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Who and What are We?

Murderers deserve to die. Human beings are above animals. Aborting a baby’s life is wrong. All men are equal regardless of the color of their skin. These statements may be considered bold, but a simple phrase found early in the Bible addresses these issues.

God made us in His image. “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them” (Gen. 1:26-27). Since God is spirit and not earthly (John 4:24), the image of God must be a spiritual likeness. We have a spirit that cannot be touched or seen. That spirit gives us the ability to reason and talk. It enables us to choose. It means that we have a conscience. Our bodies are made from dust, and dust cannot give us these amazing capacities. Only the image of God can do all this.

An unborn child is made in the image of God because the age and size of a human being’s body does not give him moral value. His immortal spirit given to him by God at conception defines him as a child and not a piece of tissue (Luke 1:36; Heb. 12:9). To take that child’s life before birth is as wrong as taking his life afterward. The problem with people who condone or commit abortion is that they are closing their eyes to what really gives worth to human life — the image of God inside.

Animals don’t have an immortal spirit. From the beginning God said we have the power and the right to dominate them and use them for our benefit (Gen. 1:26,28). There is nothing wrong with killing animals for food and clothing (Gen. 9:3; 3:21). If animal rights protestors had lived in the early days of this country they would have admitted this or starved.

These are strange times, however. God made us spiritually in His image and physically as males and females, but spoiled children and adults who live in foolish and rebellious imagination defy the nature God gave them. It seems that many have an identity crisis far beyond what this expression used to mean. Now boys want to be girls, girls pretend to be boys, and parents are allowing their children to identify as dogs and cats and expect schools to supply leashes and litter boxes! Many in our morally insane culture have left God so far out of their thinking that they don’t know who or what they are anymore! But how can they know themselves without knowing their Creator?

God said it is right to kill and eat animals but wrong to kill innocent human beings. Why? “Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man” (Gen. 9:6). There is no controversy about the death penalty when we accept what God said in this verse.

The key to overcoming racism is not government legislation. It is recognizing that all people are made in the image of God and are equal in His sight regardless of their ethnicity. It does not take millions of dollars to understand this and put it into practice. This great truth was taught long ago in the Bible and it stands true in this age of darkness and confusion.


West End church of Christ bulletin article for October 9, 2022


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