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Summary: Christian Worldview includes our status as creatures made in the image of God.

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The Big Picture -

A Holy Reflection

Bible Reading:

Genesis 1: 26-31; 11: 1-9

John 17: 15-26

PREPARED BY

KEN GEHRELS

PASTOR

CALVIN CHRISTIAN REFORMED CHURCH

NEPEAN, ONTARIO

Last week we spent some time together in space. We took an Apollo 17 view of the world, trying to understand how God sees us. What’s His view of the world? How does that affect our view of the world?

It came as the second in our series on Christian worldview.

We began two weeks ago, saying that when you talk about what matters most, what is of value and what is not, where our priorities lie and what is disposable -

what we’re talking about is Worldview

the basic collection of attitudes, values, and approaches that directs what the eye sees how the heart responds, and what the mind processes.

Worldview is there,shaping and directing absolutely everything.

Then, with Bible in hand, staring from space back to earth, we realized just how important this creation is to its Creator.

Scripture begins on a beautiful, perfect earth.

Scripture ends on a beautiful, perfect earth.

In between Scripture is the history of redeeming this earth.

Today we’re going to zoom in on that picture.

We want to focus on those who inhabit the earth - humanity specifically.

Is there something special about how God views us?

How does that, in the context of Worldview, affect how we view each other?

The "launching pad" for our discussion is, like last week, right at the beginning of the Bible -

Genesis 1: 26-31

Holy God - Father, Son and Holy Spirit - in a Trinity conference make a decision: "Let us make man in our image...."

And they did - male and female, in the image of God.

Little wee beings,

on a tiny blue planet.

Little wee beings,

- like -

God.

And that is a central part of how we view this world and our role in it.

It helps, as we seek to appreciate this point, just what is meant by "image of God." I suppose we could speculate all we want, or superimpose our own opinions on the thing - and do it till the proverbial cows came home.

But let’s begin by having a peek back at what people would have understood by such a phrase in the days when Genesis was put to writing.

One of the things that is found from time to time in explorations around the sites of ancient civilizations are statues of the kings who reigned in those days, images of the king. These were erected by the ancient rulers in the various corners of their kingdoms to make the statement that they were in charge there. When a person saw the image they saw, through that image, a picture of the King and his power and his working.

When God guided Moses to write Genesis, this is the thought he wished to convey to the people --

that the King of the Cosmos placed images, likenesses, of Himself in the outposts of his empire

to represent Him,

to make the statement for all to hear that He is in charge.

Male and female, flesh and blood images,

living, thinking, responsible and creative images,

who were given the mandate of actually doing some of the work of the King on his behalf.

Humanity was made, then, as royalty.

That’s why Luke 3 calls Adam "the son of God".

They were immortal spiritual and physical beings whose actions differed from the actions of dogs because they, unlike the dogs, were accountable to the King for them.

Humanity carries, in their image bearing, ruling responsibility.

We are responsible for how we live in Creation, and what we do with it.

We are responsible to creatively develop it, and to carefully preserve it.

We are responsible for the outcome; no copping out or shirking of this duty.

That’s the first part.

But not the only one. In addition to the responsibility of ruling, there is the responsibility of relationship.

God made multiple image bearers, not just one. And the first act He performed was to bring those image bearers together into covenant relationship with each other. Genesis 2 tells us of Adam and Eve.

The Gospel of John narrates the prayer of Jesus, which amplifies what Genesis first portrays. In it Jesus clearly shows that we are like God, we represent God to the world by the way that we can live in unity as a larger community -

joined together as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are joined together.

Let’s read that together -

JOHN 17: 15-26

That, too, is part of a Christian way of viewing the world and life in it.

No Christian worth their salt can buy into that very cheap and very common idea that "I’ll do what I need and want to do and you go out and do what you need and want to do."

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