TUOR Genesis 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. What does this mean? Is the image physical or spiritual? What is this image? I am fairly certain that none of us have the answer to this one, but what do you think? CHRIS TEMPLE Its certainly not physical, for no man hath seen God (The Father) at any time. It means that God made man to share in God's communicable attributes, but not in His incommunicable attributes. PASTOR LARRY Some do think that there is a physical component to it ... that when God created man, he had Christ in mind. I can take this or leave it. I think the image of God refers to characteristics of personality ... intellect, emotion, volition, the ability to objectify oneself, etc. BOB LANDIS I think it was a spiritual image He was talking about. He made man pure in His image and likeness so we could have direct fellowship with him. JOHN WELLS God is not, as Kenneth Copeland describes, "a big man, about 8 feet tall." I agree with Chris about our sharing God's communicable attributes. After creating everything else; plants, animals, birds, fish, and reptiles, God turned His attention to creating the crown of His creation. Adam, in his rational life, he was like God in that he could reason and had intellect, will, and emotion. In the moral sense, he was like God because he was good and sinless (initially). LIVIN’INTHEWORD Its certainly not physical, for no man hath seen God (The Father) at any time. It means that God made man to share in God's communicable attributes, but not in His incommunicable attributes. OH yes, Brother some have seen him, says so in the word. John 14:7 If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him. I believe what Jesus said here was, " If you have seen me, You have also seen my Father." Genesis 1:26 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. Notice the words.."in" and "after." I believe that God was talking to Jesus here. God and Jesus are one. John 1:11 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. Who was the Word here? God the Father John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. Who was the Word here? God the Son, Jesus Christ. In my mind, "image" and "likeness" are two different things. My daughter bares likeness of me, but she's not an image of me. When I look in the mirror, or see a picture, there is my image. God created us in their image AND likeness. The Bible is very blunt, means what it says and says what it means. There are no hidden answers there. CHRIS TEMPLE I'm not sure where you see a contradiction. Perhaps you didn't read my inserted "Father" for clarification? John 1:18 No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him. NKJV or John 1:18 No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son, or the only begotten God, Who is in the bosom [in the intimate presence] of the Father, He has declared Him [He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known]. AMP PASTOR LARRY On the idea of the physical being as a part of the image of God several thoughts. 1. The idea that God does not have a body and no one has seen God does, IMO, minimize the issue of Christ's earthly body which he continues in. As I originally said, when God created man, he had Christ in mind. The incarnate form of God would have been the blueprint for the man's created form. There could well have been a Christophany on Day 6 when God gave the command and instructions to Adam and God's daily appearance in the garden in the "cool of the day" may also have been a Christophany. 2. After God proposed to make man in his image, he made him a corporeal being among other things. Since man is in the image of God, it seems impossible to exclude physical factors. 3. If we say, as we must, that man is a unity in his composition, it would seem that such unity is a part of the image of God. No less than John Murray said, "Man is a body, and it is not possible to exclude man in this identity from the scope of that which defines his identity, the image of God" (Collected Writings, 2:39). 4. The parallel between Adam in the image of God and Seth in the image of Adam could imply that the body that Adam received from God and the body which a child receives from its parents is a part of the image of God (See Anderson and Reichenbach, JETS, June 1990, 197). After reflection on this some, I am more inclined to see the body of man as a part of the image of God, along with the communicable attributes and the attributes of personality. However, I am not completely persuaded, nor am I greatly concerned by it but I thought I would throw these thoughts out anyway. AARON And [Elohim] 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. 27 So [Elohim] created man in his own image, in the image of [Elohim] created he him; male and female created he them. ...this name, like every other name in the Hebrew, has a distinct meaning, full of significance. For the word "Elohim" is formed from the Hebrew word, "Allah," "to swear," and describes One who stands in a covenant-relationship, which is ratifed by an oath. Parkhurst, in his well-known lexicon, thus explains the name:--"Elohim:" "A name usually given in the Hebrew Scriptures to the ever-blessed Trinity, by which they present themselves as under the obligation of an oath. ...This oath, (referred to in Psalm cx. 4 'The Lord sware and will not repent,') was prior to creation. Accordingly 'Jehovah' is at the beginning of the creation called 'Elohim,' in Gen. i. 1, which implies that the Divine Persons had sworn when they created; and it is evident, from Gen. iii. 4, 5, that both the Serpent and the Woman knew 'Jehovah' by this name, 'Elohim,' before the Fall."--Andrew Jukes, The Names of God in Holy Scripture God is love, 1 John 4:8 THERE ARE THREE THINGS IN LOVE, AS IT WERE A TRACE OF THE TRINITY But what is love or charity, which divine Scripture so greatly praises and proclaims, except the love of good? But love is of some one that loves, and with love something is loved. Behold, then, there are three things: he that loves, and that which is loved, and love. What, then, is love, except a certain life which couples or seeks to couple together some two things, namely, him that loves, and that which is loved? And this is so even in outward and carnal loves. But that we may drink in something more pure and clear, let us tread down the flesh and ascend to the mind. What does the mind love in a friend except the mind? There, then, also are three things: he that loves, and that which is loved, and love.--St. Augustine, De Trinitate All that to say this. God's image is reflected in love, and more specifically the love that exists (or is supposed to exist) in the marriage relationship. For there you have a lover, a beloved, and the Spirit of love, and the three stand together in a covenant relationship ratified by an oath (vow). Why else would God say, "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them,"? Appearance? Please! PASTOR LARRY There is no basis whatsoever to limit the image of God to love, and even less (if such can be said) to love in a marriage relationship. The image of God, whatever it is, is what sets man apart from animals. It is clear that personality (intellect, volition, and emotion) are a part of it as well as much else. Appearance? Why not? AARON But that the marriage relationship (as God designed it, not as it normally exists in this fallen world) and all that goes with it is the image of God is made crystal clear in Ephesians 5. "This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband." But as touching appearance: at what level can we say the apes stop resembling God? PASTOR LARRY While marriage is a beautiful human picture of our relationship with Christ, Eph 5 does not address the image of God in man. It is wrong to take that passage and assert anything about the image of God. But as touching appearance: at what level can we say the apes stop resembling God? They don't have the attributes of personality. AARON Pastor Larry maintains that the physical appearance of humans is part of the "image of God." To which Aaron replied, "At what level can we say the apes stop resembling God?" knowing that apes and humans are similar in appearance. Pastor Larry said, "They don't have the attributes of personality." Not only is his answer factually erroneous (as anyone who would even casually glance at the observations made by those who study the behavior of the lower primates would immediately see), but completely avoided the question. God is Three in One. How can plurality in oneness be better represented here on earth than in the marriage relationship? "Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh," Genesis 2:24. I won't quibble endlessly over this issue. No where in any portion of the Scriptures is man's physical appearance presented as the reflection of God's image. PASTOR LARRY If you understand what personality is, then you would not call my answer factually erroneous. Study a theology book on personality and you will see why I said what I did. It is not about behavior and likeability. It is much more. Personality is usually understood regarding one's manner of interaction with other people (i.e., he has a good personality). That is not personality in the theological sense of the word. You need to study this up before you accuse me of being erroneous. As for avoiding the question, what question did I avoid? The question was, what makes man different from apes and I answered "personality." Whether you like the answer or not, you cannot say I avoided it. God is Three in One. How can plurality in oneness be better represented here on earth than in the marriage relationship? So who is the third in marriage? Marriage is the union of a man and woman. In the Godhead, who is the man and who is the woman and what is the third person? In marriage two people become one flesh, yet you have gone out of your way to deny that the image of God has anything to do with flesh. In the Godhead, who was the mother and father who was left? You are taking one issue and confusing it with another. You tried it with Eph 5 where the image of God is not mentioned and then followed it up with Gen 2:24 where the image of God is still not mentioned. Let me save you the time. The image of God is never mentioned with marriage in Scripture. No where in any portion of the Scriptures is man's physical appearance presented as the reflection of God's image. I gave support from Scripture above to which I am inclined, not absolutely committed to. As I said, no where in Scripture is marriage presented as a reflection of the image of God yet you have gone out of your way to prove that by quoting Scriptures that have nothing to do with the issue. AARON Pastor Larry said: So who is the third in marriage? Jesus, when answering a question about marriage, joined Genesis 1:27 and Genesis 2:24. And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, and said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. Matthew 19:4-6 That also answers your question about who is the Third Person in the union, unless you would also accuse Jesus of misusing the Scriptures. Genesis 1:27 clearly tells us that Elohim made man in Their image male and female. You tell me Who in the Godhead is the male and the female if, as you say, we physically resemble God. PASTOR LARRY Gen 1:27 and Gen 2:24 do not discuss marriage and the image of God. Notice that Jesus left out the part about the image of God. Why? Because the image of God has nothing to do with marriage. However, do you really mean to say that the only people in the image of God are those who are married??? TUOR One thing that I thought about originally was perhaps God gave man free will.(for those of us who believe man has any free will in his existence) This would be what was meant by in our image. I would imagine it could be talking about man's soul too. AARON … the image of God has nothing to do with marriage. Not only are you in complete error, you presume a lot. But if you can present one authoritative commentator (past or present) who shares you view of Christ's motive in thusly quoting the Creation Narratives, I may look more seriously at your point of view. However, do you really mean to say that the only people in the image of God are those who are married??? His image is only in people who love. For love requires three things; a lover, a beloved, and the Spirit of love. God created marriage to be the full earthly revelation of His image. Even Christ, who is the very image of His Father, came to earth to seek the Bride that God had chosen to present to Him. PASTOR LARRY You want me to present a commentator who says that you are wrong? Nobody addresses the fact that you are wrong because no one that i know of supports you. Commentators generally addressed legitimate views and since yours in not in that category, it is not addressed. No one comments on the image of God in marriage in commentators or in the books on divorce and remarriage (and I familiar with most of the major ones) because no one supports your view. Do you have one commentator (authoritative or not) that supports your view? The fact that you can make a statement does not legitimize it. It must have validity on its merit. Your position does not. If someone besides you supports your position, give a reference and I will look it up. His image is only in people who love. For love requires three things; a lover, a beloved, and the Spirit of love. God created marriage to be the full earthly revelation of His image. Even Christ, who is the very image of His Father, came to earth to seek the Bride that God had chosen to present to Him. Here are two positions with no scriptural support given. To say that God’s image is only in people who love is nowhere supported in Scripture. God’s image is in everybody without exception. That is why there is a prohibition on murder. It is stamping out the image of God in man (Gen 9:6) and it is a capital offense. To say that God created marriage to be the full earthly revelation of His image is likewise without merit. The only stated purpose for marriage is that “it was not good that man should be alone.” You might also make the case for raising a godly offspring (Mal 2). However, never is the image of God mentioned in regards to marriage and you have not yet dealt with that problem. Marriage is used as a picture of our relationship with God, not of the image of God. You need to start dealing with Scripture. AARON OK, one more time. Present a commentator who DOES NOT link Genesis 1:27 and 2:24 based on Matthew 19:4-6. You will find that they all almost without fail present marriage against the backdrop of being made in God's image. So one who DOES NOT is almost sure to press the issue. You wrench Genesis 1:27 from its context when you say it has nothing to do whatsoever with the image of God. For the Scripture saith: "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them." For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh. Nothing can be plainer to sound readers of God's Word. PASTOR LARRY You are not even considering what I am saying. You are making no arguments in support of your position and offering no one who does. Let me make something clear (that was stated in the last post): An idea does not have validity because someone can state it. There must be argumentation from Scripture to support it. You have offered none.