by Norman P. Grubb
The soul—spirit differentiation of Hebrews 4:12 is a key Scripture for living in the abiding rest the writer speaks of as our continued experience.
Hebrews 4:12For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-¬edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
In Hebrews 4:9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his. 11Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.
That rest, of course, means not indolence, but rest from the strain of the sense of incapacity in our daily activities to be replaced by the con¬sciousness of capacity (we’ve got what it takes, which results in far ful¬ler, not lesser, activities in God’s sufficiency.
This is obviously so when we know that we are He as us, in place of the lie of independent self. We may often be disturbed in our new freedom of living unless, as the Scripture tells us, we have seen clearly this difference between soul and spirit. Paul simply likens it to the difference in our bodies between joints and marrow. Marrow is the life of the bones. Marrow is likened to our inner spirit— union where our selves are joined to His $elf, and from which our new life flows. Joints are the means by which the marrow—life operates in outer form. They give flexibility. So our spirit joined to His Spirit, where our know¬ing who we are is the permanent flow, expresses itself by our outer forms of soul.
The soul, like the joints, gives outer emotional expression to our spirit—love, and mental reasonings and explanations give expression to our inner spirit—knowing. Thus, soul emotions and reasonings are of vital value to our Christ manifestation, but can equally be penetrated and assaulted by Satan on either feeling or thought levels. A great many of our unsolved problems find their answers as we con¬tinually differentiate between soul reactions and spirit—fixed—condition and replace the soul disturbances by recognition of our true being as He. Spirit is like the sea —— total and beyond disturbance. Soul is like the restless waves, but we are like the sea. So also is the difference in this verse between “thoughts” (variable soul level, good or bad) and “intents” (fixed spirit—life purpose).
Simple as This by Norman Grubb