Reflecting God’s image by how we respond to the boy and the gorilla

Reflecting God’s image by how we respond to the boy and the gorilla

Last weekend, a toddler climbed over a barricade at the Cincinnati Zoo, tumbled over a cliff into the moat, and was carried away by a male gorilla. To save the boy, the gorilla was killed. It was a sad turn of events that could have turned out far worse.

The mountain gorilla is an endangered species, as are all gorillas today. According to National Geographic, only 700 mountain gorillas exist on the earth. Now that population has decreased by one. There are millions of little boys on earth today, yet we can rejoice that the life of just this one was saved because the gorilla was sacrificed. In God’s economy, all the gorillas in the world are not worth the life of one child who bears his own image and likeness.

Yet, we cannot, in our armchair reflections, simply vote “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” for the gorilla or the child and be done with it. Rather, such a harrowing and emotional event should prompt us to think through what it means to be made in God’s image, how that fact shapes our values and views, and how those values and views, in turn, affect our work as stewards of all of God’s creation…(to read the rest of the article, click here).



Karen Swallow Prior is Professor of English at Liberty University. She is the author of Booked: Literature in the Soul of Me and Fierce Convictions: The Extraordinary Life of Hannah More–Poet, Reformer, Abolitionist. She writes for Christianity Today, The Atlantic, and Think Christian.