Who do you see?

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Genesis 1:26,2

By saying it three times in two verses, God wanted us to understand that He made man in His image. “Let us make man in Our image;” “So God created man in His own image;” “in the image of God He created Him, “male and female He created them”. After the first man and woman were created, they could boldly say, “I am holy and righteous for I have been created in God’s image.” “I look like God because He created me in His image.”

Prior to their disobedience and fall from God’s presence, the first two humans were sinless and perfect. They had free access to God with nothing in between that hindered them from fellowship with Him. God actually came down looking for them in the garden. They were the only creatures on earth that He could fellowship with, and it seems that He desired to spend some time with them. All through Scripture we see God longing to be with His people, desiring their companionship. As Creator, He must have found the same kind of satisfaction in these two people as a painter who proudly put his signature on a work of art, so that everybody who saw it, might know it. The signature on a work of art identifies it with its creator.

At some stage however, Satan, a fallen being banned from heaven, approached Eve and deceived her to disobey God’s instruction to them, and she ate from the forbidden tree. Adam, knowing the consequences of her disobedience, refused to let her die alone, and ate from it also, triggering a spiritual law that caused his entire posterity to be infected with the spiritual death that he brought upon himself.

Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? Romans 6:16

Spiritual death, the very nature that we were born with, became man’s greatest need. It changed Adam’s likeness to God into the likeness of the fallen angel that deceived him, and he became a fallen man himself. The same lot that befell Lucifer, fell on Adam, and he became separated from God – a major defeat for man, and the ultimate disappointment for God.

If God turned His back on man at that time there would be no hope for him, with torment his only prospect in an eternity without God. It would also mean a decisive victory for Satan over God. Thank God, His grace is sufficient for us, and His love endures forever! His love is greater than the power of the devil’s deceptions and His wisdom far beyond the craftiness of Satan.

Fast forward to the New Testament. God, in His great love for man, executed His master plan of redemption to bring us back into fellowship with Him. His image, imprinted on man in creation, but scarred by the devil’s craftiness, is brought back to its former glory. He did not just paint over the scars to hide them from view, no, He painted a brand new picture!

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17

For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. 2 Corinthians 5:21

We no longer identify ourselves with the fallen angel, the deceiver, accuser of the brethren, Satan, Lucifer. It would mean a failure of the work of Jesus on the cross if there was but a trace left of Satan’s destruction on the redeemed. Jesus did so much more than just cleaning us from our sins; He was judged for it on our behalf, and received the prescribed death penalty for it.

And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. Colossians 2:13,14

There is nothing that we can add to that; Jesus did what had to be done. We are new creations in Him, and righteousness has been restored to us who put our trust in Him.

It must be noted though that God is Spirit (John 4:24), and Adam and Eve were spirit-beings when they were made in His image. Their bodies did not look like God because He doesn’t have a body of flesh. They existed in Him before they received their bodies in Genesis chapter 2; they were hidden in Him, just as we are now hidden in Him:

For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. Colossians 3:3

This truth gave Paul, understanding of the substitutionary work of Christ on the cross, to boldly confess:

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. Galatians 2:20

Your new identity is not found in your ancestors, but is spiritual; your body is not the real you, but merely the tent in which you live as an earth dweller. Identity with your outward appearance is fatal for a Christian; it is like a dual personality disorder when you identify with death and life at the same time. It also opens the door to the many social ills that plague those in the world without Christ. Spiritually there are only two races: those that were naturally born once, or those that were born twice through the new birth – you are either a descendant of the first Adam or the Last Adam.

Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him… Colossians 3:9,10

Who do you see? Are you a sinner or a saint? Are you spiritually dead or alive? What can you do, and where are you heading? What is the purpose of your life? Whose image do you bear? If you don’t know who you are in Christ, your uninformed mind will default to what it knows, and continues to project you as a sinner, as many Christians do.

But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. 2 Corinthians 3:18

Discover your true identity as a new creation as you see yourself in the mirror of the Word, and be transformed into the image of God in Christ Jesus, then render yourself to Him as you discover who you are in the Word!

Discover your true identity as a new creation as you see yourself in the mirror of the Word, and be transformed into the image of God in Christ Jesus, then render yourself to Him as you discover who you are in the Word!

Supplement your Bible studies with these Kindle books, or use it to teach/encourage others. Download the free Kindle app where these books are found on Amazon, and read it on your phone, tablet or computer.

The devil cannot create anything, but he distorts everything that God gave us. One of his favourite tricks is to remind you of your life before Christ, and make you believe that nothing really changed. But everything changed! You became a new creation with a new identity – now it is up to you to discover who you are in Christ and begin to walk in newness of life. This book will help you in this journey. Available here
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