The creation story in Genesis tells us that all humanity bears the image of God. We were made to share responsibility for the earth, expressing authority over it in a way that reflects God’s character – with creativity, generosity, and love. However, humanity has rewritten God’s intended story. The Bible tells of our history: greed, theft, hate, and war. We see it still today; across our social media feeds, on the news, and in our own neighborhoods. Our world cries out because of suffering and injustice.
How do you feel when you hear about migrant families being torn apart? When you read about human trafficking happening right where you live? When weapons are welded on the innocent? Even though the darkness can seem overwhelming at times, Romans 8 gives us fresh hope and assurance: Jesus came to deliver creation from its corruption.
God’s story of restoration intends to see humanity honoring each other, encouraging and supporting each other to fully reflect Him. Understanding that every person is an image bearer of God should have an impact on the way we live our lives. It means we should recognize each other as equals in value and dignity, and recognize that every person has a unique potential to be creative and productive and to contribute towards the good of the whole creation.
As Christians, if we are seeking to show the love of God and reveal what it means to live under the Lordship of Christ then our lives must echo the belief in our shared identity as God’s image bearers. Our actions should never suggest that anyone is lesser within creation.
Sometimes human rights are regarded skeptically within the Christian community because of the way they can focus on the individual at the expense of the community; however, they are a biblical way of recognizing people as bearers of God’s image. Are there any people or groups who you think are less worthy, for whatever reason? Think about how God sees each of them as His child. Does that affect how you feel about them?
Lord, thank you for creating me in your image. Help me reflect your values in how I treat others and to see the worth of every person. I pray for those who are suffering from injustice. Show me how I can partner with you to help bring justice and peace to them. Amen.