God's Word begins with structure and meaning. We're told that we're made in God's image and our relationship with Him is based upon this one important point. Exactly what is God telling us when He lets us know that we're made "In His Image".
Webster's Third Edition Dictionary adds clarity as it defines image in the following manner: a reproduction of a person
or thing; • exact likeness : SEMBLANCE
• a person who is strikingly like another person in appearance, manner, or thought;
• a son who is the image of his father
Let's begin by taking a closer look: Genesis 1:26 (KJV) paves the way as it reads:
"And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: 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." Being made in God's image and likeness illustrates the following:
"Like another person in appearance, manner, or thought" illustrates our likeness to God. God, in the flesh (Jesus Christ), experienced joy and disappointment through feelings that parallel ours. We both experience "love" and "hate". The only difference is: We do things naturally and God does everything super naturally.
We continue with Genesis 1:27 (KJV) which reads: "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them." The message is repeated as we clearly see that "In His Image" makes it possible to share everything with God. The better we know Him, thecloser we draw to Him as our feelings become entwined. This serves to give us new direction.
We now examine this path of feelings we share with God. Circumstances dictate whether we "love" or "hate" and God shares these exact same feelings. We're very familiar with God's love, yet a closer look reveals the full range of God's feelings.
First, we go to the Old Testament: Malachi 1:2-3 (KJV) states:
"I have loved you, saith the Lord. Yet ye say, Wherein hast thou loved us? Was not Esau Jacob's brother? saith the Lord: yet I loved Jacob, And I hated Esau, and laid his mountains and his heritage waste for the dragons ofthe wilderness." Jacob and Esau were twins and verse 2 illustrates God's love for Jacob while verse 3 shows us that he hated Esau. Utilizing the Strong's Concordance, the word
"hated", Strong's # 8130 reads: sane', saw-nay'; a primitive root; to hate (personal) :- enemy, foe, (be) hate (-ful)
God offers a double witness as we move to the New Testament. Romans 9:13 (KJV) reads: "As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated." Your Strong's Concordance # 3404 shows the Greek origin of hate as follows: