The solution.

Genesis 1:26–27 (NKJV)

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.

The world, and our great nation, would be a lot better off if we all would just take this passage seriously. Because of our sinful nature, we “need” to feel good about ourselves by looking down on others. We enjoy being prejudiced.

By specifically mentioning both men and women, this passage shuts the door on one form that could take. Men can’t say that only they are in the image of God.

But this also highlights the fact that everyone is in the image of God. That includes all races as well as sexes. No matter what someone looks like, or what they’ve done, they are God’s image bearers.

This is the only way bigotry can end. The need to look down on others isn’t going away. You can tamp it down with laws and peer pressure, but it’ll just be driven underground. People aren’t going to stop thinking they’re better than someone else. They can always justify it based on money, or education, or some other silly factor. You can make them shut up about it, but you’ll never change their minds.

Who can claim that they’ve never prejudged someone by their accent? I know I have.

But the solution isn’t to see everyone as being carbon copies of each other; that not the way we’re equal. We’re created equal. We’re endowed by our creator with His image.

Whatever someone looks like, or sounds like, or even smells like, they’re created in His image. It doesn’t matter where they went to school, or if they went to school. They’re created in the image of God. We are created in the image of God. It’s we.

Curiously, this means we are supposed to prejudge people. We should prejudge everyone as an image bearer of God. Yes, sin damages that image, but it’s still there.

Even those people who think we can end bigotry some other way are created in His image.

Mike Slay

As a mathematician, inventor, and ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church in America, Mike Slay brings an analytical, conversational, and even whimsical approach to the daily study of God's Word.