Dignity and Destiny: Humanity in the Image of God

John F. Kilner (Eerdmans)

The belief that humans are created in God’s image has helped to animate movements to vanquish cruelty, injustice, and discrimination worldwide. But Kilner, director of bioethics programs at Trinity International University, reminds us of the danger when counterfeit versions of this belief emphasize traits—like the capacity for reason or self-government—that vary from person to person. “Viewing people in terms of the image of God has fostered magnificent efforts to protect and redeem people,” he writes. “It has also encouraged oppressing and even destroying people.” Kilner lays out the Bible’s teaching on what it means to be God’s image bearers, in order to combat the real-world harms that result when we don’t understand it.

The Spirit of Adoption: Writers on Religion, Adoption, Faith, and More

Edited by Melanie Springer Mock, Martha Kalnin Diede, and Jeremiah Webster (Cascade Books)

Christians sometimes fall prey to a “happily-ever-after mythology” surrounding adoption, writes Mock, an English teacher at George Fox University, in the introduction to this volume. In reality, adoption is a “messy business, fraught with paradox and complication, with joy and sorrow, with loss and redemption.” The Spirit of Adoption gathers first-person accounts from adoptive parents, birth mothers, and adoptees on how adoption has shaped their lives. “By allowing others to narrate their spiritual journeys through adoption,” Mock writes, the book shows that “adoption can be a wonderful, powerful, hopeful experience and one that is difficult, painful, despairing. ...

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