The assault on life, anyone’s life, is an assault on personal justice. Since we have been created in the image of our Father, we are heirs of the rights that come with His Life. Life has rights. The right of the conceived child is to live. The inherited needs of life are items such as breath, food, nurture, protection, affection and so on… They are inherited rights. We have a right to breath, eat, be nurtured and protected and feel affection.
God is alive. He also has rights. When Adam departed from dependancy on the Life of God, He cut God’s jugular vein. Adam denied God the right to govern and inhabit creation in one subjective decision. Adam and the human generations have repeated this severing act over and over again. We do not give God His basic rights to breath and eat, commune among us… .experience protection of His honor, nurture from abiding and the affections of the human races that He fashioned lovingly with His own hands. We are not just towards God’s Life.
However, this is the story of God towards us, “For the Lord is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold…” Psalm 84:11. God is not a withholder of justice. “The works of his hands are faithful and just…” Psalm 11:7. “The Lord works righteousness and justice for all who are oppressed,” Psalm 103:6. God does not withhold the rights of Life because they are equal to the rights of His own life. God created the human life in His image and therefore it inherits the preciousness of God’s own Life.
The violation of human life is a violation against God. Our personal justice is tied to the heart of God’s own justice. In Scripture, God tells us not to withhold justice from one another. “Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it,” Proverbs 3:27. God binds us to a standard. We have been given God’s life and are expected to honor that Life in all of its human forms. We bless human life with air and food, nurture and protection, friendship and affection, when it is in our power to give it. By doing this, we make a statement about our concern for the Life of God. “To the one who strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also, and from one who takes away your cloak do not withhold your tunic either. Give to everyone who begs from you, and from one who takes away your goods do not demand them back. And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them,” Luke 6:29. We give justice in the same measure that God would desire justice be given to us. Although the human container may not respond as a vessel of honor, we are still required to honor the image of God that is present in them.
This includes our own bodies and souls. We are each Divine image-bearers. To violate our lives or the lives of others is to violate God. When we do justice towards humanity, we are doing justice towards God Himself! Cain violated the life of God in Abel. His God-given blood still speaks of the injustice.