Ever since Pastor Brad was a little guy enjoying the summer at Badlands Bible Camp in Medora, North Dakota, Psalm 8 has been one of his favorites. This psalm recognizes all the wonderful things God has made, but says human beings have no equal in all of creation; we are the ones “made in the image of God.” We are the ones invited to walk and talk with God in the garden. And, ever since that time in the garden, we are the ones charged with the responsibility of caring for the rest of creation.
Sometimes when someone is caught in some act of moral failure…some social indiscretion…people are heard to say, “Well, you know, he’s only human.” It’s meant to describe us at our bumbling worst. But the ancient psalmist would have us think otherwise. We are human…not as a mistake…but as the crown of God’s creation. As one author I read put it, “What a ‘magnificent antidote’ for the self-doubt and despair that sometimes grips us! We are human!”
This psalm, then, is certainly a word of grace…of affirmation…of blessing. It is also a psalm of great expectation for us to be better…to do better…to be co-workers with God in caring for all that God has made…and in so doing, caring also for one another. Black, white, young, old, of whatever creed or no creed at all, we are human beings created in the image of God.