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Fierce mastery

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Let’s come back for a moment to original glory, the glory of God given to us when we were created in his image. So much light could be shed on our lives if we would explore what we were meant to be before things started going wrong. What was it that we were created to do? What was our original job description?

God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground." So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. God blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule." (Gen. 1:26-28)

And let them rule. Like a foreman runs a ranch or like a skipper runs his ship. Better still, like a king rules a kingdom, God appoints us as the governors of his domain. We were created to be the kings and queens of the earth (small k, small q). Hebrew scholar Robert Alter has looked long and hard at this passage, mining it for its riches. He says the idea of rule means "a fierce exercise of mastery." It is active, engaged, passionate. It is fierce.

John Eldredge

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•  •

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