The Image of God
Throughout Our lives we have heard about that we’ve made of Image of God, this one is a nice thought which is needed to know whenever needed to know our own value. The Image of God is made to understand the self-evaluation of a person, everyone got a image of god, it means you are not a God but You are like God for own self. It’s just like a reminder for own value. In the Genesis 1:26-27, God explains that Let us make man in our Image of God he created him in male and female. The meaning of the word Image in Latin is imago Dei which means shadow and Likeliness. A person who believes to be a part of God and an image of God in him will feel a great pleasure and completeness. This provides them a sense of Greatness which is required by them. This is known as Image of God when peoples start to feel it within themselves. Sometimes it also has some negative impact on peoples like believing they are God as well they are someone who can control the movement of something. This sometimes becomes painful and disastrous for the peoples. (Neil, 1962)
According to the father’s of the church the term image and likeliness which is described and understood do not mean the same thing. The image can be termed a power by which everyone is endowed with the God since our existence in the world. By making proper us of being based upon the Image of the god we can acquire the ability God’s likeness. These are something which is necessary a man should inherit.
A person can have Image of God which means he/she may have the Qualities which a person inherits, someone can be creative because God is creative. In the Bible it's described that the god has created heavens and Earth. This can be related to the creativity of a human. An artist is creative as he can paint something creative, an actor is creative as he can do something creative role in the film. A manufacturer is creative because he can make a thing in which creativity is needed; architecture is creative because he is building something creative. The Image is truer and stronger concept in today’s world than before, as we know we are something because of a special Quality and Image in ourselves. This has become the measure in which peoples are being measured in present time. We care more about the talents and gifts a person inherits not of his true character. (Milne, 2009)
The image which explains that a person communicates because God Communicate, as stated in Genesis 1:3, God said let there be light. Human is superior to any other creature of the world because we can think a reason behind everything, we can use symbols and arts in our communication. This is a special quality which a person inherits; everyone should communicate with the society where they are living in. It’s said that someone is intelligent because God is intelligent, logical thoughts flow through the God’s mind, as a result, we can think critically because of its will make an impact on a person’s ability to think logically. As we all have some different level of intelligence though we can make it better and more proper by analyzing it as a God image. (Leaney, 1973)
Irenaeus made a significant difference between the God’s images, which he has identified as the human reason and the moral freedom. We have lost the likeness with the image of God in fall; this was mainly interpreted in the medieval period and made an optimistic view in the Human nature. Luther in his works stated that there is some parallelism with the Hebrew which describes the image of the God and the likeness as the same concept. As per Luther’s views, the Image of God is totally lost and that can be regenerated only by the Holy spirits.
There are different views regarding how the image is lost due to fall. A concept which shows that the image of God provides us the qualities which separate us from the animals. They're different qualities of the image of Gods in which some I have already explained in the above parts. Though it’s stated that communication and rationality are also present in the animals, the qualities in some other cases qualities are not seen as a God’s image rather than its seen as a relationship with the God. Some theologies demonstrate it as our role playing to represent the God in the earth. As per the Milne’s views, the bible does not refer to a total loss of the image of God. Some Dutch scholars such as A.Kuyper argues about the connection in the common grace, and God restraints the worst effects of the fall and renders social life tolerable for humankind (Milne, 2009)
It’s stated by the many scientist and authors that the image of which is described in the Genesis is something which is needed for the Spiritual perfection in the human being which was lost during the fall. It explains that men are being created by the God with some special qualities which are not present in the animals and other creatures (Thompson,). But genesis also explained in later that the image of the God is the likeliness, not the image. Authors have claimed that the image of God does not relate with the spiritual perfection, as the creator was aware that the humans will do the sin. Martin Luther also claimed that the image of original righteousness which is completely lost in the fall. John Calvin similarly makes a distinguished relationship between the image of God and the destruction of it due to sin. Later on, he has made a less hardcore assumption and differentiated it as completely lost and partially lost. As stated by Feinberg the image of God in present time is in the corrupted and impaired state. He stated that the present theory regarding the image of the God is not actually the same but it is changed with the time.
There are some debates over the likeliness, as per the Jim Schicatano views, the Image and likeness are two different things. The likeliness means for someone who possesses some of the qualities of a person. As it could be true a person can’t possess all the characteristics of God. As per his views a person cannot possess the qualities of god such as Wisdom, perfection, and creativity like a God (Jim, ). There are also some different views of the authors who has different views regarding the image and the Likeliness. The Image and the God and the likeliness does not differ from each other. The church fathers always suggested a distinction between the two words. The Greek of the image is taste whereas the Latin of the Likeliness is the Demuth. As per the father’s view, the tselem is referred as the physical state and the mamuth stands for the ethical state of a person (Feinberg, 1972). It related that the image is the unchanging part of a person whereas the likeliness is the changeable part. Thus, the image could be something different or a person but the later could be lost with the generation to generation (Crawford, 1966).
Schicatano believes that the humans are like God human’s as they have given preference over other creatures. As the GOD is responsible for the creation of the universe so as we are responsible for our world. This narrates the terms such as the image of God as this provides the sense as we have created and maintaining our own world. I think somewhat this is necessary and necessary as well. However its duty of the human kind so that they can make it worth living, it believed that the God has created the world as per his own likeliness as now we have to manage and made the world as per his views. We are just doing our own parts of contribution in this regard. This must note taken as Granted as we all are answerable to the God in this regard. (Ross, 1983)) There is also some debate over these views of the likeliness and the Image of the God. Some authors debated whether the image of God and the Likeliness is referred as the domination of the lower creatures by the Human or it’s something else. As stated by the Norman Snith in the Expository times, 1974 he has claimed that the meaning of all these things is that the Man is an agent of the God who is responsible for the representing all the creatures living in this world. As human’s are given special privileged over the other creature like the ability to understand and express the things as well as the quality of Creativeness which is not given to any other creature so we are responsible for the perfect management of the world which is made by the God and managed by the humans so that It would remain same as God wanted. Dominion over the earth by the human being is described as the influence of the image or the likeness of the God ( Keil, 1996). As stated by the William M baker the presence of the Likeliness of the God in the Human which makes them able to exercise the dominion over the world is itself not the image but somewhat closer to the God (Baker, 1991).
As a human being, we may not be able to understand the meaning of these phrases but it's in deep in our perception. After extensive research many theologians and the researchers as well Christian orthodox believes that we are still in the image of the God. With many different views regarding these concepts, most of the Christian Orthodox and theologies believe that we have been made in the Image of God and that’s why we are capable of determining our own destiny. We have the ability to increase our knowledge and the wisdom so that we can manage the world which was created by the God as per his likeliness. This is a highly debatable topic and many scholars have expressed their views regarding this, many have described different sources which are responsible for it. As we know there are many Qualities of the Human beings which are described in the Genesis, which is later sources as evidence by the authors and scholars as a Proof that the humans are the image of Good who are responsible for the control and maintenance of the World.
P.R. Ackroyd, A.R.C.Leaney, and J.W.Packer, eds., The Cambridge Bible Commentary: Genesis 1-11 (Cambridge: At The University Press, 1973), pp.24-25
The Broadman Bible Commentary, Vol.1 (Nashville: Broadman Press, 1973), p.125
William Neil, Harper's Bible Commentary, (New York and Evanston: Harper & Row, Publishers, 1962), p.16
Jim, .S, CREATED IN THE IMAGE AND LIKENESS OF GOD
Hugh Ross, Genesis One: A Scientific Perspective, Rev. Ed. (Pasadena, CA: Reasons To Believe, 1983), p.13
Henry M. Morris, The Genesis Record (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House, 1976), p.74
Milne, .b, 2009, Know the Truth: A Handbook of Christian Belief, Interversity press