In His Image

Human beings are so powerful that we have the right and the power to choose our own way in this world and no being, not even God can move us off our chosen path, unless we let him.

We have a God, who has chosen to leave the decision of whether or not to acknowledge him, up to us. We have a Creator who chooses to stand at the door and knock instead of invading our holiest of holies, which, if he is creator, he can do. We have a God who (and I use this word very carefully) submits to our choice. Where the choice leads us to is a different matter, but we do have a creator who will not stop us from perishing or from living, if that is our choice.

This I think is a mystery and could make us think God is non-existent, or inactive at best because He has given us the space and the freedom to rule our world, without him. Human beings can seem to systematically and completely shut God out of their reality. In reality, no one can, in the sense that a software, no matter how artificially intelligent it is, cannot shut out its developer. Its intelligence is still below that of its creator, which implies there are boundaries. When it crashes by using its intelligence to act contrary to its creator’s intentions, it still needs its developer to fix it. In that sense, we cannot shut out our developer, “for in him we move, live and have our being” according to the scriptures. We exist within a context created by him and even our capacity to deny him is a gift.

We are softwares created originally in the image of the master developer and creator, known as the only wise God, who is also called Love. His love prompted him to make us in his image, which means we are like him, especially in terms of sovereignty. In our worlds, we rule, just like he rules the universe and all of creation. He has chosen to make us so godly that even He needs our permission to be known by us. In a sense, human beings denying the existence of God confirms the existence of God. On one hand, It is He who made us so powerful that we can deny him and prevent him. If we are this awesome, how much more our source? On the other hand, if God does not exist, in my little mind, I doubt very much that we will have even the remotest conception of the idea. I am not sure we will be capable of thinking about it or talking about it or debating it so much if it is not real. Darkness does not mean light does not exist. Darkness exists only because there is light and darkness is an indirect reference to light. In a sense, this is a smoke that indicates a real fire somewhere. C.S. Lewis, Philip Yancey and others have written a lot about that.

While God’s love prompted him to make us like himself in sovereignty over our private domains with or without him, his wisdom caused him to make himself indispensable and to create boundaries. He is technically indispensable because we still depend on God’s creation (regardless of our view regarding origins, at least things we did not create, like other humans, animals, plants, air, water, land, micro organisms, etc.) for our very existence. There are boundaries because we cannot become God and we cannot choose life (present or eternal) and end up in death (present or eternal) and vice versa.

However, we are still sovereign and we have a God-given right to choose our own paths regardless of what the Creator says about it or what any other human being thinks about it. Any one of us can choose to act however we wish, because we are created in His image. We are so sovereign that once our jaw is set on a course, no one in all of creation, not even the author of creation can stop us. If anyone chooses to live (physically or spiritually), the devil and all his hosts and malevolence and trickery are incapable of stopping them. If anyone chooses to die (physically or spiritually), God in all his power and majesty cannot stop them because he will not.

Like every human, God has crowned me with glory and honor. But I have chosen to lay my crowns at the feet of Jesus Christ, whom I believe is the redeemer and restorer of humanity and all of creation, fully aware that I have the God-given right not to, even though I realize it is his desire that I do. I also realize that I have the freedom to choose this path regardless of how it makes me look in the world. It is my choice, I take responsibility for it and I will live with it. It is my way of being in His Image.

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