What does it mean that man is made in the image of God?


Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

Community answers are sorted based on votes. The higher the vote, the further up an answer is.

Shea S. Michael Houdmann Supporter Got Questions Ministries
On the last day of creation, God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness" (Genesis 1:26). Thus, He finished His work with a "personal touch." God formed man from the dust and gave him ...

July 01 2013 4 responses Vote Up Share Report

Eced7a1f c81d 42f4 95ea 9d5719dce241 Singapore Moses Messenger of God, CEO in IT industry, Astronaut, Scientist
Gen 1:26-37 says, "And 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 creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them"

More Facts about God:
► He is a person (Job 13: 8; Heb. 1: 3). 
► He has a spirit body (Dan. 7: 9- 14 10: 5- 19 Isa. 6; Ezek. 1; Rev. 4). 
► Shape (Jn. 5: 37) Form (Php. 2: 5- 7) 
► Image and likeness (Gen. 1: 26; 9: 6; 1Cor. 11: 7; Jas. 3: 9) 
► Back parts (Ex. 33: 23) 
► Heart (Gen. 6: 6; 8: 21) 
► Hands (Ps. 102: 25- 26 Heb. 1: 10) 
► Fingers (Ps. 8: 3- 6 Ex. 31: 18) 
► Right hand (Rev. 5: 1- 7) 
► Mouth (Num. 12: 8; Isa. 1: 20) 
► Lips (Isa. 11: 4; 30: 27) 
► Tongue (Isa. 30: 27) 
► Feet (Ex. 24: 10; Ezek. 1: 27)
► Eyes (Ps. 11:4; 18:24; 33:18) 
► Ears (Ps. 18:6; 34:15) Head (Dan. 7:9) 
► Hair (Dan. 7:9) Arms (Ps. 44:3; Jn. 12:38) 
► Loins (Ezek. 1:26- 28 8:1- 4) 
► Voice (Ps. 29; Rev. 10:3- 4) 
► Breath (Gen. 2:7) 
► Countenance (Ps. 11:7) 
► Soul (Mt. 12:18; Heb. 10:38) 
► Soul passions, as grief (Gen. 6:6) 
► Anger (1Ki. 11:9) 
► Repentance (Gen. 6:6) 
► Jealousy (Ex. 20:5; 34:14) 
► Hate (Prov. 6:16) 
► Love (Jn. 3:16) 
► Pity (Ps. 103:13) 
► Fellowship (1Jn. 1:1- 7) 
► Pleasure and delight (Ps. 147:10) 
► Joy (Neh. 8:10; Gal. 5:22) 
► Peace (Gal. 5:22) 
► Longsuffering (Gal. 5:22) 
► Gentleness (Gal. 5:22) 
► Goodness (Gal. 5:22) 
► Faith (Gal. 5:22)
► Meekness (Gal. 5:23) 
► Self- control (Gal. 5:23) 
► Spirit (Ps. 143:10; Isa. 30:1) 
► Spirit faculties, as mind (Rom. 11:34) 
► Intelligence (Gen. 1:26; Rom. 11:33) 
► Will (Rom. 8:27; 9:19) 
► Power (Eph. 1:19; 3:7, 20; Heb. 1:3) Truth (Ps. 91:4) 
► Faith (Rom. 4:17; 12:3) Hope (1Cor. 13:13) 
► Righteousness (Ps. 45:4) 
► Faithfulness (1Cor. 10:13) 
► Knowledge (Isa. 11:2) 
► Wisdom (1Tim. 1:17) 
► Discernment (Heb. 4:12) 
► Immutability (Heb. 6:17) 
► He wears clothes (Dan. 7:9- 14) 
► Eats food (Gen. 18:1- 8 Ex. 24:11) 
► Rests (Gen. 2:1- 4 Heb. 4:4) 
► Dwells in a city (Jn. 14:1- 3) 
► Sits on a throne (Isa. 6; Dan. 7:9- 11) 
► Walks (Gen. 3:8; 18:1- 8, 22, 33) 
► Rides (Ps. 18:10; 68:17; Ezek. 1) 
► Manifests other powers and physical presence like other beings

July 30 2014 1 response Vote Up Share Report

Seth3 Seth Freeman
When God, speaking to Himself in the Trinity, desired to make man in His own image, He was not referring to physical form.  For God has no bodily form.  Christ did once He was born on earth, but the reference here has no bearing on our physical appearance.

Mankind stands unique amongst all of God's creation in that we alone are created in His image.  It is in our personality that this is seen most clearly.  We are self-conscious and self-determined. We have a free will.  We enjoy art, music, beauty - we create. 

While other creations of God operate by instinct, we operate with more than just instinct.  We are moral creatures, with a morality that is innate inside all of us rooted and based in the character of God. 

Also, it is important to remember that this image was in a way distorted, or even shattered by sin. It is only through Christ, that our nature can be (and will be) transformed once again into the perfect image of God.

August 07 2013 1 response Vote Up Share Report

Open uri20150128 738 pv2hit tom w
Ask children, “What does God look like?” and their responses usually include: “He is very old, has a long white beard, bushy white hair, and wears a flowing white dress or robe.” Frequently cartoonists add sandals and unruly white eyebrows. Whether it’s a towering figure or simply an enormous hand descending from Heaven, man’s concept of God’s appearance appears to bear little resemblance to our own. This may seem puzzling as Genesis repeatedly states that we are created in God’s own image (Genesis 1:27). 

This image of God was imparted only to humans. While God is not confined to human form, imperfect and finite man shares in God’s nature, with communicable attributes (life, personality, truth, wisdom, love, holiness, justice). We have the capacity for an amazing spiritual relationship with Him, giving us insight.

Any insight as to, “What does God look like?” requires an extraordinary encounter. In Genesis 32:22–28 Jacob, the father of the twelve patriarchs of the Israel, after wrestling with God, was left crippled. “Jacob named the place Peniel—“face of God”—for he said, ‘I have seen God face to face, yet my life has been spared’” (Genesis 32:30). God came as close to Jacob as possible—the Creator’s hands were physically placed on him. 

It is not permissible for God’s face to be literally seen (Exodus 33:20). When Moses encountered God as a blazing bush, he feared looking at God (Exodus 3:6). Even Moses’ intimate relationship in which the Lord spoke “face to face” (Deuteronomy 34:10) contained limitations. In seeking God’s glorious presence, Moses is reminded, “...you may not look directly at my face, for no one may see me and live” (Exodus 33:11, 20-23). “Face to face” indicates intimate conversations shared between two close friends. This mutual trust allows them to communicate honestly and openly with one another (Deuteronomy 12:6-8).

The Old Testament’s examples of God’s appearance centered on His glory and heavenly presence dwelling within objects of His choosing: the Tabernacle (Numbers 12:5; 16:19, 42), pillar of cloud and pillar of fire (Numbers 14:14). In the New Testament God reveals Himself by appearing to us through His Incarnate Son, Jesus Christ.

In response to, “What does God look like?” an omnipotent and omniscient Creator sent a child.“Christ is the visible image of the invisible God...For God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ” (Colossians 1:15, 19). There is no mention of any distinctive features in this Child’s personal appearance, only specific elements–-lying in a manger, wrapped in strips of cloth, and a star over a house. Yet the shepherds and the wise men immediately recognized Jesus as they glorified, praised, and worshiped the Living God. “The son reflects God’s own glory, and everything about him represents God exactly...” (Hebrews 1:3). 

With unconditional love and grace, God created us in His own tselem (image) while giving us a glimpse of Himself in Jesus Christ—“No one has ever seen God. But his only Son, who is himself God, is near to the Father’s heart; he has told us about him” (John 1:18). In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus tells us, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God” (Matthew 5:8). We may not yet fully see God’s face, and yet He fully looks upon us with unfailing love.

July 20 2014 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Anonymous
My opinion is ...  The Hebrew word used for God is Elohim and it is plural. This same proper name is used for God throughout Genesis 1 and clearly describes God the creator. David also uses this proper name of God in the Psalms. God is One, but we also know from Scripture that God is Father, Son, and Spirit. The Scriptures also let us know Jesus, the Son, is also the Word of God with God in the beginning. I believe Jesus was speaking the Father's desire and plan as intercession, as a request, "Let Us make ...." The Father, Son, and Spirit work together and are One God.  T

August 07 2013 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Image George Delmindo
God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness" (Gen 1:26). So God made man in his own image and likeness - as to shape and form. So how does God look?

God is a Spirit [John 4:24]. God's body is composed of Spirit, of spirit composition, whereas man is made of flesh and blood. We are made from the dust of the earth, but fashioned in God's image. God is a Spirit. And Spirits are invisible to human eyes. 

Adam was made to be like God. He was made physically complete on the sixth day of creation week. But his likeness of God, mentally and spiritually, is not fully complete. Adam lacked something else. He is not imputed with the character of God. God does not create character by fiat. It has to be developed and it takes time to have such a character. The scriptures say God is holy, just and perfect. That is what God is. That is his character.
Adam is to work out for that kind of character while he is in the garden of Eden, but Satan had interfered in God's work of creating something out of Adam. God's master plan for Adam was left unfinished - his creation of the perfect spiritual man and bring him to glory as his born son. Though Adam failed, Jesus Christ is the fullness (1 Cor 15: 45-47). Jesus became the first so born of God's creation of many sons.

Adam could live on and not see death until the time of his change would come - because the Holy Spirit [tree of life] was made available to him. It is the Holy Spirit which will guide and help him in his walk with God, but just like every Christian, Satan is always around looking for an opportunity. And Satan was able to bring him down by deception. Instead of believing God, he believed Satan's lie that he will not die! And be like God knowing good and evil. Here is where the doctrine of the immortality of the soul originated. It's Satan's lie!

Well, Adam did not die that day, he still lived on to be 930 years old and then he died as God told him so. He returned to the ground where he came from. Sin brought an end in Adam's life, as God told him so. When God speaks, his words are so certain that they can be counted as if already accomplished. When God says so, it will surely come to pass. So Adam's life came to an end. The Bible did not say that Adam died spiritually or his death meant separation from God, but he really did experienced death - which means cessation of life. It was Adam's sin which caused his separation from his maker.

Adam was made a living soul (Gen 2:7, 1 Cor 15:45), just like the animals. Animals are also called souls or nephesh (Hebrew for soul), but he was different from the animals in a way God gave him a spirit. This spirit in man (Job 32:8) which is the breath of life, is the seat of his intellect. It cannot think or reason apart from the body. It gives understanding. Man is not that spirit. Man is the soul himself - a living soul.This spirit (ruach in Hebrew) is the blueprint of the man which returns to God at death (Eccl 12:7). When the body that reverts to dust is resurrected, this spirit will again be reunited with the body and will bring all the memories back.
Human life is animal existence but with human spirit empowering the brain with intellect makes us different from the animals.

Man was made to have a relationship with his maker. Therefore he was made in his maker's form and shape, with contact and relationship made possible by the presence within him of the human spirit (Rom 8:16-17).

August 28 2014 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Image Thomas K M A retired Defence Scientist from Indian Defence R&D Orgn.
May I add some more facts about the creation? God formed man in His own image and likeness. God is spirit. He formed man in spirit (in His own image and likeness) (Gen.1:27) God wanted man to reign over the entire creation and in fact, He gave man the full authority to rule over the world. God therefore, created man in visible form taking dust from the earth so that the other creations were able to see him in visible form over his spirit with soul and body with all senses. (Gen.3:7). 

God therefore, created man in full form with spirit enveloping the soul and the body with a holy, righteous, innocent nature. The creation of man was one time. Our God is perfect and His creation is perfect.

October 15 2014 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

1515012380789778228527 RICK PORTER Chaplain [ Truckers Chapel ]-- Undeserving Child of God
Man seems to be described as mind, body, and soul. In Mark 12:30, Jesus uses words heart, soul, mind and strength, as to loving God.

We know God as the trinity is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. If man has a trinity of substance, mind, body and soul/spirit, then humans can be said to be in Gods image as Father/mind, Jesus/body, and Holy Spirit/ spirit.

February 15 2017 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Stringio Andrea Spirit www.firstlove4jesus.org
God the Father was speaking to His Son, Jesus, who was known as the "Word" John 1:1-4 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men."

August 07 2013 1 response Vote Up Share Report

Mini Laura A
When God made us in His image, it was not physically. We carry God’s image in knowledge, righteousness, and holiness. These connect to our understanding, will, and affections, respectively. God has these three characteristics in perfection, and so did Adam and Eve, but our understanding is darkened, our will corrupted, and our affections polluted. So we still carry His image, as we were created, but it has been marred almost beyond recognition.

August 10 2021 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Psalm 121 Allyse C
The Hebrew word for "God" is actually "Elohim". The word Elohim means "mighty ones", therefore, these mighty ones are the angels! So, when the angels said to make man in their own image, they were making man to look just like them. Adam wouldn't have the same sinless behavior as the angels, but he did look like the angels. We look forward to that day when we actually ARE equal to the angels in Luke 20:36. This reference in Genesis also further proves that angels do not have wings.

August 06 2013 12 responses Vote Up Share Report

Me at sawdust fest 2b Craig Mcelheny Christian Author
Imagine if you could, what this world would be like if it was part of our nature to be incapable of lying. I mean, precisely, the sum total of all lies in the world would be zero. Then imagine again if everyone was endowed with the patience of Job, could not be provoked into an angry mood, and never acknowledged or reacted to a wrong done. If everyone was always soft spoken, never arrogant, and never bragged, how far would that go toward correcting the ills of this world?

Let’s take it one step further: What if everyone believed all things said? You would be labeled naïve in this world, but not in God’s world, because there are no lies in God’s perfect world. It is part of His nature to believe all things, bear all things, endure all things, and hope in all things. Hope will one day disappear, but in this imperfect world we must cling to hope – the hope of glory.

Jesus gave us a command. He said, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect” Matthew 5:48. This comes about when the agape love that resides within is perfected on the day of judgment (1 John 4:17, John 17:23). That is what Gen. 1:26 is about. It was not a done deed when the Trinity said, “Let us make man in our image.” They intended to remake the Creation into a set of beings infused with God’s nature as defined by agape love (1 Corinthians 13:4-7). God does not intend that we should be robots, but we do need an attitude adjustment.

Their plan involves at least six millennia. The Creation was subjected to the futility of this world, not by our choice, but by God (Rom. 8:20). It was done in the hope of setting the Creation free (Rom. 8:21), that we should be the glory of God (Rom. 8:18-19). This will happen when the Lord appears (1 Peter 5:4) for we shall be like Him (Col. 3:4, 1 John 3:2) perfected in love, incapable of sin (1 John 3:9). For we shall no longer miss the mark of the fullness of God’s glory, as evidenced by the latter half of 1 John 3:9.

Eph. 1:4 tells us that God chose us before the Foundation of the World to be holy and blameless before Him in love. That will happen at the resurrection when we are completed/perfected in His image. It already happened to Jesus (Heb. 2:10, Heb. 5:9, and Heb. 7:28). He is the radiance of the Father’s glory and the express image of the Father’s divine nature (Heb. 1:3 NASB and NKJV). 

See related answer to "What is the meaning of 'perfect' in 1 Corinthians 13:10?" 

August 16 2014 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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