There are many mistranslations and/ or misunderstood words in the Christian bible!
The English word, "spirit", is used 217 times in the New American Standard Version of the Old Testament. Using my Holman's New American Standard
Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible with Hebrew-Aramaic and Greek Dictionaries, I find that in 213 cases, the original Heb/Aram word behind the
English word "spirit", is the Heb/Aram word "ruach". That is to say, that in only 4 uses of the English word, "spirit", was there a word in the
original text that was NOT "ruach".
This word, "ruach", also occurs in other places in the Old Testament. For whatever reason, in those passages, the translators felt it best to use
another English word, other than "spirit". Here are the other words they chose:
air (used 2 times), anger (1 time), blast (2), breath (31), breathless (1), cool (1), courage (1), despondancy (1), exposed (1), grief (1), heart (1),
inspired (1), mind (3), motives (1), points (1), quick-tempered (1), side (4), sides (2), strength (1), temper (2), thoughts (1), trustworthy (1),
wind (96), winds (8), windy (2), wrath (1).
Now, to get a sense of the usual uses of the word "ruach", here are some selected (few) passages containing the word. In each verse, you'll find
one or more words in ALL CAPS, which indicates the English word that has been translated from the word "ruach". Obviously, I cannot type out all 213
occurances, so these are my own selections.
"And the earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep; and the SPIRIT (ruach) of God was moving over the surface of the
The water prevailed fifteen cubits higher, and the mountains were covered. And all flesh that moved on the earth perished, birds and cattle and beasts
and every swarming thing that swarms upon the earth, and all mankind; all that was on the dry land, all in whose nostrils was the breath (neshamah) of
the SPIRIT (ruach) of life (chayyim), died.
2 Kings 2:15
Now when the sons of the prophets who were at Jericho opposite him saw him, they said, "The SPIRIT (ruach) of Elijah rests on Elisha." And they came
to meet him and bowed themselves to the ground before him.
Into Thy hand I commit my SPIRIT (ruach); Thou hast ransomed me, O Lord, God of truth.
Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast SPIRIT (ruach) within me. Do not cast me away from Thy presence, And do not take Thy Holy
SPIRIT (ruach) from me.
(The word "ruach" is also used to denote "evil spirits"...)
"Then a SPIRIT (ruach) passed by my face; The hair of my flesh bristled up.
The word "soul". is used 244 times in the New American Standard Version of the Old Testament. Using my Holman's New American Standard Exhaustive
Concordance of the Bible with Hebrew-Aramaic and Greek Dictionaries, I find that in 240 cases, the original Heb/Aram word behind the English word
"soul", is the Heb/Aram word "nephesh". That is to say, that in only 4 uses of the English word, "soul", was there a word in the original text
that was NOT "nephesh".
This word, "nephesh", also occurs in other places in the Old Testament. For whatever reason, in those passages, the translators felt it best to use
another English word, other than "soul". Here are the other words they chose:
any (1 time), any-one (3), appetite (7), being (2), beings (3), body (1), breath (1), corpse (2), creature (6), creatures (3), dead (3), deadly (1),
death (1), defenseless (1), desire (12), desire (2), discontented (1), endure (1), feelings (1), fierce (2), greedy (1), heart (5), heart's (2),
herself (12), himself (23), human (1), hunger (1), life (148), lifeblood (2), lives (34), living creature (1), longing (1), man (4), man's (1), men
(2), mind (2), myself (2), ourselves (3), own (1), passion (1), people (3), perfume (1), person (90), slave (1), some (1), some (1), strength (1),
themselves (6), thirst (1), throat (2), will (1), wish (2), yourself (24)
The Hebrew word 'shamayim' which is defined as the sky', the place where the clouds and stars are, or 'shamayin', the Aramaic word of the same
definition. Psalms 68:4 it is translated from the Hebrew, arabah, the desert 77:18 the word is galgal, Hebrew for wheel or whirlwind '
89:6 & 37 where it is translated from the word shachaq, Hebrew for powder or thin vapor .
The Hebrew word for angel is mal'ak, which means to dispatch as a deputy; messenger; ambassador. The Greek word for angel is aggelos, which means to
bring tidings; a messenger. The word angel is used, in one form or another, 198 times in the Bible. Common angels are real personal beings with
personal bodies and personal souls including feelings, emotions, passions and desires as well as personal spirits including all intellectual powers as
we know them.
The Bible is the Abridged Version. There have been close to fifty versions or translations of the bible throughout history and there are actual large
volumes of gospels that were omitted from the ultra-popular King James version. Essentially, as soon as someone found a disparity, which was
invariably, they would excise a chapter that didn't agree with their version of Christianity. This led to the formation of God's Beatles - Matthew,
Mark, Luke, and John - whose gospels were chosen as the definitive volumes.