Garry spoke tonight about the subject of human value. So often, we associate our value with work, and it’s true that God gave us work to do (see Gen 2:8-17), but work is not the source of our value. Adam was placed in the Garden of Eden to work and take care of the garden; he was meant to serve and guard it, demonstrating the servant nature of work which Jesus exemplified. (Luke 22:24-27) After the Fall, work became more painful and involved toil and sweat (Gen 3:17-19), and as a result of sin, our views on value and work have been largely distorted (see Eph 4:17-18).
So often, the prevailing culture sees evolution as the norm and this means that human value has no real explanation; we exist ‘randomly’ or ‘by chance’ and have no purpose or meaning. Instead of having value because we are made in God’s image and because God values us, people feel there is meaning only insofar as they can create their own meaning and identity; this is often tied in with the job they do or the money they earn. When we become the arbiters of meaning, the consequences can be frightening: Down’s Syndrome has been virtually eradicated in Iceland because abortion is practised on babies shown to have this ‘defect’; they are viewed as ‘things’ to be eliminated rather than people having value. God places tremendous value on human life, however (see Matt 10:29-31); so much so that Jesus came to redeem those under the law (see Gal 4:4-5; 1 Pet 1:18-19). God places great value on us and we do not have to earn this value and cannot change our value. God’s acceptance of and love for humankind is unconditional and unwavering. Through His great love and because of the value He places on each and every one, He gave Himself for each and every one, to draw each to Himself for now and eternity. It cost Him so much, but He looks at you and says, ‘You’re worth it!’