4 This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created, when the Lord God made the earth and the heavens. 5 Now no shrub had yet appeared on the earth and no plant had yet sprung up, for the Lord God had not sent rain on the earth and there was no one to work the ground, 6 but streams came up from the earth and watered the whole surface of the ground. 7 Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being. 8 Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. 9 The Lord God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
God created us from dust. It is a simple enough thought but embedded in the text here is the sense of God crafting, moulding, making, shaping us and once happy with that shape – He breathed life into us and we lived. In Genesis 1 we read that God formed us in His image – meaning, at the very least, we are profoundly different from animals, indeed that we are not animals, as they are not so described. Here in Genesis 2 the very breath of God is breathed into us and as such this sense of difference from the animal kingdom is continued. This is not to diminish God’s creation of animals, but it is to remind us that we are different in essence from the animal kingdom, the Scripture records – “very good” as God’s stamp of approval on the creation of humankind not simply “good” as the descriptor of the animal kingdom and most facets of creation are described.
What does this mean to us – well it is not a place for pride or superiority as lords without stewardship. God has given to humankind the stewardship of the earth – made us in His image and breathed His life into us. This stewardship requires that we must give our best efforts to protect this planet and universe – God’s creation – as we are different from the rest of His creation and so enabled and emboldened to do His bidding.
Father may we do our best to steward Your creation in ways that bring honour to You.
Written by Ps. Richard Botta