Gospel Song – Soul of a Man

Gospel Song – Soul of a Man

Gospel Song – Soul of a Man.

Blind Willie Johnson, the legendary gospel blues musician, recorded this classic song in 1930. Blind Willie was unsurpassed in terms of songs that have stood the test of time. He only recorded about 30 songs, in the late 1920’s, and they all continue to get a lot of attention from blues singers and gospel musicians. Virtually all his sings refer to Scripture, have been called “sanctified blues,”  and succeed in stimulating the listener’s faith. For more on the life and ministry of Blind Willie Johnson, refer to the post “Let your light from the lighthouse shine on me.”

LYRICS – Soul of a Man

I’m going to ask a question, please answer if you can.

Is there anybody’s children can tell me, what is the soul of a man?

Chorus: Won’t somebody tell me, answer if you can. Won’t somebody tell me, what is the soul of a man?

I’ve travelled different countries, travelled to the furthest lands.

Couldn’t find nobody could tell me, what is the soul of a man.


I saw a crowd stand talking, I just came up in time.

Was teaching the lawyers and the doctors, that a man ain’t nothing but his mind.


I read the Bible often, I try to read it right.

As far as I can understand, it’s nothing but a burning light. 


When Christ taught in the temple, the people all stood amazed.

Was teaching the lawyers and the doctors, how to raise a man from the grave.


Soul of a Man – YouTube


Blind Willie is highlighting a mystery, an aspect of creation that defies definition. Astoundingly, God is able to create something that exists, but is invisible, intangible, immaterial in each person. We can’t see the soul, or touch it, smell it, taste it, hear it. But the soul is there just as surely as one’s nose and toes. The soul is a deep mystery. What does it consist of? What can we point to when we want to prove its existence? Bible writers offer a variety of ways to describe the soul, but a precise definition is hard to come by. Jesus once said, “Don’t be afraid of those who want to kill your body. They cannot touch your soul.” (Matt. 10:28). Jesus seems to be saying that there is something that exists as an intimate part of each person that only God can touch. Only God knows and protects our true foundational self. The soul has been described as the intangible center of our personality, the distinctive inner core of each person, the seat of our affections, emotions, desires. The inner self that makes us individuals. The spiritual and immortal part of a person, the part that exists because of God’s breath of life. Some believe that the soul is God’s breath in each of us, because after God gave breath to Adam, Scripture says, “Man became a living soul.” (Gen. 2:7).

Soul of a Man – Ramblin’ Jack – YouTube

Amazingly, it seems that God has given us at least a measure of control over how our souls operate. We are to love God “with all our souls.” (Deuteronomy 6:15). Does this mean that we are able to refuse to engage our souls when we feel like it? Jesus commanded us to do this too, in Mark 12:29-30. Does this mean we can apply our souls to love, or not to love? This seems to be a fearsome power that God has given us in our weakness and frailty. Lord strengthen us to engage our souls in our love for you.

Tom Waits – The Soul of a Man (2016 HD) – YouTube