by Rob Parlante
There is a spiritual battle going on for control of every Christian’s soul. The battle is your flesh trying to control and influence your soul, versus your soul’s dependence on the Holy Spirit to live life. This begs the question, what is the definition of the soul? What’s it made up of and how is it influenced? To understand what the soul is, we need to examine the makeup of man. We see from 1st Thes 5:23, that man is a 3 part being. Man is made up of a spirit, soul and body. Man’s human spirit is regenerated by the Holy Spirit when one exercises saving faith in Christ’s death, burial and resurrection for the forgiveness of one’s sins. Man’s dead spirit is made alive. Man’s is either spiritually alive or spiritually dead. The body is our flesh and bones, the physical person we are as we live on the earth. Now what about the soul? It’s interesting from the 1st Thes 5:23, that there is an order in man’s makeup. It shows a flow. It states, spirit, soul and body. From this verse we see that in the middle of the spirit and body is the soul. So we can conclude that the soul resides in between the spirit and the body. This is a spiritual reality that we can’t see on an x-ray, or some by some other physical means. But scripture states it resides in every man.
So what’s the soul? I like to define the soul as man personality. It’s what you see when you interact with fellow human being. We can further break down what the soul is by looking at what makes up ones personality. It’s made up of one’s mind, will and emotions. We see ones emotions and actions by the decisions we make. We see their personality/soul. Now back to the spiritual battle, external fleshly influences (Body) are trying to influence the soul, and the Holy Spirit inside every believer is trying to influence the soul. Every believer has a choice (a will) to be influenced and depend on the flesh (external, body), or depend on the Holy Spirit (internally). The war is being raged in your mind for where you will place your dependence. Will you depend on the flesh, or will you depend on the indwelling Holy Spirit? This is a spiritual war.
Man’s humanistic inclination is to depend on their resources (Flesh) to live life. This is our default before being regenerated. After becoming spiritually alive, we need to learn to depend on the Holy Spirit which indwells every believer. This could take a life time, and this is where many have abandoned the faith thinking that Christianity just doesn’t work. Where is the victory in Jesus, like the song we sing in church on Sunday mornings?
I’ll cut right to the chase and give you the answer. Victory in Jesus is only obtained when you give up. When you give up trying to live your life out of depending on your own resources to meet your needs and to live by total dependence on the Holy Spirit which is inside you. This is a simple truth that isn’t taught in many churches today. Just give up and let Christ/Holy Spirit live your life for you. Let go of trying to control and give the control of your life to Christ. Let your soul be in perfect harmony with the Holy Spirit which indwells you. This is an awesome truth and an awesome way to live. It’s so freeing and restful. Just Give Up! Just Give Up! Just Give Up!
How do you know when you have given up, it’s when you have the same attitude as Jesus did prior to his crucifixion when he prayed in the garden of Gethsemane.
Matthew 26:39 (NASB) And He went a little beyond them, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as You will.”
Not as I will, but as You will. That’s giving up! Once you give up of relying on your flesh to live life, Christ will live His life through you and give you a peace which is beyond comprehension. The Spirit will flow through your soul and body to the outside world. That’s the Christian life. If you are still not sure about giving up, please consider the prayer below in your quiet time with Christ. Let the Holy Spirit guide your soul into truth.
I have been struggling to live the Christian life out of my own resources. I admit that I have been trying to get my needs met through people, achievements and possessions. I now give up on my self-sufficiency and do hereby commit my life unconditionally into Your hands. I give up all my rights and expectations and give You permission to make me into the kind of person You want me to be. Do with me whatever You choose.
If you would like to learn more about the truths described here, come join us at Grace Christian Church, currently meeting at the Freehold VFW, every Sunday at 9:30 am.
In Him, Rob Parlante – Elder / Grace Christian Church