Man consists of body, soul and spirit. Each is made of different substance and functions for different length of time.
The body is material and temporary. After the end of the physical life, it will dissolve into its constituent elements and never again be resurrected in physical form. Its function is to shield the soul and spirit during the earthly life. The body continually changes as cells die and are replaced, although its identity and appearance are basically preserved – except for changes due to growth and aging. This material part is not connected with the real person (the soul). When its function is accomplished, the body ceases to be a part of the person altogether.
The spirit part contains the functions of life and what controls the person’s behaviour. This includes the intellect, mental faculties, and reasoning powers. The spirit uses the organs of the material body to manifest these attributes. However the spirit faculties can function even when the brain or the physical organs of one or more of the five senses are impaired. This life principle does not die and continues living in the spirit world after dropping the envelope of flesh. The mind – the mental and intellectual faculties – also continues, now without the limitations that the physical body had placed on it. Memory and all the things forming an individual’s identity continue. The person in the spirit world can still conceive thoughts of material things and perceive the physical – even more perfectly than before.
So after death, humans don’t cease to live – they merely enter life on a different plane and in different form. They retain all the things of mind, conscience and soul that were theirs in the earthly life. The spirit body continues to house and protect the soul. Changes in the body also occur, but are not controlled by the same laws as those that control the changes in the physical body, but rather by laws which control the development of the soul.
The soul is the only part of man that was made in the image of its Creator and that may partake of God’s nature and substance and thus become immortal. Therefore the transformation from humanity to divinity occurs at the soul level. It is the soul’s choice to seek the Divine nature and be thereby transformed. A soul that doesn’t receive the Divine nature can only progress to a condition of purity and perfection that was possessed by the first parents before they disobeyed and fell.
By contrast, a soul that receives the Divine Love and nature through faith and prayer begins to change from the image of God to the Substance of God — which is how the transformation from humanity to divinity occurs. With time, the person’s nature becomes at one with the Father’s nature. At that point, the individual enters the Kingdom of God, starting at the First Celestial Sphere. With the soul transformation, the human mind becomes absorbed in the mind of the soul, which is now the mind or nature of the Father. After that, this mind of the soul enables the divine person (though not God) understand the things of God and continue progressing.
The soul is the essence of the human being. When the soul becomes transformed from humanity to divinity and enters God’s Kingdom, the individual becomes a divine angel. The transformation of the soul into divine substance only occurs as a result of the inflowing of the Divine Love which happens through the work of the Holy Spirit. The Love needs to be asked for and invited – it never forces itself on a person. The soul needs to be open to receive it, but no human by themselves can open their soul. This can only be accomplished by sincere heartfelt prayer and faith. In response to such prayer, the soul will be opened and work in such a way as to attract the Love. This soul preparation is done by the bright spirits of the Celestial Heavens whose duties include answering the prayers of the penitent. They influence the soul so as to turn the thoughts and aspirations to the Divine Love and its working. The Holy Spirit then brings this Love and causes its inflowing.
So prayer and sincere longing are the only gateway to “the sheepfold” of God’s Kingdom — the transformation from humanity to divinity. Moral deeds and good thoughts will not cause the inflowing of the Divine Love, but are the necessary steps to the purification of the soul in its natural love. However, good thoughts and deeds may help to turn the aspirations and perceptions of the soul to higher levels, which in turn may lead to faith and prayer for the Divine Love.
The Divine Love is totally separate and distinct from human love. Therefore, when the Love becomes a part of a person’s soul, they become a new creature in their transformation of humanity to divinity. There is a vast difference between a person with only the natural love and one with the Divine Love in that the latter literally becomes a part of divinity and not subject to death for evermore.
The Divine Love is available to all for the asking – irrespective of race, status, education, or anything else that distinguishes humans from one another. It is unlimited and by continuous prayer, more can always be received even by those who have reached high positions in the Celestial Heavens.
Reference: New Testament Revelations of Jesus of Nazareth
Photo: Kim Hattaway
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