God Created Them According to their Kind

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elephant

Several times in today’s Bible reading, we see the phrase “according to their kind”. Moses records the Creation of the various species of plants and animals and remarks that God created them all in an orderly way. The Hebrew word for “kind” allows for some variation from species to species. But the fact remains that God was very orderly in the way He created the world.

As I type this, I’m about to leave for home from the Texas Hill Country. During this vacation, Amy and I were able to experience something we never have before. We got up close and personal with five elephants! In the process, we learned quite a bit about them that I had never known before. For instance, did you know that African elephants and Asian elephants cannot reproduce with each other? Why? Because they are different kinds of elephants. African elephants descended from mastodons while Asian elephants descended from mammoths.

But not only are plants and animals created according to their kind, people — Adam and Eve — were created according to their kind … in God’s image and in God’s likeness as male and female.

When God created Eve, He made her special, different from all of the rest of His creation. Why? Because Adam needed something that “corresponded” to him. No other plant or animal was suitable for him. God needed to create something according to Adam’s kind. So God fashioned Eve from Adam’s rib.

One Hebrew lexicon (a fancy name for a dictionary) says, “God created woman by taking “a rib” from Adam while he was in a very deep sleep …. Conceivably this means that God took a good portion of Adam’s side, since the man considers the woman to be “bone of his bones” and flesh of his flesh (Gen 2:21). This picture describes the intimacy between man and woman as they stand equal before God. Since God made the woman, she is responsible to him in worship. She is not a mere extension of man; she possesses a unique individuality in her own right. There is no indication that woman is inferior. On the other hand, since her body is made from man’s, there is a continuity between the two with the result that they can find a fulfilling relationship only in one another, but never with the same intensity in any other part of creation. Therefore woman’s origin makes it possible for a man and a woman to establish a dynamic relationship in which they become “one flesh” (cf. Gen 2:24).”[1]

Application

You are fearfully and wonderfully made! (Psalm 139:14) You, like your father Adam, were created in God’s image. You bear God’s image. You are very special and distinct from every other kind of creature. God wired you with certain gifts and personality traits unlike any other of your kind. No one is exactly like you.

Given this reality, in this New Year, what kinds of things does God want you to do, given your complete individuality?

Welcome to a new year of Bible reading! This year we’ll read through the Bible — the entire Bible — according to a chronological plan developed by Dr. George Guthrie. If you have a smartphone or tablet and if you haven’t already, download the YouVersion Bible App and search for Guthrie’s “Reading God’s Story: One-Year Chronological Plan“. When you choose to read this plan, you’ll be able to follow along with our church as we read through the Bible this year.

Note: If you don’t have a smartphone or if you just want to read through the Bible with a printed version of the reading plan, here’s where you can print it.

[1] Hartley, John E. “1924 צלע.” Ed. R. Laird Harris, Gleason L. Archer Jr., and Bruce K. Waltke. Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament 1999 : 768. Print.)