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Nature of the Soul

Self Government

Plato says that it is better for everyone to be governed by the divine and intelligent within himself and if that failing then from without. The goal of control of children is to not setting them free until there is established an internal constitutional government within them as guardian and ruler of the child. 818 rep.

MESSAGE FROM PLATO AND JESUS

Jesus “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him?” Luke 11:13

Plato when describing forces operating within the soul offers a symbolic picture of multifarious headed beast like Chimera or Scylla or Cerberus. He describes the multi -headed beast as tame and wild beasts united with the inner man clothing the whole with an outer form of a man. Man may appear simply as man but within his soul are forces that pull him in various directions. Plato says that if a man is unjust, he makes strong the multi-headed beast thereby starving the inner man and being made feeble, the outer man is enslaved by the multi-head beast, The soul of man is then governed, directed, and pulled about by the viciousness of the various heads of the beast. However, Plato also says that the man who knows that justice is more profitable that injustice and affirms this by his actions, he will gain supremacy over the entire man even taking control of the multi-headed beast. The just man is enslaved only to the best man within himself and governed by the divine.

We have a glimpse of this inner battle for the soul being waged in Genesis 4:5-7, “Cain was very angry, and the expression on his face fell. Yahweh said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why has the expression of your face fallen? If you do well, won’t it be lifted up? If you don’t do well, sin crouches at the door. Its desire is for you, but you are to rule over it.” We can see that the Cerberus or sin crouching at the door of Cain’s soul is working though Cain’s emotions in order to gain dominance over Cain, and from the record sin won causing Cain to murdered his brother Abel. Cain’s soul became vicious Cerberus.

This inner battle described by Plato is the picture of the spiritual conflict waging within every person as described in the New Testament. In the NT, the multi-headed beast is called Satan, the devil, or the Evil One who seeks to pull the soul into emotional turmoil in order to drive the soul into transgressions. The Holy Spirit, the divine governing principle, works to overcome the thousand evils of the devil or according to Plato, the various heads of Cerberus. The Holy Spirit does this by leading the soul toward truth, toward sensibility of the divine, toward the discovery of right and wrong which is the foundation of justice and for good works.

In man, there is an internal enemy, a Cerberus, seeking to fuse ignorance with passion turning the human soul into a vicious beast filled with great transgressions or in NT terminology turning man into a criminal, a demon. a devil. Salvation from this horrible fate comes from the Holy Spirit allowing man to overcome his internal enemy, his Cerberus, his Devil, by the removal of the darkness of ignorance by the Light of Truth that restores man to the human race who is proclaimed a son of God. Ask the Father of Lights for the Holy Spirit and labor daily to place your eyes upon the good and holy pulls of the God’s Word that you may be pulled away from the hell where demons live – the bars, the homes of ignoble speech, and the barren places of the soul – and be placed with the congregation of Saints who reside with the Father.

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Plato says the ignorance resulting in folly is due to the emptiness of soul by lack of habits toward understanding reality and knowledge. 812

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1 Timothy 6:10 “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some have been led astray from the faith in their greed, and have pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”

John of Salisbury “The appetite for wealth excludes wisdom and drives off virtue.” 99

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Hooker says that tribulation and anguish belongs to every soul that does evil.” 85

Hooker says that man’s observation of his nature is righteousness, his transgression sin. 85

Jesus “This is eternal life, that they should know you, the only true God, and him whom you sent, Jesus Christ.” Jn 17.3

Socrates says studies are useful that tend to focus the soul on reality which is essence versus genesis and imperative to behold. Knowledge is something that always is not something that comes into being and passes away.  Such studied would draw the soul to truth and is productive of a philosophical mindset which directed upward and not earthward. 759.rep

Virtues

John of Salisbury says that the four virtues – courage, prudence, temperance, and justice – flow out of the main channels of the fountain of honor, propagating in streams of goodness. Perhaps these are the four rivers the depart from God’s paradise irrigating the earth to bear desirable fruit in the future. 62 

Enemies

Jesus “But I tell you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who mistreat you and persecute you.” Matt.5:44

Cicero “The right course, moreover, even in our differences with our bitterest enemies, is to maintain our dignity and to repress our anger, even though we are treated outrageously. For what is done under some degree of excitement cannot be done with perfect self-respect or the approval of those who witness it.” 137

 

Reason

Hooker says that goodness is seen by the eye of understanding, and the light of the eye is reason.” 71

 

Likeness

Paul “…and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new man, who in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of truth. ” Eph4:23-24

Note: Paul gives valuable insight to the nature of soul. First, the mind is spirit. And the spirit of mind had been made in righteousness and is holy. God claims to be spirit, righteous, and holy. So when God says in Genesis 1.27 man was made in his image and likeness. The ‘likeness” refers to man’s spirit of mind. The work of the atonement is to restore man to the natural inclinations of his mind, to take him from  madness to sanity, from injustice to justice, according to God’s nature.”

Hooker “Man in perfection of nature being made according to the likeness of his maker….” 70.2

Divine Affliction

Paul “Because, knowing God, they didn’t glorify him as God, neither gave thanks, but became vain in their reasoning, and their senseless heart was darkened.” Rom.1:21

Achilles says the Zeus has robbed Agamemnon of good sense. 150

Image and Likeness

Genesis 1:27 “God created man in his own image. In God’s image he created him; male and female he created them.”

Cicero “The first principle is that which is found in the connection subsisting between all the members of the human race; and that bond of connection is reason and speech, which by the processes of teaching and learning, of communicating, discussing, and reasoning associate men together and unite them in a sort of natural fraternity. In no other particular are we farther removed from the nature of beasts; for we admit that they may have courage (horses and lions, for example); but we do not admit that they have justice, equity, and goodness…”  50.xvi

Achilles calls Odysseus god-derived. 148 Illiad

Homer “godlike Achilles” ill.153

Virtue

Cicero “But whereas I said a moment ago that we have to follow in the steps of our fathers, let me make the following exceptions: first, we need not imitate their faults; second, we need not imitate certain other things, if our nature does not permit such imitation; for example, the son of the elder Africanus (that Scipio who adopted the Younger Africanus, the son of Paulus) could not on account of ill-health be so much like his father as Africanus had been like his. If, then, a man is unable to conduct cases at the bar or to hold the people spell-bound with his eloquence or to conduct wars, still it will be his duty to practise these other virtues, which are within his reach — justice, good_faith, generosity, temperance, self-control — that his deficiencies in other respects may be less conspicuous. The noblest heritage, however, that is handed down from fathers to children, and one more precious than any inherited wealth, is a reputation for virtue and worthy deeds; and to dishonour this must be branded as a sin and a shame.” de.off.121

Cicero “We shall, therefore, work to the best advantage in that role to which we are best adapted. But if at some time stress of circumstances shall thrust us aside into some uncongenial part, we must devote to it all possible thought, practice, and pains, that we may be able to perform it, if not with propriety, at least with as little impropriety as possible; and we need not strive so hard to attain to points of excellence that have not been vouchsafed to us as to correct the faults we have.” de.off.114

Education

Jesus “…every good tree produces good fruit; but the corrupt tree produces evil fruit. A good tree can’t produce evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree produce good fruit. Matt.7:17-18

Socrates says that great souls in evil soil grow more wicked than less endowed souls in the same soil. 728

Note: Socrates is speaking of the product of education. Education being the soil that enriches the soul, every person should be made sensible to the dangers of allowing education to be corrupted. If we apply Jesus’ analogy an evil tree or corrupted education cannot produce good souls just as a good tree  or good education cannot produce evil souls; however, Socrates intensifies this by saying a soul with great abilities raised in corrupted soil that is corrupted education will grow greater in evil than those less endowed.

Divine Discipline

Hebrews 12: 11 “All chastening seems for the present to be not joyous but grievous; yet afterward it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been exercised thereby.”

Socrates says that those who gain intelligence and truth, attain to knowledge, and truly live and grow only then find the end from the travail of the soul but not before. 726

Know Thyself

Paul “For I say, through the grace that was given me, to every man who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think reasonably, as God has apportioned to each person a measure of faith.” Rom.12:3

Cicero “ Everyone, therefore, should make a proper estimate of his own natural ability and show himself a critical judge of his own merits and defects.” de.off.114

Gifts

Paul “For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.” Rom.11:29

Cicero “Everybody, however, must resolutely hold fast to his own peculiar gifts, in so far as they are peculiar only and not vicious, in order that propriety, which is the object of our inquiry, may the more easily be secured. For we must so act as not to oppose the universal laws of human nature, but, while safeguarding those, to follow the bent of our own particular nature; and even if other careers should be better and nobler, we may still regulate our own pursuits by the standard of our own nature. For it is of no avail to fight against one’s nature or to aim at what is impossible of attainment. From this fact the nature of that propriety defined above comes into still clearer light, inasmuch as nothing is proper that “goes against the grain,” as the saying is — that is, if it is in direct opposition to one’s natural genius.” de.off.110

Pride

 Proverbs 16:18-19 “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. It is better to be of a lowly spirit with the poor, than to divide the plunder with the proud.”

Cicero “The greater our prosperity, moreover, the more should we seek the counsel of friends, and the greater the heed that should be given to their advice. Under such circumstances also we must beware of lending an ear to sycophants or allowing them to impose upon us with their flattery. For it is easy in this way to deceive ourselves, since we thus come to think ourselves duly entitled to praise; and to this frame of mind a thousand delusions may be traced, when men are puffed up with conceit and expose themselves to ignominy and ridicule by committing the most egregious blunders.” 91.deoff.

Contentment

Paul “Not that I speak in respect to lack, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content in it. I know how to be humbled, and I know also how to abound. In everything and in all things I have learned the secret both to be filled and to be hungry, both to abound and to be in need.” Phil. 4:11-12

Cicero “Again, when fortune smiles and the stream of life flows according to our wishes, let us diligently avoid all arrogance, haughtiness, and pride. For it is as much a sign of weakness to give way to one’s feelings in success as it is in adversity.” 90

In God

Acts 17:28 ‘For in Him we live, and move, and have our being.’

Hooker says nature works with designs and patterns coming from the bosom of the Highest, and upon nature’s discovering of these drafts, she fixes here eye upon them in imitation of God’s will.  62

Note: Ho0ker makes this statement for involuntary objects, but I would extend them to voluntary objects such as the soul. Specific patterns manifest themselves children versus older children versus adults. The study of these patterns is to study God’s universal designs  in nature.

Tribunal

Grotius “For God has given conscience a judicial power to be the sovereign guide of human actions…” 215

Dead Soul

Jesus said, “Follow me!” But a certain man said, “Lord, allow me first to go and bury my father.” But Jesus said to him, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead, but you go and announce God’s Kingdom.”  Luke 9:59-60

Jesus “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitened tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but inwardly are full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.” Matt.23:27-28

John of Salisbury writes when one is moved by the stimulus of deep feeling, one cannot dissimulate, but will be inspired to express one’s passions; what is joyful brings exaltation; what is hopeful will induce cheerfulness; what is fearful will yield anxiety. He who is not stirred by the loss of his own material goods is not very human, neither is one in a human condition who is not moved by the loss of that which belongs to another.

Note: Jesus speaks of the dead who are yet alive. He is speaking of those severed from the life of God’s spirit. The Spirit of God give proper feelings to life.  The feeling of love, peace, family, forgiveness and more. God’s spirit is life, but those who are cut off from God’s spirit by iniquity are cut off from life. As Jesus said they are dead man bone in white washed tombs. Although, they have a pretense to life or pretend at life, they are numb by their wickedness. Being numb and misguided in life is a curse , and why the curse is worthy of examination; to end such a curse is the road of repentance and prayer for God’s Spirit to restore the soul.

 

Dignity

John of Salisbury writes that vice of drink leading to inebriation causes a fog across the eyes and the disappearance of truth. Virtue is cut down at the root and vice yield a crop leading to miserable misfortune. In this way the image of the Creator is distorted into character of a beast and man degenerates from his condition of dignity.  9

Self Mastery

Paul “For we were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. But when the kindness of God our Savior and his love toward mankind appeared, not by works of righteousness which we did ourselves, but according to his mercy, he saved us through the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit..” Titus 3:3-5

Socrates says that reason and and the principle of high spirit its ally, both having been taught to perform is proper work will rule over the appetitive part which is the mass of the soul. Reason and its ally will keep watch upon the appetite which by being filled and infected with pleasure should wax big and strong and fail to keep to its own work and undertake to enslave and rule over the classes which it is not fitting that it should and so overturn the entire life of all.” 684

Genesis 4:6-7 “Yahweh said to Cain, “Why are you angry? Why has the expression of your face fallen? If you do well, won’t it be lifted up? If you don’t do well, sin crouches at the door. Its desire is for you, but you are to rule over it.”

Cicero “Our mental operations, moreover, are of two kinds: some have to do with thought, others with impulse. Thought is occupied chiefly with the discovery of truth; impulse prompts to action. We must be careful, therefore, to employ our thoughts on themes as elevating as possible and to keep our impulses under the control of reason.” de.off.132

Socrates says that justice is self mastery within; man cannot allow the principles of his soul to labor, interfere, and meddle with each others work;  reason, high spirit, and appetitive must be harmonized, and the soul having attained to self-mastery and beautiful order within, having linked and bound all three together is made a unit, self-controlled and in unison. Socrates says justice is when reason supported by high spirit rules over the appetitive, but when these principles of the soul are in a civil war, then the soul existing in injustice will display licentiousness, cowardice, brutish ignorance and turpitude.  686

Cicero “But as we have a most excellent rule for every phase of life, to avoid exhibitions of passion, that is, mental excitement that is excessive and uncontrolled by reason.”  136

Spirit

Jesus “It is the spirit who gives life. The flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and are life.”  Jn 6:63

John of Salisbury say that the body is animated by the soul, and the soul is animated by God.” 14

Note: The body is inert, without life, without animation. It is the soul that gives life and expression to the body. The soul is the person and this person is directed and animated by a spirit in thoughts and feelings. However, the Bible speaks of two spirits: the spirit of God and the spirit of the Evil One. Homosexuality,, adultery, drunkenness, addictions, and other evils are the expression of spirit, thought and feeling, of the Evil One. The Evil One exists within the soul, and in consequence, the soul is expressing its nature, its spirit, within the body. To remove this spirit, its thoughts and feelings, you need to call on the name of the Lord for a new spirit with His thoughts and His feelings. This is an act of saving grace, for life is in God’s spirit, while death is predestined for those possessed of the evil spirit. Call on the name of the Lord and in your sincerity God will deliver you.

Note: When Jesus says the “words” that he spoke is spirit and life? Jesus was making a connection to things he was saying as coming from God’s spirit. Everything external emanates from spirit. Holy things from God’s spirit, unholy things form the Evil’s spirit. Words and actions of man come from spirit, but which spirit? Jesus was speaking from God’s spirit and therefore Jesus was speaking words of life to his hearers, but those who speak from an Evil spirit speak death to their hearers.

 

Discipleship

Paul “Every Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”  2 Tim 3:16-17

Paul “For the word of God is living and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and is able to discern the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”  Heb.4.12

Cicero “It may sometimes happen that there is need of administering reproof. On such occasions we should, perhaps, use a more emphatic tone of voice and more forcible and severe terms and even assume an appearance of being angry. But we shall have recourse to this sort of reproof, as we do to cautery and amputation, rarely and reluctantly — never at all, unless it is unavoidable and no other remedy can be discovered. We may seem angry, but anger should be far from us; for in anger nothing right or judicious {137}can be done. In most cases, we may apply a mild reproof, so combined, however, with earnestness, that, while severity is shown, offensive language is avoided. Nay more; we must show clearly that even that very harsh.” 136/137

Gift of the Holy Spirit

John “But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and will remind you of all that I said to you.” John 14:26

Socrates says a man’s high spirit preserves during a time of pain and pleasure the rule given by reason as to what is to be feared or not to be feared.” 684

Note: If reason is the spark of divinity, this divinity comes in the Father’s name, and it is the work of the Holy Spirit to strengthen the message of reason in times of temptation and turmoil. We know that the Holy Spirit was delivered at the time of Pentecost, but we also know that God’s spirit was given to his messengers such the Prophets and Kings of Israel, and even Balaam received the spirit.

Mis-information

John “Beloved, don’t believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” 1 John1:1

Soul – Actions

Sidney:“What ever moral power is from God, the exercises of that power, and the acts thereof, must be from God, and so these acts must be morally good and just; for if the moral power be of God, as the author, so must the acts be. Now, the acts of a tyrannical power are acts of sinful injustice and oppression, and cannot be from God.” Lex 102

Note: If the action of the soul is just that action is from God, but if the action of the soul is unjust then that action which is sin is not from God, and if the act is not from God then its from another source.

Soul – Desire

Jesus “It is the spirit who gives life. The flesh profits nothing….”John 6:63

Socrates says if the desire of the soul is to thirst for a drink, this desire is compounded by “good,” for example,  in a good drink.  These two desires in the soul are complimentary.  But we ask, where does this desire come from? If we perceive that the spirit is the source of life to the soul, we say impulses, appetite, desires, longings and hopes are messages from the source of life, the spirit. The nature and behavior of the soul, animated through the body, is the expression of the spirit. If I say I thirst, I say the spirit has made me thirsty. So how many spirits are there operating upon the soul. The ancients Greeks personified the spiritual realm. The spirit of Aphrodite is the impulse of lust and adultery, Hera of jealousy, and Athena of folly.  Jesus says in Luke 11:24-26,” The unclean spirit, when he has gone out of the man, passes through dry places, seeking rest, and finding none, he says, ‘I will turn back to my house from which I came out.’  When he returns, he finds it swept and put in order.  Then he goes, and takes seven other spirits more evil than himself, and they enter in and dwell there. The last state of that man becomes worse than the first.” There are other spirits, in Isaiah11:2 says,”Yahweh’s Spirit will rest on him: the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of Yahweh.”

Spirit

Paul “For though we walk in the flesh, we don’t wage war according to the flesh; for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but mighty before God to the throwing down of strongholds, throwing down imaginations and every high thing that is exalted against the knowledge of God, and bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ…” 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

Sidney ”Every magistrate, and every man by his works, will forever declare whose minister he is, in what spirit he lives, and consequently what obedience is due to him according to the precept of the Apostle.” 379.2

Note: There are three aspects to man. The body, the soul, and the spirit, The soul animates the body; the spirit gives life to the soul. Thought and feeling is the realm of the spirit.  Thoughts come in two forms: legal and criminal, the former leads to self sacrifice while the other to self interest.  By choice of thought,  a soul is a servant and an agent of peace is Heaven is the soul’s reward or by choice of thought, he is the devil raging in his assaults.

Bracton “That if he do injustice, he ceases to be king, degenerates into a tyrant, and becomes the vicegerent of the Devil.”  sid399

Cicero “But if the exaltation of spirit seen in times of danger and toil is devoid of justice and fights for selfish ends instead of for the common good, it is a vice; for not only has it no element of virtue, but its nature is barbarous and revolting to all our finer feelings. The Stoics, therefore, correctly define courage as “that virtue which champions the cause of right.” Accordingly, no one has attained to true glory who has gained a reputation for courage by treachery and cunning; for nothing that lacks justice can be morally right.” 62.xix.de.odd

Confession

James “Confess your offenses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed.”  James 5:16

Hebrew 4:12 “For the word of God is living and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and is able to discern the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”

Note: Judges on circuit perform the Lord’s work;the work of safeguarding the soul. This work is by confession and  repentance.  Why confession? The language of spirit is thought. From an evil spirit comes evil thoughts and from God’s spirit comes thoughts of good works. Temptation is when a thought is fused with a specific lust: sexual, murderous, avarice and the like.  The strength of this combination determines the strength of temptation.  Temptation entering into a soul is increased when the soul entertains in his imagination both thought and desire. By entertaining the thought and succumbing to attached desire, both are now owned by the soul, and when the soul acts out its desire guided by thought, it becomes the child of the spirit that delivered the thought. Those who belong to God lay claim to the thoughts of God for good works. Those who lay claim to evil thoughts belong to the devil. The work of the judge in circuit is to discern the thoughts and attitudes of the heart though confession in order to determine the spirit in order to guide the soul toward sonship with God and away from obedience to the devil.

Over Coming Criminal Impulse

Pufendorf “So that after all the Pains that can be taken to repel Nature, if it takes its full Swinge, yet it may so far be restrain’d as not to produce open Acts of Wickedness…”

Biblical Application: Matthew 16:24 “Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.”

“…and the Difficulty which happens in vanquishing these Propensities is abundantly recompens’d in the Glory of the Conquest.”

Biblical Application: James 1:12 “Blessed is the man who endures temptation, for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord promised to those who love him.”

“But if these Impulses are so strong upon the Mind, that they cannot be contain’d from breaking forth, yet there may be found a Way, as it were to draw them off, without Sin.”

Biblical Application:  James 5:16 “Confess your offenses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The insistent prayer of a righteous person is powerfully effective.”

Divine Judgment

Deuteronomy 2:33-34 “Yahweh our God delivered him up before us; and we struck him, his sons, and all his people.  We took all his cities at that time, and utterly destroyed every inhabited city, with the women and the little ones. We left no one remaining.”

Socrates says that children in their earliest play are imbued with the spirit of law or a spirit of lawlessness. The spirit of lawfulness fosters their growth, and restores and sets up the state that was overthrown by the spirit of lawlessness.  666

Note: Socrates perceived correctly that the soul moves according to the spirit and that spirit is  imbued at an early age. This explains why the God of Israel had Israel, a rod of judgment, destroy in some cities every man, woman and child. This was done in order to remove the spirit of lawlessness that had engulfed the whole community. This should be a warning to the nations that are using the public education system to teach kindergarten children the homosexual and lesbian lifestyle. This spirit once infused in the soul of the youngest leaves no avenue of mercy from God  who left a testimony of His judgment the complete destruction of Sodom, Gomorrah and Pompeii.

Apply Biblical Principles to the Wisdom of Cicero (Letter to De Officiis – {15} V.)

Cicero “You see here, Marcus, my son, the very form and as it were the face of Moral Goodness; “and if,” as Plato says, “it could be seen with the physical eye, it would awaken a marvellous love of wisdom…But all that is morally right rises from some one of four sources…”

  1. The full perception and intelligent development of the true.

Biblical Position: Deuteronomy 6:5-8 “You shall love Yahweh your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your might. These words, which I command you today, shall be on your heart; and you shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them for a sign on your hand, and they shall be for frontlets between your eyes.”

  1. The conservation of organized society, with rendering to every man his due, and with the faithful discharge of obligations assumed

Biblical Position: Exodus 18:21-22 ”Moreover you shall provide out of all the people able men which fear God: men of truth, hating unjust gain; and place such over them, to be rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens. Let them judge the people at all times. It shall be that every great matter they shall bring to you, but every small matter they shall judge themselves.

  1. The greatness and strength of a noble and invincible spirit.

Biblical Position: 2 Peter 5-7 “Yes, and for this very cause adding on your part all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence; and in moral excellence, knowledge; and in knowledge, self-control; and in self-control perseverance; and in perseverance godliness; and in godliness brotherly affection; and in brotherly affection, love.”

  1. The orderliness and moderation of everything that is said and done, wherein consist temperance and self-control.

Biblical Position: James 1:19-21 “So, then, my beloved brothers, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger; for the anger of man doesn’t produce the righteousness of God. Therefore, putting away all filthiness and overflowing of wickedness, receive with humility the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.”

Works of Sin

Epictetus says if one is overcome by a temptation of the flesh, do not consider it a single defeat, but a strengthening of a dissolute habit, and by repetition, the mind becomes callous. 144.3

Note: Sins and  transgressions dims the light of divinity which is the process of reason guided by the judicial tribunal conscience.Sin makes the conscience callous or insensitive to the nature or law of God written upon the soul.

Circumcision of Moral Law

Deuteronomy 10:16 “Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiff-necked.”

Note: Conscience, the judgment center of the soul, bases is judgment about behavior and  desire on the laws or convictions that are impressed upon the soul. It is the work of the law or  circumcision to engrave a deeper impression of divine law upon the soul in order to allow the conscience to read God’s will amid the turmoil of passion, criminal or legal. The work of the law is described in 2 timothy 3:16 “Every Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness.”

Atonement

Hebrew 9:14 “how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without defect to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

Note: Sin and transgressions of God’s law dulls the conscience by dead works. Repentance of sin allows the blood of Christ to cleanses the conscience of the consequences of sin restoring the divine light of reason. – this is a spiritual action.

Depravity

Pufendorf “From whence also it necessarily follows, that in the Science of the Law of Nature, a Man should be now consider’d, as being deprav’d in his very Nature, and upon that Account, as a Creature, subject to many vile Inclinations”

Note: Depravity is when the the light of divinity, reason, is extinguished and no longer capable of reading the law of God that is imprinted upon the soul. The soul is completely given over to the lusts of the flesh – its conviction are determined by bad doctrine that supports its irregular passions and criminal impulses which no rule the soul. Convinced and in deep conviction of the truth of their personal notions and inclinations the conscience of the soul declares evil as good and that which is good is declared evil. 

Isaiah 5:20″ Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;who put darkness for light,and light for darkness…”

Dialogues

Adam Geary writes,” Certainly classical natural law in its Christian variant might want to make an argument that goes something like: because we are divinely created ( an ‘is’ statement of a kind) then it ‘ought’ to the case that we should act morally..”

Response: True philosophy says God is incapable of transgressing His law because He can not violate His own nature; therefore,God is perfect and without sin. This perfect God on the sixth day of His creation created mankind in His image and likeness (Genesis 1.27), and since man shares in the likeness of God, man shares in God’s divinity. This is the principle of natural law in the personhood of man or man having an innate sense of moral justice. In other words, man was created with a finely tuned, error free sense of equity which we call the law of man’s original nature or the natural law of man.. Algernon Sidney says that the law of nature, which is reason, is an emanation of divine wisdom, a divine light. Cicero calls is the gift of the gods. Thomas Jefferson writes, “…those moral rules which the Author of our nature has implanted in man as the law of his nature.” Rev. Samuel Rutherford in Lex Rex calls it a royal faculty that is from God. So in the original creation, mankind is made in the image and likeness of God and therefore, is perfect and without sin, that is, perfectly just in his interactions among mankind. There is no “ought” in the equation until man through Adam fell into rebellion when the law of nature which is right reason became corrupted and fell into irrational behavior through criminal impulse. Sir Eward Blackstone writes in his Commentaries,”But, in order to apply this to the particular exigencies of each individual, it is still necessary to have recourse to reason, whose office it is to discover, as was before observed, what the law of nature directs in every circumstance of life, by considering what method will tend the most effectually to our own substantial happiness. And if our reason were always, as in our first ancestor before his transgression, clear and perfect, unruffled by passions, unclouded by prejudice, unimpaired by disease or intemperance, the task would be pleasant and easy; we should need no other guide but this. But every man now finds the contrary in his own experience; that his reason is corrupt, and his understanding full of ignorance and error.”

Adam Geary writes, “there is no necessary link between Christianity and natural law.”

Response: First, when we consider natural law, we say it is the process of reasoning, a set of laws emanating from the spark of divinity implanted in man by God. Proverb 20:27 says, “The spirit of man is the lamp of the Lord.” This lamp is the light of understanding which dictates good conduct by the process of right reason according to the laws of nature emanating from the Supreme Authority. Grotius says that man’s rational nature, his innate moral sense, or right reason dictates binding or unlawful action, forbidden or commanded action by God, who is the author of nature. The former proverb is a direct Biblical link to the law of nature. Another link is found in Romans 2:14-15, ” for when Gentiles who don’t have the law (of Moses) do by nature the things of the law, these, not having the law, are a law to themselves, in that they show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience testifying with them, and their thoughts among themselves accusing or else excusing them.” Paul in Romans is speaking of good conscience operating according to the law of nature discerning right and wrong. Additionally, Micah 6:8 says, “He has shown you, O man, what is good. What does Lord require of you, but to act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?” Here is God calling upon equity or the law of nature in man, in the words, justice and mercy. Why is Scripture concerned with the law of nature? Because reason is corrupted, and God has set out a plan for its restoration or repair. This plan is called the Atonement. Depravity is when the light of reason is darkened by sin and the conscience is no longer able to reflect the judgment of God written upon the heart but the soul concedes to the the irregular passions of the flesh and criminal impulses of the heart. It is at this point that a thief, murder, and adulterer are born. The work of the Atonement is to restore the law of nature by making its accessible to the a cleansed conscience. First, by inculcating God’s law to create deeper impression of His law upon the heart, and secondly, by repairing the defiled conscience through the spirit of Christ so the conscience can reflect the light of divinity, the truth, emanating from God’s law, this restoration and cleansing is done by inculcation of divine law, confession and repentance violations of it. This two prong device is the work of the Atonement.

Adam Geary writes, “…I myself find more interesting- would perhaps begin from the inherently interpretative nature of human being or human intelligence…rather that a starting point is ‘moral personhood’- in other words the structuring of the self through ideas like individuality, dignity and our ‘being with’ others.”

Response: Grotius says the law of nature is unalterable and cannot be change but by God Himself. Thomas Jefferson says that the laws of nature are the moral laws furnished by the Creator and they lay the true foundation of evidence. In summery, true philosophy says the laws of nature are unbending and immutable, and only God can change them. This lays the foundation of criminal justice by declaring rules of permissible and impermissible conduct. No city, county, state or nation according to true philosophy can alter the rules set by God. Human rights cannot trump God given obligations. Personal dignity can not be legislated according to individual opinion repugnant to God’s nature. There is in the community of man a Higher Law which requires the highest conduct called the law of nature which is the perfection of God. It is only by God’s mercy are those perfections lowered to meet the needs of an irrational creature in rebellion, these laws of mercy, imperfect as they are, are the laws given by God on Mt. Sinai. For example, in the law of nature there is no law “Do not Steal” because in the divinity of man no such notion exists, but when that notion appeared outside of man in the from of a serpent thereby causing Adam and Eve to steal, the law “Do not Steal” came into existence, not by the law of nature, or pure nature, but by the law of man’s secondary nature, which is conscience reacting to violation of God’s order, See Lex Rex.

Circumcision as Sons of God

Pufendorf “But Moral Divinity does not content it self in regulating only the Exterior Actions; but is more peculiarly intent in forming the Mind, and its internal Motions, agreeable to the good Pleasure of the Divine Being; disallowing those very Actions, which outwardly look well enough, but proceed from an impure and corrupted Mind.”

Note:  Circumcision of God’s moral law is useful in making a man righteous or  law law abiding. But it is the circumcision of the spirit of Christ that speaks of the God’s highest purpose and pleasure. It is the law of grace that seeks self sacrifice for the aid, welfare and service of others. This law comes in many forms like “love your neighbor as yourself,”, “love your enemies”, and it offer rules for the “good Samaritan”. Those who are circumcised by this spirit are made sons of God.

Transformation

Socrates says the fairest picture is discovered when a soul, imputed with multiple virtues, is in harmony with the beauty of bodily form 647. In the Book of Peter we see the Spirit encouraging the additions of moral virtue in the soul. 2 Peter 5-7: “…in your faith supply moral excellence; and in moral excellence, knowledge;  and in knowledge, self-control; and in self-control perseverance; and in patience godliness; and in godliness brotherly affection; and in brotherly affection, love.”

Association

Paul “Don’t be deceived! “Evil company corrupt good morals.” 1 Corinthians 15.33

Socrates says in the Republic that the base will imitate freely, thinking nothing beneath him.

Note: Associations can not but edify or diminish the character of the soul. The soul will imitate what is admires and respects. For the sensible soul, it will imitation the good for the insensible it will imitate the bad.

Culture

Socrates in the Republic that examples of evil in art, music, architecture and manufacturing are not benign but work imperceptively  to build a mass of evil in the soul.  644 Since culture teaches, the Gospel of Jesus Christ  sets the bar very high in  Ephesian 5: 3-4 “But sexual immorality, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not even be mentioned among you, as becomes saints; nor filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not appropriate…” See Political Pearls

Physical Exercise

Paul “For bodily exercise has some value, but godliness has value in all things, having the promise of the life which is now, and of that which is to come.” 1 Timothy 4:8

Plato says he does not believe a sound body by its good qualities renders the soul good, but a good soul renders the body the best possible. 648

Nature of the Soul

Psalms 138:13-14 “For you formed my inmost being. You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful. My soul knows that very well.

Three components form man: body, soul, and spirit.  In Genesis 1.27 man is made in the image and likeness of God.  Socrates says a good soul is good but a cunning soul is quick to suspect evil. There are patterns in the soul which cause the good soul to recognize other  goods souls and other patterns that cause the cunning soul to be  considered wise among other cunning souls. Politically, Algernon Sidney makes us aware that a good king or magistrate will be surrounded by good counselors while the evil king or magistrate will be surrounded by wicked courtiers.

Culture

Socrates says the unmitigated gymnastics turn out more brutal souls than they should be and those of music are made softer than is good for them. 655

Deuteronomy 22:5 “A woman shall not wear men’s clothing, neither shall a man put on women’s clothing; for whoever does these things is an abomination to Yahweh your God.”

Note:  Socrates explains a principle without implicating the spirit behind the principle.  The Spirit of God operating in the human community is the winnowing fork that separates the wheat from the chaff or the good souls from the evil.  Its operation is spiritual. Two spirits like opposing hooks operating within a soul work to pull the soul in opposite directs, either toward  good works or toward works of evil.  These spiritual pulls on the soul is the work of Satan or of Christ, the former toward death and the later toward  life.  Every external action of the soul, even the culture itself,  is a spiritual pull moving a soul or society toward eternal life or eternal destruction.

Jesus “His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will thoroughly cleanse his threshing floor. He will gather his wheat into the barn, but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable fire.” Matthew 3:12

Character

Paul “Now in a large house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of clay. Some are for honor, and some for dishonor.  If anyone therefore purges himself from these, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, and suitable for the master’s use, prepared for every good work.” 2 Timothy 2:20-21

Socrates in his fiction says that the first and chief injunction that the gods lay upon the rulers is that they are to be careful guardians and intently observant of the intermixture of type of the metals in the souls of their offspring. If sons are born with the infusion of brass or iron give not pity to them, but assign to each the status due to his nature, the work of manufacturing and farming.  But if sons are born with a mixture of gold and silver such a composition deserves higher honors, some to the office of guardian, some to assistantship,  alleging that there is an oracle that the state will be overthrown when the man of iron or brass is its guardians.   659

Seneca says a lowly cottage can be a shelter of virtues. By adding virtue soon the cottage will be handsomer than any temple – when justice is conspicuous, and  temperance, wisdom, righteousness and right reason dicharges it duties correctly and the knowledge of god and man. 118

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This entry was posted on April 30, 2013 by .
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