Mrs. Maryann Bilton from Yorkshire, England was my Elementary school principal in Murrayville, BC from 1933-1937, and my teacher in Grade 7 & 8. She delighted in giving us Latin proverbs and maxims to encourage us to do our best. The above title in Latin is, “mens sana en corpore sano.”
From this we should understand that the two impinge upon one another. If we look after our bodies with proper diet, exercise, rest etc., then our mind is sharper. Conversely when we look after our mind and pay attention to read good wholesome things, and talk along the same line, -- then our body also profits. Today we call it “psycho-somatic” medicine.
But the above philosophy or psychology is viewing man as a “dichotomy,” a person of but two parts. This accords well with Behavioral Psychology and Evolution, but does not accord at all with God’s thinking in the Bible. After all, God is the Creator of all things, and who should understand us better that the One who made us?
The Spirit of our Creator speaks these words through the apostle Paul, “May the God of shalom make you completely holy – may your entire spirit, soul and body be kept blameless for the coming of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah” (1 Thessalonians 5:23). God is called the Father of the spirits of all men. Man is essentially spirit, has a soul and lives in a body. God is also a spirit, and has made us in His image. Man is therefore a Trichotomy, not a dichotomy.
When man ever since Adam is born into this world, his spirit is dead unto God. He is dead in trespasses and sins. When Adam sinned, his spirit died to relationship with God, and his progeny has inherited his fall. But when man receives the birth from above, his spirit is resurrected, and immediately communion with God is restored.
At this point the mind now must be renewed and brought up to the level of the recreated spirit. (Romans 12:2). This is both immediate and progressive. One man upon receiving this experience of the new birth was asked to give his testimony. He said, “I feel damn good!” His mind was not yet renewed. Three weeks later when asked to give his testimony he said, “I thank God for saving me and giving me His Holy Spirit on the basis of Jesus Atoning work!”
Perhaps the following will help you to see the difference between soul and spirit. In the universe we find 5 Kingdoms. The Plant kingdom reaches down into the Mineral kingdom and by osmosis converts mineral life into plant life. Then the cow from the Animal kingdom reaches down and eats grass and converts it into the animal kingdom. Man then eats hamburger and drinks milk, and converts the animal kingdom into the Human kingdom. Finally God reaches down on the basis of the Atoning work of Jesus at Calvary, and converts man into the Kingdom of God.
Now separate the Animal kingdom from the kingdom of man, and you will see the unique gift of God to man, his spirit. Animals do not worship God – just look at the adoring eyes of a dog as he is with his master. But God has made man for Himself, and he is restless until he finds his rest in God (St. Augustine). Until man experiences the new birth he is not much better than the animals. But once his spirit is alive unto God – what a difference there is between man and animal or bird life.
Notice: it is the higher kingdom in each case which initiates conversion unto a higher level. Unless God enlightens the eyes of man and opens the door of the Outer Court of the Tabernacle, he cannot see the Kingdom of God. He must be born from above by the grace of God to enter the Kingdom of God (John 3:3; 5). Then He can see Jesus as His Savior at the Brazen altar, and the necessity of baptism and sanctification through the laver. It is here that man becomes an evangelical Christian.
But unless God again enlightens man in a higher level to see through the door of the Holy Place, he cannot understand the filling or baptism of the Holy Spirit. He will not understand the 7 spirits of God at the Menorah, nor the 9 gifts of the Spirit and the 9-fold fruit of the Spirit. He will not know how by the help of the Holy Spirit to feed on Christ at the Table of the Bread of God’s presence, nor how to worship in spirit and in truth at the Altar of Incense. When God opens his eyes and man opens this second stage of the 60-fold believer, he then understands the Feast of Pentecost or Shavuot, and the testimony of Charismatic and Pentecostal believers.
But don’t stop here! Ask God to open your eyes so you can see through the riven veil into the Holy of Holies. Like David enter in to sit before the Ark of the Covenant, and worship God as one possessed of Him. Here, having passed through the Feast of Passover with justification by faith, and then the Feast of Pentecost in the Holy Place – now enter into the Feast of Tabernacles, the GREAT feast of the Jews. Here be possessed by the Holy Spirit and lose yourself in Him. Here understand full intimacy with Jesus in the spirit and be unto Him as He was unto the Father.
Here understand chapter 5 and 32 of “Rees Howells, Intercessor,” by Norman P. Grubb, the autobiography of Madam Guyon, the life of Amy Carmichael, J. Hudson Taylor, George Muller, Andrew Murray and many others.
Don’t sell yourself short at any time of the initial states. Press on into the Holiest of all, and there find the satisfaction of St. Augustine. It is only when God opens your eyes, and with great hungering and thirsting you press into the Holies of all, that you will find true rest unto your soul.
One other word needs to be said. God speaks to us through His word. Rees Howells spent two hours a day letting God speak to him through the written Word. Then he waited on God in prayer, not just speaking to God, but letting God now speak to him by the word of the Spirit, the Rhema word.
The written word in Greek is “Logos;” in Hebrew, “Davar.” The living word of the Spirit in Greek is “Rhema;” in Hebrew, “Amar.” Learn from these saints who have gone before us how to be with God on His throne in heaven by knowing and walking in the written word – but just as importantly, know God on the throne of your heart and hear the 7-fold Spirit speaking and leading you from this place of intimacy.
Remember the word spoken to Madam Guyon by the Franciscan monk. He showed her why her life was a failure. “It is, madam, because you seek without what is within; accustom yourself to seek God in your heart, and you will there find Him.”
God is no respecter of persons – and what saints of yore have experienced, you too can enjoy in God today. The Kingdom of Heaven is within you!
It was the above word that led Madam Guyon into an interior relationship with God so deep and real, that men like Archbishop Fenelon came from across Europe for her to mentor them. They knew she had found the secret of intimacy and overcoming life in God.
St. John of the Cross thoroughly understood this same secret shortly after the days of Christopher Columbus. He taught how to purge oneself of the 7 capital sins of the flesh under the title, “The Ascent to Mt. Carmel.” Then under its sequel, “The Dark Night of the Soul,” he led believers into the second stage of purging their spirit of these same 7 capital sins. Finally in his song of songs, he showed how to enter into the Holy of Holies, and experience union and communion with the Beloved of our souls. It is a 3-fold path, paralleling the teaching of the Tabernacle of Moses. Notice how truth so often comes in a 3-fold manner. Too many believers stop at stage one – and even too many at stage two! No, don’t rob yourself of the blessing of realizing the overcoming life in this life. Press on for all that God has for you. The Feast of Pentecost is not the acme and final goal, but the Feast of Tabernacles. There is the potential of an experience in this today, not just tomorrow. Don’t short-change yourself by settling for either step one or two. Possess and be possessed by all of God.
E. Stanley Jones saw this same truth in his day. On the following page, I am enclosing one of his readings. It concerns the possibility of overcoming through the Holy Spirit those deep problems that lie in our subconscious.
Have you ever said, “I can’t understand whatever made me do that?” Well, there is a hidden part of us that is not subject to our full control. But when we let the Holy Spirit loose in our lives, He is able to tame all the wild animals within us. Try Him! Invite Him in to take full charge. Turn every compartment of your life over to Him. He understands you, and He is able to do within you abundantly above all you can ask or think according to His power that works in you! J.A.W.
Taken from “Abundant Living,” p. 15
THE HOLY SPIRIT WORKS IN THE SUBCONSCIOUS
John 14:25-26; 15:26; 16:7-14
We come now to the question: Can the whole nature be changed – conscious and subconscious? If so, how? The answer is that Christianity provides for this deeper cleansing in its teaching and provision for receiving of the Holy Spirit. The area of the work of the Holy Spirit is largely, though not entirely, in the realm of the subconscious. There the Holy Spirit works – purifying, redirecting, and dedicating age-long driving instincts. The wild horses of nature roaming in all directions are tamed and harnessed to the purposes of the Kingdom. The Holy Spirit is tamer and redeemer, for only He can work at those depths. “For the Spirit fathoms everything, even the depths of God” (1 Corinthians 2:10, Moffatt) – and man. But the Holy Spirit not only fathoms the depths of man; He refashions the depths of man and unifies man at the center, so that the conscious and the subconscious speak the same language, understand each other, drive for the same goals, and own a common Lord.
But here is where the Christian Church is weakest. It believes in and teaches the Holy spirit – partly. The disciples were at this stage when Jesus said to them: “He [the Holy Spirit] remains with you and will be within you.” (John 14:17, Moffatt.) The Holy Spirit was with them, but not within them. The same is true today. Most Christians know the Holy Spirit is with them – He disturbs them by momentary touches, by flashes of nearness, by illuminations and insights, by saving here and saving there. But all this is “with,” and not “within.” He goads us rather than guides us, illuminates rather than invigorates, prods us into activity rather than penetrates all activities – it is from without in, instead of from within out. The capital and government is on the outside, rather than on the inside. The sense of outsideness will persist in religion until we enter into what the disciples entered into at Pentecost. There they passed over from the “with” stage to the “within” stage. Their religion was no longer a prodding, but a penetration; no longer a restriction, but a release.
O Spirit of God, I, too, long for this withinness – I would be every whit whole. I would have the seat of Thy authority within me. For I cannot conceive that Thou has come so far in Thy redemption and wilt not come the full way. Thou wilt not stop on the threshold – Thou wilt move within. Come, Spirit, come – within, within, entirely within. Amen