The fact that God says, “Let us make human beings in our image, in our likeness so that they may rule…” reveals the apostolic call of man. What is an apostle? An apostle is one who is sent by God to represent God to the world. He is called and set apart for this purpose. He is given the mission to rule and reign with Christ on earth––to establish the Kingdom of heaven on earth––to bring to earth a heavenly colony. This is the original purpose of human beings. We are to reveal and reflect God.
Adam marred this apostolic call, but it has always been God’s heart to restore it. From the beginning we see God as a God of salvation. He chose the line of Seth, Noah and Shem. He then chooses Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Jacob through his wrestling with God as man becomes more like God––he becomes broken and weak. Jacob’s name is changed to Israel and that name change was very costly. Now he bears a permanent wound much like the Messiah bears a permanent wound. This permanent wound is for the sake of giving birth to a new apostolic community: the nation of Israel. Israel’s call is to be a light to the nations, thus bringing to them the original blessing Adam and Eve were given. Israel was chosen to represent, reveal and reflect God to the nations.
Unfortunately, something went tragically wrong. Just as Adam and Eve partook of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, Israel also saw the law only as the mere knowledge of good and evil. The Jews, by and large, refused to come to the Lord of life. The Scriptures became a veil to them rather than a window. Israel blasphemed God’s name among the nations.
The good news is that Israel’s call was not aborted, just like man’s purpose was not absolved. The Messiah himself came walking on earth calling out to man: “Where are you?” He found a remnant of Jews––specifically twelve, to represent the twelve tribes of Israel––and designated them apostles. This is the beginning of a new church, an apostolic community. With these men he will invest his image. These will be the men who will continue Adam’s apostolic call and rule creation with peace. They are called to be fruitful and to multiply. They are not merely to rule their own community––they are called to be a blessing to all of creation––the fish, the birds, the livestock, the wild animals and the insects. Their good news is to be preached “to all creation” (Mark 16:15).
Prayer: Father, may we realize our apostolic call and begin to walk in it, in Jesus’ name.