There are times in a man’s life where and when he sits and have a rethink of life and its essence, events and happenings in his immediate environment and the world at large, moments where man philosophize on many heart aching issues; moments where and when he ponders on the problems of life and humanity as a whole and tries to proffer a solution. Every complete and sane person does this once in a while. In fact, there are some that soliloquize which may not be bad in itself. It is said that before a problem surfaces, the solution to that problem existed before the problem surfaced. It is in the place of meditation, thinking and in-depth assessment that such solutions pop up.
One of the greatest men that lived this earth was king David, a man of great wisdom and intimate walk with God, he was called ‘a man after God’s own heart’, a man of power, skill and strategy; a man of war who never lost any battle during his days and set a good foundation for his successor and the ones thereafter. He walked with God to the point that God entered a covenant with him courtesy of which his descendants occupied the throne. A man of unbroken connect with God, a psalmist and a prophet.
This man David wrote a major part of the book of Psalms, alongside many other songs.
At one point in his life, he was lost in deep thought and meditation and this was what he had to say:
“1……….. O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens. 2 Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightest still the enemy and the avenger. 3 When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; 4 What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? 5 For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour. 6 Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet: 7 All sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field; 8 The fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth through the paths of the seas. 9 O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!” Psalm 8.
When the psalmist considered all that he did, he could not help but ask, ‘What is Man?’ Observe he did not ask ‘who is man?’, he asked ‘what is man?’
‘What is man?’ is posed at attempting to unravel the essence of this being called man, his components, design, purpose and destination.
In another of the psalmists meditation, he had this to say:
“1 A Psalm of David. Blessed be the LORD my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight: 2 My goodness, and my fortress; my high tower, and my deliverer; my shield, and he in whom I trust; who subdueth my people under me. 3 LORD, what is man, that thou takest knowledge of him! or the son of man, that thou makest account of him! 4 Man is like to vanity: his days are as a shadow that passeth away.” Psalm 144: 1- 4.
Having seen how weak, frail, incompetent and insufficient man is, and yet the strong, all powerful and all able God decided to make man his object of admiration and mercy, the psalmist threw another question.
Have you ever sat to wonder, what is it about me or the human race that God is so pertinent and interested about?
What makes me so special?
What makes God love me as much as He does?
Despite all the gross evil going on every nook and cranny of the worked, why is God this merciful?
All these questions and many more, have any ever wondered your heart and have you been able to successfully get an all embracing answer?
I’d like to attempt to answer the question. What is man?
Take a journey with me and let is dive back into the origin of things, the very premise from whence all precipitated from.
“3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: 4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: 5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,” Eph. 1: 3- 5.
Here it is glaring that man is the chosen elect of God, not even angels but man, chosen by the sovereign and supreme monarch of the universe, this election was not done at creation, rather is was done in God, in eternity past and long before the foundation of the world was laid.
This means the real and true essence of man is not time based neither can it be viewed, captured and understood from the perspective of time. Man is a being that was sustained in the eternal God; therefore man is a being of eternity, projected into time. Man was sustained in God, man was and still is part of God, when time came forth, man was allowed to find expression on the earth.
So, what is man?
Man is a being that has always been part of God and existed in God as far back as eternity past.
Lets us take another step further:
Genesis chapter 1 gives us the account of creation: “1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. 2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. 3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. 4 And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness” Gen. 1: 1- 3
There are two thoughts to the creation story, while some believe that there was a heaven and an earth, but the fall of Lucifer to the earth ruined the beautiful creation that preexisted, therefore God had to recreate. This thought beliefs that a beautiful and perfect God could not have just created an earth that sustained the description in Gen. 1: 2. The fall of Lucifer is proven both scripturally and scientifically.
The other thought is that the first verse was a summary, and the second downwards was a description of what was.
I am not going to delve into any of the two thoughts as this isn’t the subject of this piece, I may do that someday.
The reason why I brought this scripture is to eventually show us when man as a visible entity came on board. Man as a visible entity came on board when God (Elohim) said, let us make man in our own image and after our own likeness. “26 And 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 fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. 27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. 28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” Gen. 1: 26- 28.
What happened here was that God peeped into Himself and replicated Himself in man using the dust of the earth and breathing His life into what he had made. Courtesy of this, man had to also live and be sustained on the very same life and breath as God, man was not amorphous, but was meant to maintain connection with his source and progenitor, my piece “The Lord is My Shepherd; I shall NOT want” does justice to the last statement. Of all of God’s creation, both animate and inanimate, only man was privileged to receive the very breath of God in order to begin living. All the terrestrial, aquatic and extra terrestrial animals came into life by the reason of the spoken word.
“20 And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. 21 And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. 22 And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. 23 And the evening and the morning were the fifth day. 24 And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so. 25 And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good.” Gen. 1: 20- 24.
When it got to man, this was what happened:
“20 And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. 21 And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. 22 And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. 23 And the evening and the morning were the fifth day. 24 And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so. 25 And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good.” Gen. 1: 26- 28.
Let’s see more details, “7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” Gen. 2: 7.
Only man survives on the very breath of God.
Man is the apex of God’s creation, while creation was to serve under him; he was to subdue and dominate over all.
To be continued in my next piece on the same subject matter.