Do all lives matter? God says yes! We are all created in His image (Genesis 1:26 Genesis 1:26And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.
American King James Version×). He gave His Son to all—every single one of us (John 3:16 John 3:16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
American King James Version×). We all have value to God (Matthew 6:26 Matthew 6:26Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much better than they?
American King James Version×, Luke 12:24 Luke 12:24Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them: how much more are you better than the fowls?
American King James Version×). All lives matter—poor, rich, famous, obscure, forgotten, disrespected, unrepresented or out of mind. Those treated unjustly matter just as much as the privileged.
In today’s world—just as much as it has been in the past—there are those who feel and act as if some lives don’t matter as much as others do.
Do all lives matter to us in the Church of God?
In our hearts and in our actions, do we value those who are different with the proper concern and acknowledgement? As human beings we all have natural bias toward those who are similar to ourselves and often not favorable to those who are different. It takes conscientious effort to overcome these tendencies and to actually love all of our brothers as ourselves (Matthew 22:39 Matthew 22:39And the second is like to it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
American King James Version×, Mark 12:31 Mark 12:31And the second is like, namely this, You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is none other commandment greater than these.
American King James Version×). Favoritism, which produces unjust treatment, is a sin (James 2:8-9 James 2:8-9  If you fulfill the royal law according to the scripture, You shall love your neighbor as yourself, you do well:  But if you have respect to persons, you commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors.
American King James Version×).
I once heard a story about two men who were walking and talking:
The first man said, “Do you consider us good friends?”
The second man replied: “Yes, I consider you to be just like a brother.”
“Do you love me?”
“Yes, brother, I love you.”
“Do you know my pain?”
There was a pause.
“Then how can you truly love me?’
We in the Church of God must show love for one another by sympathizing, caring for, and even trying to walk a mile in another’s shoes so that we demonstrate real compassion (2 Peter 1:10 2 Peter 1:10Why the rather, brothers, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if you do these things, you shall never fall:
American King James Version×). In recent weeks I have seen both authorities in positions of power as well as common citizens engage in acts producing loss of life and violent reactions in the streets.
I have personally observed and felt the pain of horrible injustice that, unfortunately once again, I and others express with tears, sadness and sorrow. We must pray for and seek to understand and comfort those who are suffering, physically or emotionally from pain and heavy hearts. We need the loving kindness of the Good Samaritan who aided a Jew (Luke 10:25-37 Luke 10:25-37  And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?
 He said to him, What is written in the law? how read you?
 And he answering said, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.
 And he said to him, You have answered right: this do, and you shall live.
 But he, willing to justify himself, said to Jesus, And who is my neighbor?
 And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.
 And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.
 And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.
 But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him,
 And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.
 And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said to him, Take care of him; and whatever you spend more, when I come again, I will repay you.
 Which now of these three, think you, was neighbor to him that fell among the thieves?
 And he said, He that showed mercy on him. Then said Jesus to him, Go, and do you likewise.
American King James Version×). We must not hide behind our privileged status and distances, ignoring the elephant in the room (James 4:17 James 4:17Therefore to him that knows to do good, and does it not, to him it is sin.
American King James Version×).
God desires that there be righteousness (Hebrew tsedaquah) and justice (Hebrew misphat). Tsedaquah means having a right relationship with God and a right relationship with people, having equity despite social differences. Misphat means actions taken to correct injustice (Amos 5:24 Amos 5:24But let judgment run down as waters, and righteousness as a mighty stream.
American King James Version×).
Appreciate and cherish everyone
So, let not God’s people be found wanting—through the absence of love and understanding, or with moral neglect or lack of compassion for others who are in some way different. Pray for, talk to and comfort one another (1 Peter 3:8 1 Peter 3:8Finally, be you all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brothers, be pitiful, be courteous:
American King James Version×). We should appreciate and cherish everyone. All are God’s children, all lives matter; none more than any others.
May God who gives this patience and encouragement help us live in complete harmony with each other as is fitting for followers of Jesus Christ (Roman 15:5).
Vincent L. Braddock