Eastern Orthodox/Genesis 1-27

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QUESTION: Dear, My name is Berhane. I belong to Eritrean Orthodox Church. what is the meaning of when the bible says, God create man on his own image. Is means God has hand, leg, nose, mouse, aye everything exactly like us? On John 4, "God is spirit" written. And the angels are spirit. We have also spirit. So, I am confused. can you help me to clarify this. thank you and God bless your service and happy holiday

ANSWER: Christ is born!

Berhane,  Genesis 1:26-27 means that we are all created with the ability to become God-like.  This is the meaning of being created in God's image.  These verses also tell us that we are to grow into the likeness of God.

What makes us the image of God is not our arms or our legs or our noses.  What makes us the image of God is our ability to love, to forgive, to heal, to reason, to choose the good and not the evil, to see beauty, to act justly and mercifully.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Dear, the "likeness and image" are this two words have the same meaning? from what i understand, Adam had a likeness of God until he broke the first commandment. I just couldn't understand the word "image". Thank you

Answer
Berhane,

In genesis 1:26-27, "image" refers to our potential.  "Image" is like the blueprint, the plan, of a house.  "Likeness" refers to how we follow that plan, and how well we build.

Working from the same plan, two builders may build very different houses.  One may take great care and build a strong house with tight joints and level floor.  Another builder may be a careless workman and build a house with a warped floor, wear joints, and a sagging roof.

God gives each of us a perfect plan for becoming human.  He gives each of us a perfect human nature.  This plan is His "image."  We must each build according to His image in us to become His likeness.

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