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Podcast: Is it Your Soul or Your Spirit? (Soul Wholeness)

addiction holy spirit podcast soul wholeness Apr 14, 2021

We each have a body, a soul, and a spirit. It’s easy to confuse the soul and the spirit, but distinguishing each from the other is essential to walk in total health.

And here's how that applies to us... 

One of the most difficult aspects of navigating life is the constant tension between what we believe in theory to be true— and what we “know” in reality to be true.

For instance—

  • The Bible tells us we are complete in Christ (Galatians 4:19), but we often feel empty.
  • The Bible tells us we are forgiven and that God doesn’t even remember our past sins (see Hebrews 8:12), but we sometimes still feel guilty.
  • The Bible tells us God is doing something in us and that He will complete it (see Philippians 1:6), yet we often feel stuck— like we’re not really getting anywhere.

Oddly enough, the Bible actually embraces this tension. For instance, Hebrews 10:14 says, “... He has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified...”

Notice the two— seemingly opposite— realities:

  • The work is complete (“He has perfected…”)
  • We are in process (“…those who are being sanctified.”)

Though this sounds like one massive contradiction, it starts making sense once we understand there are multiple “layers” to us. As we learn to live from the right “part” of us, we find ourselves empowered to move through the lenses of the invisible truth rather than focusing on the visible reality staring us in the face. That, in turn, begins changing what we see.

I know. It sounds super-confusing.


We must recognize there is an “outer person” and an “inner person” to each of us. In some sense, we do. But, most of us don’t realize the Bible also teaches that we are comprised of a body, a soul, and a spirit— and that the soul and the spirit are two different entities. That is, the “inner person” can be subdivided even more.

We intuitively understand that in order to be healthy we must take care of our bodies. That’s a given. But we’ve also got to take care of both aspects of the “inner person.” In other words, health involves not only spiritual wholeness but also soul wholeness, because the body is different than the spirit and the spirit is different than the soul.

We often confuse “soul” and “spirit” as the same. They are different. Hebrews 4:12 says (emphasis added),

For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any double-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

According to this passage, the Word of God “divides us,” so we can effectively discern what is spirit and what is soul.

It’s easy to separate the “body” from the “spirit” or the “body” from the “soul.” But delineating the “soul” from the “spirit” sometimes proves a bit more difficult.

The word piercing in the Hebrews verse in the original Greek language is more akin to a precise surgical scalpel than a wieldy William Wallace-like battle sword bludgeoning someone. That is, sometimes it requires close and careful attention to discern which part of us is soul and which part is spirit. Reality is far more nuanced than “black and white.”


Let’s briefly discuss the differences between the spirit and the soul— because this concept is foundational for walking in soul health…

The Spirit is the part of us which immediately renews when we awaken to God’s grace. As well, it is the part of us that is “one” with Christ.

1 Corinthians 6:17 tells us, “Whoever is united with the Lord is one with Him in spirit” (NIV).

This spirit is the true “inner man” we want to live from. It is the key to pulling the unseen world into the visible world around us. The problem is that the spirit is often hidden beneath or behind the soul.

And, whereas the spirit is quiet, steady, and humble, the soul can become aggressive, outraged, and opinionated. Quickly. In other words, the soul is the internal part of us that’s still “in process.”

The soul is comprised of the following:

  • The mind, which includes our thoughts
  • The will, which includes our desires
  • The emotions, which includes our feelings

Are those not the parts of us that cause the most problems and create the most chaos?

In this talk we break it down and begin stepping towards total health…



Links for this talk =

The Soul Wholeness book + other info is available at 

The 5/7 online event info is at 

Join the Facebook group I mentioned, the #Hilltop Hangout, at  

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