Our world is wrestling with questions of justice, equality, and reconciliation. What does it mean that all humans are equal? What does it mean to practice justice? And what hope do we have for reconciliation?
In response to these issues, we are often quick to share our opinion but slow to turn to the Word of God. Over the next seven days, we want to take a deeper look at what the Bible says about justice, equality, and reconciliation. The Bible has wisdom to teach us, and we believe it’s time to let the Word speak.
In the opening chapters of the Bible, we read something amazing. First, we read that God makes all things good. He creates the sun, moon, and stars, the sky and sea, the dry land, and all creatures. Then He creates humanity—man and woman—and says something unique about them: They bear His image.
What does that mean? In the Bible, “image” is the same word used to describe the idols that foreign nations would set up and worship. These idol statues represented both the physical and symbolic presence of that god on earth.
This is what God declares about humanity. Each person is unique in our appearance and gifting, yet the Bible says that all of us are a physical and symbolic representation of God on earth. King David reflects on this amazing reality in Psalm 8, where he writes that God has crowned humans with glory and honor.
The Bible is clear that human dignity is to be taken very seriously. In Genesis 9, God tells Noah that taking a human life is far worse than killing an animal. And in James 3, James writes that we don’t understand the value of life if we praise God at one moment but in the next curse people who God made in his image.
Jesus came as the perfect representation of God. Every human has failed to image God perfectly, but the author of Hebrews says that Jesus is the exact representation of God’s being. Jesus shows us what it means to be human. The last pages of the Bible set forth a hope for a day when people will stand together and worship God from every tribe, tongue, nation, and language—a diverse yet unified image of God.
As you read the Scriptures for today, reflect on what it means to be created in the image of God—to be God’s physical and symbolic representation on earth. And may our eyes turn to Jesus, who is the perfect representation of God.