Deeper Study Box 2: Implications of Believing Human Beings were Created by God
Because we are created in God’s image, the structure of our very bodies
is an imperative to give ourselves totally to His cause (Mt. 22:19-21).
Whatever bears God’s image- i.e. our very bodies- must be given to Him.
“It is he that hath made us, and [therefore] we are his” (Ps. 100:3 RV).
We must be His in practice because He is our creator. So it is
not that we merely believe in creation rather than evolution; more than
this, such belief in creation must elicit a life given over to that creator.
God created man in His own image; and therefore we shouldn’t curse men
(James 3:9). By reason of the image they bear, we are to act to all men
as we would to God Himself; we are not to treat some men as we would animals,
who are not in the image of God. Because we are made in God’s image, we
should therefore not kill other humans (Gen. 9:6). James says the same,
in essence, in teaching that because we are in God’s image, we shouldn’t
curse others. To curse a man is to kill him. That’s the point of James’
allusion to Genesis. Quite simply, respect for the person of others is
inculcated by sustained reflection on the way that they too are created
in God’s image. It's one of the many implications of creationism.
Watch Our Behaviour
Ps. 94:8,9 tells the fools to be wise and watch their behaviour, because
“He that planted the ear, shall he not hear? He that formed the eye, shall
he not see?”. Reflection on the fact that God truly is our personal designer
and creator will lead to an awareness that He therefore sees and knows
all things. These first principles powerfully link up, to exhort us to
live life and speak our words knowing we are in the very presence of our
creator. And remember that it was reflection upon the extent and nature
of God’s creative power which lead to Job’s repentance; it isn’t something
we can passively reflect upon. Just because “Thy hands have made me and
fashioned me: [therefore] give me understanding, that I may learn thy
commandments” (Ps. 119:73). David realized that because he had been made
in God’s physical image he had a duty to desire to be spiritually reformed
in His moral image; and thus he sought strength to be obedient to God’s
It is often forgotten that work is a consequence of creation, not the
fall. It is intended by God as a means to partnership with Him and self-fulfilment
as He intended. This is what is so wrong with the spirit of laziness which
is inculcated by alcohol culture. There is almost an ambition to obtain
as much time as possible for ‘relaxation’ with the bottle; whereas labour
in whatever form was intended by God from creation.
The Value of Persons
Only those who believe that we were created by God and have the possibility
of eternal redemption can truly perceive the value of persons. Only
they can grasp the worth of human beings, that we are not mere animals,
but there is a wonder to human life which inspires us to seek to
save humans through the preaching of the Gospel. John Stott has
powerfully commented: “When human beings are devalued, everything
in society goes sour. Women and children are despised; the sick
are regarded as a nuisance, and the elderly as a burden; ethnic
minorities are discriminated against; capitalism displays its ugliest
face; labour is exploited in the mines and factories; criminals
are brutalized in prison; opposition opinions are stifled; Belsen
is invented by the extreme right and Gulag by the extreme left;
unbelievers are left to die in their lostness; there is no freedom,
dignity, or carefree joy; human life seems not worth living, because
it is scarcely human any longer. But when human beings are valued,
because of their intrinsic worth, everything changes: women and
children are honoured; the sick are cared for and the elderly allowed
to live and die with dignity; dissidents are listened to; prisoners
rehabilitated, and minorities protected; workers are given a fair
wage, decent working conditions, and a measure of participation
in the enterprise; and the gospel is taken to the ends of the earth.
Why? Because people matter, because every man, woman, and child
has significance as a human person made in the image of God”.