Posted by: davidbowerkingwood | December 13, 2019

The Mystery of You

The Image and Likeness of God

Genesis is the book of beginnings; it lays a foundation for everything else that will happen. A study of the book reveals much, but leaves much concealed as it is focused upon one issue; the issue of man’s fall and his redemption.

I believe the entire Bible follows one underlying theme, the fall of man, and man’s redemption and restoration as implemented by the Second Person of the Trinity, the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Beginning of Man

One of those notable beginnings involves the creation of man; man is the only creation that is breathed into existence, not spoken into existence. In Genesis 1:26-28 where it is written:

26 Then God said, “Let Us make man 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.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 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.”

A Dichotomy of Being!

While we learn a great deal from those verses, they leave so many things unanswered; what are the ramifications, what are the implications from being created in the image and likeness of God? In Genesis 2:7, a little more is revealed:

“7 And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life (lives in the original Hebrew); and man became a living being.”

From this verse, it can be concluded, we are truly a dichotomous creation; we come form two distinctly different components, the dust of the earth for our body and the breath of God to animate it. Since we are created in the image and likeness of God, it should be evident this is a reference to the breath of life breathed into man’s nostrils by God and occurs after the creation of the body from the dust of the ground.

(It is interesting to consider the nature of redemption when Christ died on the cross; he redeemed our living self but did not redeem our bodies; as born-again Christians, we occupy bodies still under the Adamic curse and share our bodies with a fallen sin nature.)

The Breath of Life

It would appear, the expression, “the breath of life,” is a rather poetic description of a complex process of animation which involved the passing on of a life-force from God, to man. Sadly, almost nothing is revealed about the nature of this life-force, this breath of life, as to its origination or timing other than it came directly from God and it was in God’s image and likeness.

There has been a great deal of speculation on the origin of man but minimal Biblical revelation on the subject. To the best of my knowledge, nothing definitive is revealed about the transmission of this divine, “breath of life” to succeeding generations.

The first six chapters of Genesis provides the principle source of information but leaves many unanswered questions. The first six chapters covers a span of around 1,656 years which is a very long time; the world was an entirely different place 1,656 years ago; in 363 history records what would be to us, a totally alien world.

How Should this Impact You?

We’ve all heard the expression, “What you see is what you get;” while this may be true in some instances, it is most emphatically not true when it comes to you and me; we are infinitely more than this temporary tent we wear during our mortal years on this globe. I love the way Paul expresses this reality in 2 Corinthians 5:1-6 where it is written:

“5 For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven, if indeed, having been clothed, we shall not be found naked. For we who are in this tent groan, being burdened, not because we want to be unclothed, but further clothed, that mortality may be swallowed up by life. Now He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who also has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.

So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. For we walk by faith, not by sight. We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.”

While our mortal bodies are of this earth, our life is from God; at a time appointed by God, our life will return to our creator and our body will return to the earth from whence it was made; the Bible is careful to point out, we have a “building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.”

I’ll soon be 87 and have observed the deterioration of this mortal body; although I have been richly blessed by the Lord, I can join with Paul as he writes: “ We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.”

God will always be faithful to you

“28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.” Romans 8:28-30

In the meantime, let us all: “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!” Philippians 4:4

Painting, “In His Own Image” by Adele Bower ©


Responses

  1. David: so blessed by this post! THANKS!!! Dave

    >

    Liked by 1 person


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