I never get tired of talking about how we are a spirit/soul/body and how that plays out in everyday life. Tonight was no different talking to the guys in jail. I love going to the jail to speak and I guess it’s because I get the opportunity to encourage them and let them know God still loves them. I know if he can turn my life around there is no reason he can’t do the same for them.
Most of the time when going to the jail I have a verse or passage of scripture I want to share with them tonight I guess you could say I had one verse. After telling them a brief testimony of how I used to do drugs and how that led to divorce but God delivered me and restored my marriage. I spoke to them of how humans are made up of three parts. We are a spirit have a soul and live in a body. I read Hebrews 4:12 (NASB) “For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” So right here the Bible tells us our soul and spirit isn’t the same thing and it takes the word of God to divide between the two.
I’m convinced that most of our problems stem from not understanding how we are made. I shared with the guys how when Adam sinned man began to be only outward focused. Of course this is because he died in his spirit. He only had the outer to live by hence the need to be born again of the Spirit of God. As a lost man, dead in our spirit, we are left to live a flesh driven outer focused life. God never intended us to be led around by our bodily cravings or soulish thoughts and feelings.
Some may have different views on what constitutes the soul but for me I have settled it as follows. I see the spirit realm as being where we are in contact with God. The soul realm is the realm of our emotions and intellect. This is the part of us that very well may fluctuate all day long. We may wake up feeling good and by lunchtime we’re frustrated and angry about something. The trick is recognizing it is just that, the soul. We are directed to live by the Spirit not the soul or body. Living after the Spirit is where the settled more steady life comes from. This is where the renewing of our minds comes into play.
We have lived by being led by our body cravings and soulish thoughts and emotions for so long we have to learn how to walk after the Spirit. This is the whole reason I speak on these matters because I don’t hear too many others talking about it. But the Apostle Paul tells us “Walk after the Spirit and you won’t fulfill the lusts (desires) of the flesh.”
There were 31 men there tonight and for the most part all of them were glued to what I was saying. I know it was because I was telling them how to handle everyday life. Not just a “la la” life but everyday life filled with temptations designed by the enemy to lure us out and away from the Spirit. As long as we continue to live as though the outer man is the only one that matters we are in for trouble.
I guess I spoke for about 45 minutes and I ended by telling them the Christian life isn’t difficult it’s impossible. Jesus Christ is the only one who ever lived the Christian life and he is the only one who ever will. The great news is that God’s plan is to live in and through us by way of his Spirit. Then Christ will still be the only one living the Christian life but now it will be in and through you. I left them with a few more verses.
“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself up for me.” Galatians 2:20 (NASB)
“Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?” 1 Corinthians 3:16 (NASB)
Jesus said, “I am the vine, you are the branches…” John 15:5 (NASB)
As we were all putting up chairs getting ready for the guards to come and walk them down the hall to their cells a few of the guys came up and shook my hand. They said things like “Thanks for coming”, “I really needed that tonight”, and one guy asked for the churches address so he could write to me. I gave it to him, and I think he’s the one that walked away with my pencil too but you know what? It happens to all of us.
Just as I was walking out the door into the hallway one of the guys apologized to me because some of the others he said, “Only come in here to talk with someone from another cell.” I told him I know that happens but they also heard the truth and God can work with that later even if it doesn’t seem like they were paying attention. I am convinced that God will use what was said tonight for his glory no matter what it appears like on the surface. After all we are Spirit beings and things work a little differently in the Spirit.
Written by Louie