Humanity is not united. There are huge differences among human beings. The Word of God recognizes these crucial differences, and categorizes humanity in a number of ways. It describes humanity as being made up of the Chosen People, and the other nations of the world. There are Jews and there is everyone else – the Gentiles; there are the righteous and the wicked; the saved and the lost; those who are part of the Kingdom of God and those who are part of the Kingdom of this world. One of the differences in humanity is the distinction between a spiritual man and a non-spiritual man.
The non-spiritual man, the natural man, the worldly man is very much part of and influenced by the attitudes and values of this fallen world that is satanically controlled and is in rebellion against God and is under a curse. The natural man, the worldly man, the earthy man, is dominated by his fallen human nature. He is carnal, meaty, controlled by the desires of the flesh, dominated by the powerful force of sin. Rabbi Paul describes the man of the flesh as being is sold into bondage to sin.
The Rabbi from Tarsus also writes about the spiritual man: The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man’s judgment. And, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently.
The spiritual man is not dominated by the world, or fallen human nature, or the flesh. He is influenced by and controlled by the Spirit of God.
To be a spiritual man, or to be spiritual (which is the same thing), means to have a very different attitude than a human being who is worldly and natural and fleshy. To be spiritual means that the Spirit of the Three-in-One God has been given to you in a special, deeper way. The living, invisible presence of the Creator is living in you. That means that you are close to God, and He is close to You. God is very real to you. You consider Him very much to be alive and living to you. He is the living God. You understand that in Him you live and move and have your being.
The spiritual man is sensitive to spiritual things. The natural man is insensitive to spiritual things.
The spiritual man is sensitive to God and the things of God. The spiritual man thinks spiritual thoughts and speaks spiritual words. He eats spiritual food and drinks spiritual drink. He uses spiritual wisdom and understanding. He sings spiritual songs. He is part of a spiritual house. He offers spiritual sacrifices.
He knows that the Three-In-One God of Israel rewards those who seek Him and so he tries to know God better and better. He tries to hear from God; He talks to God; he tries to be directed by God; serve God; make decisions that honor God.
The spiritual man pleases God and the natural man does not. The natural, earthy, fleshy man may be aware of God. He may be religiously inclined. He may be very religious. But the man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God. Important spiritual truths are foolishness to him, and he can’t understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.
The carnal, earthy, fleshy man is part of the world system and shares its values and priorities. He loves the world and the things of the world; he loves money and what money can buy; he loves pursuing his pleasures.
The natural, earthy, fleshy man has a religion or philosophy or ideology or worldview that comes from the world, not God. His religion is that of Cain, not Abel. He may talk to God, or try to be directed by God, or try to serve God, even make decisions that will honor God, but since he doesn’t understand the truth and can’t hear God speaking clearly to him, his efforts will be a mixture of truth and error; obedience and disobedience, understanding and confusion. Ultimately the natural, worldly fleshy man can can’t please God and won’t be accepted by God, because he will not come to God on His terms.
How Do We Become Spiritual Men And Women?
We come into this world natural, worldly, carnal, fleshly, earthy. We come into this world far from God, far from truth, far from wisdom and understanding, far from salvation.
We are born natural men and women. We are born again as spiritual men and women.
To become spiritual people we must be born again. We must receive the Spirit of God. The Spirit of the Living God must be given to us in a new and greater way. We are born again and receive God’s Spirit when develop emunah – faithful faith and faithfulness.
We receive the Spirit of the Father and the Son when we understand that God is real; that Yeshua is the Messiah and the Son of God and the Savior; that the Father sent His Son into the world; that through the incarnation the Son of God became a human being; that Messiah lived a perfect, sinless life; that Yeshua suffered and died; that by means of His death and resurrection He overcome death; that the Son of God ascended to the right high of His Heavenly Father and He is alive now, and our living savior.
When we know these things, and we believe these things, and trust and have confidence in these things, and when we transfer our allegiance and loyalty to the Father and the Son, then They send us their Spirit that They share to live in us.
The Benefits That Come From Being A Spiritual Man
Then the Spirit begins to transforms us from within. The Spirit begins to make us men of the Spirit – spiritual men. The fruit of the Spirit is produced in us – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.
He makes us sensitive to God and the things of God; He helps us understand the Word of God; He helps us learn how to pray. He makes us aware of the importance of righteousness. He encourages us to do what is right.
The spiritual man is led by the Spirit. The Spirit teaches us; He guides us, leads us, directs us. The spiritual man wants to please God. He wants to do what God wants. He tries to discern what God wants. He becomes sensitive to God. He is close to God, he talks to God, he listens to God speaking to him in through the Bible, through wise counsel, through God’s still small voice, through circumstances.
The spiritual man tries to walk in the Spirit, to live in the Spirit, to stay close to God and constantly be aware of God. The spiritual man tries to cultivate a close, intimate and personal relationship with the Three-In-One God. He tries to practice staying in the presence of God; waiting on God; staying in contact with God throughout the day. He trains his mind to talk with God from the time he gets up until he goes to sleep.
He praises Him for who He is, and the wonderful things that He has done, is doing now, and will do forever. He sings spiritual songs to Him. He meditates on the Word of God, and considers the things the Lord has said and how it applies to every aspect of his life. He observes God’s design in this magnificent creation, learning from it and praising the Creator for the wisdom, beauty and design that is revealed in the creation.
He focuses on thankfulness and gratitude for the things he does have, not complaining about the things he doesn’t have. If his basic needs are met, he is content.
He asks for God’s help and blessing for himself, for his family and friends, for his Messianic community, for the entire Church. He prays for the salvation of the lost.
As we walk in the Spirit and live in the Spirit and get closer and closer to God, we grow in self-control. We have more power to resist the lusts of the flesh. We know that when we walk by means of the Spirit, and are close to God and He is close to us, we will not carry out the desire of the flesh.
The Spirit of God makes us sensitive to sin, to right and wrong, to the importance of obeying our conscience.
The spiritual man becomes more and more aware of his own limitations, his shortcomings, and his own sins.
The spiritual man understands the need for mercy, grace, forgiveness, patience; he understands the need for second chances, for restoration. redemption.
The Spirit gives us insight into the fallen nature of man. The spiritual man understands the weakness of the flesh and the will; he understands human weakness, and the strength of the adversary and his fallen helpers and the power of the world. He knows that the heart is wicked and deceitful above all things.
The spiritual man understands the deceitfulness of sin and the deceitfulness of riches.
The indwelling Spirit of God helps us resist sin. And when we sin, He helps us to turn back to God. He convicts us when we are wrong. He gives us the strength to repent. When he strays from the Lord; when he sins, yields to temptation; when he realizes he has missed the mark, he comes back to the Lord, confessing his sins, asking for forgiveness and a fresh start and a new filling of the Spirit.
He helps us conquer our pride, helping us know that we are mere creatures; that apart from Messiah we can accomplish nothing lasting, nothing meaningful; that we are dependant on the Creator for life, redemption, salvation and victory.
The Spirit of the Father and the Son helps us get our priorities in order. He helps us to put God’s will, goals, agenda, plans and purposes ahead of our own will, goals, agenda, plans and purposes.
The Spirit of the Living God helps us to develop new values – not the world’s values. We put a premium on the truth; on holiness; on righteousness, on good character; on the fear of God.
The spiritual man understands that he no longer belongs to himself. He, and everything he has, belongs to God. He has been created by God, and so to the Creator he belongs. And, he has been redeemed from the satanic slave market of sin and death; and he has been purchased from that ruination at a very high price. And so, because of creation and redemption, he gives himself to God. As his spiritual worship, the spiritual man offers himself and his body to serve God as a living sacrifice. The spiritual man understands the need for love of others and self-sacrifice.
The Spirit points us to Messiah; He helps us stay focused on Messiah. He helps us to fix our spiritual eyes on the Son of God. He makes Yeshua our role model. He helps us become more like Yeshua. He makes Yeshua’s teachings clear to us.
The Spirit makes us aware of ultimate things – Heaven and Hell; eternal reward and punishment; the Day of Judgment. The spiritual man understands the shortness of life; the temporariness of this world; the futility of life without God; that heavenly reward is better than earthly treasure; that one day close to God is better than one thousand apart from Him living in luxury; that hearing the Lord say: well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of your Lord is worth more than being the richest or the most powerful man on Earth.
The man of the Spirit becomes less and less at home in this world, and desires more and more to be with the Lord in His perfect world. Like Abraham, he realizes that he is a temporary resident here, and looks forward to that very real and eternal city, whose architect and builder is God.
The Spirit helps us understand the things God has freely given us. He helps us acquire spiritual wisdom and understanding. We treasure the Word of God. We value sound doctrine and good theology and godly leadership. We appreciate and try to understand prophecy. We highly value the Messianic Community. He shows us the importance of Israel and the Jewish people.
The Spirit helps us know and fulfill our spiritual responsibilities – building up the community. He gives us a burden for the lost and a desire to bring them the Good News.
He blesses us with spiritual gifts. The Spirit helps us utilize these gifts for the building up of the community of salvation, and the evangelism of the world.
So, which one are you? A spiritual man, close to God, sensitive to God, being led by God, serving God, or are you a fleshy, carnal, natural, earthy, man, and man of this world, serving yourself, serving this world?
There is so much to be gained by being a spiritual man, and so much to lose by being a man of this world! Ultimately, there will be a final separation between the spiritual man and the worldly, natural man, and the man of the flesh. The spiritual man shares the life of the Spirit and will live forever. The worldly man will share the destiny of this doomed world.
We most definitely want to be spiritual men and women, not natural, worldly fleshly men and women! We will enhance our lives in this world, and we will liver forever in the World To Come!
May the Lord so work in us that all of us become truly spiritual men and women!