What Does it Mean to Bear God’s Image? [99 in :99]
The Bible describes human beings as being unique, different from anything else that God created. But how are we different, and what does it mean for our lives? Let’s find out as we discuss what it means to be made in God’s image.
The Bible describes us as being made in the image of God or as God’s image bearers. Basically, what this means is that we reflect something of God’s nature and character to the rest of creation. And there are a few ways we do this:
The first is through our natural capacity for goodness, love, mercy, justice, compassion, and even, with the Holy Spirit’s help, holiness. These are all attributes we share with God, that He calls us to demonstrate in this world.
The second is through our actions. God gave humans dominion, or authority, over creation. We are called to care for all God has made, seeking to shape and develop creation, seeking to make the most of it for His glory.
The third is through our relationships. God is a relational being who eternally exists in a joyful relationship between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, we are meant to live in relationship with one another and with Him. We are not meant to live in isolation, set apart from one another, but to live with one another so that, ultimately, God’s goodness can be seen through us.
Even as we bear the image of God by nature, we do not do so perfectly. Sin distorts and disrupts it, but it does not destroy it. Instead, it reminds us of our need for the only one who perfectly represents God: Jesus, who is the image of the invisible God, the only one who perfectly reflects all of God’s attributes, fulfills His will, and enjoys a perfect relationship with the Father.