Bible Study

"For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also." James 2:26 NKJV

The Relationship Between Spirit and Body
The body gets its life from the spirit!

Dr. Reve' M. Pete

"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

Apostle Paul teaches that man is spirit, soul and body. He writes,

"Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ." 1 Thessalonians 5:23 NKJV

"For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." Hebrews 4:12 NKJV

Genesis 1:26-27 teaches, God made man in His image and after His likeness. Also, when He made man, God made them male and female. John 4:24 teaches that God is a Spirit. Since God is a Spirit, and man was created in the image and likeness of God, man must also be a spirit being.

"Then God said, 'Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.' So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them." Genesis 1:26-27 NKJV

"God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth." John 4:24 NKJV

Hence, the Scriptures teach man is one being in three elements Ė spirit, soul, and body. However, this lesson will only focus on two of those elements Ė spirit and body.

Genesis 2:7 teaches there is a relationship between manís spirit and his body. The nature of that relationship is that the body gets its life from the spirit. That truth is often overlooked. God formed manís body from the dust. But that body did not take on life until God blew the spirit into the nostrils of manís body. Then and only then did man become a living soul. So, the body gets its life from the spirit.

The Nature of Physical Death

"For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also." James 2:26 NKJV

The most popular thought from James 2:26 is ďfaith without works is deadĒ. However there is another truth in that verse that should not be overlooked. The body cannot live without the spirit. Therefore this scripture teaches that physical death is the separation of the spirit from the body.

The Various Forms of Death

Since manís body gets its life from manís spirit, what would happen if manís spirit becomes weak? Answer: The body would die. However, there are various forms of death. James 2:26 refers to physical death. When we think of physical death, we think of an occasion for the services of an undertaker and a funeral. But physical death has various stages and forms.

Sickness and disease are often forerunners of physical death. Some saints get sick because their spirits are worn out and the spirit has a hard time sustaining the body. If manís spirit becomes so weak that it can no longer sustain the body, the spirit will then separate from the body Ė and the undertaker will have to be called.

Healing vs. Spiritual Edification

When one of the saints gets sick, our first instinct is to pray for that person according to James 5:14-15 and to lay hands on that individual according to Mark 16:18. This is good. It is what we should do. But sometimes when we follow through, the Holy Ghost may tell us that this individual needs rest. If that is the case, there is no need to keep praying for healing. That would be like pouring water into a bucket with a whole in it. What the person needs is rest.

What the Holy Ghost may be telling us is that the problem is not just with the personís body, but with that personís spirit. This is especially true if the person who is sick has been involved in ministry. Ministry activity draws on a personís spirit. After ministering to others, the person who ministered need time for their spirit to rest and be replenished. In such cases, healing will only go so far. Full recovery must come from a healthy spirit.

Food for Thought: How many saints have died prematurely because their spirits were worn out and couldnít sustain their bodies? How do saints maintain a healthy spirit? What is the solution?

Building a Healthy Spirit

"But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life." Jude 1:20-21 NKJV

Jude 1:20-21 teaches praying in the Holy Ghost builds up or edifies manís spirit. One way to pray in the Holy Ghost is to pray in tongues. Apostle Paul teaches that praying in tongues edifies or builds up the one doing the praying. When a personís spirit is weak, that individual does not need to be trying to edify the church. That individual needs to tend to their own personal needs by building up their own spirit.

"For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries." 1 Corinthians 14:2 NKJV

"He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church." 1 Corinthians 14:4 NKJV

Sometimes, emphasis is placed on receiving the Baptism of the Holy Ghost evidenced by speaking in tongues, but little to no emphasis is placed on praying in tongues. The ability to pray in tongues comes with the Baptism in the Holy Ghost. When a saint prays in an unknown tongue, no one understands what that individual is saying. No one needs to because the individual doing the speaking is talking directly to God. There is no need for anyone else to understand what it being said, because it is a private conversation between that individual and God. The individual doing the praying is not engaging in ministry activity such as the ministry gift of tongues.

The person who prays in an unknown tongue is building up their own spirit. Persons who minister to others can build themselves up and recover their own healthy and well being by praying in tongues. The ability to pray in an unknown tongue is an important gift from God for the purpose of self-edification.

Through Personal Edification God Gives Us the Word We Need

"Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God." Romans 8:26-27 NKJV

"This is my comfort in my affliction, For Your word has given me life." Psalm 119:50 NKJV

The Word of God is a source of wisdom and direction. Sometimes we do not know what we need from the Word of God. But the Holy Ghost knows. Through praying in tongues, the Holy Ghost is able to reveal to us the Scriptures we need to feed ourselves and build ourselves up through meditating on the Word of God.

The body gets it life from the spirit. If the spirit is worn out, praying in tongues and meditating on the Word of God will build up the spirit and restore health to the body.


Hayford, Jack W., ed. Spirit-Filled Life Bible. New King James Version. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1991.

Zodhaites, Spiros, ed. The Hebrew-Greek Key Study Bible. King James Version. Red Letter Edition. World Bible Publishers.



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