Nov 15, 2019 08:00am
All People are Made in the Image of God

The Bible clearly states that God is the creator of all human life. (Find a list of some of those references at the end of this article.)

God is the creator of life. Therefore, life is a gift from Almighty God and we are to reverence it, respect it, and love it! This refers to our own life as well as the lives of other people.  

God cares for flowers but nowhere does the Bible say that God loves a rose.  

God cares for animals but nowhere does the Bible say that God loves a dog.  

But God does love people who were made in his own image and after his likeness.  

Because we were created for God’s glory, our lives have meaning for both time and eternity. We have an eternal purpose to live for. I believe that because life is a gift from Almighty God it should be reverenced.

We must come to the realization that human life is valuable because we were created in God’s image (Genesis 1:26; 9:6). This does not refer to a physical image, for God is Spirit—he is invisible (John 4:24). To be made in the image of God means that we were created in God’s:

  • Mental likeness—We have the ability to think, make decisions and choices, create, plan, and reason.  The animal world cannot do this.  
  • Moral likeness—We have the ability to discern what is right and wrong. Adam and Eve were created innocent, as they had never personally experienced sin. However, when they sinned they immediately knew they had sinned because God placed within them the ability to discern what was moral and what was not moral and a conscience that screamed in their minds—“Guilty!” The animal world cannot make moral decisions but merely reacts by instinct.
  • Spiritual likeness—We have a spirit that can commune, fellowship, and enter into a personal relationship with God. We have a spirit that reaches out to the Creator and longs for something greater and higher. The animal kingdom is in harmony with God, but animals cannot have a personal relationship with their Creator.

Only into the human body did God himself breathe the breath of life. When he did, man became a living soul (Genesis 2:7; Job 34:14). Someone has said that the difference between man and animal is self-awareness and God-awareness.  

Evolutionists tell us that man is a little higher on the evolutionary scale than a tadpole. Carlyle said, “You may believe that man is a little higher than a tadpole, but I believe that man is a little lower than the angels.”  We carry a designer label that is infinitely worth more than “Calvin Klein” or “Guess.”  

We even carry the mark of the image of God upon us (Matthew 6:26; 10:31; 12:11,12).

The Word of God teaches that we are not to curse people because they are made in the likeness of God. Even after sin entered the world, men are still considered to be made in the likeness of God. James wrote the following:

“But no man can tame the tongue . . . It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be” (James 3:8-10).

James said that even though men had sinned, they were still considered valuable to God because they were made in His image. Paul said that the members of the Corinthian church who, as a whole, were a very carnal bunch of Christians (1 Corinthians 3:1-3) and made in the image of God. Paul told the Corinthians:

“A man . . . is the image and glory of God” (1 Corinthians 11:7).

Even if sin has entered into our lives, we are not worthless.  

Frances Schaeffer wrote: 

“It is important to note that fallen man still retains something of the image of God. The fall separ­ates man from God, but it does not remove his original different­iation from other things (plants, animals, etc.). Fallen man is not less than man.”

Jay Adams said, “We are valuable because we are made in the image of God. To dis­honor man is to dishonor God. Remember, I am not valuable because of who I am but because of whose I am!It is not me—it’s God in me (Gala­tians 2:20; Colossians 1:27). I’m somebody in Jesus Christ!

Martin Luther noted, “God does not love us because we are valuable; we are valuable because God loves us.” 

Josh McDowell adds these words to Luther’s: “We are valuable because God loves us and has expressed his love by creating us in his image then recreating us in Christ.” We are valuable because we were created in God’s image!

God is the One who sanctifies life. As the creator of all life, he put value upon each individual being he created. 

When he made us in his image, he sanctified human life and made it of utmost value and supreme worth, which is the basis of the dignity of all humans.

The important question is since you, me, all of us, reflect God’s image, how will that change how we feel about ourselves? Other Christians? Non-Christians? Unwanted babies?

How will that fact change my life?

How will it change yours?

Bible verses affirming that God created mankind in his image:

Genesis 1:27: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God He created him; male a female He created them.”

Genesis 2:7: “And the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living being.”

Job 1:21: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart.  The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.”

Job 10:8-12: “Your hands shaped me and made me…you molded me like clay…you gave me life…”

Job 31:15: “Did not he who made me in the womb make them? Did not the same one form us both within our mothers?”

Job 33:4: “The Spirit of God has made me; the breath of the Almighty gives me life.”

Job 35:10: “But no one says, `Where is God my Maker, who gives songs in the night.’”

Psalm 100:3: “It is he that hath made us and not we ourselves.”

Deuteronomy 32:39: “See now that I myself am he!  There is no God besides me. I put to death and I bring to life, I have wounded and I will heal, and no one can deliver out of my hand.”

Isaiah 44:24: “This is what the Lord says—your Redeemer, who formed you in the womb; I am the Lord, who has made all things, who alone stretched out the heavens, who spread out the earth by myself.”

Isaiah 49:5: “And now the Lord says—He who formed me in the womb to be his servant to bring Jacob back to him and gather Israel to himself, for I am honored in the eyes of the Lord and my God has been my strength.”

Psalm 33:15: “He who forms the hearts of all, who considers everything they do.”

Proverbs 22:2: “Rich and poor have this in common: The Lord is the Maker of them all.”    

Psalm 95:6:  “Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker.”

Isaiah 17:7: “In that day men will look to their Maker and turn their eyes to the Holy One of Israel.”   

Acts 17:28: “For in him we live and move and have our being…” 

Colossians 1:16: “For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him.”)

by Jeff Swart

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