Article 3 | Man
Man is the special creation of God, made in His own image. He created them male and female as the crowning work of His creation. The gift of gender is thus part of the goodness of God’s creation. In the beginning man was innocent of sin and was endowed by his Creator with freedom of choice. By his free choice man sinned against God and brought sin into the human race. Through the temptation of Satan man transgressed the command of God, and fell from his original innocence whereby his posterity inherit a nature and an environment inclined toward sin. Therefore, as soon as they are capable of moral action, they become transgressors and are under condemnation. Only the grace of God can bring man into His holy fellowship and enable man to fulfill the creative purpose of God. The sacredness of human personality is evident in that God created man in His own image, and in that Christ died for man; therefore, every person of every race possesses full dignity and is worthy of respect and Christian love.
- All human beings have been made in the image of God >> 1:26-30 | |  Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”  So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.  And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”  And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food.  And to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the heavens and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so.
The creation of mankind was the result of a totally unique creative process of God >> 2:5, 7, 18-22 |  When no bush of the field was yet in the land and no small plant of the field had yet sprung up—for the LORD God had not caused it to rain on the land, and there was no man to work the ground… then the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature… Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.”  Now out of the ground the LORD God had formed every beast of the field and every bird of the heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name.  The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper fit for him.  So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh.  And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man.
- The fall of mankind into sin resulted in the curse of God upon all creation >> 3
- Murder is particularly wrong because it is the destruction by man of those created by God in His image >> 9:6 | “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image.
- The blessing of God, which results in life & freedom from judgment, will be found by those who seek Him through His Word >> 1
- Mankind holds a special place in God’s creation above all other creatures >> 8:3-6 |  When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,  what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?  Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.  You have given him dominion over the works of your hands; you have put all things under his feet,
- Sin separates man from his Creator >> 32:1-5 |  Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.  Blessed is the man against whom the LORD counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit.  For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long.  For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer. Selah  I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD,” and you forgave the iniquity of my sin.
- Human beings are born with a sin nature passed down from their parents >> 51:5 | Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.
- The testimony of Scripture is that all mankind is unholy & unclean because of sin >> Isaiah 6:5 |  And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!”
- Sin results in the heart turning away from God & the flesh (body) being used for acts of corruption >> Jeremiah 17:5 |  Thus says the LORD: “Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart turns away from the LORD.
- A person’s soul is the spiritual part of him or her that united or separated from God >> Matthew 16:26 |  For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?
- All races of people are actually one race coming from one man named Adam >> Acts 17:26-31 |  And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place,  that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us,  for “‘In him we live and move and have our being’; as even some of your own poets have said, “‘For we are indeed his offspring.’  Being then God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of man.  The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent,  because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.”
- Men are sinners, yet have enough knowledge to let them know that they are creatures created for a higher purpose, even though they distort that purpose & worship things other than God >> 1:19-32 |  For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them.  For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.  For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.  Claiming to be wise, they became fools,  and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.  Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves,  because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.  For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature;  and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.  And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.  They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips,  slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents,  foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless.  Though they know God’s righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.
- All human beings are totally depraved & have no spiritual good within them >> 3:10-18, 23 |  as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one;  no one understands; no one seeks for God.  All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.”  “Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.” “The venom of asps is under their lips.”  “Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.”  “Their feet are swift to shed blood;  in their paths are ruin and misery,  and the way of peace they have not known.”  “There is no fear of God before their eyes”… for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
- In one man, Adam, are were made sinners, but in another man, Jesus, who died for the ungodly, all can be made righteous >> 5:6, 12, 19 |  For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly… Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned… For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous.
- Apart from Christ, human beings are slaves to sin, but in Christ are free from sin >> 6:6 |  We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin.
- After being united to Christ, Christians still struggle with a residual sin nature waging war in side of them >> 7:14-25 |  For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin.  For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.  Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good.  So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.  For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out.  For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.  Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.  So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand.  For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being,  but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members.  Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?  Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.
- By the work & presence of the Spirit, human beings are made sons & daughters of God & are being made to look increasingly like Jesus Christ >> 8:14-18, 29 |  For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.  For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”  The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,  and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.  For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us… For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
- Because of human sin nature, the Gospel of Jesus Christ looks like foolishness to the world >> 1:21-31 |  For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe.  For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom,  but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles,  but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.  For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.  For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth.  But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong;  God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are,  so that no human being might boast in the presence of God.  And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption,  so that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.”
- Through Adam, death & sin entered into the world, but through Christ human beings can find spiritual life that transcends this world >> 15:19, 21-22 |  If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied… For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead.  For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.
Mankind is sinful and corrupt, but God sent Jesus so that salvation can be found by grace through faith >> Ephesians 2:1-22
- Jesus took on human flesh so that He could reconcile us to God & destroy all boasting >> 1:21-22 |  And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds,  he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him,
- Because of Jesus, human beings can be reunited with God’s original purpose >> 3:9-11 |  And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding,  so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God;  being strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy;