TED Conversations

This conversation is closed.

Is there such a thing as a soul, if so how is it defined?

Do people just cease to exist after they die? What happens to a person after death or before birth.

Topics: God life soul

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb
    Feb 5 2012: Hi Michael

    The bible says a lot about the soul. Probably a good place to start.

    John 4:24 (NIV)
    [24] God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.”

    Spirit & soul are both similar, non-material concepts. So God is a non-material being.

    Genesis 5:2 (NIV)
    When God created mankind, he made them in the likeness of God. [2] He created them male and female and blessed them. And he named them “Mankind” when they were created.

    We are created in the 'likeness' of God. As God is a spirit most folks understand this likeness to be within our spirit/soul.

    Genesis 2:7 (NIV)
    [7] Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.

    God gives us all life by breathing his spirit into us at conception/birth.

    2 Corinthians 5:5 (NIV)
    [5] Now the one who has fashioned us for this very purpose is God, who has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.

    The spirit we have at present is only a deposit.

    1 Thessalonians 4:17 (NIV)
    [17] After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.

    Our souls are immortal & will exist forever. Those who love God will be with Him, those who don't won't.
    Going back to the first scripture we must worship in" spirit & in truth". If we set our spiritual 'face' against God then our mind just won't 'get it'. This tends to be a problem for Atheists.

    This is by no means exhaustive, but gives a flavour of what the bible says about souls.

    • thumb
      Feb 6 2012: Um. I don't think so.
      Ecclesiastes 9:5
      For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.

      9:6 Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun.

      9:7 Go thy way, eat thy bread with joy, and drink thy wine with a merry heart; for God now accepteth thy works.

      9:8 Let thy garments be always white; and let thy head lack no ointment.

      9:9 Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest all the days of the life of thy vanity, which he hath given thee under the sun, all the days of thy vanity: for that is thy portion in this life, and in thy labour which thou takest under the sun.

      9:10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.

      The Bible's way of saying party now cause your gonna be dead. Isn't that a rap song???
      • thumb
        Feb 7 2012: Hi Linda.
        Ecclesiastes is what is known as 'Wisdom Literature' , which was a common style at that time. it is a bit tongue in cheek , or sarcastic if you like. It is Solomon's way of emphasising the futility of life on earth without god. The whole thing is pointless & meaningless, if all existence is 'under the sun'. It detracts nothing from what the bible says about the soul in other places.

        • thumb
          Feb 7 2012: Peter I have to laugh! When the Bible says stuff you agree with, it is law. When it says stuff you don' t like or agree with it is pointless and meaningless. If anybody understood party til you drop it was Solomon.

          I was really looking forward to your reply. Oh well.
        • W T 100+

          • 0
          Feb 13 2012: "and thus you make the word of God invalid by YOUR tradition...." Mark 7:13

          Peter, I'm sorry, Linda Taylor pointed out a basic Bible truth.

          Your reply is YOUR personal opinion. She quoted scripture, you refuted it with your beliefs.

          I hope you don't mind me stepping in to say this....Mary
      • thumb
        Feb 7 2012: Hi Linda.
        Glad you had a laugh. Sorry if I disappointed you. What did you think I would say? Each book is individual, but together they form a whole. You wouldn't take Song of Solomon as literal either, or Revelation for that matter, but they make perfect sense in context with the bible as a whole. Daniel & Revelation have to be read together to get the whole end time scenario in perspective, with a bit of Matthew, & Thessalonians, thrown in for good measure. Folks love to find two verses that appear to disagree, but it's never that simple. Worth the effort though.

        • thumb
          Feb 7 2012: Oh Peter, I do apologize if the laugh part was snarky. I was actually disappointed. I know scholars that will posit exactly the opposite. See that is the problem with fundamentalist. Somebody someplace will eventually say, this is truth, and this is meaningless and pointless. It's really the only way it works. The only thing that ever changes in my experience is picking and choosing what information belongs where.
      • thumb
        Feb 8 2012: Hi Linda,
        No worries; as you can imagine I take a lot worse on this site with my views.
        Our understanding of the bible is a work in progress, & it is up to individuals to decide where the truth lies. The water has been muddied over the years by many religious hierarchies using the bible as a pawn in their petty power struggles. At the end of the day though it is God's word to you & me, & we don't lose points for getting it wrong. Most of the important stuff is well enough understood & I find it awesome. You don't have to agree.

        • thumb
          Feb 9 2012: Peter
          "At the end of the day though it is God's word to you & me, & we don't lose points for getting it wrong" That has to be the best explanation ever. I think you are right. In a big picture kind of way. Because I think its between God and you and Bible or no, you don't loose points for getting it wrong.

      • Comment deleted

        • thumb
          Feb 13 2012: Ok Thomas. Sincere followers of Christ, which I assume Linda to be, don't lose points for genuine misunderstandings. No-one understands the whole bible. But you knew that, didn't you?
          Ps you should take something for that cough.
      • W T 100+

        • 0
        Feb 13 2012: Ecclesiastes 9:5-10....scriptural truth...thank you
    • Comment deleted

      • W T 100+

        • +1
        Feb 13 2012: " It obviously reveals different truths to different people, at different times, using the same Biblical passages"

        No, Thomas, it really doesn't.

        It might "obviously" seem that way, but it is not so.

        I'm not going to continue....TED is not the place for an honest consideration of scripture.
        • thumb
          Feb 13 2012: Hi Mary,

          History - recent and distant - clearly shows that it does.

          If you want to discuss it in more detail, e-mail me.
        • thumb
          Feb 13 2012: How, Mary can you possibly say that it's not true with so many battles fought with opposite parties claiming the right to fight to the same inerrant Bible.
          I’ve seen people extracting pure wisdom from that book as others came to stupidities from that same texts.
          It is the one that reflects on it that makes it into what it is.
      • W T 100+

        • +3
        Feb 13 2012: " It obviously reveals different truths to different people, at different times, using the same Biblical passages"

        Thomas and Frans....my problem is with the word "reveal". The Bible really and truly does not reveal different truths....it is we who "interpret" it different ways.

        And let me add, this is not the place to have a serious discussion on this subject.

        You can not see me, hear me, and I cannot open up a Bible and explain away....I'm sorry.

        I do thank you for taking an interest and replying to my sincere, well-intentioned comments.

        We are not all closed-minded fanatical followers of men. There are millions of us earth wide who will defend scriptural truths and make a concerted effort to live up to the godly principles found in scripture, even if this means suffering at the hands of riduculers. (not that I feel you have ridiculed me, on the contrary, I have the utmost respect for both of you and your good insights into many topics discussed here on TED)

        Be Well. I enjoy how you try to make Peter reason......I have also tried. I will continue to do so when my comments can be constructive, and not destructive or irreverant or misconstrued.

        Thank you.
      • W T 100+

        • 0
        Feb 13 2012: OK.....you win......."I don't know".......if what you said was funny or not......happy?

        I must admit that when I read your entry, an instantaneous smile came to my face
        and I envisioned Michael Jackson's video with the zombie's.....

        I guess I was the one who was trying to be hunorous in response to your entry.

        Still, Peter's view is very peculiar.....I don't know where he gets it. I have never
        heard such ideas before.

        What I do perceive is that he is sincere in his beliefs, as are you and Frans.

        Be Well....

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.