Summary: What is the Soul, and what does it do? This message looks at the creation of man and how the soul relates to us and our salvation.
Opening Remarks and Introduction
Tonight, we start a new series at Concordia called Soul Keeping. What is a soul? The word SOUL may be one of the most over-used and under-defined terms in our language. Let me show you why I say that. See if you can complete these:
1. If you have trouble making a decision, you might be told to do some soul _________ (searching)
2. Single people may look for a partner who is their soul ___________ (mate).
3. You can eat soul ____ (food).
4. You can listen to soul _____ (music).
5. You can even do spin classes called soul ____ (cycle)
Now, with all of that, what did you learn about the definition of the soul?
We’re going to start the conversation of Soul Keeping by taking a look at what a soul is through:
- The Creation of Man
- The Fall of Creation
- A Savior of Our Soul
1. The Creation of Man
Let’s start with the creation story. God created the world and everything in it. He created the ground, the oceans, the plants and animals. He created creatures in the sea, on the land, and the birds of the air. And after He completed the task, He blessed them saying “be fruitful and multiply on the earth.” (Genesis 1:22, ESV)
With the animals, there was no relationship established between God and them. Animals and plants don’t talk with God. A tree doesn’t ask God to provide more rain. Animals and plants are limited with how they interact with God.
Next, God created man, but man’s creation was a bit different. Genesis 2:7 records the event.
“Then the LORD God formed the man out of the dust from the ground and breathed the breath of life into his nostrils, and the man became a living being.” (Genesis 2:7, CSB)
God breathed the BREATH OF LIFE. This breath of life was not merely a boost of oxygen. It wasn’t a version of CPR to get the lungs and heart going. This was an intimate relationship between creator and creation as God approached Adam’s body, and breathed into the nostrils of the newly formed man.
I image that closeness of the breathing was probably like a loving embrace as God brought to life the creation that He loved so dearly. There was something different with the creation of man. There was a closeness here that didn’t occur elsewhere. This was God imparting a soul into man.
Only man has a soul, and that makes him quite unique. God has a different plan for us. So He created us with a soul in addition to our body. He created us without flaw. A perfect creation of a perfect body, with a perfect soul.
Where the animals were let to their own devices, God cared more closely for man. God created the Garden of Eden, and put trees to feed Adam. To keep the garden tended, He established rivers to flow through it. God didn’t just create Adam. He made Adam’s home too, and that home was a place for God to build a relationship with Adam.
Part of that relationship included the JOBS he was given to do. One of those jobs was the task to name all of the animals as God brought each one to see what Adam would call them. Think about that for a moment, God was a partner in Adam’s work by bringing him the animals. God worked with Adam in a very personal way. As part of that job, Adam and God talked. It was Adam’s soul that made the conversation possible.
In this way, God established a relationship with the most unique of His creations. That relationship included meeting new needs. Adam needed a companion, and God created Eve too.
The soul is that part of us that lets us reach out to God and talk with Him. It allows us the means to connect to our creator and build a father-child relationship. It’s that part of us that allows us to listen and hear what God has to say and respond. It’s the essence of who we are, and links us back to God.
Out of all creation, only man was personally given God’s BREATH OF LIFE. Only man received a soul as part of his creation. Only man was able to talk directly with the creator, and listen to what God had to say. God created man differently, because He wanted to treat us in a very special way.
That’s how it was in the beginning. A perfect man in a perfect garden, talking with God, and having every need fulfilled directly by the creator. But that didn’t last long.
2. The Fall of Creation
Soon, sin entered the world, and everything changed. In the Garden, the serpent deceived Eve by telling her that God was a liar. Eve was convinced that she could be ‘like God’ and she was led to ignore God’s command. She gave into temptation and ate the forbidden fruit.