Daily Scripture ReadingGenesis 1

Verse of the Day – Genesis 1:26-27
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.

Devotional Thoughts
God has a very specific design and purpose for the family. From the beginning He created us male and female. He has set distinct and complimentary roles for us to fulfill. Over the course of the next few days we will take time in our study Learning to Walk to examine key passages on parenting.

In order to understand the roles God has designed for us within the family we need to take the time today to answer a foundational question:

Why were we created?

Why did God create us in the first place. Before we look at His creating us male and female, why did He create human beings at all? We know that He knew we would fall into sin through Adam. He knew it would cost Him the life of His Son to redeem us and reconcile us to Himself. So why did He create us knowing all this? For the purposes of this study we will narrow the answer down to three reasons that God created mankind. God created us for fellowship, stewardship, and worship.

Fellowship – Gen 1:26

Let us start by admitting that God knew all along that He was going to create us. When He did, in the beginning, start to create all that is out of nothing, He worked through a daily progression. In six literal twenty-four hour days God worked from the decree “Let there be light” all the way to, “Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good.” Then He rested on the seventh day.

After creating the heavens and the earth, light, day and night, the sea and dry land, plants, sun, moon, and stars, sea creatures, birds, insects, and land animals He then topped His creation off with the creation of Man. God, the Three in One, declared, “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.”

He created us in His image. This means that He created us as spiritual beings that are relational, rational, and eternal. We have some of His characteristics, though we fall far short of His glory and holiness. We can reason, think, communicate, and relate. Our most basic relationships start in the family, but more on that later.

For now we see that God created us for fellowship. He desired fellowship with us. To commune, to walk and talk with us, to lead and guide us. It is not that He needed us. God is complete and sufficient in and of Himself and does not need anything. But, for His own purposes and pleasure, according to His own will, He wanted someone to fellowship with and commune with and relate to. Long before sin had broken the relationship between God and men, He had set a plan in motion to send His Son so that we have a Mediator who has come to reconcile us, the God-Man Christ Jesus!

Not only are we relational and rational – thinking beings – but we are spiritual and eternal. While we live in these earthly bodies, one day they will be changed. The mortal and finite flesh will be put off and we will put on immortality and perfection! We relate to God and to others on a spiritual level. I heard it said one time that just as an astronaut needs a space suit to live and function in space, so to we need an earth suit to live and function on earth! Our bodies, this earth suit, has been given to us so that we might live and glorify God. But this flesh is not eternal. It will die, it will be put away, it will be redeemed and glorified, and then we will live forever.

The truth that we must never forget is that all men are eternal beings – we will all live forever, somewhere.

Stewardship – Gen 1:27

We were also created for stewardship. God created us specifically to give us dominion over the earth He had created. So what is a steward? A steward is a representative. A steward does not own what he watches over and uses for his master. The master owns all in the stewards life, and the steward is responsible to the master for how he uses all he has been given in order to benefit the master and his house.

On so many levels we are stewards in God’s house. He owns it all. He is sovereign. And we are His slaves – bought and owned through the blood of Christ. All that we have belongs to Him and all that we do is for His glory and the benefit of His house.

In this regard, when it comes to being stewards over creation, we are co-workers with God tending creation. Listen to Psalm 8:4-9:

What is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him? For You have made him a little lower than the angels, and You have crowned him with glory and honor. You have made him to have dominion over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet, all sheep and oxen— even the beasts of the field, the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea that pass through the paths of the seas. O LORD, our Lord, how excellent is Your name in all the earth!

There we see what it is to have dominion over the earth. It is not the idea of wrecking and using creation without thought or with reckless abandon. We who believe in Christ above all people should be aware of the fact that we are His stewards over this earth. A steward uses the resources available but does so with wisdom and care, knowing that this is a sacred trust and that we will give an account to God for the kind of stewards that we are.

We also learn from the Scriptures that the best stewards are meek – and the meek shall inherit the earth! We who humble ourselves and trust Christ to save us will one day rule and reign with Him as His co-heirs of the Kingdom of God, including all of creation.

Worship/Glory – Ex 20:1-3; Matt 22:24-40

Thirdly today we see that we have been created to worship God. We are able to commune with Him, pray, sing praises, meditate on His Word, and witness to His gospel. He has made us not just to be subjects, friends, or servants. He has made us to worship Him. Man will never be as fulfilled as when he is praising and worshipping God.

The first four of the Ten Commandments tell us how to relate to God and they all give us directions for how to worship God. We worship Him alone. We worship Him as He commands and without icons. And we worship Him reverently, not taking His name in vain. And we worship Him as He has set out by example, keeping His day holy.

Further Jesus taught us that all of the Law and the prophets hang on two great commandments – love God with all that we are and love our neighbor as we love ourselves. Loving God with all that we are – heart, soul, mind, and strength, is to live in a constant state of worship, rejoicing always, praying without ceasing, and giving thanks in and for everything as we walk by faith.

God does not only want fellowship. He not only wants us to be good stewards. But He also wants us to worship Him in spirit and truth. These are all tied together – for as we fellowship we learn to be stewards and as we serve Him we learn how to worship and glorify Him in every situation.

And again, we see that Jesus makes this possible – He redeemed us, reconciled us to God, makes it possible for us to commune with Him, forgives our sins, and entrusts is with the living and preaching of His gospel. Truly, without Christ we cannot fellowship, serve, or worship God.

We have learned then that God created us of His own will and for His own reasons. This life is not about us – it is about Him and what He wants, His will. Have you thanked Him today for creating you so that you are able to fellowship with Him, serve Him, and worship Him? If not, please do so now.

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth, and God saw all that He had created and it was good.

Links for Further Study
(links to study each daily topic in more detail if you have the desire and the time)

God Created Us for His Glory by John Piper
The Creation of Man by John MacArthur

Bible Reading For Further Study
Genesis 1:26-27; Psalm 8:4-9; Ex 20:1-3; Matt 22:24-40
Psalm 89; 148

Recommended Songs for Worship
All Praise to God, Who Reigns Above
O Worship the King