We humans pride ourselves on being unique and the first two chapters of Genesis seem to support our claim. Oddly, chapter 3 does as well, but in the negative. We did not invent sin, but we quickly accepted sin as a way of life, taking creation with us. According to Genesis, only humans sinned.
We found ourselves, in the words of Adam, naked and afraid and much like the TV show using that name, we had to figure out how to survive in a world gone mad. Instead of having lions as friends, we had to hide from them.
Our uniqueness cannot be measured physically. I was told in school that the opposable thumb was one of the main things that separated us from animals; yet we had a cat some years ago who regularly picked up food between her thumb and first finger and put in in her mouth. We never could get her to use a fork.
We are strangely close to animals and plants in our DNA: chimps 90%, mice 88%, chickens 65%, grapes 24%, and yeast 18%. That ten percent difference is significant, of course, but it only makes our bodies different, not us.
Genesis 2:7 explains what actually separates us from other physical organisms. Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being. NIV That is why we are alone in all of creation, we contain the breath of God.
The bodies that house the real us are made of the same building blocks as grapes, fish and mice, but we alone are like God. He gave us His Spirit with that breath. We abused that particular spirit and turned away from God. Everything since chapter 3 of Genesis is about our finding our way home.
To be a true follower of Jesus is to be naked and unafraid. Paul in his letter emphasizes the importance of finding strength in weakness. Later in his letter (12:10) we read Paul’s words: That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. NIV It is impossible to muscle our way into Heaven.
Be righteous and do good.