SeekersTrove.com—Treasure Beyond Measure

The Inner Man

You are not your brain. Success does not depend upon what you do with your brain, that is, how much you educate it or how much you discipline it, or how much you train it to operate your physical body. One of the biggest misconceptions about life is that our real life is about our physical bodies, and that just isn’t true. You are not your body. Your body will grow old and die, but you, the spirit person within, will remain.

Bible readers are frequently totally freaked out about the evolution of man as taught in the world. They think that that teaching goes against what the Bible says, but for the most part it does not disagree with the Bible account. Evolution only speaks about the development of man’s body, it says nothing about the spirit of man within, nor can it. The Bible speaks about the spirit man first, and the body only as a backdrop, as it were. If you’re reading this article then most likely you are a Bible reader, so let me ask Bible Reader, what does the Bible say about the origin of man’s body? Does the Bible say that God made a mud-man and then brought it to life? Is that what it really says? Let’s look.

Genesis 1:11

Then God said, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.” And it was so. (NIV84)

Does this passage say that God created the plants directly? No, it doesn’t. It says that he commanded the land to produce the vegetation. This is important and significant. The land brought forth all of the plant life on earth—by God’s command. What is more fundamental in the evolution theory than the idea that life came from the land? This fact is the basis of evolution. Science and the Bible both agree that plant life came from the soil. Where science and the Bible disagree is with respect to where the spark of life came from. Scientists contend that everything came about by random chance and the Bible says that it wasn’t random at all, but rather through God’s direct command and will and by his very deliberate design. Just because God commanded the land to bring forth the plants doesn’t mean that God wasn’t behind it every step of the way. Nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing on the earth, is random, or by chance, or by accident, but rather God worked behind the scenes to bring it all about to his exact specifications. The Lord God created everything in this way so that he could reveal the fact of he being the Creator so that man could then believe. God is teaching you to believe him. He reveals absolute truth to people and then expects them to believe in that truth. Now science has pieced together a very interesting theory concerning the origin of life on earth, but has never, ever been able to explain the origin of life. Science can’t create life even in the most simplest of forms. Science takes what is already alive and then breeds it, splices it, grows it, implants it and so on, but cannot make it. The origin of life cannot be explained through any scientific method, nor can the origin of the universe itself. God has explained the origin of both life and the universe and it for us to believe him. God desires that we believe him. Everything important to us depends upon our believing God. Everything.

Now, let’s back up a bit and look at what the Bible says about the creation of animal life. Did God directly create the elephants? Did he directly make giraffes? The chimpanzees? What about dogs and cats? What does the Bible say?

Genesis 1:24

And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: livestock, creatures that move along the ground, and wild animals, each according to its kind.” And it was so. (NIV84)

Just like the plants God indirectly created all of the animal life too. Let me ask you: what does it mean when God says for the land to produce the dog? With the plants you might think that he meant that the land would grow the plants that God created, but that surely doesn’t work with the animals too, does it? The Bible does not say that creation was like popcorn popping out animals. Animals didn’t just pop into existence. The land produced them. I hope that you are not freaking out. What I am saying here is a very important foundation for what comes later. You must understand “A” before you can understand “B”.

People who are holding on to God by fear get totally freaked when they think that science is disproving the Bible, but science can never disprove the Bible because the Bible is fact. The Bible is absolutely reliable, but the Bible sees things from a spiritual standpoint, and the meaning of things is not necessarily what is obvious to the natural observer. The Bible deals with spiritual truths expressed in spiritual words, that is, expressed poetically more often than not. God is the ultimate poet and the Bible is his expression. Now, let us look at what the Bible says concerning the creation of man.

Genesis 2:7

…the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being. (NIV84)

Now remember that this is a poetic expression of spiritual truth; it’s not literal. Just like every other animal on the planet, God commanded the land to bring forth man. This is poetically expressed as “God formed the man from the dust of the ground.” It could rightly be said that God created all of the animals from the dust of the ground. There is not an animal or a plant or any other living thing on earth that was not crated from the physical material that makes up the physical earth. Every living thing on earth is made out of molecules of atoms, which poetically is expressed as dust. Now, why did God choose to say dust instead of matter? Dust is something that we pretty much ignore. Dust is not significant. Look at this Scripture and understand.

Isaiah 40:15

Surely the nations are like a drop in a bucket; they are regarded as dust on the scales; (NIV84)

The word dust biblically means that it is insignificant or unimportant. When the Bible says that God formed man from the dust of the earth it is downplaying the importance of man’s physical nature. Man’s body is unimportant. It is the soul that matters. It is the soul that was given to animal man when God breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, as seen in Genesis 2:7 above.

There is something else that is of critical importance for you to see and understand in Genesis 2:7 above, and that is the last statement which says that the man became a living being. This is a huge thing, but cannot be understood if you think that God made a mud-man and then brought it to animal life. That is not what this passage is saying. The man was a living Homo Sapiens before God breathed into his nostrils. Reread the passage very carefully, many times if necessary, until you can see that the man was a man before God breathed into him. The important part of this passages is not the formation of man’s body (from dust). That is so unimportant that it is mostly ignored. The important part is when God took from himself, of his own nature and likeness, and gave that nature and likeness to man, so that the man BECAME a living being. The life that God breathed into the man was eternal life, spiritual life; he gave man a spirit nature, a soul.

Genesis 1:26–27

Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. (NIV84)

God is not a man. God is not made out of dust. God is not made out of matter. He is spirit. God is eternal and physical matter is not eternal. Physical matter has a life span. Eventually physical matter will wind down and be no more. Granted, that might take a long while but it will happen. Matter is not eternal and God is therefore not made out of matter and neither are any of the angels. They are all spirit. And God “breathed” (poetic) of his eternal spirit nature, and put it inside the physical (dust) body of a man, and the man BECAME a being that was created in the image and likeness of God himself. It you don’t understand what I am saying here then pretty much nothing in the Bible will make real sense to you. This is critical. You must understand that man has two natures, one physical and one spiritual. You have a body and a soul, or rather your soul, the real you, temporally lives inside an animal body. You are not your body. The important part of you is not your body. Your body is not important at all, by comparison. I try to stay away from this topic because people get so freaked out about evolution, but really you must understand what you are and how you came to be. If you don’t understand and accept that you are a spirit being that is in an unimportant body then you can’t understand anything of importance in the Bible. Everything in the Bible speaks from this perspective. If you are not a spirit being living in a temporary body then there is no afterlife and therefore it doesn’t matter what you do in this life. Do what you want, party hearty and die. This is in fact how most people do live, but not I. I live for eternal life. I recognize that my body is unimportant. I don’t measure a man’s (or woman’s) worth by how successful they are in this world. This world is passing away and ultimately doesn’t matter at all.

1 Corinthians 7:29–31

What I mean, brothers, is that the time is short. From now on those who have wives should live as if they had none; 30 those who mourn, as if they did not; those who are happy, as if they were not; those who buy something, as if it were not theirs to keep; 31 those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them. For this world in its present form is passing away. (NIV84)

Let us move on, shall we? Your body has a mind. You can think with your mind and your mind is a function of your brain. I have stated previously that your body is unimportant, and it truly is, and that ultimately means that your mind is not really important either. The body’s importance, and therefore the mind’s importance, is for this physical life only. While we live on the earth we need a body and we must use our mind. As it turns out the mind is a very subtle thing. It is more than the sum of its parts, as it were. Let me explain.

Your mind is a function of your brain, but it is also affected by your soul. The soul has a mind too. The soul’s mind is biblically called your heart, for it is at the very center of your being. Your heart holds what your soul believes. Ultimately you are what your heart believes. Look at this next passage.

Proverbs 4:23

Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life. (NIV84)

Wow. Above all else… Above everything else. Your heart is the heart of you. It is the eternal you. It is the spirit you.

The scientific establishment calls your spiritual heart the subconscious mind, which in my mind, is a very poor name. The scientific idea about the subconscious mind is that it is below our conscious awareness. This belief is not true. We are all aware of our heart’s thoughts but don’t recognize them for what they are. As I have said above we have two completely different natures. We have an animal nature, and we have a spiritual nature. The body’s mind is mostly concerned about the drives of our natural instincts but our heart is only concerned about spiritual matters. It is the heart that is concerned about morals. What animals on earth concern themselves about right and wrong?

1 Corinthians 13:13

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. (NIV84)

Faith, hope and love (spiritual) all happen in the heart only. This is why you can firmly believe something that doesn’t make sense to your brain, however it is important that you have enough control of your body that you can seek to understand why you believe, so that you can bring your mind to a place of agreement with what your heart believes. Looking back at the evolution of man problem we can see that the “physical evidence” points to the long slow evolution of man, but our hearts believe that God created us, so we have a dilemma. Rather than hide from things in fear we should earnestly seek to understand what the Bible actually says, so that we can understand the faith that we hold. The world defines faith as believing in the unbelievable, but that is not at all a good definition. Faith is believing, sure, but the purpose of the Bible is to explain to us how things work so that we can understand what we believe. When we understand what we believe we have wisdom. The understanding of spiritual truth is wisdom. Wisdom exists mostly in the brain. When our brain understands what our heart believes then we are wise about that understanding.

More than 35 years ago, I, who was previously an unbeliever in all things spiritual, came to believe. I was watching the video television presentation called Jesus of Nazareth and I suddenly realized that I believed in God, and that Jesus was somehow the conduit to him. I didn’t know anything in my brain. My brain was confused, but I now know and understand that my heart opened up to God and believed in him. I then spent many thousands of hours reading the Bible trying to understand. I don’t know or understand the specifics of my conversion, but I do know that something in me was driving me to seek God. I was watching that show and my brain was watching and my heart was watching too, and at some point my heart believed the message that was presented and my brain wanted to understand it all.

Galatians 5:22–23

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. (NIV84)

This passage is speaking of the Spirit’s effect on your heart, not really your brain. If you open your heart to God and seek him, God’s Spirit will transform your heart, and cause the above fruit to grow within. A few days ago I was very angry with a coworker. This coworker was someone who I consider a friend and he stabbed me in the back over some political work thing. I was angry and determined not to help this coworker anymore. I figured that he betrayed me and I would just let God deal with him, but then he called me on the phone and instantly the fruit of the spirit took charge and I was kind and patient and good. My brain was angry but my heart wasn’t in it. My heart wanted reconciliation. My heart wanted peace and joy and faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. I had to tell my brain to just shut up and be good.

Romans 8:5–8

Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. 6 The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace; 7 the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. 8 Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God. (NIV84)

When you see “the sinful nature” above think your body’s natural instincts. We have physical drives that want what they want, but we must take control and not overly allow them to control us. What this passage is saying is that you, that is, your spiritual self, your heart, must not focus on what the body wants, but rather on what God wants. In verse 6 above we see that the mind of sinful man is death, and what that means is that a man who is devoted to the desires of his body is separated from God, and that separation is death. The man who wants to be the alpha male and have all the beautiful women giving themselves to him has a heart that is spiritually dead, that is, disconnected from God. That man is focused on worldly things. He may get all of his desires, but what then of his eternal nature? Everyone’s body breaks down and dies, but the person inside, the person’s soul, what happens to that true person? We must not allow our physical desires to control our mind. We must take control of ourselves and seek God and allow God’s will to work through us.

Romans 12:2

Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (NIV84)

You renew your mind by making it read the Scriptures and opening yourself up to believing them. Bible reading alone will not work. Many people read the Bible without opening themselves up to what it is really saying. Read the Bible for yourself and listen to what it actually says. Forget what it is supposed to mean, forget what people tell you it means, read it for yourself and believe what it really says. That way you will be listening to God directly and God will transform your heart and mind so that you know him personally. When we are born we pretty much know nothing. We live and learn. Our hearts have desires and our brains have desires, but we must seek God through the Scriptures and so educate both our hearts and our minds. We are truly eternal beings. We will exist forever. We will be forever with God or without him. We have no way of knowing anything about our eternal existence except through what God has told us. Follow your heart’s desire to know God.

 

This article can be found at www.TheBiblePhilosopher.com and SeekersTrove.com