Natural vs Spiritual


Elder Robert Willis (dec)

I Corinthians 2:14, “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”


We are told that it is wrong to label or categorize people. However, we do find ourselves labeling them according to their economic and/or social status. The Word of God (Bible) does indeed categorize men into two categories: Natural (Sinful) Nature, and a Spiritual Nature. God’s children fall into both of these categories at some point in their life, but the non-elect (wicked) will only fall into the first.


Those who do not know God and are not among His chosen people, are born with a Sinful Nature and will always remain a Carnal man, as they do not love God nor have the Spirit of the Lord dwelling in them nor will they.


God’s children are born with a Sinful Nature as they are sinners from Adam and continue to sin as their life unfolds. At some point pleasing to the Lord, He enters their heart in the New Birth, and borns them again of His Spirit, thus they then have both a Sinful Nature and a Spiritual Nature which creates a warfare they must continually fight on this earth. It is that Nature of Sin which causes us to succumb to the Flesh and fall away from the teachings and commandments of God.


The sinful nature shows us that we all are depraved. The wicked (who never will have a spiritual nature) are as David spoke of in Psalm 58:3, “The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as as they be born, speaking lies.” Paul says “the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness;…” (I Corinthians 1:18).


For God’s elect, who were in the same condition of having a sinful nature, are given a spiritual nature in the new birth. Paul told the Ephesian brethren, “And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; Wherein in time past he walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worth in the children of disobedience:…” (Ephesians 2:1-2). Paul does not stop there, he further states, “Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)… (Ephesians 2:5). Now notice the difference in hearing the preaching of the cross for one who has been born again by the Spirit of the Lord, “but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.”


The person who has just the sinful nature is referred to as one who is “…dead in trespasses and sins.” One who is dead does not have the capability to give themselves eternal life. The only one able to save one from a condition of death in trespasses and sins is Christ Jesus our Lord in the New Birth or Quickening. John speaks in plain language in John 5:21, “For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.”


The electing grace of God has not been understand properly by many who claim to know all about God and how He works. Notice Romans 9:15 where the Lord spoke to Moses saying, “I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.”


God is Sovereign! Hear the words of Job in chapter 9 vs. 12, “…who can hinder him? who will say unto him, What doest thou?” Daniel expounds on the Sovereignty of God in Daniel 4:35, “And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?” I say again, God is Sovereign! Let us work hard to stay away from our fleshly nature and seek the Lord’s will in all we say and do. We have much to be thankful for and should be praising His Holy name.