Created in the Image of God
Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; Let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, And over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” (Gen. 1:26)
God created the animals, the brilliantly colored vegetation, and the land in six days. But then He looked down and said that none of these creations bore His image. Even though He pronounced all of them “good,” none of them were made in His likeness. So God created a special being with a unique capacity to be like Him. This extraordinary work of this particular creation would have the ability to reflect God’s glory and display His character. Although man could never be exactly like God, there would be certain similarities enabling mankind to have a special understanding of God and, amazing though it may seem, please Him by loving and worshiping Him.
With all other creatures, God simply spoke them into being. But with mankind, we see intricate details, all revealing something of God’s purpose for us—creatures made in the image of God. So what does it mean to be created in the image of God? It means that we have been created to participate in the incredible phenomena called thinking, reflecting, deciding, learning, feeling, and knowing.
We are gifted with a moral barometer to know right from wrong. You can’t talk about the fall of mankind without acknowledging that there was somewhere to fall from. We were created as intelligent, moral creatures, and it’s from this place of favor that we fell.
Another reflection of the image of God is mankind’s capacity for relationship. The Sovereign God is three persons (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) who enjoy perfect communication, flawless empathy, and unfettered relationship. We mirror that capacity as we engage in relationships with one another, which serve to magnify the reflection of God’s glory through our mutual love for others.
We have been made for that which is sacred and holy. Made in His image, we are meant to fulfill the purpose of God …“for His glory.”
Lord God, we often compliment parents by telling them that their children look just like them. We also want other people to say that we look just like You—by our words, actions, and character. Help us to become a fitting reflection of You in every respect, so that others will want to become Your children as well. Amen.
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