Monday, February 3, 2014

Affinity 2: The Soul: Our Mind, Will and Emotions

I Thessalonians 5:23 describes the man as three parts: spirit, soul, and body. Matthew 12:30 and Mark 10:27 reference Deuteronomy 6:5, “And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.” Equating heart to spirit and might to our bodies, we have a three-part person: spirit, soul and body as verified by the Old Testament Law, the New Testament Gospel Accounts and Paul’s Epistles.

Spirit, soul and body. Man is reflective of the Holy Trinity: Holy Spirit, Father, and Son. Genesis 1:26, “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” Surely we are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14).

As it would seem, our physical bodies house our souls. But where do our spirits reside? Do our souls hold our spirit like a flame? Or, maybe our spirit sits over us like the cloud resting on the tabernacle in the wilderness.

The soul seems easier to identify. Science separates the brain into three parts: the cerebrum, the cerebellum and the brain stem. The cerebrum fills up most of your skull and does all of your remembering, problem solving, thinking, and feeling. It is the largest part and is divided into three parts, two halves on top with a separate section on the bottom for the thalamus and hypothalamus. Roughly speaking the cerebrum has a section for analytic reasoning – your left brain, a section for creativity – your right brain, and section for your emotions – the thalamus and hypothalamus. I’ll call these three portions our mind, will and emotions. This gives our soul three parts, just like our being’s spirit, soul and body.