Copyright Arrowmakers 2019
True equity in terms of personal dignity, relationships, and cooperation does not begin with Adam and Eve, but with our Trinitarian God. "Blessed be God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit." Consider for a moment that in eternity, prior to the creation of all things, the truest sense of shalom or peace exists within the Trinitarian God. I am presupposing that all that has been brought into existence to have dignity, experience relationships, and move in synergistic cooperation, has an original uncaused cause, a prime mover; God.
Genesis 1:26 offers us a glimpse of the plurality of this God-Elohim-who ushers in a new creation that will reflect dignity, relationships, and cooperation. If we summarize the whole of the Christian Scripture we learn that the dignity of God is represented in the sufficiency of his name (Exodus 20:7), his infinite holiness (Isaiah 6:3), in his effulgence (Hebrews 1:1-3), and the glory that is in the Son (John 1:14). What can we learn about this relationship which exists between Father, Son, and His Spirit. The Father has an everlasting love for the Son, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased" (Matthew 3:17); the Son says of the Father, "For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing" (John 5:20). The Son says of the Holy Spirit, "He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you" (John 16:14). Finally what do we learn about cooperation? Immediately we see from the beginning, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in complete cooperation, working to bring about a new creation in which there will be life, multiplication, and persons on mission to carry out vocations. Now, even now, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit work in cooperation to regenerate dead lives, integrate those men and women into the life of Christ, and empower those lives by the Spirit to accomplish works preordained by God alone (Ephesians 2:1-10). The Creation-visible and invisible-by the Trinitarian God is to be a reflection of dignity, relationships, and cooperation.
The second idea I want to offer to you revolves around the reality man has been created to reflect dignity, relationships, and cooperation which originates in our Trinitarian God. I begin with dignity because man and woman regardless of socio-economic, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or political distinctions are made in the imago Dei. We are reflections of God who said, "Let us make man in our image and likeness." Or as the Lexham translation states, "in our image and according to our likeness" (Genesis 1:26). Our dignity does not begin with what we can or can not do; nor what we possess or do not possess. Humankind has a dignity that is tied to the Trinitarian God. What is man then? The Psalmist states, God has made us a little lower than the angels yet we are crowned with glory and majesty. What a dignity we have. Mankind is intended to reflect a glory and majesty that signifies us as uniquely different than the rest of creation. God does not stop there though. We are made "according to his likeness." We have dignity and we are to have relationships that bear life and cooperation that cares for what God has created. Both of these concepts are found immediately after Genesis 1:26. Cooperation: "Let them" that is plurality. We cooperate together to care for creatures and subdue creation (1:26). Then there is relationship. Men and women participate in community to recreate themselves and spread throughout the creation; not in isolation but in community.
Humankind has been created to possess majestic dignity, fruitful and multiplying relationships, and cooperation which originates with the Trinitarian God. We are his wise vice regents, but what we have done and what creates this angst to bring about justice involves what N.T. Wright (Surprised by Hope) states,
"Instead of humans being God's wise vice-regents over creation, they ignore the creator and try to worship something less demanding, something that will give them a short-term fix of power or pleasure."