• Matt Beaney

#398 - IMAGE OF GOD - (21/7/21)




During this LEARNING TO HEAR series I’m taking a different approach to these devotionals. I want to us work harder at searching the scriptures for ourselves. We will use the ‘Come to Jesus Daily’ method below to help us with this. It’s well worth the hard work involved!


TODAY’S TEXT

Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”’ (Genesis 1:26-28)

I’ve included my reflections on today’s text below. However, I encourage you to pray and spend time reflecting (writing can be helpful) using the 5 questions below before reading my thoughts.


i. †GOSPEL - 'Gaze on the cross'- What does this text reveal about salvation through Jesus?

ii. UP – What does this text say about God – His worth, character, attributes, will, promises…?

iii. IN – What does this say about me, the church and how we are to relate? Is there a promise to believe, command to do, attitude to have, something to avoid, is there forgiveness to seek or give?

iv. OUT – What does this say about my community and mission?

v. DO - This has two components. Firstly, list as many possible ways that you can think of that one might apply the text (actions or attitudes). Secondly, hear - Pray about how the Holy Spirit is leading you, specifically, to respond.


MY REFLECTIONS


1. †GOSPEL

God is recreating man in His image. That which sin has marred, His grace is restoring. Fallen mankind is being restored in Christ to rule again over a recreated earth. As He worked in this first creation, so He is carefully working in this second. God created all things by His word and He is restoring all things in The Word - in Jesus the Word of God.


2. UP

This text teaches us that the Lord is the creator of the universe, the earth and all life - visible and invisible. His creativity and beauty are sublime. All creation speaks of His glory. He rules over creation.

‘The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.’ (Psalm 19:1)

Here, we see that God said ‘let us make in our image…’ He is a plurality - trinity in unity; He is Father, Son and Spirit.


3. IN

We are male and female. We are the pinnacle of creation. We are made in God’s image. We are made to be vice-regents in the earth. We are to care for the world and all of its creatures. It says that God ‘blessed them…’ God’s help and power will attend anyone who seeks to do His will in all of its various kinds.


4. OUT

The ongoing existence of creation speaks of God’s ongoing desire to save people.

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise (of coming), as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.’ (2 Peter 3:9)

As the Lord sent Adam and Eve to fill and subdue the earth, so He sends His church to fill the earth with people made new by the gospel.


5. DO?

Here are a few examples of application that I’ve come up with:

“Let us make mankind in our image” An application could be to remember again and do all we can to promote, the value and dignity of all people - from conception to death.

We could consider the part that we can play in ‘creation care’.

We are to value both men and women.

We see that having children is a good thing and a part of God’s will in marriage…

HEAR - Pray about how the Holy Spirit might want you to respond.

COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY



During this LEARNING TO HEAR series we are going to take a different approach to learning from the Bible together. We will use the ‘Come to Jesus Daily Method’ together (Gospel, Up, In, Out, Do) - you will have to do all the work!


1. Icebreaker - How has God spoken to you from the Bible this week? (During this LEARNING TO HEAR series, we are seeking to develop a culture of listening to God out of His word)


2. Select a text of scripture. (You could use the text from Sunday’s message or something of your choice.)


3. Read and recall. (Read the text and ask each person in the group to put it into their own words.)


4. Please go through these questions together:

i. †GOSPEL - 'Gaze on the cross'- What does this text reveal about salvation through Jesus?

ii. UP – What does this text say about God – His worth, character, attributes, will, promises…?

iii. IN – What does this say about me, the church and how we are to relate? Is there a promise to believe, command to do, attitude to have, something to avoid, is there forgiveness to seek or give?

iv. OUT – What does this say about my community and mission?

v. DO - This has two components. Firstly, list as many possible ways that you can think of that one might apply the text (actions or attitudes). Secondly, hear - Pray and share (if it’s appropriate) about how the Holy Spirit is leading you, specifically, to respond.


5. SIV - Finally, it would be helpful to talk and pray about how we are doing in regard to Serve, Invest and Invite. Do you have any encouraging stories or any plans in this regard? How do you want to pray in regard to our mission?





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