A devotional thought from Mike Cosper for “Created to Reflect”
Image bearing isn’t only true for Christians. All people live with a kind of God-given glory and have an authority over creation. In our sin, we can use that glory and authority to call attention to ourselves, bending the world to our wills and leaving destruction in our wake. The oppressive power of a dictator or the manipulative power of a cult leader is a twisted reflection of God’s own authority, and their influence wreaks havoc. Human achievement of all kinds—in politics, the arts, or the sciences—is a reflection of the brilliance of the God who made us, but in sin and blindness, the world fails to see the God who is the source of the universe’s beauty, order, and wonder. (See Rom. 1:18-23.)
Only by God’s grace through Jesus can we break that pattern. Just as Jesus used His immense authority to reverse the curse, spreading healing, breaking down social barriers, and serving others, we too can offer our lives for the sake of others, working alongside our Savior, hopeful for the restoration of all things.
The creation itself longs for God’s image bearers to be restored. Paul tells us: “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is going to be revealed to us. For the creation eagerly waits with anticipation for God’s sons to be revealed” (Rom. 8:18-19).
In God’s redeemed people, the hope of the world is restored.
Pause and Reflect
• What are some ways you’ve seen the authority of image bearers twisted into something destructive?
• How have you seen your own influence for good and for evil?
• Why do you think creation is longing for the redemption of God’s sons?