“So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” – Genesis 1:27
“Then the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.” – Genesis 2:7
The Bible begins with the foundational Truth that there is a God and that He was “in the beginning” and everything was created by Him and for Him. This is an essential assumption that everything after Genesis 1:1 is based on. Every story, every chapter, every verse that follows reveals to us different characteristics of our loving Father and gives us insights into how He interacts with His creation. The Bible is not written to prove there is a God…His existence is a given…it is written to introduce us to God. David said, “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims His handiwork.” (Psalm 19:1). It is creation itself that proclaims that there is a God! Paul says it like this in Romans,
“For His invisible attributes, namely His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” – Romans 1:20
The words of Scripture not only give us insight about who God is, but it speaks into our hearts and minds the intentions of a God who is deeply interested and active in our lives personally. It actually speaks to us and directs us on how we can know Him better. So, our second step in this Lenten journey is a short one. We don’t even need to leave the garden. Our first lesson was God is a creator. The second lesson is God uniquely created you!
Shhhh…don’t tell the trees or the ocean or the eagle that soars through the sky or the stars in the heaven above, but…you are God’s favorite! Let me explain. I will start by pointing you to the Scripture above. You are different and unique because you were created “in His image”, hand made from the dust of the ground. God’s finger prints are all over you (see Psalm 139:13)! Second, He breathed into you the breath of life…His Spirit. He got down, face to face, breathed, and made man a “living being”. WOW!
These first words of the Bible give us insight into who we are and, also, what we were intended to be. Like the insights about God, they are foundational to our part of everything that happens in the rest of this grand story. I want to share with you 7 things that we can find “in the beginning” about how we were created.
First, as stated earlier, we are image bearers (Gen. 1:27) of the One who made us. We are created to live a life that glorifies, or gives testimony the Father. A work of art pointing to the Master who made it.
Second, we are dependent on Him for our life (Gen. 2:7).
Third, we are created to be productive stewards of the world that God placed us in. “The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.” (Gen. 2:15). In other words, we are created to work!
Fourth, we are created with a free will…a choice. “You may surely eat freely of every tree in the garden, but…” (Gen. 2:16,17). God loves you and wants you to “choose” to love Him. This is love by definition. You have a choice.
Fifth, we are responsible for our choices and the consequences of those decisions “…of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day you eat of it you shall surely die.” (Gen. 2:17). Sin comes with a warning label! You were not made for this!
Sixth, we were made to be communal, “Then the LORD God said, ‘It is not good for man to be alone.'” (Gen. 2:18). We are not made to be alone! It is the only time during the creation event that God says, “It is not good”. So, God created family. This is the DNA of God’s design for us.
Seventh, we were made to be selfless…unashamed…confident in our relationship with the Father “And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.” (Gen. 2:25). We are each uniquely created to be who we truly are before the Father without shame.