I've talked about how we should only allow God and those who agree with God to define us. But sometimes we get those definitions wrong. Sometimes theology and politics get all mixed up, and in order to bring someone to an understanding of salvation they make us very aware of our sin. While this is not false, is that where the defining stops? Is that really how God, Elohim, Mighty Creator sees us?
God is Elohim, or Mighty Creator. As one who loves beauty I adore this name. As one who tries to create beauty and art herself, it feels personal to me. The fact of the matter is He is Elohim to all of us. He created this world we live on, and He created us... in the likeness of Him. But when He created us, He did so giving us a free will, a daily choice, a constant struggle in some cases. It began with Adam and Eve, right? They were the first to go their own way, choose their own path, want to be like God? But they weren't the last. My question then was, if God created all this we see, and ourselves, and called it good, and then we marred everything through the sin we chose, is it still good?
I asked this question on my Facebook and loved all the answers I got. They made me think, look, research, and know. Several struggled with the question as I did at first. How can what God made not be good? Did our choice mar all of His creation to that extent where it was no longer good? Can we really have that kind of power? But look at the beauty out on the horizon. See the beauty in the people around you. How can that not still be called good? There was my struggle.
As soon as I set my question out for discussion an answer popped in my brain. Jesus. Jesus is our redeemer, and I know this, but does that mean we are... bad? I've worked hard to overcome all the negative voices that were in my brain, but this seemed to reinforce it. Sometimes it may be a fine line, but it's still a line one must deal with. A few of the respondents gave me several Bible verses to look up and consider regarding who we are now.
In Isaiah 64:6 we are told that we have all become like one who is unclean, our righteous acts as filthy rags. Romans 7:18 tells me good does not reside in me, because we don't do what we want, but we do what we don't want. It tells me we are slaves to sin. Luke 18:19 tells us that no one is good but God alone. In summary: No. We are not good. As one friend pointed out, if we stayed here we would have no hope. Thankfully, these verses are not the end of the story.
Go back to all those same chapters I just shared and in each case read a little further. In Isaiah while we are unclean, we are also reminded that we are the clay and God is the potter. We are simply a work in His hand. And in Romans we read that the one who can save us from this body subject to death is Jesus Christ. And even in Luke a few verses later we are told what is impossible with man is possible with God. Maybe we only hear the negative and lose hope when our focus is strictly on ourselves. When we focus on God we see that He is bigger than us, and bigger than our sin. He is bigger than what we can't do. In God our hope is eternal.
God is still Elohim in our lives. As we enter into covenant with Him, we confess that who we are is useless and hopeless, but who He is saves us and brings us eternal hope. I loved the fact that not only did He create who we are, He is still creating us for when we are in Christ we are a new creation. (2 Cor 5:17) He created everything in 6 days thousands of years before today, but He is still our Elohim as we are reconciled to Him. He has not stopped being who He is.
So, are we good? Not on our own. However, when we look at ourselves as defined by our Elohim through our Savior, yes, we are. Ephesians 1 tells us we have redemption through Christ. Zephania 3 says He has taken away our punishment and sings over us. True eternal hope.
So, if someone tries to tell you how unworthy you are, or how less than you are, remember that because of Jesus redemptive power, and our Elohim who is creating in you a beautiful thing, you are very good.