Ephesians overview – 3:14-19, Pauls prayer (inner man), part 5.

Tuesday March 17, 2020



C) Inner man.


Both the Spirit and Christ are working within. What does God tell us of the inner man? (soul, spirit, heart, mind, and flesh)


The soul can emphasize the individual or the subject of life. It can be the “what” or the type of man he is. He is ____.


The entire inner man: what, why, how / heart, spirit, soul, mind / intellect, will, sensibility, and conscience – has to be completely devoted to God.


From Genesis to Revelation, in the Mosaic Law, in the nation of Israel in the PL, in the church, in the Lord Jesus Christ; the Father demands complete submission (motivation/spirit) and obedience (condition/type/soul) of every man.


We continue looking at the soul. If it is distinguished, it is usually seen as the subject of the person, his identity, his type.


Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words


Psuche: soul – denotes "the breath, the breath of life," then "the soul," in its various meanings. The NT uses "may be analyzed approximately as follows:


Soul in the NT: natural life of the body, immaterial part of man, disembodied man, personality, sentient part, will, purpose, appetite, individuals, inward man. [Vine’s Dictionary]


I leave the scriptures in my notes as Vine’s lists them for anyone who wants to read through them. It is a fascinating study to see just how much is going on within us.


[Vine’s Expository Dictionary]

(a) the natural life of the body, Mat 2:20; Luk 12:22; Act 20:10; Rev 8:9; 12:11; cf. Lev 17:11; 2 Sam 14:7; Est 8:11; (b) the immaterial, invisible part of man, Mat 10:28; Act 2:27; cf. 1Ki 17:21; (c) the disembodied (or "unclothed" or "naked," 2 Cor 5:3,4) man, Rev 6:9; (d) the seat of personality, Luk 9:24, explained as "own self," v. 25; 19; 10:39; cf. Isa 53:10 with 1Ti 2:6; (e) the seat of the sentient element in man, that by which he perceives, reflects, feels, desires, Mat 11:29; Luk 1:46; 2:35; Act 14:2,22; cf. Psa 84:2; Psa 139:14; Isa 26:9; (f) the seat of will and purpose, Mat 22:37; Act 4:32; Eph 6:6; Phi 1:27; Heb 12:3; cf. Num 21:4; Deu 11:13; (g) the seat of appetite, Rev 18:14; cf. Psa 107:9; Pro 6:30; Isa 5:14 ("desire"); 29:8; (h) persons, individuals, Act 2:41,43; Rom 2:9; Jam 5:20; 1Pe 3:20; 2Pe 2:14; cf. Gen 12:5; 14:21 ("persons"); Lev 4:2 ('any one'); Eze 27:13; of dead bodies, Num 6:6, lit., "dead soul"; and of animals, Lev 24:18, lit., "soul for soul"; (i) the equivalent of the personal pronoun, used for emphasis and effect:— 1st person, Joh 10:24 ("us"); Heb 10:38; cf. Gen 12:13; Num 23:10; Jud 16:30; Psa 120:2 ("me"); 2nd person, 2Co 12:15; Heb 13:17; Jam 1:21; 1Pe 1:9; 2:25; cf. Lev 17:11; 26:15; 1Sa 1:26; 3rd person, 1Pe 4:19; 2Pe 2:8; cf. Exo 30:12; Job 32:2, Heb. "soul," Sept. "self"; (j) an animate creature, human or other, 1Co 15:45; Rev 16:3; cf. Gen 1:24; 2:7,19; (k) "the inward man," the seat of the new life, Luk 21:19 (cf. Mat 10:39); 1Pe 2:11; 3Jo 2.


"With (j) compare a-psuchos, "soulless, inanimate," 1Co 14:7.


"With (f) compare di-psuchos, "two-souled," Jam 1:8; 4:8; oligo psuchos, "feeble-souled," 1Th 5:14;  iso-psuchos, "like-souled," Phi 2:20;  sum-psuchos, "joint-souled" ("with. one accord"), Phi 2:2.


"The language of Heb 4:12 suggests the extreme difficulty of distinguishing between the soul and the spirit, alike in their nature and in their activities. Generally speaking the spirit is the higher, the soul the lower element. The spirit may be recognized as the life principle bestowed on man by God, the soul as the resulting life constituted in the individual, the body being the material organism animated by soul and spirit....


"Body and soul are the constituents of the man according to Matt 6:25; 10:28; Luke 12:20; Acts 20:10; body and spirit according to Luke 8:55; 1 Cor 5:3; 7:34; James 2:26. In Matt 26:38 the emotions are associated with the soul, in John 13:21 with the spirit; cf. also Ps 42:11 with 1 Kings 21:5. In Ps 35:9 the soul rejoices in God, in Luke 1:47 the spirit.


"Apparently, then, the relationships may be thus summed up 'Soma, body, and pneuma, spirit, may be separated, pneuma and psuche, soul, can only be distinguished' (Cremer)." [End Vine’s quote]


Let’s look at a few of these:


Soul: the seat of the sentient element in man, that by which he perceives, reflects, feels, desires.


Mat 11:28-30

"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. 29 "Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls.  30 "For My yoke is easy, and My load is light."


Eph 6:5-6

Slaves, be obedient to those who are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in the sincerity of your heart, as to Christ; 6 not by way of eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but as slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart [psuche – soul].


Heb 12:3

For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you may not grow weary and lose heart [psuche – soul].


1Th 5:14

And we urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly, encourage the fainthearted [oligopsuchos = lit. small souled; despondent or fainthearted (souled)], help the weak, be patient with all men.


The lusts of the flesh wage war against the soul. 


1Pe 2:11-12

Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts, which wage war against the soul. 12 Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may on account of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation.


The good news for the believer is that God has redeemed his soul. The believer belongs to God, and from that foundation the believer fights for the experiential purity of his soul.


God will redeem the soul of the believer, Psa 49:15.


Psa 49:15

But God will redeem my soul from the power of Sheol;

For He will receive me.


We may remark as one commentator does that man is soul and he possesses a spirit. We could think of a simple object to help us form a picture. Someone sometime invented a chair. There was a reason he made it. The object is a chair but it inherently possesses a purpose, or a reason for being. You can use a chair for various other functions than what it was designed for. Man has done this, with himself and with chairs. He was designed by God to be dependent upon God and to worship God, but man decided that he would use himself for something else, falling for the lie that he could also be like a god. Everything about the inner man went wrong and resulted in an eruption of sin to the point, after ten long generations, God had only to conclude:


Gen 6:5

Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

 Gen 6:6

The Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.


We are each born into a world that has an upside down view of the purpose of man and his reason for being. Most of us grow up being saturated with this erroneous world-view. When we are born-again, the Holy Spirit within and the word of God have to transform our minds so that we can see what the purpose and reason for man has always been in the heart of God.


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