What is self-image?


/ˈˌself ˈimij/

noun: self-image; plural noun: self-images
  1. the idea one has of one’s abilities, appearance, and personality.
    “sickness is an affront to one’s self-image and dignity”


We all have ideas about who we are and what we are like.  In a sense, we are legends in our own minds.  Now I know that is an attempt at self-deprecating humor in many instances, but I think it’s accurate.

We believe things about ourselves that we think are true.  And even MORE importantly we believe we know things about others that we think is true.  In some cases that’s correct and in other cases it’s not.   We all form opinions based on observational evidence around us.

The human mind has a tendency to think highly of itself and less highly, or sometimes judgmental toward others.  I do it.  You do it.  Don’t you?  Be honest here…

“We” and by we, I mean all human beings, have a tendency to judge others by what we think is right.  To illustrate my point, let’s say I have a standard by which I live.  I believe this is the BEST way to live.  You live differently than I do and you think your way is the best.  Who is right?

Is it simply a matter of “to each his own”?  As long as we aren’t hurting each other right?  But what if we are hurting each other?  Was Hitler correct in his thinking?  He thought it was okay, what he was doing, didn’t he?  He even had the support of his government and by all means, he had the support of the populace.  Did personal thoughts, government or majority make his viewpoints correct?

Unless you are a sociopath or some Neo-nazi you’ll recoil at what I just said.

In those days there was no king in Israel.  Everyone did what was right in his own eyes.  Judges 17:6

It really comes down to an objective standard of truth.  A revelation, if you will, of what is always true and what is always right and what is always WRONG!

There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy.  But who are you to judge your neighbor?   James 4:12

Try as you might you just can’t achieve this outside of a consistent, ever present, Sovereign.  A Creator that never varies.  He is always the same, yesterday, today and forever.  Feel free to argue this if you like, because you are left with very few choices.  Random chaos or order.

Even if you deny the existence of the God of the Bible, you will live as if He does exist.  You cling to absolute beliefs, but you can’t justify them.  You can try, but unless you can acknowledge an Absolute, you have no basis for your belief.

Our ideas of our self-image are distorted by sin.  We look into a mirror and we look to our good points.  We try and think the best in ourselves and belief in our goodness, but measured against a perfect standard the flaws are evident and obvious.  If we will be honest with ourselves and place our imperfections against the law of God, we see our need for help.  This help comes from another.

Jesus Christ is that “other”.  He is the perfect judge, the perfect sacrifice, the perfect redeemer for those that recognize not only their imperfections but just how hideous they actually look to a Holy God.

Don’t walk away from here today without thinking about where you receive your self-image.


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