What the Bible Teaches



Chapter 300

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300.000.000       Torrey: p293


300.010.000       Torrey: p293, T:I
Topic 10:   Man is Created in the Image of God

300.010.010       Torrey: p293, T:I, P:1
POINT 10:   God created man in His own image, in His own likeness.

      Genesis 1:26-27 [26] Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground." [27] So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.

      Genesis 9:6 Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made man.

   QUESTION: To what do "image" and "likeness" refer?

   ANSWER: Contrast Hebrews 1:3 The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, . . .

   An image is an inexact copy. It has some, but not all, of the original's characteristics and qualities.

      Ephesians 4:22-24 [22] You were taught ... [23] to be made new in the attitude of your minds; [24] and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

      Colossians 3:9-10 [9] ... you have taken off your old self with its practices [10] and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.

      Romans 8:29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.

      2 Corinthians 3:18 And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

      Colossians 1:15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

      Compare 1 Timothy 1:17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen.

   The words "image" and "likeness" plainly do not refer to visible or bodily likeness, but to intellectual and moral likeness -- likeness "in knowledge", "righteousness" and "holiness of truth".


      Psalms 17:15 And I -- in righteousness I will see your face; when I awake, I will be satisfied with seeing your likeness.

   The Hebrew word used here clearly means a visible form.

      Compare Numbers 12:8 With him I speak face to face, clearly and not in riddles; he sees the form of the LORD. Why then were you not afraid to speak against my servant Moses?"

   OBJECTION:   Exodus 33:19 [19] And the LORD said, "I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, .... [20] But," he said, "you cannot see my face, for no one may see me and live." (Some translations read "No one may see my face and live.")

   Also, in Genesis 2 although not expressly stated, it is fairly obvious that Adam, Eve, and God were talking face to face.

   ANSWER: The "God" referred to must be the Angel of the Lord, i.e., Jesus before He became man.

   The image and likeness would seem also to have some reference to the visible likeness. It is true God is essentially spirit and invisible.

      John 4:24 God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.

      Colossians 1:5 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

   But God has a form in which he manifests Himself to the eye.

      Isaiah 6:1 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple.

      Acts 7:56 "Look," he said, "I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God."

      Philippians 2:6-7 [6] Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, [7] but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.

   See Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament on the word translated "form" in this last passage.

   Man seems to have been created not only in the intellectual and moral, but also the visible likeness of God.

      Compare Genesis 5:1, 3 [1] This is the written account of Adam's line. When God created man, he made him in the likeness of God. [3] When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image; and he named him Seth.

   It is perhaps impossible to say how much of this visible likeness was lost in the Fall, but in the regeneration man is not only recreated intellectually and morally in the likeness of God, Ephesians 4:22-24; Colossians 3:9- 10, but when the regeneration is complete in the outward, visible likeness as well.

      Compare Philippians 3:20-21 [20] ... the Lord Jesus Christ, [21] who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.

   From a comparison of the following two passages we see that "the form" of Christ was the form of God:

      John 17:5 And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began.

      Philippians 2:6 [6] Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, [7] but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.

300.020.000       Torrey: p294, T:II
Topic 20:   The Original Intellectual and Moral Condition of Man.

300.020.010       Torrey: p294, T:II, P:1
POINT 10:   Man was created with sufficient intellectual capacity to give names to all living creatures and to have dominion over them.

      Genesis 2:19 Now the LORD God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name.

      Genesis 1:28 God blessed them and said to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground."

300.020.020       Torrey: p295, T:II, P:2
POINT 20:   Man was not created a sinner, but sin entered into the world through man, by his conscious and voluntary choice.

      Genesis 3:1-6 [1] Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God really say, `You must not eat from any tree in the garden'?" [2] The woman said to the serpent, "We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, [3] but God did say, `You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.'" [4] "You will not surely die," the serpent said to the woman. [5] "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." [6] When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.

      Romans 5:12-14 [12] Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned -- [13] for before the law was given, sin was in the world. But sin is not taken into account when there is no law. [14] Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who was a pattern of the one to come.

      Ecclesiastes 7:29 This only have I found: God made mankind upright, but men have gone in search of many schemes.

300.030.000       Torrey: no
Topic 30:   The Purpose for the creation of Man and the Angels.

   We can better understand Man's original nature if we understand the reason he was created. This can best be determined by inference.

300.030.010       Torrey: no
POINT 10:   God created Man and the Angels for companionship.

Try to picture God's circumstances before He created Man and the Angels: three 'guys' 'hanging out'. Nothing else exists. Every once in awhile, one of them says "You know what I think?" And the other two say "Of course. I'm omniscient." Then they 'sit around' for awhile. Sooner or later, another one says "You know what I think?" ...

   Pretty boring, huh?

God created Man and the Angels because He was bored and lonely. Like us, He wants companionship and love. Like us, He gets enjoyment and satisfaction from teaching His 'kids' and seeing them progress.

300.030.020       Torrey: no
POINT 20:   The only way Man and the Angels could serve the purpose for which they were created was for God to create them less than perfect.

   Because God is omnipotent, He could have created additional gods with all the divine characteristics except 'eternalness'. He could have created companions that were holy, omniscient, omni- potent, omnipresent, and immortal. But what would be the point? Instead of three 'guys' 'sitting around' there would be fifty or five hundred, or a hundred billion, or whatever, still 'sitting around'.

   The only way Man and the Angels can provide companionship and interest to God is if they were made and forever remain imperfect. Man might someday be reconstituted holy like God and the Elect will have a glorious body like that of the Risen Savior, but it seems pretty clear that Man will never become all-knowing, omnipotent, or omnipresent. In that sense, he will forever remain an "image" of God lacking some of God's fundamental characteristics.

300.040.000       Torrey: no
Topic 40:   The Original Reproductive Capacity of Man.

300.040.010       Torrey: no
POINT 10:   Man was created with the capability of having children; if Man had not fallen, children could have been been born in the Garden of Eden.

      Genesis 3:16 To the woman he said, "I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. ... "

   Many believe that before the Fall Adam and Eve lived like the angels, i.e., that there was no sex and no children in Eden. It is true that there is no indication in the Bible that children ever existed in Eden. However, this passage makes it clear that if Man had not fallen, at some point Eve could have borne children in Eden. One can't increase something that doesn't exist (or at least potentially exist). This passage indicates that if Eve had remained in Eden she would have experienced minor discomfort during childbirth. If the passage simply said "With pain you will give birth to children" there would be no reason to reach this conclusion.

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