Pastoral Reflection 1.17.13

Dear church,

While a sanctity of human life ethic may be disparaged by the world, it is God’s view. His Word is clear: human life at all ages and stages is precious.

While the culture in which we live appears to favor a perspective that regards human life as no different from animal life, as Christians we serve a God who tells us clearly in His Word that we are made in His image. Likening God to a potter, a vocation that was common in those days, the prophet Isaiah wrote, “We are all the work of [His] hands” (Isaiah 64:8).

Sanctity of Human Life Sunday was originally proclaimed as a means to declare God’s care for the unborn. Because of this we have invited one of our partner organizations to speak to us regarding the sacredness of life in the womb.

However, the fact that all humans are made in the image of God does not end with caring about the lives of unborn children, as Christians are sometimes portrayed as doing; the human race is constantly ignoring the sacredness of all who are made in the image of God, and we desire deeply as a church to do more than just care for the unborn. The Bible speaks of caring for the orphan and widow; this is why we partner with Christ’s Hope in Tanzania to sponsor and visit children who have been orphaned by AIDS. There is a refugee crisis where thousands are in crisis with nowhere to go. God reminds Israel and reminds us “Love the sojourner, therefore, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.” The ongoing issue of race relations has been brought to the front and center of our country’s attention in recent months; a week ago we had our first reading group for the book Bloodlines to look at what God has to say about racial reconciliation and how our society has often failed to see the image of God in those of different races and ethnicities. Human trafficking persists as an issue both in our city and all over the world; we have more than once brought our church’s attention to organizations such as IJM and the A21 campaign that seek to bring an end to such atrocities.

None of these issues should be unimportant or irrelevant to us if we are followers of Christ. Human beings were made in the image of God.

This week and in the months to come, we hope to encourage individuals to embrace the reality that God is the Author of life, and that as His servants, we are to protect human life. According to His Word, there is no alternative. Human life is inestimably precious.

-Mike Hong
 Pastor of Worship & Justice