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Made from Love to Love: A Credo of Covenant Relation (Theological Seminary Assignment)

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I believe being made in the image of God means being “made from love to love” (Askew, n.d.). If God is all that is good, compassionate, forgiving, and the breath of life, then we embody God when we do, are, and/or have the same goodness, compassion, forgiveness, and breath of life. That’s how God lives in us. We see it when a father hugs his son; when a boss tries to understand their employee’s hardships instead of just firing them; when a wife accepts her husband’s apology for taking her for granted; and when the environment around us flourishes as we become more eco-conscious. All of these examples show how we can see God’s image in others.

When it comes to the human condition, it can be difficult to see how we are made in God’s image when we have our sinful nature. Yet, that is why it is so important to embrace and embody God’s grace. We are not our sins. We are more than the bad things that we do. Our sins do not define us. God does. So, in the act of self-love and self-compassion, we can portray God to ourselves. We do so when we treat ourselves to a day at the spa after a hard week; when we try to recognize where our maladaptive behaviors come from instead of simply judging ourselves; when we forgive ourselves for falling short of our own expectations; and when we take breath after deep breath in order to fill our lungs and sustain our bodies.

In terms of what sin is exactly, I agree with Serene Jones (2003) when she says that “sin means living against God’s will”. What is that will? It is “that we live our lives in covenant relation with God in a manner that is good for us” (Jones, 2003). However, if God lives in us because we are made in God’s image, as aforementioned, then God’s will also applies to others and ourselves. As Jones (2003) explains, “In my sin, I relate wrongly to God, others, and myself, and sin is passed on to me through my commerce with the world in which I live”. Sin, therefore, distorts the covenant relation God wills for us.

The way sin manifests, then, ends up being the exact opposite of what God is and made us to be too. We see that sin both on an individual level as well as structurally. As a result, sin could be all that is bad, heartless, vindictive, and/or death on either or both of those levels. To clarify, death is not a sin in and of itself, but how death comes to be can be a sin. For instance, in the multiple murders committed by a serial killer. Sin can also look like physically, emotionally, mentally, and/or sexually abusing a child; like creating legislation that allows for businesses to discriminate against their customers based on sexual orientation or gender; and/or self-sabotaging one’s chances at happiness because of an extreme lack of self-worth. These examples take the covenant relationship God wills for us to have with God, ourselves, and others, and mistreats these relationships by breaking said covenant.

I believe the reason we sin like this in the first place is because we have free will. As the common saying goes, having free will is a double-edged sword. Since God has given us the choice to follow God’s will or not, the temptation to not exists. It is not that God wants us to be tempted to sin, but God wants us to freely choose to follow God’s will. It is just like how all or most people would not want to receive love and/or faithfulness in a relationship if it is by force and/or coercion. I do not agree with Friedrich Schleiermacher (1928, as cited in Hodgson & King, 1985) when he says, “There can, accordingly, be for us no such thing as a feeling of absolute freedom.” Unfortunately, time and time again we fail God when we use said freedom not to follow God’s will out of our own accord, but to do the exact opposite. Therefore, we sin.


What do you believe? Share in the comments below!



Askew, E. (n.d.). Lecture 4 [PowerPoint slides]. Canvas. 

Jones, S. (2003). Serene Jones. In Placher, W.C. (Ed.), Essentials of Christian theology [eBook edition]. Westminster John Knox Press. 

Hodgson, P.C. & King, R.H. (Eds.). (1928). Readings in Christian theology [eBook edition]. Fortress Press.