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Old 03-08-2009, 03:19 PM
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George George is offline
 
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Default Re: "Spiritual Death? "

Aloha brother Forrest,

Excellent Post brother. You beat me to the punch! I agree wholeheartedly with your explanation and will add one more Post in a little while to try to "fill-out" my take on this matter.

I believe the discourse that has gone on in this Thread is an excellent "example" of how Christian brethren (from all walks of life) can have an honest, respectful, and edifying discourse - without getting "bent out of shape" or "offended" by differing viewpoints.

There are many doctrines and issues where I will not entertain contrary opinions, but on matters like we have been discussing I believe there is "room" for differing thoughts, as long as they are backed up by Scripture, and kept within the confines of the Holy words of God.

God bless you brother!
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  #32  
Old 03-09-2009, 03:37 PM
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Default Re: " Spiritual Death?"

Aloha all,

I am concerned that I might have left the wrong impression with my previous Posts about the “spirit” in man and “spiritual death”, or being “spiritually dead”.

First of all I did not mean, in any way, to question God’s words, when He said unto Adam:

Genesis 2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

If I have left that impression with anyone on the Forum, I want to apologize (especially to Samuel), because that was not my intent. I believe what God said, where He said it. My problem has been in trying to understand just exactly what manner, or kind of “death” took place in Adam the day that he partook of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

#1. We know that Adam’s body didn’t die (that day), because he lived another 930 years before he died physically. {Although his body was under sentence of death the day he sinned.)

[Romans 7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?]

#2. We know that his soul didn’t die (that day), because that was his very individual essence (i.e. who he was), he didn’t lose his identity – he still was “Adam”. Every man, woman and child has a soul within their body. {Although his soul was under sentence of death the day he sinned.}

[Ezekiel 18:4 Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die.]

#3. What I don’t fully understand is just exactly what happened to his “spirit”. Did it “die”, like our physical body, and totally cease to function (like the Calvinists believe and teach)? If it did then why are we still alive, and breathing, and walking around (in the flesh)?

I believe that all life emanates from God; that is - God is the source of all life. I believe that God imparts life to man through the “spirit” He gives to man (not the Holy Spirit). Man’s “spirit” then, is the source of life within a man, and when that “spirit” leaves a man - that man dies. {James 2:26] So, contrary to what the Calvinists teach - the “spirit” within man is not totally inoperable (it hasn’t ceased to function totally – as the body does when it dies.)

So then, what is known as “spiritual death” is NOT the SAME as physical death! To be “spiritually dead”, does NOT “mean” that man’s “spirit” does not function (like a dead body); it must mean that in relation to God, it is DEAD! In relation to a man’s body, it is still the source of physical life, but in relation to spiritual things – “it cannot receive the things of the Spirit of God”. [1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.]

Perhaps the following verse [Romans 4:19] is a partial simile to our dilemma:

Romans 4:17 (As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.
18 Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations; according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be.

Romans 4:19 And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sara's womb:

Was Abraham’s body DEAD? Not in the sense that we understand physical DEATH! Was Sarah’s womb DEAD? Again, not in the sense we look at physical DEATH. What is clear about both Abraham and Sarah is that they both were physically past being able to produce children, and yet, God ENABLED them to produce Isaac (a miracle birth)! I don’t profess to understand all of the ramifications to this simile, but I do think that our pre-conceived notions and concepts about death (since we only can “observe” physical death) influence our perceptions about what many call “spiritual death”.

If there is such a thing as “spiritual death” it has to mean more than just “separation” from God, else how do we explain Enoch and Noah?

Genesis 5:22 And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters:
Genesis 5:24 And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.

Genesis 6:9 These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.

It’s no wonder that Calvinists believe that the Old Testament Saints were “born again” (just like us)! If you believe like Calvinists: IF men are “TOTALLY DEPRAVED” (i.e. born with a DEAD “spirit”), how could they possibly “walk with God” – unless they were regenerated first? HOW could God possibly “walk with” them – unless they were “born again”? CKG and John G are definitely on to something.

And then we have the testimony from the Holy Scriptures about the only other man (recorded in the Scriptures) to have had “walked with God” – LEVI:

Malachi 2:4 And ye shall know that I have sent this commandment unto you, that my covenant might be with Levi, saith the LORD of hosts.
5 My covenant was with him of life and peace; and I gave them to him for the fear wherewith he feared me, and was afraid before my name.
6 The law of truth was in his mouth, and iniquity was not found in his lips: he walked with me in peace and equity, and did turn many away from iniquity.

This is the reason why I have been so “persnickety” about the idea or belief that the “spirit” within men is DEAD. I can accept the concept of “spiritual death” or someone being “spiritually dead” (like the simile of Abraham & Sarah [Romans 4:19]); I cannot accept the idea or belief (promoted by Calvinism) that the “spirit” within man is DEAD (Remember the “T” in T.U.L.I.P. – “TOTAL DEPRAVITY” – also known as: TOTAL INABILITY”?) - Not when I cannot find a single verse in the Bible that says so!

Again,If there is such a thing as “spiritual death” it has to mean more than just “separation” from God, else how do we explain Job, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob (Israel), Moses, Joshua, the Judges, David, the Prophets, etc.? All of these men believed God; worshiped God; obeyed God; and interacted with God. Were they “separated” from God? If they were, it was a different kind of “separation” than we are familiar with in the physical world (i.e. “separation” between a husband and wife for example).

Job 1:8 And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?

2 Chronicles 20:7 Art not thou our God, who didst drive out the inhabitants of this land before thy people Israel, and gavest it to the seed of Abraham thy friend for ever?

Isaiah 41:8
But thou, Israel, art my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend.


James
2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.


Exodus 33:11 And the LORD spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp: but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, departed not out of the tabernacle.

Numbers 27:18 And the LORD said unto Moses, Take thee Joshua the son of Nun, a man in whom is the spirit, and lay thine hand upon him; {“the spirit” = The Holy Spirit}

Acts 13:22 And when he had removed him, he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will.

What kind of “separation” is that? What about David? David only wrote part of the Book of Psalms (the greater part); and in just one Book, this one man wrote more about the Person and Majesty of Almighty God than any ten writers in the entire Bible; this one man wrote more about God’s Holy words than any ten writers in the entire Bible; and this one man wrote more about the heart of man than any ten writers in the Bible! If these men were “separated” from God, it can’t possibly be like the “separation” from God that men and women are going to experience in the Lake of Fire in eternity.

Can you see why Calvinists believe Old Testaments Saints just had to “born again” – just like us? If you accept T.U.L.I.P. as “gospel” – there could be no other explanation! Now can you see WHY I have tried to be so “circumspect” when it comes to this issue? This is the “meat” of the word that Paul spoke about, and there is a possibility that none of us is going to “get it all” until we see Jesus “face to face”.

Now don’t get me wrong, I believe that there was a “separation” that instantly took place the moment that Adam sinned. My problem has always been trying to understand - just exactly what kind of “separation” was it? And what kind of “spiritual death” occurred when Adam sinned? It’s not that I don’t believe God’s word – I do. It’s just that there are some things in the Scriptures which are “hard to be understood” [2 Peter 3:16] and this happens to be one of them.

But what I refuse to do, is go along with the “majority”, without having a strong Scriptural basis or foundation for believing something - simply because “so-and-so said so”, or our "pastor", our "church", or our "school" teaches it.

1 Corinthians 13:9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.
11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know inpart; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

In the meantime we are commanded to study God’s words and rightly divide them; [1Timothy 2:15] and not CHANGE them or make them “fit” some pre-conceived concepts we may hold - simply because we cannot discern or understand spiritual matters.

There may be a whole lot that we might speculate about this issue, but I would like to point out a couple more things – the supreme importance of God’s Holy words, i.e. “the Scripture of truth” in this matter; and the preeminent part that the Holy Spirit (not your pastor, your church, or your school) plays in understanding “the truth”.

God’s word is said to be:

Psalms 33:4 For the word of the LORD is right; and all his works are done in truth.

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

Modern day Christians underestimate the Power of God’s word and are substituting their own words, programs, and philosophies in its place. Modern day “Evangelicalism” has centered on MAN (Humanism/Psychiatry/Psychology) instead of God and His Holy word, resulting in the fleshly, carnal, and worldly display seen in their “services”.

According to the Scriptures, God’s words “are spirit, and they are life”.

John 6:63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.

The Apostle Peter testified that the Lord Jesus Christ had “the words of eternal life”.

John 6:68 Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life.

If we must speculate about spiritual matters, we are obligated to refrain from personal opinion and "private interpretation", as much as is humanely possible, and we should strive to keep an issue within the bounds of the Scriptures and not resort to “flights of fancy”, based on “feelings” or “convictions”, that have no basis in God’s Holy word.

When we study the Scriptures we must seek discernment and understanding from the Holy Spirit – not just look to men. Men can be of some help in acquiring “knowledge” (and possibly some discernment), but most of a Christian’s “Discernment” comes from the Holy Spirit; and ALL of our “Understanding” and “Wisdom” comes from God.

John 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

John 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

John 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
14 He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.

1 John 2:20 But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.
21 I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth.

1 John
2:26 These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you.
27 But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.


If we do not look to God for discernment and understanding of His Holy word, then we will look to men (this is the problem with “Christian Schools” and most of modern day Christianity), with the result that we will be relying on other men to develop a system of biblical interpretation or theological formulationsfor us. But God did not command us to study other men’s systems “of biblical interpretation or theological formulations. He commands us to “study the word of truth”: [2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.]

Brother Forrest cited these verses in 1Corinthians Chapter 2, but they are worth repeating. There is worldly wisdom, understanding, and discernment; and then there is Godly wisdom, understanding, and discernment. The things that we have been discussing must be spiritually discerned, they are not the “milk” of the word - they are the “strong meat”: [Hebrews 5:13 For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.]

If I were “more skillful in the word”, and if I had my “senses exercised to discern” more completely, perhaps I would be able to more fully comprehend these things that we have discussed here. At this point, I can only confess ignorance to fully understanding what manner of death Adam experienced when he ate of the fruit (I believe he died), and what is meant by “spiritual death” or being "spiritually dead"..

1 Corinthians 2:1 And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.
2 For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.
3And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.
4 And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man'swisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:
5 That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.
6 Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought:
7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
8 Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.
11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.
12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.
13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.


It has been my honest and sincere desire for years now, that I - “might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding”.

[
Colossians 1:9 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;]

It is my sincere prayer that all those on this Forum "might be
filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understandingalso.
  #33  
Old 03-09-2009, 06:34 PM
Winman Winman is offline
 
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This is interesting.

Yes, I don't believe the spirit in man is dead as we think of death. To me, death always means separation. But there is more. In Gen 2:25 it says Adam and Eve were not ashamed.

Gen 2:25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

Contrast that to Gen 3:7-8

Gen 3:7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons. 8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.

Now suddenly they were ashamed, embarrased and especially fearful.

Heb 10:31 It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

So, Adam and Eve's minds were changed. Suddenly they were very aware of sin itself, and were terrified of God. And I think it goes without saying that man became very self-centered and selfish just like Satan. They were also filled with desires and lusts they had not known before.

The natural man is a different creature. And as an apple tree bears different fruit from the orange tree, so does the natural man differ and bear different fruit than the spirtual man.

Gal 5:19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 24 And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
  #34  
Old 03-09-2009, 08:16 PM
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chette777 chette777 is offline
 
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I like to say that before the fall they were "God Conscience" and after the fall they were "Self conscience". They became like gods literally, because they had a heart for God before and a heart for self after.

They took the place of God in their lives. Just as Lucifer wanted to take the place of God in heaven. Lucifer took the place of God in his heart long before he even tried to exalt his throne. He tried changed the direction of angelic worship as he changed the direction of worship in his heart.
  #35  
Old 03-09-2009, 09:28 PM
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stephanos stephanos is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chette777 View Post
I like to say that before the fall they were "God Conscience" and after the fall they were "Self conscience". They became like gods literally, because they had a heart for God before and a heart for self after.

They took the place of God in their lives. Just as Lucifer wanted to take the place of God in heaven. Lucifer took the place of God in his heart long before he even tried to exalt his throne. He tried changed the direction of angelic worship as he changed the direction of worship in his heart.
That's a good way of looking at it. I'd never considered it that way before.

Peace and Love,
Stephen
 

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