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(Part 8)


May 01, 2012
Today’s reading: Genesis 1:26-2:3

We look at the very beginning and draw basic realities according to the plan of God for the life of the world. We see that in the beginning, “the Lord God formed man out of the clay of the ground and blew into his nostrils the breath of life, and so man became a living being.” (Gen 2:7). It is God who is the Creator, the Author of life. “All things came to be through him, and without him nothing came to be. What came to be through him was life” (Jn 1:3-4a). God created life and God created the human race.

Then we see that “God created man in his image; in the divine image he created him; male and female he created them.” (Gen 1:27). Man is made in the very image of God. As such, man is endowed with profound dignity. David was awed. “Yet you have made them little less than a god, crowned them with glory and honor.” (Ps 8:6).

Further, “God blessed them, saying: ‘Be fertile and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it.” (Gen 1:28a). God intends man to procreate and to populate the whole earth. “Have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and all the living things that move on the earth.” (Gen 1:28b). God gave authority and rule over the whole world to man. “The Lord God then took the man and settled him in the garden of Eden, to cultivate and care for it.” (Gen 2:15). God has given man the task of caring for His creation.

God also said: “See, I give you every seed-bearing plant all over the earth and every tree that has seed-bearing fruit on it to be your food.” (Gen 1:29). God provides the food that man needs in order to survive.

According to the above realities, what are the implications? What principles of life can we draw?

First, since God is the Creator, only He has the right to take away the life that He has created. Creatures belong to their Creator. Unlike at the time of slavery, no human being owns another human being. At the moment of conception, God creates a living human being, infused with His breath of life. There is no place for abortion, where women claim they own their bodies and thus the child within their womb. There is no place for euthanasia or assisted suicide.

Second, since we are created in the image of God, then there is an innate dignity that reflects the very glory of the Creator. As such, no one has the right to demean or denigrate that life or image. There is no place for degrading sexual practices, for pornography, for sex trafficking, for the culture of drugs, for torture and acts of violence like hazing.

Third, since God created only male and female, then there is no third sex. There is no LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender). Aside from male and female, there is no diversity of sexuality and gender identity-based cultures. There is no place for same-sex unions, much less same-sex marriage.

Fourth, since God created a suitable partner for man (Gen 2:18), with whom he becomes one body (Gen 2:24), and with whom he brings children into the world (Gen 1:28a), we are to look to marriage that is permanent, that reflects both the unitive and procreative intent of the Creator. Thus there is no place for divorce.

Fifth, since God commanded man to be fertile and multiply, we are to obey and procreate. We are to have as many children as we can reasonably and responsibly care for. There is no place for population control, as we certainly have not filled the earth. We should not look to subtracting from the peoples of the world, but rather to add, nay, to multiply. There is no place for contraception or sterilization.

Sixth, since God has given rule over the world to man, we are to care for our world and for the environment. We are to help ensure that life according to God’s intent truly happens. There is no place for corruption, pollution, environmental degradation, wanton destruction of forests, irresponsible mining, overfishing or filling outer space with junk.

Seventh, since God provided everything that man needed in order to have a satisfying and full life, we are to look to abundance and prosperity. There is no place for poverty or subhuman living.

When God finished creating, He “looked at everything he had made, and he found it very good.” (Gen 1:31a).

What God created is good, and the principles He established for His creation are what will sustain such goodness.

In paradise, God had established the culture of life.

(Excerpts from my coming book, “Forty Days of Life”)

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