moltmann :: imago dei

by Eric Daryl Meyer

“The human being’s likeness to God is a theological term before it becomes an anthropological one. It first of all says something about the God who creates his image for himself, and who enters into a particular relationship with that image, before it says anything about the human being who is created in this form. Likeness to God means God’s relationship to human beings first of all, and only then, and as a consequence of that, the human being’s relationship to God.”

Which means, of course, that it is something revealed rather than something possessed. It is not something found by introspection, but likeness discovered in the context of a relationship. This also means that it is foremost a responsibility rather than an entitlement.

“Likeness to God is both gift and charge, indicative and imperative. It is charge and hope, imperative and promise.”

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Moltmann, God in Creation trans. Margaret Kohl (Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 1993), 220, 227.

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