When you look at me, you see God.
Did I get your attention? That’s a rather dramatic claim, isn’t it? Most people would immediately reject such an incredible statement–especially anyone who has ever met me. I can be a jerk at times, I look kinda funny, and I make a lot of mistakes. I’m sure people think about a lot of things when they look at me, but I doubt that God is one of them (unless they’re using “God” in a less-than-appropriate manner).
Yet, at the very beginning of the biblical narrative, we find just such an audacious claim: ‘God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them’ (Gen. 1.27). Many of us have, perhaps, grown so comfortable with this verse and the claims that it makes for the nature and identity of human persons that we no longer recognize the fabulous nature of this assertion. At the beginning of a work clearly committed to belief in a God who is invisible and cannot be–indeed, should not be–depicted by images, and who transcends human understanding, God himself declares that he will image himself in finite, physical, and imperfect human beings.
Wow. That should get your attention.
But what does it mean? That’s been the real debate for centuries. And it’s one that I’d like to explore for a bit. So I’m going to start a series on the image of God–or, of you’d like to sound highly educated, the imago Dei.
I can’t say for sure how this series will play out. But here’s what I have in mind at the moment. I’ll update this list as the series goes along. So feel free to bookmark this post if you’d like to follow the series.
- 5 Reasons the Image of God Is Ambiguous
- 6 Things We Can All Agree on about the Image of God
- Humans Aren’t Hamsters, But the “Image” Is More Than That
- “Image” Is a Verb: Finding the image in human function
- Sex Is Natural, Sex Is Good: Finding the image in human relationships
- When in Doubt, Pick “All of the Above”
- There’s a God in There! Moving toward a conclusion on the “image of God”
- Personal Presence: Another Step toward the Image of God
- The Image Is a Story