Made in the Image of God

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Devotional Word for Monday, September 14, 2020

As I think back on the petty misdeeds of my childhood (and adult years), sometimes I wonder where in the world did such impulses come from.  After all, I knew that what I was doing was not correct.  I knew that it was not what I was supposed to do. None the less, I deliberately did what was wrong.  In doing so, I by my nature was hating God and my neighbor.  While I do not remember my thoughts and actions as a baby.  In watching my own daughters, much though I love them, I have to conclude that my own actions were just as sinful and wrong as a baby.  Indeed, from the time of my birth, I have not done what I should, and I have done what I should not do.  Why is this the case?

Today we are going to look at the Heidelberg Catechism question number 6.  It says, “Did God create man evil and perverse like this?”  The logic is clear.  If my nature is sinful, then something outside of me must have made it so.  I could not change my nature.  So where did my sinful God hating nature come from.  The catechism answers in this way, “No.  On the contrary, God created man good and in His image, that is, in true righteousness and holiness, so that he might rightly know God his Creator, love Him with his whole heart, and live with Him in eternal blessedness, praising and glorifying Him.”

We could spend years discussing the ramifications of man being made in the image of God, but I would like to point out that man was created good in the image of God.  That means that man did not always wrestle with sinful thoughts and actions like we do.  When Adam was in the Garden of Eden, he knew the Lord and related to Him in a good and right way.  While I can try to imagine what it would have been like for Adam in the Garden, I am not going to understand.  I might gain a small picture, but I am not going to understand the fullness of what it would be like to know God without sin in my life.

Fortunately, Adam’s creation in the image of God and His fall is not the end of the story.  In his letter to the Romans, Paul describes the close connection between the believer and the love of Christ.  Ultimately, Paul shows that nothing will separate us from the love of Christ.  He also helps us understand that THOSE WHOM HE (GOD) FOREKNEW, HE ALSO PRDESTEINED TO BECOME CONFORMED TO THE IMAGE OF HIS SON.  This means that those who believe in Jesus as their Lord and Savior are being conformed to the His image.  To be clear, this means that we are not only made in the image of God, but also where the image has been marred by sin, it will be restored in Christ.  I will never know a day without sin until the Lord returns or calls me home.  However, I can have confidence that the Holy Spirit is working within me conforming me to the image of the eternal Son and when I see the Lord face to face, I will know Him and worship Him without sin.  My life won’t just be like I was back in the garden with Adam.  It will be far better.  When I see the Lord face to face, there will never be any possibility of sin entering into my thoughts or deeds.  That is good news indeed.  Let us pray.