As children of God, one of the top ten things we should pursue first is to know who we are in God’s eyes. The rest of our walk with God – how we choose to see ourselves, to interact with others, how we teach, love, sleep, eat, marry or stay single – all of it, is based on understanding who we are, which will also deeply affect how we see others. So – who are we? Let’s look at some key passages that show us God’s initial design criteria. Knowing this deeply will allow us to walk in peace with ourselves, and exude peace toward others.
Image Bearing – To Be…
If we are children of God, it makes sense to look to God for our deepest understanding of our own person. We do not define ourselves by our track records of wrongs, or even things we’ve done well. After all, victory and defeat, in human terms, are a quickly moving revolving door. We must look to scripture – the timeless resource – for proper definition. So – what did our Lord have to say about us?
Genesis 1:26-28 Then God said, “Let Us make man (people) 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.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” NKJV
Genesis 1:31 Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good…NKJV
What does it mean to be created in God’s image, or likeness? In the Hebrew:
Image – #1923 “tselem” – resemblance, representative figure/image. Moral/spiritual similarity. Masculine noun.
Likeness – #1823 “denuwth” – similitude, manner, in that fashion. Feminine noun.
Dominion – #7287 “Radah” – to dominate, reign, prevail. Verb.
Fill – #4390 “Male’” – to overflow, be abundant. Verb.
Subdue – #3533 “kabash” – to bring into subjection. Verb.
We as humans were made to gloriously reflect our Creator to others, and to the earth. Morally, and spiritually, we were meant to look like God, by our own free will, which God gave us. We were made to co-rule here on earth as in heaven. We were made to be priests. (Rev 20:6) True, we are not born priests, but it is our goal, and it is God’s goal. We start out beautiful children, learning about our Daddy, learning to speak, walk, and act like Him. God spent time with His Creation in the garden because He loved them, and God wanted them to be around Him. We become like who we emulate, while still being ourselves – walking in our own given talents and abilities, by knowing that person intimately, and applying their principles to our own daily walk.
A trail is worn down because we each move at different paces, based on our stride, weight, our gaze as we pass, and even emotions at the time we cross that part of the path. So, even though God’s children are going the same direction, the path is worn smooth, rather than just being “footprints in the grass.” We are made in God’s Image, and each given specific gifts to use as God would use them, to be a blessing to all on earth, and even the earth itself. We are marvelous creations of God, not a collection of failures or accomplishments.
Psalms 139:14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well. NKJV
April 27, 2021