Friday, February 8, 2019

Humans are Creatures

"The LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living being" (Genesis 2:7).

Today we begin a study on the nature of humanity. At the onset, we find in Genesis that human beings are created by God. We have our origin not in the flux of impersonal forces, in an impersonal cosmos, but rather in the personal decision of a personal God.

Secondly, we were created body and soul and still exist as body and soul. One of the continuing problems in philosophy is the question of the mind-body or soul-body distinction. It is pretty clear to all people that there is a consciousness that exists apart from the body, and men instinctively know that after death they will still exist. At the same time, the soul governs the body, and the body influences the mind or soul.

Thirdly, human beings were created male and female and still exist as male and female. There is no third sex. Genesis 1:27 indicates that humankind as a whole is made in the image of God, as well as each male and female person. Genesis 2 teaches that though there is but one image of God, there are two kinds of persons within this one image. Male and female are equal in essence, but different in function.

Fourthly, we were created with dominion over the creatures and still have it. Dominion is a function of our imaging of God, so that we reflect God’s attribute of rulership by ruling over the rest of the cosmos. Because of sin, man tends either to dominate the creation in a perverse manner, wrecking instead of cultivating it, or else to bow down and subject himself to the creation, permitting creation to have dominion over him.

Thus, we come to the last point, which is that we were created holy and righteous but no longer have these qualities. And because of this, all four of the aspects of humanity we have discussed have become warped and distorted.

The solution to the identity crises which so plagues us and our children is found in properly understanding who we are as created by God. If you are a parent you will find this study of human nature especially valuable for the insights you can use in teaching your children. Use these upcoming blog posts to discuss the real crisis precipitated by sin and its consequences.