Man has a body formed from the dust of the earth. And life came in that body from God breathing the breath of life into his nostrils. “…the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul” (Genesis 2:7). The Lord then endowed man with a nature capable of knowing, loving, and serving Him.
The high point for any creatures of the physical earth’s relationship to God consists in blindly obeying instincts implanted in them by their Creator. But, even though man was created from the earth like the animals were, he also has a unique kinship with God, who is a Spirit. Man is therefore not inspired by instinct, He is inspired by his kinship to God. Since man was created on behalf of his Creator, he therefore has kinship with Him through the natural likeness of God in his own image. “…in the image of God created He him…” (Genesis 1:27).
The human body was originally intended to reflect the glory of God. And ever since man was created in the Garden of Eden, he has been the result that came from the personality of God. Therefore, the image of the divine Creator is stamped on all humanity within the realm of His creation.
We are surrounded by God throughout our existence and we also depend upon God for our very existence. “…in Him we live…” because God is the One Who sustains our life. We are therefore dependent on Him. “…and move…” Wherever we move, He is there. We exist in Him, and by Him since “… we are also His offspring” (Acts 17:28). This means that we share the same likeness in this relationship we have with the Godhead. We were formed as a triune creation: body, soul, and spirit, and God is also a Triune Being, composed of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit (the Godhead). And, since all humanity was formed by the Creator-God as a distinctive, earthly, mirror image of Him in the sense of creation, the man who has been born again can also be called “God’s offspring.”
But we need to understand that this unique relationship man has with God does not guarantee that he will be saved from sin. The only ones who are God’s true children are those who have determined that they want to be quickened into a new life by the Spirit of God. And as many as have received Him as their Savior, who spiritually really believe in who God is, have been “born again,” because they have accepted Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, as the Savior of their lives, through a new birth that is spiritual.
In our first birth, we were born corrupt, molded in sin. Therefore, we must be made new creatures. It is essential to have new principles and a new nature, along with new feelings and goals. We must be entirely different from what we used to be. When the same Lord who brings the body to life brings our soul to life, we wake up to the spiritual world and then begin living the spiritual life. This is called the new birth, God’s new creation, the new man. This new birth comes from heaven, and points toward heaven. When we are born again, a great change is made in our heart by the power of the Holy Spirit of God. He does something in us and for us which we cannot do for ourselves. And this is not done according to any wisdom or power of our own, but only by the power of God.
It is, therefore, this heavenly element in man that makes it possible to have eternal life in kinship with God—if we want to and if we are willing to become a new creation by becoming one with God’s heavenly Son. This is the primary reason why the Lord did not create man like the animals, but in His own image instead. Therefore, if we will believe in Jesus Christ as our Savior, we can become a new creation in Him. Then we will continually become conformed spiritually to God’s likeness, and will thereby continually become a new creation in Him!