Read: Genesis 1:26-27
The work of God’s creation is original in a sense that our human minds cannot comprehend. All ideas, masterpieces, and designs that humans have produced have been inspired by, in some way or another, something else. What God has produced is nothing like that. Think about how everything from the complexities of gravitational law to the biomechanics of a simple tree were sketched, mapped, and made by a genius God who needed no subject. Imagine creating something that is related in no ways ever to any previous composition, category, or concept. Imagine creating something fully original.
In all the previous days of the creation account, God created out of nothing and in original ways. Light, land, sea, animals, birds; all of them totally original works of God, unimaginably and uninspired by any other thing. But in this passage, there is one great difference in the works of God; one creation that is made in such a way so as to set it apart for all eternity.
God, when He made humanity, was completely, totally, and captivatingly inspired by Himself. When He made that first man, and along with him me, and you, and every other human being, it was like a master painter gazing into a mirror for His final crowning work. Let that sink in; of all the never-to-be-seen beauty of the cosmos, the climactic work of creation was human beings. There cannot be anything more beautiful, more inspiring, and more humbling than to realize that we are made in the image of God Himself.
The greatest ponderance in all of the creation story is that this newborn of a man, the start of all humans, is the mirror of faultless, flawless, quintessential God. What was the scene like? Did the Divine Artist make a man like I, as a little boy, used to make sandcastles? Did Adam cough when God breathed life into his lungs? Did he look like Jesus?
There is significant evidence in Genesis chapters 1-11 that the juxtaposed phrases “in the image of God” and “according to their kinds” are meant to culminate in an understanding that, mysteriously, humanity is the kin and kind of God; His offspring, and commissioned as the representative by which His workings and will are to be accomplished upon earth.
While opinions may differ, saying “image of God” is more so about God’s human-like body, or a spiritual correspondence between God and man, or a relational aptitude humanity holds; it cannot be denied that, by our image-bearing, humans have a unique role in this universe.
How is it that you, your life and who you are, reflect the image that you carry? Jesus in Matthew 5:15 called us “The Light of the World,” and declared that it is not to be hidden. Do the ways I live my life as the image-bearer of God enlighten the world?