*An Old Testament Biblical Theology paper:

The Image of God

God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness … So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:26, 27). That God would make man from the dust, breathing the breath of life into his nostrils, and give him dominion over the rest of creation, is a distinction that set man apart from the rest of the created order (Genesis 2:7, 1:28). In The Mission of God: Unlocking the Bible’s Grand Narrative, author Christopher Wright explains that the image of God, or imago dei in Latin, in humanity is a matter of essence, something that we are, not something that we merely possess (Wright 421, 2010). Wright illuminates the imago dei concept further by explaining that the expression, “is adverbial (that is, it describes the way God made us), not adjectival (that is, as if it simply descried a quality that we possess) … To be human is to be [my emphasis] the image of God” (421). However, the lofty notion that humanity has the image of God, asserted so clearly in the earliest chapters of Genesis, begs the question; what does the image of God —in which humanity was made— mean?  Read on »

It is only possible to succeed at second-rate pursuits — like becoming a millionaire or a prime minister, winning a war, seducing beautiful women, flying through the stratosphere or landing on the moon. First-rate pursuits involving, as they must, trying to understand what life is about and trying to convey that understanding — inevitably result in a sense of failure. A Napoleon, a Churchill, a Roosevelt can feel themselves to be successful, but never a Socrates, a Pascal, a Blake. Understanding is for ever unattainable. Therein lies the inevitability of failure in embarking upon its quest, which is none the less the only one worthy of serious attention.

- Malcom Muggeridge

Whoever trusts in his own mind is a fool,
but he who walks in wisdom will be delivered.

- Proverbs 28:26

If those that are in reputation for religion in any thing set a bad example, they know not what a deal of mischief they may do by it, particularly to their own children. One bad act of a good man may be of more pernicious consequence to others than twenty of a wicked man.

- Matthew Henry

Let us endeavor so to live that when we come to die even the undertaker will be sorry.

— Mark Twain

“Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves.” (Philippians 2:3, NLT)

#VALIDATIONVIASOCIALMEDIA?

Do you use social media to draw attention to yourself? Do you worry about the number of likes and comments you get? Since we sometimes do permissible—or even good—things for bad reasons, it is worth considering what characterizes and motivates your e-behavior. Could it be that deep down you are using social media to find validation from others? More importantly, when God looks under the surface into the recesses of your heart (Jeremiah 17:10), what does He find?

If we’re honest, we can acknowledge that we often look for others to subdue our fears and help us feel important instead of letting God meet our deepest needs. Accordingly, social media can be the arena where people-pleasers go to binge. Read on »

Refusal to retaliate against injustice is only tolerable if one is assured of justice eventually.

Thielman, Theology of The New Testament

Repost via Anthony Bradley, professor of theology and ethics at The King’s College in New York:

Two of my heroes who promoted racial reconciliation after the civil rights movement are J. Deotis Roberts and John M. Perkins. In different ways these two men both wanted to see the church of Jesus Christ provide a post civil rights era image of racial unity and peace. While there has been much progress, many of their dreams have yet to come true.

But I am convinced that the church will only be able to lead society on race if it moves beyond reconciliation and pursues racial solidarity, which means embracing our common human dignity (Genesis 1:26-28) as a human family in ways that celebrate and respect differences between ethnic communities for the common good. This is beyond the failed concept of “color-blindness” and recognizes the importance of racial, ethnic, and ideological differences as a catalyst for loving our neighbor’s well (Matthew 22:36-40; John 17).

As such, I believe racial reconciliation has largely failed for four reasons:

  1. Racial reconciliation fails to interrogate white privilege. There is no denying the dominant cultural group in America is Caucasians. Being a white person in America comes with many unarticulated advantages. In 1988, Peggy McIntosh launched a national discussion by suggesting a framework to engage this discussion-a topic that evangelicals have yet to explore. White privilege has been defined this way: “A right, advantage, or immunity granted to or enjoyed by white persons beyond the common advantage of all others; an exemption in many particular cases from certain burdens or liabilities.” Read on »

A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls.

- Proverbs 25:28