The Divine in Man

John 10: 31-42
Jer 20: 10-13 / Psa 18

Is it not written in your law,* “I said, you are gods”?
(John 10:34)

To everyone reverence is due,
As each person has something divine;
So our actions and words must be true,
According to God’s will and design.

The Jews took up stones again to stone Him. Jesus said, ‘I have shown you many good works from the Father. For which of these are you going to stone me?’ The Jews answered, ‘It is not for a good work that we are going to stone you, but for blasphemy, because you, though only a human being, are making yourself God.’ Jesus answered, ‘Is it not written in your law, “I said, you are gods”? If those to whom the word of God came were called “gods” — and the scripture cannot be annulled — can you say that the one whom the Father has sanctified and sent into the world is blaspheming because I said, “I am God’s Son”? If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me. But if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.’ Then they tried to arrest Him again, but He escaped from their hands. He went away again across the Jordan to the place where John had been baptizing earlier, and He remained there. Many came to Him, and they were saying, ‘John performed no sign, but everything that John said about this man was true.’ And many believed in Him there.

Reflection

Jesus cited Psalm 82:6, “I said, ‘You are “gods”; you are all sons of the Most High…’ to counter the charge of blasphemy against Him. Although He was really telling the truth that He was the Son of God, He did not impose His will on the Jews because He wanted them to believe according to the wonders that they had seen Him perform. But they were too proud to set aside their traditional monotheistic belief to accept His claim that He was really their Messiah, God Incarnate, Who had come to share His divinity with men.

Every person has God within him, because we are not only made in His image and likeness, but by Christ’s death and resurrection, we have been made one with Him as children of God, and inheritors of His kingdom in heaven. What an awesome thought! And yet, if we ponder deeply on the matter, we are truly gods in the way God designed our existence. As Scriptures say, God made us “a little less than a god, …crowned with glory and splendor… made lord over the work of His hands, … set all things under his feet” (Psalm 8:5-6). If God did not endow us with such reverence, would He have taken all the trouble to humble Himself, be shamed and tortured and die for our sake? That’s how precious we are in God’s eyes. So how come we can’t accord the same kind of regard and respect for our fellow human beings? How come we find it so easy to throw stones of insults, threats, or unfair judgments at those who are different from us, or just because we consider them below our station?

The recent uproar over a Hong Kong columnist’s demeaning and racist statement about the Philippines being a “nation of servants” shows how much we value our dignity as a people. And yet the same newspaper carries accounts of hundreds of unsolved killings happening in our country, as well as hundreds of minors being driven to prostitution. How do we find the sacred and the godly in this environment? There is something very wrong with our country, and we must fervently pray for God’s intervention to help bring us back to His will and design.

Help us, dear God to draw closer to You, so that our every thought, word and act may conform to your Will, and we may be worthy to receive Your beloved Son into our lives. Amen.

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