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Is Man 2 Parts or 3?

Is Man Two Parts?

Those who find man being two parts, body and soul/spirit are call dichotomists. The word comes from the Greek dicha meaning "two" and temno meaning "to cut." Historically the western (Roman) church were dichotomists.

The definition and descriptions of the dichotomous theory go like this:

Man is two parts – material and immaterial, although the immaterial may have multiple functions.

Conscious life capable of possessing and animating a physical organism is the psuche.

That same conscious life which exercises rational, moral agents and is susceptible of divine influence and indwelling is called the pneuma.

Psuche is man's immaterial nature as it looks earthward and touches the world of senses.

Pneuma is man's immaterial nature looking Godward.

Man's immaterial nature, therefore, has a duality of powers but a unity of substance. (This statement is the key difference in the statement of the two positions.)

Scriptural support for the dichotomous theory:

Logically, we can distinguish between the material and immaterial part of man, but we cannot consciously discriminate between the soul and the spirit.




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December 8, 2021

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