Devo Scripture: Genesis 1:26-31
Key Verse: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:27
As we begin this journey through Genesis I can’t help but pull in and park on the last ten verses of chapter 1. Of course I’ve read it before but this time when I got to verse 27 something made me stop and read it again and again. “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” God created man in his own image. Wow! Just let that sink in for a moment. Really think about what you’re reading: “So God created man in. his. own. image.” An image is a representation. So that makes you and I representations of God. Does that thought cause you to celebrate or cringe? I think it’s a little of both for me.
Now before we dig a little deeper into what it means to be “made in the image of God,” here’s a few foundational points:
- God is eternal, therefore he made man in his image by giving him a spirit that will live eternally (either in Heaven or hell depending on your position of who Jesus is). God is spirit (John 4:24) therefore God gave man a spirit.
- God is relational therefore “male and female he created them.” He created us to be relational beings, just as He is.
- God is love (1 John 4:16) therefore he made us in his image by making us with the capacity to love and be loved.
- God is the sovereign ruler over all therefore he made man in his image by declaring that mankind also rule. In Genesis 1:27 God declared man to have “dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
- God is perfectly holy and righteous. And when God first made Adam and Eve he made them perfectly holy and righteous. They were without sin but made the choice to defy God and thus sin entered not only them but the world. However by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, God views all believers as perfectly holy and righteous. (Eph. 1:4)
But what does it really mean to be made in the image of God? What does that very fact mean for me? How should it affect my life? I meditated on these questions for quite sometime over the past week. And as I was reading an email totally unrelated to the topic at hand I felt an undeniable tug on my heart. Right in the middle of my “little break from small children” the Holy Spirit gave me a light nudge when I read the phrase “be a product of the product.” It hit me like a ton of bricks…that’s what God wants from me. He made me in his image so I could be a “product” of who he is. Now obviously God is not a “product” but hopefully you get the idea. He created me in his image to reflect Him and who he is. ***I have been made in His image so I can be His image.
I long to make an impact for Christ. I long to be an effective person, effecting others for Christ. So in my moment of clarity I knew the only way to do that is to be “a product of the product.” It’s as if Jesus whispered to my heart, “If you really want to be effective, if you really want to make an impact, be a product of me. Love because I am love (1 John 4:16). Be merciful because I am merciful (Luke 6:36). Forgive because I am forgiving (Col. 3:13). Be a peacemaker because I give peace (John 14:27). “Be holy because I am holy” (1 Peter 1:16). Be truthful because I am truth (1 John 5:20). Be joyful because I give joy. Reflect who I am. Be my image.”
In the Hebrew the word “image” carries the idea of a shadow. And what does my shadow do? It does everything that I do. I can’t shake my shadow. I can’t run from it or make it do something different than exactly what I do! That’s the idea of being the image of God. Do exactly as he did. Do exactly as he does. Be his shadow! Stick right with him…when he moves, move in the exact manner reflecting an undeniable “image” of God. I don’t know about you but I have some work to do here. Oh to be His shadow and do exactly as he does! Thank goodness for the Holy Spirit! (John 14:26)
Maybe you don’t want to impact thousands. That’s totally fine! But do you want your children to follow the Lord? Do you want your husband to commit to the Lord? Do you want a brother or sister or mother or father? Then be a product of Jesus! Reflect Him. I’m by no means saying their salvation is dependent upon your behavior. It is God and God alone that draws them to Christ (John 6:44). But God has given us the beautiful ability to be his image to others. Though marred by sin we can still be a reflection of him by the grace and power of the Holy Spirit. And he uses us! The power of testimony is tremendous! So be a product of the God you desperately want your loved ones, neighbors, and friends to believe in. Be a product of the mercy, grace, love, forgiveness, peace, and freedom you have come to know through a relationship with Jesus Christ.