Thursday, April 21, 2016

Our worth… God's glory

God says we alone are in his image (nothing else in all the universe is LIKE God!). Because of this we are of tremendous value and worth to God for only we can reflect God (who is of infinite, eternal and absolute worth) back to him and out to others in a way no other creature or created thing can. Other than his eternal Son, who is the radiance of his glory and the exact representation of his nature, we are the most capable of this. 

We were created to recognize and participate in God himself, the most valuable (most High) of all and to be infinitely valued/loved by him. Our worth and value is precisely because we have the capacity to show forth, bring attention to and awareness of the greatest and most worthy of all beings, only second to Christ himself, our "big" brother. And only we have the capacity to receive God's love, appreciate and enjoy his glory in a manner equivalent to God's (Jesus) receiving and enjoying it. 

Incredible as all this is, we reject this because we prefer to be our own god. We value our independence more than our true joy.

This state of being like God, in his image has nothing to do with what we can do for God or provide him (do some good work/performance such as covering our shame with fig leaves) but is based solely on what he has given us, on who God has made us to be (LIKE God himself!) and not on what we can do. And that is our problem. We want our identity based on what we do, not who he has made us to be and actually are. 

Because we are disconnected from God, the grounds/source of our being/value, we live with a subtle, buried and deep sense of guilt, shame, worthlessness and inadequacy. Therefore we are now always seeking to do things to prove we are important and valuable, not worthless. We are constantly attempting to prove our worth by our actions.

Our having a hard time accepting that we are worth God's love (because of who he created us to be [creatures in his image] ) is actually a subtle form of rebellious unbelief. God tells us we are designed by him, for life in him. Why? To enjoy him as much as possible, we must be like him as much as possible without actually being him. And since this is so, we can not function properly without a relationship (being united) with him.

Yet we refuse to recognize this and reject this status (offered to us by God through Christ, not earned by us) and attempt to be our own god; to hang on to the lie that we can operate without him and even do something to prove our worth by our independent efforts to earn God's love. This simply is contrary to who God designed us to be i.e. who we actually are and who he tells us we are. And this is the very attitude (distrust/unbelief) that keeps us from reconnecting with God through the provision he has made for us in Christ.

For a discussion of our worth in relation to sin click here

For a discussion on tension between being and doing click here

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Grace to you
Jim Deal