“It absolutely questions what makes us human. And I don’t think we know anymore what does.”
This is a quote from Lee Berger, a professor from the University of the Witwatersrand, that led a team to discover “Homo naledi”, the newly found species in the Homo genus; which apparently makes them our ancient ancestors (Read the CNN report here).
The find did not disturb me at all, I believe in what I believe and nothing can shake that. But what was disturbing was the claim that we don’t know why we are human because of this find.
In that, I believe Berger to be false. In the presence of something we don’t fully understand, we can often question what we believe, which could falsely lead us to completely abandon the truth for the sake of “progress”. This scenario can be found in all areas of life. But when you anchor yourself to God, even the many mysteries of life can not shake you. Even when you question, your foundation of faith will not crack, but only harden as you mature. Anchoring yourself to God will allow you to grow, not get tossed around.
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:27
It is in that verse, we can find our human identity and value. We were created by God in his likeness. There are many interpretations that can be implied here, which could be a completely other post, but every implication is that what makes us human is God.
We are human because of God, and thus we are special because we are made uniquely in his likeness. No other species can boast of that, thus no other species is like us and holds our value. Note: does that mean we should be jerks to animals, no; but animals should not be valued equal to human life.
Nothing can destroy what makes us human, unless we forget the God who created us. That is why we must always get our identity from God, and not from the opinion of man or the forces of this world.
We were made in the image of God, by God and for God.
That is our identity.