We are created in God's image
Genesis 1 verse 27 tells us that in the beginning God created the first two human beings in His image. He created them male and female. Together the man and woman, Adam and Eve reflected the character and glory of God.
As you read the words above you may contest them. You may believe that human beings, all living things and the universe is the result of chance. I have to question you and ask how such order can result from chaos? I challenge you to think through the possibility of the complexity of even the simplest micro organism evolving from the raw materials of the earth but even more fundamentally how the origin of the universe could have been the result of an explosion of nothing transformed into something? How did the intricate and amazing complexity of the human body evolve and how is it that no scientist living or dead has been able to produce any valid evidence, fossil or otherwise showing that any species of living creature has changed into a new and totally different species?
See the Answers In Genesis website for resources looking at my questions above:
We are broken
Into the perfect peace and safety of the first human couple's home, the Garden of Eden, an intruder came - Satan. Adam and Eve had no corruption in their nature. The Bible tells us that they were naked and unashamed - completely innocent and pure. They had a face to face relationship with God, their Creator. They had no prospect of death or sickness - they were created to live on the earth forever as eternal beings, reproducing after their own kind and ruling the earth as God's children and representatives.
The Bible tells us that Satan was a powerful but fallen angelic being who had rebelled against God and had become evil and corrupt. In total malice he sought to harm God in the only way he could by turning the hearts of Adam and Eve against their loving Creator.
In Genesis chapter 2 we read of one restriction being placed on Adam and Eve - there was one tree whose fruit they were forbidden to eat - the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. They were warned by God that to do so would result in death. Perhaps some would argue that it was unfair for God to place some kind of test before them. Actually he was giving them the opportunity to exercise the precious gift of freewill in choosing the way of life and of love.
In Genesis chapter 3 we see the tragedy of first Eve and then Adam succumbing to Satan's temptation and lies and taking the fruit that they had been forbidden to eat. The result of their sin was that their relationship with God was broken; their nature became sinful and rebellious like Satan's and they now faced both physical and ultimately eternal death in a creation that had become twisted and broken like them.
We see them leaving the perfection of the Garden of Eden to face the toil and pain of living in a now spoilt and hostile world.
Within one generation we see the first murder - Adam and Eve's first son Cain killing their second son Abel. Human history since then bears witness to the power of sin and death that has reigned in each human heart including you and me. We are all broken and cannot mend ourselves. Our brokenness affects every aspect of our being including our sexuality and identity.
God's Rescue Plan
As we concluded our previous paragraph we saw a dark picture of humanity and the world itself. We can protest that we have no part in that picture but if we were honest we would have to admit that we are not innocent of rebellion against God or of wrongdoing against our fellow human beings. All of us share in the death sentence of Adam and Eve. We are destined to die physically but more than that we face meeting God as our judge and then living on for eternity excluded from his presence, knowing his righteous anger against our sin. That's what hell is and it is a real and terrifying place.
That is the bad news that we all need to hear and acknowledge. There is however some amazing good news...
God has never stopped loving rebellious humanity. Just over two thousand years ago , in fulfillment of prophesies in the First Covenant of the Bible, God came as a human being in the person of his Son Yeshua, born to a young virgin in Roman occupied Israel. Yeshua or Jesus as many of us know him grew up to manhood and at the age of thirty began a travelling ministry throughout the towns and villages of Israel proclaiming the kingdom of God and demonstrating that kingdom by healing the sick, raising the dead and delivering the oppressed from demons.
Opposed and hated by the religious leaders he was arrested and by lies and deceit the Roman governor of Jerusalem, Pontius Pilate was persuaded and manipulated into ordering his execution on a cross.
Jesus died after six hours of agony on the cross. As he suffered he forgave his accusers and those who nailed him there. But even more than that he took the punishment that we all deserve for our sin. He died our death, carried our blame and became the scapegoat for each one of us.
Was that the end? No, although his followers thought it was. Jesus was taken down from the cross and laid in a borrowed tomb. On the third day after his death early in the morning some faithful women went to his tomb to anoint his body with spices but to their amazement found it empty! Jesus was risen from the dead!
In the following days and weeks he appeared to and ate with his friends and followers and then after forty days he ascended to heaven where he reigns now as the Lord of heaven and earth.
Jesus is God but by becoming a man and suffering in our place on the cross he has bridged the chasm between sinful humanity and God. Through repentance, faith and trust in him as Lord and Saviour each of us can know forgiveness and reconciliation to God. We can know the miracle of new birth and adoption as sons and daughters of God with the promise of spending eternity in heaven with him when we die.
Restored To His Image
If all that Jesus won for us on the cross was that we could be forgiven that would be amazing enough. This amazing good news goes even further because as we follow Jesus as disciples after receiving him as our Lord and Saviour we experience the miracle of being restored to the image of God as we were always intended to be. The Bible tells us that we become new creations, the old things of our lives passing away and all things becoming new. That restoration of us as human beings includes our sexuality and our gender identity and in the next section of this website, 'The Healing Journey' we will look at how God wants to do that through the work of His Holy Spirit in our lives.