ESV - 27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
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What does being created in the Image of God imply? First, it should be evident that it doesn’t imply having the physical appearance of God. Instead, it seems to me that being in God’s image means that we share some of His characteristics that distinguish us from other living creatures. The primary characteristic we share with God is independent, free-will consciousness. This is what sets humans apart from the animals. Another factor is that humans were granted “dominion” over other creatures just as God has dominion over all His creation. (Genesis 1:26-28) And finally, a more controversial factor could be human longevity. The general view is that some aspect of each human is immortal and may spend eternity either in or out of God’s favor. (Matthew 25:46) If this is true, than longevity is another characteristic we share with God. There may be more characteristics we could describe but I will leave that for others to pursue.
In Genesis 1:26 the Bible states, "...let us..." (Plural) "...make man in our..." (Plural) "...image, after our..." (Plural) "...likeness...". The plural nature of God is known by Christians as "one God manifested in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God is a triune being. Man was created in the triune image of God. Man is a triune being--body, soul, and spirit. Man's body is created in the image of the Son; man's soul is created in the image of the Father; and man's spirit is in the image of the Holy Spirit. Reverend Doctor Roy L. Swihart
This is more about what we will be when we are completed in the image of Christ (Eph. 4:13) than it is about what we are as human beings. Gen. 1:26 is more of a declaration of a stated goal, than it is a reflection on the creation. The goal is to rid the cosmos of sin. How do you do that? You make the Creation blameless and Holy at the resurrection, possessing the very nature of God. That is to say that the Creation will not be susceptible to temptation (James 1:13), will not be capable of lying (Heb. 6:18), and will possess all the characteristics of agape love (1 Corinthians 13:4-7). And, no longer capable of sin (missing the mark of God’s glory – 1 John 3:9). These are the characteristics of Jesus when He was completed in the exact image of the Father (Heb. 1:3). These same characteristics are ours to have, “the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints.” (NKJV Eph. 1:18). God bless!
I like to think of being created in the image of God as being capable of reflecting something of God to those around us. Paul reminds us that we are a letter from Christ; for example, as Christians, when people look at us they should be able to see Christ. We are created in His image, we become to those who are perishing the aroma of death, but to those who are being saved the aroma of salvation, 2 Co 2:16. Paul further developed this in 2 Co 3:17-18, NIV. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lords glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the spirit.
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