God is spirit. John 4:24
The word used for spirit in the New Testament is pneuma, in the Old it is ruach. Both mean wind, breath, spirit.
But in their meaning of spirit, they have several distinct connotations:
- As in the English phrase in the spirit of, it can mean following the strain of thought or the believes of somebody or something.
- Human spirit of life, that is the part of man that can live independently after one’s death.
- Human ratio, the mind. Scripture introduces a difference between the two immortal parts of man, soul and spirit. Spirit is man’s immaterial nature which enables him to communicate with God, who is, as our verse tells us, spirit too. The soul does not receive from God (1Co 2:14), but makes us aware of the natural environment.
- A spirit, a simple, incorporeal immaterial being. Especially God himself and the Holy Spirit.
These are the traditional meanings of the word _pneuma_ following Strong’s loosely as an example. This article is to give a more profound view of what a spirit is. But first some basics.