Created  in  the  Image  and   According  to  the  Likeness  of  God  

Image  and  Likeness  
ì  Image  is  the  poten*al  we  have  within  us  to  become  

like  our  prototype  

ì  Likeness  is  the  result,  the  purpose,  the  ideal   ì  a  founda*onal  dogma  of  the  Church  that  ALL  

human  beings  created  so  

ì  Image  implies  being  God's  children   ì  cf:  Scriptural  teaching  in  Gal.3:26;  1Jn  3:1  

Biblical  Foundations  
Then  God  said,  “Let  us  make  humankind     in  our  image,  according  to  our  likeness;     and  let  them  have  dominion  over  the  fish     of  the  sea,  and  over  the  birds  of  the  air,     and  over  the  ca<le,  and  over  all  the  wild     animals  of  the  earth,  and  over  every     creeping  thing  that  creeps  upon  the  earth.”     (Gen.  1:26)  

Image  and  Likeness  
ì  a[nqrwpo" -­‐  ἀνω - θρώσκω ì  The  human  person    
ì  more  than  just  flesh  and  blood   ì  a  special  creature  with  the  commandment  to  become  like  

God   ì  the  grandeur  yet  fragility  of  the  human    person  -­‐  compare   organic  rela@onship  with  other  creatures   ì  Sw'ma and cw'ma

General  Meaning    
ì  According  to  St  Fathers,  a  general  meaning  of  the  term  

"image"  implies  that  human  beings  have  been  created  
ì  by  God's  grace  (katav cavrin)   ì  by  God's  good  pleasure  (kat j eujdokivan)   ì  by  God's  power  (katav duvnamin)   ì  by  God's  energies  (kat j ejnevrgeian)   ì  by  God's  will  (katav qevlhma)  

ì  to  become  everything  God  is  by  nature,  by  grace   ì  Human  person  -­‐  an  epiphany  of  God  

Growing  towards  likeness  
ì  In  reality  human  sin  has  resulted  in  human  

beings  refusing  to  grow  towards  likeness  

ì  The  result  of  this  is  outlined  in  Rom.  1   ì  Human  beings  created  to  give  glory  and  thanks  

to  God  -­‐  ejvdovxasan kaiv eujcarivsthsan irrelevant  in  our  lives   death  

ì  St  Paul  outlines  the  result  when  God  becomes   ì  Communion  with  God  is  life  and  separa@on  is  

Specific  meaning  of  "image"  
ì  No  consensus  in  the  Fathers   ì  From  all  the  literature  we  can  safely  conclude  the  

following:  

ì  Image  can  refer  to:   ì  Our  communal  being   ì  Image  as  growth   ì  Image  as  self-­‐awareness   ì  Image  as  Freedom   ì  Image  referring  to  the  whole  person  

Image  -­‐  Communal  
ì  Since  we  are  created  in  God's  image  this  implies  that  we  are  

rela@onal  beings  

ì  Rela@onal  in  the  ver@cal  and  horizontal  sense   ì  Etymology  of  provswpon betrays  its  rela@onal  character

 

 

naturae  ra@onalis  individua  substan@a  (Boethius)  

ì  Human  beings  created  to  have  a  rela@onship  with  God  and  

with  fellow  human  beings   sum"  

ì  Descartes  said  "cogito  ergo  sum";  we  would  say  "amo  ergo  

THE  BEAUTY  OF  THE  PERSON  
ns a  in   e  human  persohin  g  re niqu a ow  beau*ful  dnd  uence  totally  astonis ì  H er their  absolute  iniffceaselessly  cap*va*ng   g   always  surpris taneous  loving  in  freedom,   endlessly  spon ys  different.     therefore  alwa   e     w  threatened  bycthof   we   re  no Why  is  it  that  hingathe  ec-­‐sta*c  experien e   other  not  wis ed     nd  surprised  by  that  which  is   being  astonish  ota er?   different  in  the h   nnot  love  the  other   a Why  is  it  that  we  cdifferences   t e not  DESPITE  Ehofirt  hose  differences     but    BECAUS    created  by  God    not  different   Since  we  wereer  but  different  for  each  other   from  each  oth
 

Image  -­‐  Growth  
ì  Created  in  the  image  of  growth  also  means  we  

have  the  poten*al  for  growth  

ì  The  dynamic  aspect  of  the  human  person  

expressed  in  the  dis*nc*on  made  by  the  terms   image  and   likeness   dis*nguish  are:  
ì  ì  ì  ì 

ì  Fathers  of  the  Patris*c  tradi*on  which  
Irenaeus,     Clement  of  Alexandria   Origen   St  Maximus  the  Confessor  

Image  -­‐  Growth    
ì 

“Human  received  the  honour  of  the  image  at  their  first   creaIon,  but  the  full  perfecIon  of  God’s  likeness  will  be   conferred  upon  them  only  at  the  consummaIon  of  all  things”   "every  intelligent  nature  is  in  the  image  of  God,  but  only  the   good  and  the  wise  are  in  his  likeness".     Adam  "was  but  small,  for  he  was  a  child;  and  it  was   necessary  that  he  should  grow  and  so  come  to  his   perfecIon."    

ì 

ì 

Image  -­‐  Self  awareness  
ì  Created  in  the  image  of  God  implies  we  do  not  act  

out  of  ins*nct  but  can  think.  

ì  Responsibility  to  give  crea*on  a  voice   ì  Includes  the  whole  person:  St  Irenaeus  
ì  "By  the  hands  of  the  Father,  that  is,  by  the  Son  and  the  Spirit,  

the  human  person  was  created  in  the  likeness  of  God.  The   person  was  so  created,  not  just  a  part  of  the  person.  Now  soul   and  spirit  are  certainly  a  part  of  the  person,  but  they  are  not   the  person  as  such.  For  the  complete  person  consists  in  the   commingling  and  union  of  the  soul  that  receives  the  spirit  [or   breath]  of  the  Father,  together  with  the  flesh  [or  physical   nature]  that  is  fashioned  according  to  God's  image."  
ì  Against  the  Heresies  5,6,1.  

Image  -­‐  including  the  body  
ì  Niketas  Choniates  
ì  §"The   term   human   being   is   applied   not   to   the   soul  

alone   or   to   the   body   alone,   but   to   both   of   them   together;   and   so   it   is   with   reference   to   both   together   that  God  is  said  to  have  created  the  human  person  in   his  image."  
ì   Prosopopeiai,  PG  150:1361C  

ì  Carl  Jung  
ì  "Spirit   is   the   living   body   seen   from   within,   and   the  

body  the  outer  manifestaIon  of  the  living  spirit  –  the   two  being  really  one.”  
ì  Modern  Man  in  Search  of  a  Soul,  (London:  Routledge  Ark  

Paperbacks,  1984),  253.  

Image  -­‐  freedom  
ì  Image  reflected  in  our  freedom   ì  St  Cyril  of  Alexandria  
ì 

"Human  beings  were  created  in  the  beginning  with  control  over   their  own  decisions,  and  were  free  to  direct  their  will  as  they   chose.  For  they  were  formed  in  God's  image,  and  God  is  free."  
ì  Glafyera  on  Genesis,  1,4.  PG  69:24C.    

ì  St  Maximus  the  Confessor   ì  "if  the  human  person  is  created  in  the  image  of  the  

blessed  and  super  essenIal  Godhead,  then  –  since  the   Godhead  is  free  by  nature  –  this  signifies  that  as  God's   image  the  human  person  also  is  free  by  nature."  
ì   Dispute  with  Pyrrhus,  PG  91:304C.  

Image  -­‐  freedom  
The   Macarian   Homilies   (4th   century)   point   out:    
ì  § "Heaven,   sun,   moon   and   earth   have   no   free  

will,   but   you   are   in   the   image   and   likeness   of   God;  and  this  means  that,  just  as  God  is  His  own   master   and   can   do   what   He   wishes   and,   if   He   wishes,   He   can   send   the   righteous   to   hell   and   sinners  to  the  Kingdom,  but  He  does  not  choose   to  do  this…  so,  in  like  manner,  you  also  are  your   own  master  and,  if  you  choose,  you  can  destroy   yourself."     ì   Homilies,  15,23.    

Responsibility    
ì  Naming  the  animals  
ì 

Gen.  2:19  –  20:  “So  out  of  the  ground  the  LORD  God  formed  every   animal  of  the  field  and  every  bird  of  the  air,  and  brought  them  to  the   man  to  see  what  he  would  call  them;  and  whatever  the  man  called   every  living  creature,  that  was  its  name.  The  man  gave  names  to  all   cahle,  and  to  the  birds  of  the  air,  and  to  every  animal  of  the  field;  but   for  the  man  there  was  not  found  a  helper  as  his  partner.”  

ì  Betrays  highest  esteem  that  God  has  towards  

humanity   ì  Nomen  is  omen  

ì  Mul@plying  upon  the  earth   ì  Gen.  1:28  God  blessed  them,  and  God  said  

to  them,  “Be  fruiiul  and  mul*ply,  and  fill   the  earth  and  subdue  [κατακυριεύσατε]  it;   and  have  dominion  over  the  fish  of  the  sea   and  over  the  birds  of  the  air  and  over  every   living  thing  that  moves  upon  the  earth.”    
ì  Not  understood  in  terms  of  conquering   ì  Cf:  rela@onship  between  husband  and  wife  

The  Paradox  of  the  Human  Person  
ì 

earthly,  yet  heavenly….  Midway  between  majesty  and  lowliness…  both   spirit  and  flesh (St  Gregory  the  Theologian)   how  much  your  Creator  has  honoured  you  above  all  other  creatures,  He  did   not  make  the  heavens  in  His  image,  nor  the  moon,  nor  the  sun,  nor  the   beauty  of  the  stars,  nor  anything  else  which  surpasses  all  understanding.   You  alone  are  an  icon  of  Eternal  Beauty,  and  if  you  look  at  Him,  you  will   become  what  He  is,  imita*ng  Him  Who  shines  within  you,  whose  glory  is   reflected  in  your  purity.  Nothing  in  all  crea*on  can  equal  your  grandeur.  All   the  heavens  can  fit  in  the  palm  of  God's  hand...  and  though  He  is  so  great...   you  can  wholly  embrace  Him.  He  dwells  within  you...  He  pervades  your   en*re  being”  (St  Gregory  of  Nyssa)  

ì  “For  this  is  the  safest  way  to  protect  the  good  things  you  enjoy;  by  realizing