Elohim - Image and Likeness
Allow me to share with you something that you probably already know, but maybe had not yet considered in light of the first chapter of Genesis. And that is, you were not created to just 'do'. You were created for the purpose and Joy of Being; to be ever "on call, and always available". [II Timothy 4:2] "...Be instant (always ready) in season and out."
In Gen. 1:26 we read; "Let us make man in Our image, after our likeness." To me, this continues to be one of the most cloaked and guarded mysteries in all of Scripture. The truths revealed in this one sentence may be more obvious to many others; but I have struggled for years to try to "see" the deliverance that this verse offers. The following has helped me greatly. My sincere hope is it will help you as well.
In Gen. 1:26 the word translated "image" is from the Hebrew word "tselem". In your Strong's Concordance, it is #6754. This word is translated as a noun. But, please, hear this! The word translated "image" in Gen. 1:26 is a verb! This is, I believe, incredibly important. Strong's #6754 is a verb, not a noun. To "tselem" a thing is to act out and/or illustrate that thing. You and I were created to "tselem", or image, GOD. We were created for the purpose of acting out and illustrating ELOHIM (GOD). And to do ELOHIM is to be ELOHIM to those that need to benefit from the presence of ELOHIM, which is Our Father's LIFE. God (ELOHIM), Our Father, is our Life. [John 17: 3]
In Exodus, chapter four, we hear YHWH telling Moses how he, Moses, will be used by YHWH to deliver and lead Israel from Egypt. GOD told Moses that he, Moses, would be as GOD (ELOHIM) to Aaron, because Moses would provide "GOD WORDS" for Aaron to say. In Exodus 4:16 we read: "And he himself (Aaron) shall be as a mouth for you, and you (Moses) shall be to him as GOD" [NKJ version]. King James English really butchers this sentence. The New King James much more accurately communicates the literal Hebrew words in Ex. 4:16. And again, in Ex. 7:1, Father told Moses "I have made you (Moses) GOD (ELOHIM) to Pharaoh." Moses was to be GOD to Pharaoh by saying what GOD said and by doing what GOD did. By doing and saying ELOHIM, Moses "tselem" (imaged, a verb) ELOHIM. By "imaging" (doing and saying) ELOHIM, we manifest the Life of our Father. Can you see this truth? Of course you see it. And by doing and saying only my Father's nature, then I do indeed "image" (tselem, Strong's #6754, a verb) my Father's Life.
In Gen. 1:26, the word translated "likeness" is from the Hebrew word 'de mooth'. In your Strong's Concordance, it is #1823. The word 'de mooth' is a feminine noun. It comes from the Hebrew root word that in Strong's Concordance is #1820, which means "...to be dumb; to be silent; to have no voice." This Hebrew word, #1820, is pronounced 'dah-mah', and it is a verb. To 'dah-mah', is to intentionally be silent; to actively have no voice.
Now to add to this lovely mystery, the word in Strong's Concordance given the number 1819 is also pronounced 'dah-mah'. It is also spelled identically to #1820. It is also a verb. But the definition for #1819 is "...to compare; to liken to; or, to be likened to, or compared to." Both words, #1819 and #1820 are pronounced 'dah-mah', and both are understood to be feminine verbs. I believe that both words, #1819 and #1820 are, indeed, the same. Allow me to try to explain.
The word #1819, 'dah-mah', means "...to compare; to liken; or to be like or to be compared to." The word #1820, 'dah-mah', means "...to be dumb; to be silent; to fail, or be cut off." Again, these words are verbs. They describe, or ascribe to, activity. Both words are spelled the same, and both words are pronounced the same. However, the word translated 'likeness', that comes from these verb forms, is the word 'de-mooth', #1823. It is a noun.
And now, here is what I believe I have seen in this mystery.
A noun describes a person, a place or a thing; or, a state of being. The word 'de-mooth', #1823, is a feminine noun that indicates a state of being. But it is a state of being that comes from the verb activities of #1819 and #1820, 'dah-mah'. The word 'de-mooth', #1823, is translated as 'likeness' because of the following: 'de-mooth' is 'likeness' (1819) by "...being likened to; by being compared to; by resembling"; and 'de-mooth' is 'likeness' (1820) by "...being cut off; by failing; being dumb, and by having no voice". #1823 is "...to be like, or resemble." by way of having no voice of my own (dumb), or having no characteristics of my own (cut off; fail). Our LORD, Jesus, said "I only say what my Father says. I only do what my Father does." Or, in my own words, "I have no agenda of Adamic inclinations. I have only my Father's inclinations. I have no voice of Adamic inspiration. I have only the voice of my Father's inspiration".
You and I are in the 'likeness' of GOD (ELOHIM) when we are 'dumb' where our own Adamic desire and speech is concerned. I am in the 'likeness' (de-mooth) of ELOHIM when I am "...compared to; or likened to" ELOHIM by doing and saying only what ELOHIM (GOD) does and says. When I 'do' what my Father does, then I am "..being likened to and compared to" God because I "cut off" my own Adamic doings and sayings.
Strong's #1819, #1820 and #1823 are all feminine expression. To be feminine is to be submissive to that which you recognize as superior in quality and performance. In our relationship with our Father, we as soul are to be submissive to HIM as SPIRIT, for our benefit. We benefit when we submit to HOLY SPIRIT LIFE. Spirit is masculine. Soul is feminine. When we do and say only what our Father does and says then we are submitting ourselves as soul to HIM as SPIRIT. Jesus was perfectly submitted to the leading of Father. Submitting to Father was the work that HE was called to. James 2:18 tells us that faith, without accompanying works, is dead.
Now let me carefully point out that "to do" a thing is not the same as "to be" a thing. In Gen. 1:26 GOD said "Let us make man (adam) to be our 'likeness' by 'imaging' our Life." ( alan's paraphrase). But to "ape" a thing is not the same as to "image" (tselem) a thing. An ape may copy (ape) actions, but never understand or have knowledge of what, or why, it is "aping" an action. To "image" a thing, however, is to know "what and why" you "image" (tselem) a thing. A Priest of God knows what he is doing, and he knows why he is doing it. In Psalm 103:7 we read "He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel". Or in my own words, the Israelites saw what GOD was doing; Moses, however, knew why HE was doing what HE was doing. Also, in Psalm 147:19 we read that Jacob gets to hear the Word of GOD, but Israel begins to see and understand what is going on. These are teaching us levels of understanding and response ability. And with response ability comes responsibility. To "ape" an action does not necessarily bring responsibility. To "image" (tselem) an action, however, requires a higher level of understanding; it requires a level of "being".
Adam is formed "a living soul". Adam, as soul, is feminine. Adam is made in the 'likeness' (#1823, feminine noun) of GOD. Please understand that when I say 'adam', I am not making a distinction between Adam the man and Eve, the woman (womb man). When I refer to Adam I am speaking of the character of Creation known as the species called Adam; both male and female; masculine and feminine in our individual expressions. For Adam, who is created, to be like GOD, WHO is Creator, Adam must "Image" (tselem, a verb) GOD (ELOHIM) by expressing the Life, Character and Nature of GOD, Who is Spirit. The first of Adam is Soul. "And the LORD God formed man dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul". [Gen. 2:7] To become a "living soul" is to be given opportunity to express and manifest "...the only wise GOD." But to become a living soul in no way provides or indicates the presence of Spirit Life. Spirit Life is the presence and awareness of God, Who is Life Himself.
Adam, equipped and charged to "image" HIM who is LIFE, was instructed to "...fill the earth and subdue it."[Gen.1: 28] The instruction "...to fill the earth" means to grow and expand your positive presence to the extent that everything in creation comes under the influence of your "positive and Life giving presence." It has the same idea that Paul shared with us in Ephesians 5:18 where he told us to be "...not drunk with wine; ...but be filled with HIS Spirit." Adam was totally capable of influencing all of creation with the LIFE of GOD. Indeed, his very assignment was "...to tend and keep" the garden which GOD had established. Adam was to serve and maintain the garden of God. Adam had been given great responsibility. He would not have been given responsibility if he had not already been provided with ability. But Adam had not been tested and proven. GOD tests everyone whom HE appoints. The test that GOD puts us to is not for GOD to learn our weaknesses. The tests are to show us our weaknesses. Adam had to be tested. And, Adam had to fail. It was already known by FATHER that Adam, HIS son, would fail. Indeed, "...the Lamb of GOD slain from the foundation of the world". [Rev. 13:8] GOD knew that the "first Adam" would fail to accomplish what only the "Last Adam" could accomplish. For "...the last will be first, and the first will be last."[Matt. 20:16] The first Adam, which was earthy, clung to his earth expression. He failed to be elevated, in his mind, above the ways of the earth by yielding and submitting to the Spirit. The Last Adam, however, a life-giving Spirit, expressed the GOD LIFE so perfectly that HE caused all who saw HIM to either hate HIM or to love HIM, depending on the intent of their heart.
The Last Adam, Jesus of Nazareth, The Christ, perfectly imaged the Life of Father before our face. The first Adam was formed of the ground. He was an earthy expression, and instructed to partake of only Spirit Life. The Last Adam was not created. HE was "begotten" of the Word of GOD. HE is The Word in manifestation. The Last Adam is begotten of the Word-Spirit of GOD given to a virgin soul. The Last Adam is the Word made flesh. The first Adam was flesh that could partake of Spirit. The Last of Adam was born of Spirit, and became flesh. [John 1:14] The Last Adam, Jesus Christ, perfectly imaged (tselem) for us the quality of Life that the first Adam failed to image (tselem).
Only when we are Born of His Spirit can we truly image Him.
The serpent, which is the subtle and cunning alluring of carnality and self, entices us to doubt the Spirit and trust self. This is the call of death. Jesus refused that call. He was tested and tempted in every way, yet without failing. [Heb. 4:15] Jesus of Nazareth, fully man because HE was born of us, completely and legally passed every test and trial that the first Adam failed to accomplish. HE was as us because HE was of us. Here we see that our Elder Brother, on our behalf, performed for us that which we were not able to do for ourselves. HE defeated, on our behalf, the control of death to demonstrate to us that the chains of death are no longer chains. You and I, as fallen Adam, had to be shown convincingly that we are no longer bound with the limitations of carnal flesh. HE won for us. And GOD now desires for you and I, the True Body of Christed Ones, for we are born of the same Spirit that raised Him from death, to go in the Name (Nature and Character) and Power and Authority of CHRIST and be to creation the Servant Sons we were originally purposed for. For all of creation longs for and desires the manifestation of the Sons of GOD. [Rom.8: 19-22]
In all of Creation, only Adam (soul) recognizes and understands the nature and quality of GOD (ELOHIM) Life. And only Adam perceives and knows and understands the importance of the absence of ELOHIM Life in this creation. And only Adam knows and understands the implications of failing to "Image" (tselem, a verb) ELOHIM. When I fail or refuse to image (tselem, a verb) ELOHIM, then I do "image" (tselem, a verb) 'adam'. To "image" adam is to fail to "image" ELOHIM. [compare James 3:11]
Jesus said, "I only do (image) my Father's Life". [John 5:19-21]
"When you have seen me (when you see me "image" Father's Life), you have seen Father". [John 6:38; 14:7-10]
When I do "image" (tselem, a verb) ELOHIM, then you have seen ELOHIM. Please read Psalm 82 carefully. Psalm 82 is a rebuke to those who were given understanding and opportunity to be like (de-mooth, a noun #1823) ELOHIM by doing (imaging, a verb, #6754) ELOHIM, and yet refused to do so. And when you "image" Adam rather than "image" GOD (ELOHIM), then you do, as Adam, take to yourself death. Hear Proverbs 16:25; "There is a way that seems right to man, but its end is the way of death". Remember the popular song Paul Anka wrote for Frank Sinatra entitled "I Did It My Way"? Adam's way always ends in death. [Gen. 2:17] "...for in the day you eat thereof, you shall surely die". Or in my own words, "...in the day you eat thereof, you enter into a dying process that ends in death". Or as it says literally in Psalm 82:7, "...as adam (as a man) your activities produce only death, and as one, the princes do fall and produce falleness". And death, in scripture, always signifies an absence of God in our thinking, our actions and our Heart.
I suggest to you that Father has provided Adam with the "mind of Christ". [Philippians 2:5,6] And the Christ Mind comes with being Born of God's Spirit. Many believers, all over Creation, are becoming aware of a Feast Day called Tabernacles. I believe GOD, our Father, is doing this. This is, in my mind, a GOD Thing. HE is calling HIS Son(s) to a Tabernacles experience and understanding that elevates the individual believer to "...taste and see that the LORD is good." Tabernacles is not just a 'holiday' (holy day). Tabernacles is a level of understanding the presence and the purposes of GOD. Tabernacles was the third of the feast days of Israel. Tabernacles is a Third Day experience. Tabernacles is a Third Day level of God Consciousness. Tabernacles is, I believe, a step closer to understanding ourselves as "..one Spirit with GOD." Jesus prayed, in John 17, that Father would not take us out of this world, but that HE (Father) would make us one with HIM even as Jesus was one with HIM. "For to be carnally minded (which is getting your understanding from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil) is death, but to be Spiritually minded is life and peace". [Rom 8:6] "He will swallow up death forever,..." [Is. 25:8] Death is swallowed up in Life. "And this is eternal life, that they may know (verb) You, the only true GOD, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent".[John 17:3] ELOHIM, Our Father, has now equipped His Son(s) with "... the mind of CHRIST", that we may now Image (tselem, an action verb) ELOHIM. That was our original assignment. Our assignment has not changed. GOD calls you His Son. And so do I.
Shalom and Shalom! Alan
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