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
As a purposeful trick of the calendar, we find ourselves this week between two generally recognized Sundays in many Evangelical congregations. This past Sunday (January 16th) and this next Sunday (January 23rd) highlight Racial Reconciliation Sunday and Sanctity of Life Sunday, respectfully.
We find ourselves between these two great beacons of opportunity to give warning to ships at sea, and we must use these opportunities amidst the storms of chaos, and the storms of complacency. The two Sundays serve as two resolute light houses warning us to steer clear of the rocks before we crash.
The central guiding light of both issues is this: the image of God. Every little baby is a precious rendition of His magnificent image. So it follows that everyone, no matter ethnic origin or grouping of ethnic origins, is created in God’s likeness. This alone gives human beings intrinsic value above and beyond anything else on planet Earth – their lives belong to their Creator.
We know that we are created in His image, not because God has arms and legs, but because we realize that there are rights and wrongs, we have the capacity for love – and the capacity for anger. However, we are un-tempered like our Creator, and taking His place on the thrones of our hearts, we may easily push our limits to obsession and hatred. We have creative minds and hearts and we will create our own worlds of misery or of order. This depends on our reliance upon self or reliance upon the One who endowed us with this capacity. We are, as the narrative in Genesis tells us, fallen.
Realizing that individuals are cast in an image or likeness is also indicative of the fact that we are not the One whom projects the image. We, therefore, do not have the freedom to take His place in judgment of an individual solely based on his or her ethnic make-up, nor we do have the authority to decide who makes it outside of the womb.
Jesus is the light that shines in the darkness (John 1:5). Those of us called to spread the Gospel are commissioned to carry the Light. Between these two beacons, let us warn the battered ships before they dash against the rocks, and let us arrive safely at home where life is indeed precious, and individuals worship their Creator on level ground beneath His grace and mercy. Brothers! Preach this word. If you do not have a text, use the one above. Those who fail to recognize these issues give a silent vote to the ongoing problems inherent in both of these issues – and these issues will wreck not only the church, but civilization as a whole.
For additional helpful thoughts, read John Piper’s Brothers We are Not Professionals (B&H 2002) chapters 26 and 27, “Brothers, Sever the Root of Racism,” and “Brothers, Blow the Trumpet for the Unborn.”
 The two dates coincide with Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday and the Supreme Court Decision of Roe v. Wade.