Is the human soul mortal or immortal?


Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

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05a00e36 4298 4314 84c7 d5f047bb0a9a Rotimi EWEDEMI Very keen Bible Researcher
In my opinion, the start of finding biblical answer to this very good question is to first understand what the term" soul" mean.

Do humans have a soul or do we have soul? 

Genesis 2:7 helps us to figure out the answer to the question: " And Jehovah God formeth the man -- dust from the ground, and breatheth into his nostrils breath of life, and the man becometh a living creature (Genesis 2:7 YLT)

"And Jehovah God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul" (Genesis 2:7 ASV)

"Then the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath or spirit of life, and man became a living being "(Genesis 2:7 AMP)

"And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being" (Genesis 2:7 NKJV).

From the above, God did not give man a soul; rather he made the man to be a living creature, or living being, or to be a living soul.

The original language- terms as used in the Scriptures show "soul" to be a person, an animal, or the life that a person or an animal enjoys. However the connotations that the English "soul" commonly carries in the minds of most persons are not in agreement with the meaning of the Hebrew and Greek words as used by the inspired Bible writers.

If we accept the above biblical viewpoint, it becomes clear what the answer to the main question is. And, interestingly, the Bible gives a clear and simple answer, as follow:

"Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die (Ezekiel 18:4 KJV)

"For everyone belongs to me, the parent as well as the child – both alike belong to me. The one who sins is the one who will die" (Ezekiel 18:4 NIV)


The soul is NOT immortal! Soul can die.!

The interesting fact to note is that the meanings popularly attached to the English word "soul" stem primarily from ancient Greek philosophy, actually ancient pagan religious thought. 

That the soul can be destroyed or killed out of existence is confirmed from the words of Jesus as follows: 
Matthew 10:28 "And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell".

September 15 2014 15 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Al Mari Private practice as a cardiovascular & thoracic surgeon
Analysis is critical in understanding this concept of the English word "soul" (nephesh in Hebrew). To do this, one has to go back to Genesis and take us through the step-by-step mechanism in the formation/creation of man.

"And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath (nhshamah) of life (chay); and man became a living soul." (Gen. 2:7).

As the preceding verse connotes, when man was formed "from dust", what was formed was the "lifeless" physical body, viz., brain, heart and other parts of the body. This "lifeless body" became alive only when God "breathed into his nostrils the breath of life". Then and only then did man become a"living soul". Meaning, body+breath of life = "living soul".

This tells us that a living being (human) has 2 components, viz., body and breath of life before classified as a "living soul". In Biblical parlance, one can deduce to a certain extent that the English word "soul" in the O.T. refers to a "living being/human".

Proof of these separate components can be derived from the fact that each one can be destroyed or killed, as in:

Matthew 10:28 "And fear not them which kill the body (soma), but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." Notice that "breath of life"(nhshamah chay in O.T.) is translated in English (New Testament) as "soul" or "psyche" in Greek. 

From the above statements, it is clear that "soul/breath of life/psyche" are not "immortal, it can be killed. Nevertheless, when we die and "thoughts perish", the body is buried and subsequently rots, but the "breath of life/soul/psyche" at time of death goes back to the Creator, as in:

Ps.146:4 "His breath (ruwach) goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish." (No longer thinking when dead; no consciousness)

Ezekiel 18:4 "...the soul that sinneth, it shall die". (soul is not immortal)

Eccl.12:7 "Then shall the dust (the body) return to the earth as it was: and the spirit (ruwach or breath) shall return unto God who gave it."

Notice that while, at death, the "soul" can be killed or destroyed, temporarily it goes back to the Creator. From there, it will be given a "spirit-composed body" at time of 1st resurrection and together with Jesus comes back at the Millenium on earth. And we, who are alive on this resurrection day will change "in a twinkling of an eye" (ICor. 15:52) from mortal to immortal (I Cor. 15:53-54), and meet Jesus and the rest of the "firstfruits" "in the air" (I Thes.4:17) to come down to earth and to the temple in Jerusalem. From here, Millenium starts and the "kingdom of God" like a "stone" (Dan.2:35) will subsequently occupy the whole earth.

I did not understand this concept until I learned about computer technology. The parallel is: The spirit of man is much like a "thumb-drive" or USB flash-drive that has all the "memory" or information/data that one can download into. The whole computer (like our body) can be destroyed or die/rot, but the "breath of life/spirit", (the memory and history of our unique life) that goes to the Creator, can then be "inputted" into a "new computer" or "spirit-composed body".

By the way, the "spirit of man" is different from the "Spirit of God" that Jesus died for and resurrected for us to receive ("to in-dwell in us") by grace and out of love by the Father.

For the original words: http://www.keralabrethren.net/boardkb/view.asp?id=2181&forum=General

January 16 2015 25 responses Vote Up Share Report

1515012380789778228527 RICK PORTER Chaplain [ Truckers Chapel ]-- Undeserving Child of God
The terms born again and second death, give us a clue to this question. Humans souls are imparted at conception, body, mind, spirit, soul. This is the language used to describe the complete composition of life. Thus if the soul must be born again or born from above to inherit eternal life{John 3:1-7}then before it is not immortal. Also if one sent to hell is said to perish and experience the second death[Rev. 20:14} then the soul there is punished and then perishes or dies.

December 24 2015 3 responses Vote Up Share Report

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