Not long ago, I had the privilege to visit with some high school and college students from our church. As we came to the end of our time together, I asked them, “Is there anything that you’d just like your pastor to know? Anything you’d like me to just to keep in mind, whether it’s sermons or ministry in general?” One of the gals said, “Well, you know, sometimes I just have a sense of ‘lostness.’” I knew she was a Christian, so, I asked her, “What exactly do you mean by a sense of ‘lostness?’” She said, “Well, I’m just not really sure what I’m supposed to do with my life. I’m not completely sure why I’m here.” What she was expressing is one of the oldest questions known to man – “What is the meaning of man? What is the meaning of my life? Why am I here?”
- Knowing what God means when He says, “We are all made in His image.” It has nothing to do with physical appearance. None of us has the slightest idea what God looks like. Those who walked with Jesus in His time on earth knew what He looked like, but being in the image of God has nothing to do with physical appearance. It does mean that we possess knowledge, the ability to think and to reason, which is unlike any other of God’s creation. You don’t find the Oceanic College of Porpoises. You don’t find the Amazon Jungle University for monkeys. You don’t see a rhinoceros coming up with ideas for new computer chips and deciding to live in Silicon Valley because that’s where they can collaborate together on that process. Made in the image of God means we can think and reason like God.
- It also means that we have emotions like God. God has emotions? Absolutely! The Bible is clear that God becomes angry with us when we don’t live in a way that is pleasing to Him. But, God also has great love for man—for you and me. God has great joy when we discover His will and the purpose He has created each of us. He feels great joy when we praise Him, enjoy fellowship with Him, to know Him, and really get to know Him and His will for our lives.
- Man is made in the image of God because we can make decisions. We have the free will to make decisions. We can decide—do I go to this university or do I go into the military? Do I buy this house or do I rent and live in this apartment? He even allows us to decide whether to reject Him or to love Him. Because we are human and we are uniquely created in the image of God, to make decisions just like God.
- Finally, we have a sense of conscious about what is right and what is wrong. We feel guilt when we do things that are wrong or immoral. Man debates what is right and wrong, what is ethical and what is not. Animals act by instinct and desire. Only man possesses morality like God.
When we realize what it means to be made in the image of God, that is when we begin to understand why we are here and what our purpose is in life. Jesus shows us what it’s like to be in the image of Him. When you trust Him and follow His lead, He’ll guide you on where you need to go with your life.