“Then 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 birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food. And to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the heavens and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so. And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.”
— Genesis 1:26–31
It is always surreal to look at my children — my boys in particular — and realize that they came from my essence. Just a quick glance, and there is no denying that they are mine. Because of their DNA, it is actually their destiny to look like me. The evidence is all in the image.
In the beginning, God created man in his divine image. In large part this meant that, from inception, men and women had the capacity for presence, relationship and love, not just with one another, but with God. Notice that the passage above references God speaking in the plural (“let us”). This plurality is at the core of God’s divine attributes. God is three in one. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit have existed from the very beginning, in perfect communion with one another, and were actively working together in the creation of our ancestors in the flesh: Adam and Eve.
And the text then further sets apart this crown jewel of creation by saying it was “very good”. Of course, it wouldn’t stay like this for long. The disobedience laid out in Genesis chapter three sets the stage for the broken reality in which mankind would ultimately live.
It’s into this fallen world that God the Son arrives in the body of Jesus of Nazareth, the planned gift that begins the reversal of the curse set forth in Genesis. The end result of the life of Jesus Christ is that mankind is now offered a change of spiritual DNA. This change is the genesis of a divine union that changes our fallen destiny.
Christmas not only ushers in the new reality, but reminds us that there is another change that is coming soon: a day in which all of creation will be redeemed and transformed. These bodies of sin that we live in will be destroyed forever, and we will fully and perfectly live out the image of God the Son for eternity.