The Origin of the Soul

Using physical means of investigation and it does not take us much effort to realize anymore where the physical aspect of our nature comes from through sexual reproduction.  But when it comes to the nature of the soul there is no real account in the Bible about the origin of the human soul.  While the soul of Adam was clearly created at the time of his physical creation, there is no explicit reference to how the human souls for all of us who are alive today have come from.

            Throughout history Christians have held different theories as to when the origin of the human soul took or takes place.  There are the Christians who believed that at the beginning of Creation, God created all of the souls of humankind and that they are in heaven waiting for their chance to enter into a human body in order to be created.  Origen advanced this theory about the human preexistence; however, this theory has not a biblical foundation nor does it enjoy much of a following today within orthodoxy.

            Traducianism theorizes that the human soul is generated along with the physical creation in human reproduction.  My guess would be that those who have not really thought about the subject would probably fall into this camp within the Christian community.  Traducianism supposes that it is in this way that “in Adam we are all one.”  For, if the human soul is passed on through human reproduction then there really is only one human soul in the world, Adam’s, and that we are all manifestations of our first father without invading necessarily into the heresy of universalism.  Traducianism, however, could fall into the pitfalls of the heresy of universalism if one is not careful.  Traducianists stress that it must be correct because when God rested on the Sabbath all creation is over.  This however ignores the obvious Biblical teaching that in Christ we are all new creations in our spiritual reality.

            Creationism, the theory that God created the soul of man at the moment of human conception, is the theory which most orthodox circles have embraced.  In this view the human soul is independently created by God at the moment of conception.  Yet because this view is the majority view it should not be supposed to be the correct view.  The Scriptures do not teach explicitly about the origin of the soul and so the Christian should not teach dogmatically about the origin of the soul.

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Comments (1)

  1. danthequestionman

    Doesn’t the Bible teach us that death came into the world(s) through the sin of Adam?
    1st Corinthians chapter 15 verse 22 tells us “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive”, does this not infer that sin is passed down to mankind through the original sin of Adam?
    Considering Creationism, if each person receives a new soul created by God at the moment of human conception, would that soul not be perfect and without sin if it was created by a perfect God?
    How could sin and death affect us then if we were all created anew?
    Didn’t God say to the prophet Jeremiah (1:5) “Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb,I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations”?
    Does the above statement not at least infer that the souls of men were created spiritually before our birth?
    The process of spiritual pre-creation not only affects the souls God breathed into man(note Genesis 2:4&5) in part 4 these are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens – verse 5 " and every plant of the field “before” it was in the earth, and every herb of the field “before” it grew:" but appears to also include all forms of creation.
    Is it possible then that Adam took on sin and death to pass it down through his generations in order to fulfill the plan of God to save the previously sinful beings that had been cast to earth in the fall of Lucifer through repentance and forgiveness by allowing them access to God through equally sinful man?
    Does that make some form of sense for creation?

    November 23, 2012
    1. hearthappy45

      Unfortunately we all sin after the manner of Adam.

      November 25, 2012
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