Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” – Genesis 1:26-28
It is clear from the very first chapter of the Genesis what God intended for us. We were created, man and woman, in His image; we were to have dominion over His creation and rule it as He ordained it and ordered it. And in Adam and Eve, that is what we did, if even for the briefest time. Then we began, as the human race, to have a long-standing and oft-times all-consuming love/hate relationship with…sin. Starting in Genesis 3 we see the effects, the impacts and the consequences of our sin nature and decisions. Sin became a wave that has rolled through the ages, through the generations; sin is something that even we who have been born again must struggle with and deal with. And so shall all do until the Second Coming of Jesus Christ restores the world into a right relationship with God. Many lives will be lost, ruined by sin; many tears shed in agony and sorrow as we go forth until that blessed day arrives. Yes, we who are of His Church will be raptured out before the most horrible of time of the seven-year tribulation, but there is no promise of avoidance of persecution, of painful testing of faith, of possible death for just believing in the Lord Jesus Christ or having the temerity to proclaim His Name with our lips. Our Savior suffered to save us; we may well suffer before we see Him. Mankind boldly and with pride continually claims dominion over the world, and people try to claim it over each other in a continuing struggle that will culminate in the antichrist making the claim to be a god himself.
Why would we think that in our gross disobedience we have any right to exercise our claims of dominion as granted to humanity through Adam in Genesis 1?
Before destruction the heart of a man is haughty, And before honor is humility. – Proverbs 18:12
Pride, pure and simple, is our motivator, our driving force and always proves to be our ultimate downfall. Humanity revels in the self-deluding notion of being self-made. We take pride in our accomplishments, shake our fists at and openly defy a God who would rightly (and lovingly, but harshly if needed) teach us otherwise. A God who would graciously accept us into His family if we would but repent and give ourselves through faith and trust in Christ Jesus. But for the most part (and this has been true throughout the history of humanity) we choose not to accept His free gift offering but continue to build by the sweat of our brow (and the pride of our hearts) that which will never stand up and pass through His consuming fire. What are we to do with such people?
Sever yourselves from such a man, Whose breath is in his nostrils; For of what account is he? – Isaiah 2:22
We are to be in this world but not of it, we are to proclaim Christ to the ears of the world that are itching to be tickled with false teaching. We are to do it no matter what, and not grow discouraged. But we need make sure we sever ourselves from “such a man” as noted is the passage of Isaiah 2 that lives within each of us by our sin nature. For we would be no better than the world if not for trust in Christ and the indwelling Spirit that is the result. It is His Spirit that prompts and convicts us when “such a man” rears his ugly head within; it is His Spirit that prompts and emboldens us to speak the Gospel to non believers or rebuke our brothers and sisters in Christ when “such a man” rears up in others. Where is the hope as we struggle through this daily battle, which at times exhausts and discourages even the most faithful among us?
Blessed are the meek, For they shall inherit the earth. – Matthew 5:5
Meekness, a strength under control and discipline. Humility, an attitude that we do not accept that we are less than we are, but that we accept exactly who we are, and who we would be without Christ in our lives. Meekness and humility, lived out in a life of faith and trust in Jesus Christ, will see us though any ordeal as purposed in God’s will and bring us to the point where we will one day co-rule and co-reign through Christ in His Millennial Kingdom.
He who will make all things new has made us a new creation in Christ. 2015 may be another year of “such a man” in Isaiah 2, but it might be the year Jesus calls His True Church home. We may live in that first type of year, but should live as if the second type is coming to pass.
We should live as “such a man” as the Lord would have us, not the world. And we should do so today because…
Jesus is coming soon!