The Image of The Invisible God, part 1

Where To Begin…
Interestingly enough, the place that Owen starts to expound on the image of God, is with our knowledge of Him. Revelation and our understanding of the image of God are integrally fastened together. In other words, if we are to grasp what the image of God is, we will have to understand what God has revealed about Himself in the images and shadows of things pointing to Him. Owen asserts that there is no other way for us to know anything about God except through what He has revealed about Himself in our intellect and the created universe around us. The infinite relating to the finite through other finite things.

John Owen…

Therefore, we can have no direct intuitive notions or apprehensions of the divine essence, or its properties. Such knowledge is too wonderful for us. Whatever is pleaded for an intellectual vision of the essence of God in the light of glory, yet none pretend unto a possibility of an immediate, full comprehension of it. But, in our present state, God is unto us, as he was unto Moses under all the external manifestations of his glory, “in thick darkness :” Exod. XX. 21. All the rational conceptions of the minds of men are swallowed up and lost, when they would exercise themselves directly on that which is absolutely immense, eternal, infinite. When we say it is so, we know not what we say, but only that it is not otherwise. What we deny of God, we know in some measure—but what we affirm we know not; only we declare what we believe and adore…. We have no means—no corporeal, no intellectual instrument or power—for the comprehension of him; nor hath any other creature…. That God is in himself absolutely incomprehensible unto us, is a necessary effect of our infinite distance from him. But as he externally represents himself unto us, and by the notions which are ingenerated in us by the effects of his properties, are our conceptions of him : Ps. xix. 1 ; Rom. i. 20.

On Images…
When we see a picture of an apple, we understand that the picture is not an apple, but that it is merely an image of an apple. When we see a shadow of anything, it is not pointing to itself, but rather to what is casting the shadow. When we read that man is made in the image of God, we understand (at least we should understand) that man is not God, but that he is made in the image of God. This is truly a mystery to me, and I love a good mystery. In light of this, we should be captivated by God when we see glimpses of Him in what He is gloriously revealing about Himself. He is the endearing Father that says unto us, “Child, know Me.” And He wants His children to know Him.

Something To Consider…
It would seem that the innate desire within man to worship someone or something is an evidence that man is made in the image of God. This is, of course ruined by the fall in that man does not worship God naturally or only. However, man does in fact worship something, always. It may be God, it may be false gods, it may be money, it may also be self, but man does worship. I believe this is a proof of man’s divine engineering.


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