Day 6 – What Is a Soul?

On the sixth day of each week of our study, we are going to share a short animated video. Today’s video is a word study for our English word “soul.” Each week in our band we answer the question, “How is your soul?” We hope this video will provide some clarity around both the biblical understanding of the Hebrew word for soul, nephesh, and what we are aiming at as we attempt to answer the question.

I recall learning this in a seminary class and having a bit of a crisis. “Wait—you mean my soul is not just this immaterial part of myself that leaves my body when I die and goes to heaven like I see in the movies?” This was difficult for me to grasp, but this insight has actually helped me not to separate my spiritual life from my physical being. To consider myself as a whole person. To bring all of myself—mind, body, will, emotions, and heart—as a whole living being to God. It has even helped me take better care of my physical body and to care more about the earth that God created. Rather than trying to escape our world, I believe God is in the process of redeeming it to make all things new.

We will revisit this in greater detail next week, but when you come to the question, “How is your soul?” think about it simply as, “How are you as a whole person?”

The Prayer

Jesus, today I thank you that you created all of me. All of who I am—my body, my thoughts, my feelings—matter deeply to you. I am the only me in this world. I thank you for loving me. Help me to love you with all of my heart, my strength, and my soul. Amen.

For Band Interaction

What does loving God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength look like for you?