Summary: What is the nature of man? 1) He is a marred being. 2) He is a dying being. 3) He is an eternal being.
THE NATURE OF MAN
GENESIS 1: 26-27, 2: 7
1. Illus. of teenager
• Went into room and slammed door, saying under breath, “people, people, PEOPLE!”
• Mom went to door and said, “what’s wrong?” Girl replied, “people, that’s what’s wrong!”
• “Let me in, and we’ll talk about it.” “No, you’re a people too!”
2. Have you ever felt that way? “I don’t understand people, I don’t know what’s wrong with people, and I don’t know why people act the way they do sometimes!” Have you ever wished you knew what makes your boss, spouse, or best friend tick?
3. If you are ever going to understand what makes people tick, you will have to understand their basic nature. The best place to learn about man’s basic nature is Genesis, where the creation of man is explained!
4. Text: As he wrote about the creation of man, Moses also wrote about the basic nature of man.
5. Today: although people come in all shapes, sizes, and colors, every human being has the same basic nature.
6. What are these basic elements of human nature?
I. WE ARE ALL MARRED BEINGS
1. See 1: 26-27 God created Adam “imago dei,” in His image.
2. This doesn’t mean that Adam looked like God physically, that God had two hands and feet etc. It does mean that Adam looked like God spiritually and intellectually.
3. If we could have gone to the Garden, we wouldn’t have been around Adam 5 minutes before we would have said, “Adam can think and reason, Adam can create, Adam can make moral decisions, Adam is attracted to that which is just and good. He bears the image of God!”
4. Unfortunately, something happened. (3: 6-7). Because of this first sin, Adam’s nature was marred and corrupted, including the image of God.
5. Illus. of video tape
• Left it accidentally in back window of car in summer.
• Could still recognize it as a video tape, but it was warped and twisted.
• Bible teaches us that Adam’s sin did that to the image of God within him. It marred and corrupted it.
6. That twisting and marring was passed down to each of Adam’s children. We bear the image of God, but it is so hopelessly corrupted by sin that it is sometimes hardly recognizable. That’s why people originally created in the perfect image of God can:
• Kill an innocent child
• Fill body with drugs and booze
• Get addicted to pornography
• Steal a $100 bill
• Live a sexually immoral lifestyle
7. See II Corinthians 3: 18. When we receive Jesus as Savior, He begins the process of recreating that image in its purest form. The job won’t be complete until we see Jesus, but that’s where we are headed spiritually.
II. WE ARE ALL DYING BEINGS
1. See Genesis 2: 7a. Adam’s physical nature was formed from the dust of the ground. If you could read this verse in Hebrew, there is a play on words that emphasizes how close our linkage to the dust really is. “formed man… = adam. “of the ground…” = adamah.
2. So what if we are dust? Genesis 3: 19. From the moment of our conception, we are terminal.
3. Illus. of Thomas Donaldson (Contemporary Illus. #33)
• His name is Thomas Donaldson, and he hopes that he has cheated death.