Heaven vs. Earth Currency
God values glory. Jesus describes His crucifixion experience as glorified (John12:23) and glorifying God the Father (John17:1). Glory is innate to God before creation (John17:5). God’s glory is a demonstration and measure of the value of His reputation, His name (John12:28). God shares His glory with His children. Which part of the tripartite man, Spirit-Soul-Body (1The5:23), does God share His glory?
This reflection is titled Glory- The Currency of Heaven explores the evidence to support this claim, which requires answering the question posed above and understanding why and how.
Soul and God’s Glory
The Soul and God’s Glory
2Co4:16-17 says, “For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward (esō ) man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.”
The book “The Release the Spirit” by Watchman Nee interpreted the inward man as the born again spirit. For the following reasons, the inward man refers to man’s soul and not the spirit of man.
- The blue letter bible shows that the word inward (esō) based on Strong’s translation renders as soul or conscience. See link – https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/Lexicon/Lexicon.cfm?strongs=G2080&t=NASB
- The word inward (G2080) occurs six times in the New Testament, out of which three times it is associated with the word “man,” see the snapshot below.
In Rom7:22, Paul was referring to his inward man that joyfully concurs with the law of God. Arguably this reference can be made to refer to either soul or spirit. However, it is also reasonable to claim that Paul is referring to his soul rejoicing with the law of God. For Paul, resolved to embrace death as gain and live is for Christ (Phi1:21), this claim that his soul rejoices with God’s law is within reason.
2Co4:16 and Eph3:16 mentioned that the inward man is renewed and receives strength. This inward man is referring to the soul and not to the born again spirit. Since the born again spirit is a perfect and complete divine product of God, the Holy Spirit (John3:6). It makes little sense for this finished divine product to require renewal and strengthening, which implies that the born-again spirit experiences decline and need renewal and strengthening.
For the above reasons, the inward man is the soul of man and not the man’s spirit.
Paul used the words “light afflictions” in 2Co4:16-17, relatively as he compares them to the surpassing worth of knowing Christ (Phil3:8-10), to describe hardships that he cites in 2Co11:23-29 which are by any human measure far from light or ordinary.
Paraphrasing 2Co4:16-17, “the soul of man is producing glory that has eternal weight as the result of the experiences of the temporal suffering even unto death.”
The following clarifies how the man is partaking glory with God. It also explores how the man realizes this glory.
- The soul of man is partaking glory with God.
- How does the soul realize glory?
Glory realized glory by suffering for goodness sake (1Pet3:17), for Christ’s sake (1Pet4:14-16), and righteousness’ sake (1Pet3:14).
This post references Peter because of the context where Christians demonstrate their faith in sincere brotherly love and experience soul purification-salvation (1Pet1:9, 22). This reflection takes the position that the soul purification-salvation and the soul producing the eternal weight of glory in 2Co4:16-17 are the same.
Why is the Soul Glory Important to God and Man?
Glory is essential to man because it is the currency of heaven that the soul earns on earth.
The soul is unique to each person. The soul is the sum of the individual life lived uniquely. The purpose and will of God have designed this life uniquely. The glory currency is, therefore, a unique outcome for each person.
Jesus, as the Son of Man (For Jesus as Son of God had glory before He took on human form, John17:5) has the most glory among all the sons of God. One can say, if glory equals currency, Jesus is the wealthiest man representative in heaven. Jesus glory has two parts
- The glory He gained by this life, death, and resurrection.
- The glory produced by Christian’s souls collectively is accrued to Christ (1Pet4:14, John17:10).
Glory, the soul, produces is essential to man because it is the only actual eternal possession that man can truly claim as their own, which God also desires and accrued to Jesus.
What is the use of this currency?
The use of this currency is speculative, but this reflection posits that the amount of soul salvation one possesses will determine the ruling and judgment stature of the risen believer who will rule (2Tim2:12) and judge (1Co6:1-3) the world with Christ.
But what of the born again spirit and the resurrected body? Why are they excluded from this glory?
Man’s born again spirit is begat of the Holy Spirit (John3:6), where Christ supplied the blood to forgive man of His state of sin (1John1:7). God, the Father’s power who raised Jesus (Rom8:11) from the dead, supplied the spiritual body preserved in heaven (1Co15:44, 1Pet1:3-5). God performs both works that are perfect and complete with no effort required or desired from man.
Stated, the born-again spirit and resurrected body are both saved once the person confesses, according to Rom10:9. The only difference is the timing between the two—the Holy Spirit begets the born again spirit immediately (John3:6). In comparison, God preserves the resurrected body for us in heaven (1Pet1:3-5). The Holy Spirit is the believer’s pledge to guarantee that God the Father will honor His promise (2Co5:5) to give the resurrected body.
Glory is essential to God because the more glory the soul possesses, the soul is more Christ-like. God the Father, God the Son as the man Jesus, and God the Holy Spirit have perfect communion of oneness among themselves. This triune relationship is a complete and perfect union.
God desires a similar relationship with a man but cannot force this outcome. Man has their free will in their soul to determine the degree of this oneness in man’s relationship with God. The more glory the soul has, the closer the soul will experience oneness with God and their spirit and body perfected by God.
Jesus’ soul suffered in weakness and perfected as He submitted to God’s will in weakness (2Co13:4, Heb5:2, 5:7-9). It is within reason to claim that only Jesus as Son of Man, only His soul is perfect before God.
Glory is essential to God because the more glory the soul possesses, the soul is more Christ-like. God the Father, God the Son as Man Jesus, and God the Holy Spirit have perfect communion of oneness among themselves. Their relationship is the ideal relationship.
God desires a similar relationship with man through the shared glory of the soul.