The Image of God
People have debated for years what it means to be made in “the image of God.” All of the following have been put forward as explaining this idea: can reason; can use language; can choose; can imagine; can design and build; can think in the abstract; has em
otions - there are others. All of these are most likely part of what it means to be made in God’s image. But we want to consider this from a somewhat different perspective.
Since we are made “in the image of God,” should we not reflect that image in our lives? Here we are not talking about any kind of mental capabilities but about our conduct and values. Since God is righteous, we should be righteous. Since God gives life, we should value life. Since God is merciful, we should show mercy. Since God is slow to anger, we should have the same self-control. Since God gives freely, we should be eager to give when there is a need. Since God is one, we should strive for unity in our marriages, families and churches. Since God is love, we should love not only Him but those around us.
These aspects of the image of God are those which were blurred and warped in the garden when the first pair listened to the devil. So now, having the knowledge of good and evil, we too often choose to do and to value that which does not reflect the image of God in which we are made. We choose: to be unforgiving and hold grudges; to be selfish and greedy; to hurt, even kill others; to abort babies; to turn our back on the needy; to throw temper tantrums and speak vicious words to others. We could go on. You get the idea.
This image of God was recovered in Christ Jesus the Son of Man. He perfectly reflected the image of God - “He who has seen Me has seen the Father;” (John 14:9). This is why the scripture teaches that God has predestined those whom He would call to be “conformed to the image of His Son” (Romans 8:29). In and through Jesus you and I can again give a much clearer image of our God.