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What Does It Mean to Be Made in God’s Image and Likeness?

Discussion in 'One Bread, One Body - Catholic' started by Michie, Apr 10, 2021.

  1. Michie

    Michie Human rights begin in the womb. Supporter

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    The imagination, like the soul of which it is a part, must die to itself so that it may be resurrected in Christ.


    “And he said: Let us make man to our image and likeness. …. And God created man to his own image: to the image of God he created him: male and female he created them.” —Genesis 1:26-27

    What does it mean to be made in God’s image and likeness? In what way does the image of God in us make us different from the rest of his creation? And what connection is there between this image and the imagination?

    Continued below.
    What Does It Mean to Be Made in God’s Image and Likeness?
     
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  2. Clare73

    Clare73 Blood-bought

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    See Ephesians 4:24; Colossians 3:10.
     
  3. Hidden In Him

    Hidden In Him Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Hi Michie!

    This is an interesting question to ponder. In terms of His image spiritually, the verses Clare used are good. In terms of how the Jews would have understood it (and likely in terms of the way we should still take the Genesis text today), the Lord was talking about literal image, i.e. physical appearance and form. God is a Spirit, but scripture also says concerning the form that Spirit takes visibly that He has hands (Job 12:9, Proverbs 21:1), Feet (Matthew 22:44; Psalms 110:1), Eyes (Psalms 33:18, Job 34:21) and other anatomical features that are equivalent to the human body. Some might say these are merely metaphors, but I doubt it. Certainly I believe He is much bigger in form than a normal human, but he appears to take the same form in how He allows Himself to be seen in Heaven by eyes that can withstand His beauty and power.
     
  4. Jay Sea

    Jay Sea ................ Ke ĉiuj vivu

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    Surely the clearest image of G-d that we have is Yeshua. So it means that we follow "The Way" of compassion and forgiveness; Condemn war and bring peace to our fellow men and women. County all peoples as equal and part of "G-d's Kingdom NOW".
    Everyone is a brother or sister in the Kingdom of G-d; even here in this world where we train to be worthy of the next. There is no hatred or war in the next life so we need to act with love and as peacemakers in this life. Those in the military have a difficult job as they need to question every order to fight as to how it fits with G-d's love for mankind and not just their particular country.
    The military do not even comply with the just war requirement far less the way of Yeshua.

    In Love
    Jay Sea
     
  5. Michie

    Michie Human rights begin in the womb. Supporter

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    The answer is to be found in the way in which we share in the triune splendor of the Good, the True and the Beautiful.

    Whereas all things are good insofar as they are made by God, there is a deeper goodness, known as virtue, which requires a freedom from instinct, a freedom of the will to choose freely to do the good. An oak tree is good, as a work of divine art, but it is what it is. It can only be what an oak tree is and can only do what an oak tree is programmed or designed to do. It can do nothing else. It will do nothing else because it has no will with which to do it!

    Man, on the other hand, has a freedom to choose to be more fully whom he is meant to be, which is Godlike, or he can choose to refuse. To be more fully like God is to be good as God is good, to be true as God is true, and to be beautiful as God is beautiful. To become good as God is good is to love more fully, choosing freely to set aside ourselves in sacrificial service of the other; to become true as God is true is to reason more clearly, seeking to know reality in conformity to the way that God knows it; to be beautiful as God is beautiful is to see the beauty of God’s image and presence in his creation and to seek to become creators ourselves, making beautiful things as God makes beautiful things.

    If our making of beautiful things shows the image in us of the Maker of all beautiful things, we can see that the imagination is itself a shining forth of God’s image in us (image-ination). Man is not just made — he is made to be a maker. He is, however, free to choose to use his imagination virtuously, using the gift in conformity to the will of the Gift-Giver, or he can choose to take the gift and use it for his own prideful purposes, casting the priceless pearls of the imagination into the gutter.


    The gift of the imagination is no different from the other gifts of God’s image in us. We are free to use them or abuse them. We can be good as God is good, or we can refuse, choosing evil; we can be true as God is true, or we can choose falsehood; we can bring forth the beautiful fruits of the imagination as God brings forth from his own Divine Imagination all that is good, or we can choose the ugliness of les fleurs du mal, the sickly blooms of an imagination poisoned by pride. The imagination, like the soul of which it is a part, must be baptized. It must die to itself so that it may be resurrected in Christ. It is this baptized imagination which has brought forth the cornucopia of Great Books which are the beautiful blossoms on the tree of Christendom.

    This essay first appeared in the UK’s Catholic Herald and is republished with permission.
     
  6. public hermit

    public hermit social troglodyte Supporter

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    I love this! The good, the true, the beautiful. It's all one. Plato and the ancients said it. Likewise, a thoughtful Christian said it April 9th, 2021. Some truths are ubiquitous and eternal. Kind of like God. ;)
     
  7. Bob Crowley

    Bob Crowley Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The qualities He's given us - intelligence, creativity, trinitarianism (body, soul, mind / father, mother, son), a conscience and sense of morality, language and communication, the conflict between good and evil (a proxy for the spiritual war between Him and the Devil), emotions including the extremes of love and hatred, and the fact we're never satisfied.

    The last comment actually came from our archbishop some time ago. He pointed out animals are easily satisfied - give a dog a bowl of dog chow, reliable water, shelter and bedding, and some time and basic entertainment eg. going for a walk, chasing a ball, chewing a bone, and he'll be as happy as Larry.

    But not us - we're never satisfied. We keep looking to the future as God does - He's looking forward to the day when He brings together all things into a perfect harmony.
     
  8. tz620q

    tz620q Regular Member Supporter

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    Our Adult Formation director at my church once said that the name of God, the tetragrammaton, could be translated as "I will become what I will become". This expresses the sense that God is continually becoming, not as humans where we are seeking perfection; but in creating, in enacting His will. I think this attribute of becoming, of restless pursuit of perfection as an attribute of God, is one of the ways that God bestowed His image on us. We are given both a fallen nature and the desire to overcome it. Oh great fault that led to an even greater perfection.
    Of course, one could make the point that God the Father, though of spirit only, had a physical form for Jesus in mind already before He made Adam. I think though that this theory would break the thought that God assumed our image, not the other way around.
     
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