One thing I learned a long time ago, during what I call my PhD days, is that it is nearly impossible to win a theological debate. So it didn’t take me long to decide to steer clear of debates about theological doctrine. I have learned that the Holy Spirit is quite good at leading us into all truth as Jesus promised He would (John 16:13). I rather let Him do His job and not try to convince anyone about what is true.
In that light, I have had an interesting thought lately and I am intrigued with the implications.
God commanded the Israelites in Exodus 20:4 to not make for themselves an idol (“graven image”) or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. He goes on to tell them not to worship these idols or serve them. Basic bible interpretation tells us not to create a graven image, which is an actual physical thing that we would believe is God then volitionally chose to worship it as God. This, of course, is a ludicrous thought for anyone who truly loves the Lord and knows the life they share in the Him through their union with Jesus Christ in their inner person. But that is not my main point.
What I find most interesting is these two truths:
- God created us in His image (Genesis 1:26-27).
- God’s greatest purpose for our lives is that we be conformed into the image of His Son, Jesus Christ (Romans 8:29).
Isn’t it ironic that God commands the Israelites to not create a graven image of God, while at the same time He had already created all men in His image and is busy working to conform as many who will let Him into His very image?
God’s greatest desire is that we be an exact expression of His image. This happens as we surrender and allow the life of Jesus within us by His Spirit to manifest in and through our lives (2 Corinthians 4:7-11).
Our enemy, the devil, is always employing diversion tactics to keep us from the truth that will set us free. He will even use well-meaning theological debates to distract us from the truth about God.
I know there are some believers who miss this amazing truth — God actually wants all of us to be the expression, image, of His life here and now so that the world can see Him clearly. The only way that happens is for us to allow Him to conform us more into His image. He is most glorified as we are allowing Him to break our self-centeredness and selfish ways so that His life can be expressed in and through us.
So I seek more than ever to be conformed into His image so others can see His life, love, grace, mercy and so much more expressed through me. To God be the glory for creating us in His image and passionately pursuing us until we are all conformed into His image for His glory.
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