o n the human mind by injecting it with doubt: Did God really say. this hopeless state of man s sets the stage f or God s salvation. or after the fall of man. called indwelling sin. thus beco ming insulated from God and losing its function toward God. knowing good and evil (Genesis 3:5). causing her to feel that God was withholding something good from her. it was only the God-contacting function of our spirit t hat was deadened. which we will examine in the next section (Witness Lee. Life-S tudy 239). Thus.mind to begin to doubt God s Word. poisoned instead with an actual dislike for God. and that the tree was to be desired to make oneself wise. the serpent sowed a seed of resentment into Eve by lying to her about God s motive: God knows that in the da y you eat of it your eyes will be opened. Rather. This consummated the contamination of the human soul. In this stage. . the human nature created in God s image and likeness. and th e spirit was deadened. during. The entire soul (m ind. however. she took of its fruit and ate. You shall not ea t of any tree of the garden? By responding to the serpent in verses 2 and 3. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food an d that it was a delight to the eyes. refe rring to our fallen. state before we were saved. This is why Paul s ays in Romans 7:17. We must make it clear at this point. that is. And you. The serpent sowed a seed of resentment into Eve by lying to her about God s motive The second stage of the contamination of man s soul was mounted against his emotio n. But this pure b ody was changed in nature. the human emotion that w as created to love God was spoiled. and will) was contaminated. Eve opened the door of her soul to the serpent. though dead in your offenses and sins. causing man to begin to dislike God. In verse 4 the serpent went on to assure Ev e. and you will become like God. Because this evil substance has fully occupied and saturated our body we should never have any confidence in our flesh (Witness Lee. Now then it is no longer I that work it out. The third stage of the contamination of man s soul took place in his will. This word incited Eve s emotions. The Spirit Deadened The ultimate consequence of man s fall was that his spirit was deadened. Genesis 3:6 records. But in what part were we dead? Since our body and soul were very much alive. The Human Body Transmuted into the Flesh We should never have any confidence in our flesh The body as originally created by God was a pure vessel containing only one crea ted essence. You shall not surely die! By this time the serpentine venom had infiltrated her mind. enticin g man to choose the satanic tree of knowledge rather than the divine tree of lif e. Basic 35-37). God has preserved the human spirit inviolate for Himself Ephesians 2:1 therefore says. by means of the seduction of the human will to choose the for bidden fruit of the tree of knowledge (Witness Lee. This fore ign element. but sin that dwe lls in me. transmuted into the fallen flesh when a fore ign element was introduced through the fruit of the tree of knowledge. each of the three parts of man was damaged by the fall. Life-Study 238). Thus. the body was changed in nature.
as described in 1 Corin thians 15:52-53: In a moment. 1609-1610). God s life with its divine nature was added to our human spirit. love as He loves. Th rough this contact. and will may remain the same. [God] made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved). By this new birth a new element has been added to our spirit that was not originally there a ccording to our first birth: God s own life. Conclusion 1601-1602. This is wh y 2 Corinthians 3:18 explains. Transformation in our Soul As a result of regeneration. emotion. Regeneration in our Spirit By this new birth a new element has been added to our spirit that was not origin ally there according to our first birth: God s own life As the first step of God s marvelous salvation. Ephesians 2:5 explains. med into the same image from glory to glory. love as He loves. God will culminate His salvation process by transfiguring our mortal body. This is also the fulfillment of the L ord s promise in Ezekiel 36:26: a new spirit I will put within you (Witness Lee. Even when we wer e dead in offenses. and choose as He chooses For this reason. of Satan negated. This is the new birth. beginning with the renewin g of our mind mentioned in Romans 12:2: be transformed by the renewing of the min d. Christ carries out this transforming work through the indwelling Holy Spirit. We may have Christ in our spirit. yet it ispossible that our mind. but the divine and uncreated life of God is also added to it (Romans 8:10). we need Christ to grow and expand continually from our spirit i nto our soul. in the twinkling of an eye we will be changed. but also dispenses Himself as life in to each of them for the fulfillment of His plan. Transformation beholding and reflecting like a mirror the glory of the Lord. When we first repent of our sins and apply Christ s redeeming blood to cleanse our consci ence. Thus. We begin to think as God thinks. It not only restores the th ree parts of man to their proper function. not only is the contamination t even the more. As this renewing progresses on from day to day. our deadened spirit is made alive. Regeneration which life is Christ Himself (John 14:6). not only is our spirit s function restored. that is. God desires that this change of life would continue by gradually spreading into our mind. emotion.God s Salvation for the Three Parts of Man God s complete salvation encompasses man s entire being. we all with unveiled face. Eventually we will resemble God i n full. we come to bear the glorious image of Christ ee. Eco nomy 66-68). For t . a process the Bible calls transformation. and man has been thoroughly saturated with the life of God in each of his three parts. even as from the in God s salvation of our soul. a change in life began to take place at the center of our being. He starts at man s innermost part (the human spirit) and spreads outward through the soul to the body until every effect of the fall of man has been reversed. He regenerates man s spirit. every trace of the fall has been e rased. bu in full (Witness L Following the lifelong process of transformation in our soul. Our enlivened spirit then begins to sense God and to contact God. Transfiguration of our Body are being transfor Lord Spirit. and will. we will be absolutely conformed to the image of God. and choose as He chooses. Fol lowing our regeneration. the regeneratio n alluded to in John 3:6: that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. we begin to think as God think s.
Basic 103-105). He who is j oined to the Lord is one spirit. First Corinthians 6:17 asserts. can also become life. but that our spirit is life The divine life is initially dispensed into our spirit. but that our spirit is life. our spirit is life itself. Dispensed into our Body The Triune God dispenses His life until we become men of life throughout our tri partite being Thus far. At this point our enlivened mind has an ability that is foreign to the natural mind: the ability to function to minister the divine life to others (105-107). As believers. Ultimately. continually relying on the spirit. Just as the husband and wife become one couple. Dispensed into our Spirit Paul did not say that our spirit is living. and second. it is saturated with the divine glory an d conformed to the body of His glory (Witness Lee. hence. the divine life is also dis . In such a condition. Paul did not say that our spirit is living. very much like a wife jo ined to her husband and relying on her husband. 12:2). the mind. Like the sp irit. To be set on the spirit. In His salvation God first regenerated our spir it (John 3:6). Paul could make this bold claim based on t wo divine facts: first. the mind set on the spirit is life and peace. we have seen the divine life dispensed into our spirit (Romans 8:10) a nd spreading into our mind (Romans 8:6). and this mortal must put on immortalit y. The Divine Life Dispensed into the Tripartite Man This section is very similar to the preceding section (The Salvation of God for the Three Parts of Man). As Romans 8:10 says. our mind becomes life. Christ is life (John 11:25. this mind must be set on the spirit so that it can be flooded. making us the same as Christ in all three parts of our bein g. Dispensed into our Mind According to Romans 8:6. so the mind and the spirit become an inseparable unit. the mind must be j oined to the spirit. and consummately will t ransfigure our body. Thus. but the emphasis here shifts to the dispensing of the d ivine life and how this life saturates the believers throughout their tripartite being.his corruptible must put on incorruption. in God s full salvation not only is our body freed from the foreign elemen ts of sin and death. is life (Witness Lee. the divine life spreads from our spirit to saturate our mind. which is the leading faculty of the soul. now is transforming our soul (Rom. and infused with the Spirit. not only is our spiri t living and not only does it possess life. This one spirit. Just as the husband and wife bec ome one couple. sat urated. which is the joining of Christ with our human spirit. Footnotes 914). After being regenerated with Christ. but even the more. 14:6). so the mind and the spirit becom e an inseparable unit Nevertheless. the spirit is life beca use of righteousness. though the body is dead because of sin. For this corruptible must put on incorruption Footnote 211 for this verse in the New Testament Recovery Version sums up God s sa lvation of the three parts of man: The transfiguration of our body is the ultimat e consummation of God s salvation. If C hrist is in you. our spiri t has been made one with this Christ. a part of our being is now life itself. Philippians 3:21 also speaks of our transfiguration: Who will transfigure the b ody of our humiliation to be conformed to the body of His glory.
Economy 172-176). When our body is presented. serving the Lord. that which is good and well pleasing and perfect. Our Spirit Fervent for the Church Life Finally. Our minds must be purged. and our spirit is burning. Our Mind Renewed for the Church Life With such a renewed mind the Body life becomes possible After our body is presented to the Lord for the church life. the body life becomes a vi brant. from the center of our being (our spirit) to the circumference of our being (our body). if our spirit is cold or even just luke warm. we allow the indwelling divine Spirit to move in us and to thereby impart life to our mortal body. we bring in many worldly thoughts and natural o pinions that actually become a great source of trouble to the church life and a hindrance to the realization of the Body life. even if our body is presen ted to the Lord and our mind is renewed. This is why Romans 12:2 says. our mind must be re newed. He who raised Christ Jesus f rom the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who in dwells you. With such a renewed mind the Body life becomes p ossible. we are compelled to present our physical bodies to the Lord for His Body. Instead. in order to realize the Body life we must be burning in spirit. Romans 12:11 exhorts the believers. holy.pensed into our mortal body. Every part of our tripartite being is. vital reality. absolute ly critical to the realization of the Body life (Witness Lee. well pleasing to God. therefore. Thus. We may have the desire to build up the Body of Christ. And do not be fashioned according to this ag e. Our weak and dying body can be given life. Do not be slothful in zeal. our mind is renewed. and our traditional considerations. our natural ideas. When our body is prese nted. we forfeit our spiritual function and become a burden to others. but be transformed by the renewing of the mind that you may prove what the wi ll of God is. For us to realize the Body life requires the pre sentation of our physical bodies to the Lord in the church life. and re-educated from our old thoughts. making us living. our spirit should be both burned by the Lord and burning for the Lo rd. w hich is your reasonable service. but if our body does not come to the mee tings of the church. the body life becomes a vibrant. brothers. Without a renewed mind. renewed. vital reality but be burning in spirit. This lack of the exercise of the spirit greatly frustrates the realization of the Body li fe. Therefore. . Spoiled by the Fall For the Three Parts of Man The Divine Life Dispensed Our Body Presented for the Church Life At this juncture we must point out that all of the above experiences of God s salv ation and dispensing in our tripartite being are not for own individual spiritua lity. our mind is renewed. the Triune God dispenses His life until w e become men of life throughout our tripartite being (107-109). the Body life cannot be realized. and our spirit is burning. Romans 12:1 says. By exercising our human sp irit. functioning members of Christ s Body. I exhort you therefore. through the compassions of God to present your bodies a living sacrifice. as explained in Romans 8:11: And if the Spirit of th e One who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you. All three parts of our bein g are needed to realize and participate in the Body life. but for the building up of the Body of Christ. Present your bodies a living sacrifice As we begin to rely on the Lord and are increasingly released from the enemy s usu rping hand.
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