Ye Olde Cambridge Guy
Archaeologists found a medieval graveyard underneath the Divinity School at Cambridge University. It was full of complete skeletons belonging to people considered normal and poor during their long-gone era.
Researchers took one of the 700-year-old skulls and did extensive 3D imagining on it to discover what the ancient man looked like. (DRUMROLL, PLEASE…)
Well, he looked like a guy from Cambridge, England. If I were to visit Cambridge next week, and I saw this guy in a pub, I wouldn’t give him a second glance. Same goes for a bar where I live in Kansas City.
We can get so caught up in things that we forget that all the wildly different people we encounter are also real, full-fledged people who share the same dignity we have.
Whether I want to admit it or not, I’m a heck of a lot like ye old Cambridge guy, and he’s a lot like me.
Being made in the image of God – as Genesis 1 puts it – applies to all of us, not just to the people of my generation. God’s love for the cosmos – as John 3 puts it – applies to everyone, not just to the people who look and talk like me.
So, I’m called to live that out when I do church, politics, and life.
Sometimes we’re tempted toward the arrogance of today. We say, “Long ago people were different and stupid because they didn’t have smartphones or whatever.” Other times, we lean the opposite way and say, “Modern people are weird. We were better humans way back when.”
It’s better to say, “People are wildly different; we always have been and always will be. But, we also all share the dignity of God’s love and the frail glory of being a person. Let us live like this is true.