October 6, 2009

A Trinitarian Worldview - Part I: Imago Dei

I have decided to rerun a series of posts that I wrote for another blog I was writing for a bit but have since stopped. It is on my thoughts around a worldview revolving around the concept of the Trinity. I think it is would be worthwhile to re-engage some dialogue around this so over the next 7 days I will rerun the series, with some minor modifications. For those of you who read and commented on the series in the other blog, my profuse apologies, but this has been on my mind and I wanted to air it again. I beg your patience and pardon.

The series begins with the concept of the Imago Dei, the Image of God. Simply put, Imago Dei asserts than we are made in the image of God.

26Then God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule
over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the
cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that
creeps on the earth." 27God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.

Genesis 1:26-27 (NASB)

I believe it is important to start with this fact because if we are created in His image, we should share some of His attributes, even if we are imperfect in our sinful nature. Our worldview should be shaped by who we are in relationship to God.

Who are we? In the broadest of senses we are:

  • Capable of thought, reasoning, voluntary activity. We are emotional, we can love, hate, grow angry, happy or sad. We are relational, we seek out others in community, we seek out our Creator in praise and worship.
  • Capable of creative activity. We look to learn, to build, to make new things out of old things. We fall short of being able to create out of nothing, but we are driven to create nonetheless.
  • Capable of dominion. We seek to control our environment, others and often at our peril, our God.
  • Capable of thought beyond this life, Unlike animals who are in the moment at all times, we can look beyond today and even tomorrow. We can plan and anticipate, and even ponder eternity.
These are attributes that mirror, although dimly, our divine Creator. But it is the very things He bestowed on us to make up be in His image that can be the root of our destruction. In our sin, we often think and act against God, taking the gifts He has given us and try to come out from under His sovereign will.

Are there other aspects/characteristics/attributes you see in us under the Imago Dei?