Imago Dei (The Image of God) - Part One: Who Am I? | Firm Foundation (Video and Audio)




Genesis 1:26 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.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

This is an instance where a biblical worldview is helpful. A Christian worldview only applies to Christians, but a biblical worldview is for everyone.

What is the imago Dei?

Imago Dei is the Latin term for “image of God.” The term is used because it is distinctive and beautiful sounding. Knowing who you are is foundational to both a healthy self-image and a strong sense of purpose. (Watch this video)

Humankind was created to be an image bearer of the Creator. This ideal state was to be a representation of who God is and what He is like. Of course, humanity is far from this ideal state.

“The imago Dei is not a quality possessed by man; it is a condition in which man lives, a condition of confrontation established and maintained by the Creator. … The imago Dei is that in man which constitutes him as him-whom-God-loves.” –John Piper

The imago Dei was the outcome of being created by God. No other creature was made in the image of God, not even Angels.

Look at the words image and likeness in Genesis chapter 1


Hebrew צֶלֶם - ṣelem (Pronounced tseh’-lem)

From an unused root meaning a representative figure or image

Stong’s Dictionary word (#H6754) is used in the old testament as image (16x) and vain shew (1x).

It is used mostly to denote objects of false worship such as idols. It is interesting that this is the word used to describe people being made in the image of God. It shows that this word is only understood by the context in which it is used.

It is best understood as representing the character of something or someone.

For example, my father is technically inclined, a problem solver, and a hard worker. I have my father’s or character IMAGE in me. My mother loved people, served people, and had great compassion. I possess that particular image or character of my mother.


Hebrew דְּמוּתd - demût, (pronounced, dem-ooth’)

Stong’s dictionary word (#H1819); means, resemblance; shape; like (-ness), manner, similitude.'

This is best understood as representing the likeness or appearance of something or someone. For example: I RESEMBLE both my mother and my father.

Maximizing Imago Dei (Genesis 1:26-28)

God’s image - Character
God’s likeness - Outward actions
Dominion - Responsibility, tasks, duty, service
Fruitful - Utilizing abilities an gifts
Multiply - Reproduce yourself, empower others 
Subdue - Create and maintain order

Reflection Exercise 
1. Describes ways in which you carry Imago Dei (the image of God)
2. Describes ways in which you represent God’s likeness, His witness to the world around you

Courage and Partnership

1 Samuel 14:6 Then Jonathan said to the young man who bore his armor, “Come, let us go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised; it may be that the Lord will work for us. For nothing restrains the Lord from saving by many or by few.” 7 So his armorbearer said to him, “Do all that is in your heart. Go then; here I am with you, according to your heart.”

This conversation between Jonathan and his armorbearer happened at a desperate time in the history of Israel. King Saul had made the tactical error to attack the Philistines with 3000 men, but they were met by 30,000 Philistines. The outcome was tragic:

When the men of Israel saw that they were in danger (for the people were distressed), then the people hid in caves, in thickets, in rocks, in holes, and in pits. And some of the Hebrews crossed over the Jordan to the land of Gad and Gilead." 1 Samuel 13:6 -7

Fear and panic paralyzed the army of Israel as some hid themslves and others ran away. What followed was an act of courage by Jonathan with the support of his unnamed armor bearer. Jonathan took the decision to go up alone against the Philistines, believing that God could work with few as well as with many. As important as Jonathan’s courage was the response of partnership by the armor bearer who said, “Do all that is in your heart. Go then; here I am with you, according to your heart.”

You can read about the victorious outcome of this courageous act in 1 Samuel chapter 14, but note how victory and encouragement for others began with a singular act of courage and partnership. Support, love, and commitment are the beginning and sustaining of great works for God!

What is a Christian Worldview? Does It Help or Hinder?

Watch on YouTube
Read Article
Romans 12:2, Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Colossians 3:17, And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 2:8, See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. A worldview is a set of ideas, values, and presuppositions. It’s like putting on a pair of sunglasses that color how you view life, people, and ideas. People collect little pieces of their worldview through parents, school, movies, and friends. A Christian worldview is based on the Bible. Their worldview was one of the reasons why white churches of the 18th and 19th centuries did not work to end slavery (while many individual White believers did work to end slavery). In fact, many believed the Bible affirmed slavery and the inferior status of persons of African descent (which was part of their worldview at that time.)

“It is done” Because Jesus said “It is finished.”


Philippians 3:10, That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection…

John 19:28, After this, Jesus, knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, said, “I thirst!” 29 Now a vessel full of sour wine was sitting there; and they filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on hyssop, and put it to His mouth. 30 So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.

We can say “It is done” Because Jesus said “It is finished.”

#1 - Jesus finished the endless cycle of Jewish sacrifices and created the path to redemption

#2 - Jesus finished access to God the Father.

#3 - Jesus finished the endless cycle of guilt and self-condemnation.

Jesus Is Risen! You Can Rise Too!