Leonardo da Vinci’s Famous “Vitruvian Man” Drawing

The Nature of Man

This article is divided into four subsections:

  1. Precis of the mainstream Christian Position.Leonardo da Vinci’s Famous “Vitruvian Man” Drawing
  2. Failings of these teachings.
  3. Precis of the True Bible Teaching Position.
  4. Link to Wrested Scriptures Page.

The Wrested Scriptures Page lists passages commonly used to defend the erroneous views, and outlines the correct understanding of these passages.

In referring to ‘Mainstream Christianity’, we speak of the principal Christian groups, such as Catholics, Baptists, Evangelicals, Pentecostals, etc.

Please excuse the directness of the sections below; due to the nature of the media, we felt it was best.

  1. Precis of the mainstream Christian Position.

Mainstream Christian Teaching

With regards to the nature of humankind, almost all of Christianity is united in affirming that within every person lies a portion that is inherently immortal. The most frequent take on this is that we have an immortal soul that upon death of the flesh does not die, but rather goes somewhere else. Variations abound.

  1. Failings of these teachings.

Inherent Flaws in Mainstream teaching

  1. The evidence of our eyes denies that upon death we go somewhere else. When we see someone die, no matter how nice it is to think that a part of them remains alive, the empirical evidence points to the fact that they are totally dead.
  2. To bear out the first point, God said to Adam in clear and concise terms that upon death he would return to the ground: “In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; you are dust, and to dust you shall return“. (Gn. 3:19) Humans are made out of two things: inert materials, and the spirit of God. The inert material (water, minerals, other elements and compounds) is not unique to us or in any way special, and the life giving spirit (or breath) of God simply returns to Him when we die (Eccl. 12:7).
  3. There is no Biblical evidence that the spirit of life possessed by humans is special in any way. Quite the contrary, we are living beings in the same way all breathing, oxidizing creatures are living beings. The vocabulary of Genesis and the entire Bible bears this out.
    • Ecclesiastes 3:19 – For the fate of the sons of men and fate of beast is the same; as one dies, so dies the other. They all have the same breath, and man has no advantage over the beasts…
    • Ecclesiastes 9:10 – Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might; for there is no work or thought of knowledge or wisdom in Sheol [the grave], to which you are going.
    • Psalms 146: 3-4 – Put not your trust in princes, in a son of man, in whom there is no help. When his breath departs, he returns to his earth; on that very day his plans perish. Notice here that it doesn’t say that the body returns to earth: ‘he returns to his earth’. The person returns to the soil, not just a part, or exterior shell as is taught.
    • 2:7 – then the Lord God formed man of the dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being. Compare with 1:20, 21 and 24, where all the other ‘living beings’ are created. Note that the Hebrew in all these verses is ‘nefesh‘, which in many cases is translated ‘soul’. So, animals have souls just like we do.
  4. In the Bible, the word ‘soul’ simply means ‘being’ and can refer to animals as much as humans. The phrase ‘immortal soul’ is entirely absent from scripture, and in fact, there are many passages that quite explicitly say that the soul [i.e. the being or person] dies.
    • Ezekiel 18:4, 20 – …the soul that sins shall die. [In this passage, soul means simply ‘person’.]
    • Psalms 33:18-19 – Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him, on those who hope in his steadfast love, that he may deliver their soul from death, and keep them alive in famine. Note here that the death God saves the soul from is famine, not anything spiritual or otherworldly. Again, soul simply means person.
    • And the clincher, if you have access to a concordance, is to look up the usage in the original Hebrew. The word soul has no salient supernatural use. It is applied to people, animals and even internal organs.
  5. Biblically, the hope of humanity lies in the resurrection. It makes no sense to say that a being that never really dies is resurrected – these are mutually exclusive pathways. Resurrection is our only hope, as Paul says in such memorable terms: “If the dead are not raised, let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die” (I Cor. 15:32). There is no other hope.
  6. Precis of the True Bible Teaching Position.

What is True Bible Teaching

We believe that man is created out of the dust of the earth. By the dust of the earth, we understand the elements and compounds that make up all things. This body is given life, or breath, by God. Upon death, our breath leaves our body, our bodies return to the soil. Our only hope lies in the resurrection from the dead when Christ returns to this earth. In the meantime, the dead lie in the earth in the sleep of death, alive only in the memory of God, until Jesus comes.

  1. Link to Wrested Scriptures Page, learn more here about the True Nature of Man as revealed by True Bible Teaching

Wrested Scriptures


Are You Saved

Are YOU Saved?

The house was blazing and fire-fighters were rescuing people trapped inside. It wasHouse on fire extremely dangerous and the firefighters had to apply their skills with great care.

“Thank you SO much for saving me”, gasped one man who had finally been brought to safety. “No problem”, said the fire-fighter, “but you stay well away from the building now; don’t go anywhere near until we say it is OK”.

Some minutes later the man ran back to a part of the house that did not look as though it was on fire.

No-one knew why and no-one could stop him.

Suddenly there was an almighty crash and part of the building fell on him, killing him outright.

Remember Lot’s Wife

There is a similar account in the Bible.

Angels visited the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah and told the man Lot to get out, together with his family. God was going to destroy these cities because their inhabitants were so wicked. Lot’s family was led to safety by the angels, who even held their hands and told them “Escape for your life! Do not look behind you nor stay anywhere in the plain” (Genesis 19:14–17).

However, after being taken out of the city, Lot’s wife did look back and was turned into a pillar of salt. Jesus refers to this in Luke 17:32, warning people of the importance of taking notice of his words.

In each of these scenarios people had been removed from inevitable destruction by being taken to a safe place, but they subsequently perished because of their own foolishness.

Doubtless they thought they were ‘saved’, even though they perished.

Jesus our Saviour

We are all painfully aware that the human race is a dying race. Everyone dies. However, the Bible tells us that God sent His Son to be the Saviour of the world (1 John 4:14). In fact, being associated with the name of Jesus is the only way of escaping permanent death.

“Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

God has provided a way of escaping inevitable destruction. Consequently, the Bible refers to believers as ‘saved’ (2 Timothy 1:9, Titus 3:5, Romans 8:24).

Some professing Christians believe that this means that eternal life is guaranteed to them, whatever might happen. This is not what the Bible says. The death of Jesus can save us from the inevitability of death, just as Lot’s wife was saved from the brimstone and fire that destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 19:24).

However, just like Lot’s wife, we might still perish. This is clear in the writings of the apostles. In 2 Timothy chapter 1, the apostle Paul describes believers as ‘saved’ (verse 9), but subsequently urges Timothy to ‘hold fast the pattern of sound words’ (verse 13) and clearly states that some people have in fact strayed from the correct way (2:16–18).

Similarly, Paul tells the believers at Corinth that they are saved by the gospel “if you hold fast the word which I preached to you” (I Corinthians 15:2). Jesus himself says that “he who endures to the end will be saved” (Matthew 10:22 and 24:13). The point is reinforced in I Corinthians 1:18 where Paul describes believers as those “who are being saved” (also 2 Corinthians 2:15).

God Asks Us to Obey

God has saved mankind from the otherwise inevitable death sentence. However, He asks us to respond individually: to believe and be baptised:

“He who believes and is baptized shall be saved”“He who believes and is baptized shall be saved” (Mark 16:16).

Jesus said that:

“Unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God” (John 3:5).

These are very strong words without any possibility of compromise. Later in the chapter Jesus says that we must believe on the ‘name’ of the Son of God (v 18). It is abundantly clear that this belief is not merely an intellectual assent to the record of Jesus’ life. It also requires a personal commitment, which must be based on an understanding of what the ‘name’ means.

Jesus means ‘Saviour’ and Christ means ‘Anointed One’. Those names spell out God’s plan: to save us because of what Jesus has done and to send him again as King.

The Only Name

In Acts 4:17–18 Jesus’ name is associated with doctrine (i.e. beliefs). It is therefore necessary to understand his name and the implications for our relationship with him. Jesus commanded his followers to live by the same selfless and godly principles that he did (John 13:34). He described this as taking up the cross:

“Whoever desires to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me” (Mark 8:34).

This obviously requires us to understand what Jesus himself believed and how he lived.

We have been offered a reprieve from the death sentence that we inherited from the moment we were born.

God offers us salvation. Please don’t ignore this life-saving offer.

By Anna Hart