Image of God


Series: Genesis
Genesis 1:26-27

Mike Rauwolf | October 16, 2016, 10:00AM

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Main Points:

  1. Genesis 1 reveals how God has ordered and structured the Kingdoms/Domains of Creation, along with the residents or rulers over those Kingdoms/Domains. It is a display of how the world is supposed to work properly.
  2. Human beings are made in the “Image of God” – a title normally given only to kings in the Ancient Near East. Translation: God’s intent for humanity is that we would be his regent kings/rulers over His Creation. “Image of God” is not only a description, but also a vocational calling. The creation cannot flourish unless humans rule over it properly.
  3. How do we exercise our calling and rule over the earth?  The answer is found by looking at what God has already modeled for us. In the six days of Creation, God does four things repeatedly that we are now called to do:
    1. Exercise Creativity for the benefit of all creation (As God created, he now calls upon us to use His raw materials and continue to create… gardens, communities, art, cities, etc.).
    2. Judge rightly for the benefit of all creation (determine what is good).
    3. Separate or distinguish habitats and roles according to what works best for the benefit of all creation.
    4. Pronounce “Calling,” or “Naming” (affirming identities and destinies according to what God has already established) for the benefit of all creation.
  4. Colossians 1:15 says that Jesus is the “Image of the invisible God.”  Jesus is the true image-bearer, the fully human being. In his life He embodied everything we were called to be. In his death he absorbed all of the consequences for our failure to be what we were called to be.

Questions:

  1. Where have we “got it right?” i.e., exercising creativity that blesses a community, judging rightly, distinguishing/separating properly, or calling appropriately?
  2. Where have we “got it wrong?” i.e., creativity that harms people, redefining what is good according to personal or short-term gain, wrongfully distinguishing/discriminating, or naming/renaming inappropriately?
    1. (Bonus: When we alter the God-given calling/naming of someone or something according to a redefined definition of what is good, how does that affect its long-term destiny? Does it lead to flourishing and fruitful multiplication? Do we even tend to make these decisions with long-term implications in mind?)
  3. Read Colossians 3:9-10.  How does Christ restore you to your calling: “The Image of God?”
  4. Pray for each other, repenting of where we have “got it wrong (question 2),” and asking God to help us further submit to the Spirit, that we might be able to “walk according to the calling we have received (Eph 4:1).” – Image-bearing kings/rulers.

CLICK HERE to download full resolution images of the slides used in this message (.zip format).

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