Here’s the opening of a piece I wrote for InTouch Magazine:
Sometimes a counterfeit helps us understand the purpose of the genuine object. People produce counterfeit money, for example, not to hoard but to exchange for things of value. And that should remind us money is not to be treasured for its own sake but used. Those coins and pieces of paper have no value in and of themselves. They are merely conveniences that allow us to exchange our labor and expertise for milk, eggs, gasoline, books, and other necessities and pleasures. The same principle holds true for copycats of the imago Dei—a Latin phrase which means “image of God.” To shed light on the original, let me tell you about the knock-offs, the cheap imitations.
The whole thing is here.
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since the Incarnation of Christ, the meaning is now fully realized:
from Gregory of Nanzianzus, comes this insight:
“He who makes rich is made poor; he takes on the poverty of my flesh, that I may gain the riches of his divinity. He who is full is made empty; he is emptied for a brief space of his glory, that I may share in his fullness.
What is this wealth of goodness? What is this mystery that surrounds me? I received the likeness of God, but failed to keep it. He takes on my flesh, to bring salvation to the image, immortality to the flesh. He enters into a second union with us, a union far more wonderful than the first. Holiness had to be brought to man by the humanity assumed by one who was God, so that God might overcome the tyrant by force and so deliver us and lead us back to himself through the mediation of his Son.
The Son arranged this for the honor of the Father, to whom the Son is clearly obedient in all things.
The Good Shepherd, who lays down his life for the sheep, came in search of the straying sheep to the mountains and hills on which you used to offer sacrifice.
When he found it, he took it on the shoulders that bore the wood of the cross, and led it back to the life of heaven.”
God made us in his image because he wanted us to be unique and rule over the earth and other living creatures.
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