by Robert Brinsmead
Man - male and female - are made in God's image and likeness. This is the only place where God is revealed to us - the arena of human life and existence. "God is manifest in the flesh." "The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us." We of course, have learned to give these New Testament statements a generic meaning as even Jesus intended we should do. Even Paul says in one place, "That which may be known of God is manifested in them..."
All ideas and theologies have originated in the human mind, including all the distorting myths and the more edifying longings for a more humane order. The clearer revelation of what and who God is comes with the progressive dawning of a human consciousness. There is much in the Old Testament that portrays Yahweh as the tribal God of the Hebrews and a celestial bully at that. Even in the prophets a true monotheism emerges slowly and progressively. Their's was a theology and a morality of the Exodus. God was manifested in what God did for Israel- delivering them from oppression. So Israel's God is the One who "executes justice for all that are oppressed." This sets the pattern for the kind of human behaviour that can create a Promised Land.
In creating a Land like this, the people of the Exodus must act out the story and the spirit of the Exodus in all their relationships including even the life of their beasts. God hates oppression. So the people must hate any and every expression of oppression. They must not oppress the poor because they too had been poor and oppressed. They must defend and protect the fatherless because they too had been fatherless in the land of Egypt. They must not oppress the stranger, because they too had been strangers in Egypt.