Currently there are seven million of us on the planet. If worth is determined by supply and demand, then maybe a person isn’t worth much. Certainly many of the things people do would suggest that we are not worth much (i.e. war, genocide, abortion). But what if you know a person? What if they are your child, spouse or parent? What if they are your best friend? Suddenly value skyrockets, at least to you.
Consider God’s point of view. He knows us all intimately. We are all His creation. He sees, better than any of us, that we are eternal creatures. He sees our hidden potential. His value of each one of us is expressed in what He was willing to do to save us. He gave His one and only Son that whoever believes in Him has eternal life. We are worthy to die for.
So there is a great disparity between the value God has for people and the value we have for people that we don’t personally know. This is an area where every disciple of Jesus has room to grow. We are called to “love our neighbor as ourselves”. That love would imply that we should care about people’s general well-being, but we should especially be concerned with a person’s eternal well-being. Perhaps we will not have time nor opportunity to know and personally love a person in the course of our limited lifetime. But what if we do have an impact on a person that connects them to Jesus and eternal life, won’t that person be of incredible value to you and, even more so, won’t you be valuable to them.
God’s love for a person does tend to overflow into the hearts of those who follow Him. Yes, we can remain aloof. Sinful nature is good at that. But we can also become so much more fulfilled when we start seeing eternal value in every person, even in people who are very different, or perhaps even objectionable, to us. Each person has the potential of being of eternal importance to you. That is why we must take evangelism seriously and personally. If you see value in people, you will find it much harder to hate them.