Submitted by Andy Mcilvain.
Imago Dei “image of God” describes how humans mirror God’s divinity in our moral, spiritual, and intellectual nature. “And the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul (Genesis 2:7).”
First God makes a man, a lifeless body which is made into a living soul by the breath of God. The Breath of God is the source of our life. Man did not have a soul, but he became a soul, and the life-force was the breath (spirit) of God. This image bearing has given us dominion over all the earth and we therefore have a right to live out our days upon the earth. Our body is the physical means by which our spirit, soul, and heart are expressed through visible activity in this material world.
If we further consider the “spirit of man” as found in Proverbs 20:27, the spirit of man is referred to as the (Lamp) or Candle of the Lord, searching all our inward parts. Here we learn that mankind’s “life-breath” (human spirit) which was breathed into him by God at creation and into us at our creation becomes a way (lamp or candle) that God continually uses to search our inmost being. Our discernment of wisdom acquired from the Holy Spirits teaching and self-correction in our lives allow us to have self-knowledge or conscience. This gift of discernment allows us to think, plan, and weigh matters through the guidance of His Spirit.
Jesus Christ is revealed to be the image of the invisible God in the New Testament. In Romans 8:9 Paul describes Christians like this, “But you are not in the flesh, you are in the Spirit, if the Spirit of God really dwells in you.” Christians are those in whom the Spirit of God dwells. God lives in the soul of man by the indwelling of his Spirit. The leadership of the Spirit in our lives is powerful and yet our response is so free that Paul calls the leadership of the Spirit in us—the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22).
Death ultimately becomes a part of our human experience as a result of the fall (Romans 5:12). At death, the body of man goes to the dust; and the spirit returns unto the Lord who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7).
The future of our body, as described in the New Testament, is to be redeemed. We die, our body goes into the grave; but when Christ returns he raises our body and we then have a body like his resurrected body. He reunites our personality to our body to make us whole and complete, no disease, depression, discouragement. And with this new body we enter a new heaven and new earth.
“Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.”