Our church is currently in a series on our Statement of Faith and Confession, a 13-paragraph document on the doctrinal beliefs of our community. We are spending a few weeks on section 3, The Creation of Humanity. This Sunday we will be looking at man/mankind as male and female. Here are just a few thoughts and points that are very interesting but may or may not make it’s way into the teaching:
“… [Then] the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature” (Genesis 2:7 ESV).
“formed the man of dust”
Calvin points out that man being made in the image of God, “is incomparably the highest nobility.” And yet there is a caution to mankind to remember from where the man came from: “…and, lest men should use it as an occasion of pride, their first origin is placed immediately before them; whence they may learn that this advantage was adventitious [i.e. “happening by chance rather than design or inherent nature”]; for Moses relates that man had been, in the beginning, dust of the earth. Let foolish men now go and boast of the excellency of their nature!” (John Calvin, Calvin’s Commentaries, trans. John King; Accordance electronic ed. Edinburgh: Calvin Translation Society, 1847), n.p.
Man is formed by the LORD God into the LORD God’s image. This is an intimate act and shows the nature of God’s immanent care and concern for the pinnacle of his creation. Nevertheless, the man is a contingent being. The man’s “make-up” is rudimentary: “dust…ground”. His value comes from the one who “formed” him – who breathed life into him. Man: a living, breathing being in the image of God…from dirt.