Thursday, February 28, 2013

The Breath of God

The Bible says in Genesis 1:26 that God said, "let us make man in our image..." The term "man" in the preceding quote in the Hebrew according to Strong's Hebrew Greek dictionary is the same as Adam. The word "man" according to Strong's means simply "a human being (an individual or the species, mankind, etc.). Then in verse 27 the Bible says "So God created man (again see Strong's Hebrew Greek dictionary) in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them." So the term man or mankind is inclusive of the male and female in the human species.

The difference between mankind and the other beasts and creeping things according the Genesis account is that man was formed  from the dust of the ground and life was breathed into him (See the reference to Genesis 2:7 later) whereas the rest of the creatures God made (formed out of the ground) was the direct result of the spoken word. The Genesis account doesn't say that God spoke to the rest of His creation, He only spoke to man who was made in God's image. It is not until Genesis 2 that we find God dealing with man as an individual.

The Bible states in Genesis 2:7, "And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul." Man is the only creature known to have the sense of self awareness. There have been attempts to communicate with other creatures, such as killer whales, dolphins or chimpanzees, etc. And there have been reports of lower animals having a measure of intelligence and making use of tools, etc.  But to my knowledge man is the only creature with cognizance of other creatures. Man is the distinct and unique creation of God.

Again in Genesis 2:19 the Bible says "and out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam (man, the same word used in Genesis 1:26) to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof." Some might say that the Bible account is not true because there are still creatures that are yet undiscovered. But let me say that the term or name Adam can be interpreted man (or mankind) and he is still finding and naming the creatures God has made. (Again see Strong's Hebrew Greek dictionary)

All this has been said to illustrate that God's breath makes the difference between lower animals and mankind. In the Acts of the Apostles 1:8 the Lord Jesus said, " shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you..." Then the Bible says in Acts 2:1-4 "And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance." The Bible does not say that God breathed into the rest of His creation, only into Adam.

It is interesting to note that in Strong's Hebrew Greek dictionary, the term "Ghost" in Acts 1:8, and "Ghost" and "Spirit" in Acts 2:4 are from the same Greek word, "pneuma." The word pneuma means "a current of air, that is, breath (blast) or a breeze'''... or (divine) God, Christ’s spirit, the Holy spirit: - ghost, life..." So in the Genesis account God breathed into man's nostrils "the breath of life; and man became a living soul." And on the Day of Pentecost, God again breathed His breath or Spirit into the one hundred and twenty "and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost (Pneuma) and began to speak with other tongues as the Spirit (Pneuma) gave them utterance."

Adam was just a body formed from the dust of the ground, laying there without life until God breathed "the breath of life" into him. So too, mankind is dead in trespasses and sins until God breathes the Breath of Life through the baptism of the Holy Ghost into us.  The Apostle Paul asked the twelve Ephesian believers an Acts 19:2, "Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed?"  The question is pertinent today.  You may be a faithful disciple, trying to do your best to follow the Lord Jesus, but I ask you this simple question, "Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed?" If your answer is no, then ask God to fill you today. He will breath into you His Breath, the Spirit of Life.  You will never be the same. 

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