2018-09-12 / Religion

God created man in his own image

Sunday School Lesson
Rev. James Temples

Genesis 1:26-2:7

The divine record of the “origin of the human race” is related to us in a simple and concise manner. “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness, So God created man in his own image.” Genesis 1:25a, 26a. In spite of the divine record, fallen humanity has attempted to devise many different schemes, attempting to explain the appearance of humankind on our planet. As we read these man-made philosophies, extreme “faith” is required to accept these great errors.

The scriptural phrase, “And God said, Let us.” (Genesis 1:26a) uses the divine name “Elohim,” which is a plural word in the Hebrew language. This fact points to the fact of a triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. As we study the structure and function of the human body, one can get a glimpse of the nature of our Heavenly Father, the creator of the universe. However, our best pictures are inaccurate, since we can only see mankind after the entrance of sin into the world. There is no room for doubt, regarding the placement of gender, “male and female created he them.” Genesis 1:27b.

The record gives the divine directive for the ideal relationship between mankind and all of nature, “and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.” Genesis 1:26b, c.

As we continue to read the account, more details are given, regarding the actual process of the creation of humans. “And the Lord God formed (fashioned; shaped) man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” Genesis 2:7. The Hebrew translated “life” is plural. The New Testament writers give us a clearer picture of this part of the creation. The Greek language, of the New Testament, has three different words translated by our single word “life.” One of these words is “bios.” This shows the “life” that is in all created beings, plants, animals, and other “simplified” forms. Another word is psuche,” the word from which we get the word psychology, relating to the mind, and mental capacity, and thought processes of humans. The third word is “zoe,” life on the highest plane; spiritual life. When our first parents sinned, the “zoe” was lost, and replaced with the “sin nature.”

A divine responsibility was assigned to our race. “And God blessed them, and God said unto them, be fruitful and multiple (increase), and replenish (fill) the earth, and subdue (can mean ‘tread upon it,’ or ‘bring into subjection,’) it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea. and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” Genesis 1:28. Divine provision was made for the created race. “And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of the tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat (food).” Genesis 1:29. All other life forms came under the same divine care. “And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.” Genesis 1:30. The assessment of the creation is given, “And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.” Genesis 1:31

There has been much discussion regarding the continuation of the account. “Thus the heaven and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had done. And God blessed the seventh day, and sancitified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.” Genesis 2:1- 3. The thought of “sabbath” has been used by some teachers to indicate the number seven. The Hebrew word is from the root meaning “to rest.” The record shows many uses of the word for days other than the seventh day. When we attempt to “force” scripture to conform to our ideas, we can wade into the murky waters of gross error. By simply using the word in the sense of “rest,” we avoid many scriptural pitfalls.

The record continues to give us details, allowing us to understand some of the “means” by which the God-head carried out these mighty acts. “the Lord God made the earth and the heavens. And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the Lord (Jehovah) God (Elohim) had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not man to till the ground. But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.” Genesis 2:4b-6. The absence of one “to till the ground” resulted in the formation of the Adam, the first man. Genesis 2:7.

Our Heavenly Father, the creator of the universe, is “omniscient,” “all knowing.” Provision had already been made for the redemption the human race, even before Adam was formed. The Apostle John wrote of Jesus Christ as “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” Revelation 13:8b. This need for the human race was provided, even before the need existed.

There is no question, today, regarding our need for a Savior. The eternal provision is available to all who will accept. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast,” Ephesians 2:8,9. If you have never accepted this “gift of God.” please invite Jesus Christ into your heart and life, today.

Rev. James C. Temples’ Sunday School Lesson has appeared in the Early County News each week since 1967. A native of Early County, Rev. Temples taught in public schools 32 years and 10 years at Southeastern College of Assemblies of God, in Lakeland, Fla. He also served as pastor and evangelist during those years. He can be contacted at P. O. Box 1484, Swainsboro, GA 30401; 478- 299- 2068. Email: temples_ james@ yahoo. co m

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