Today, we get to talk about something wonderful. We get to talk about the fact that Jesus redeems all things and restores the image of God for humanity – for us, for you sister. No matter what you’re going through, this post is for you. Your image has been restored and woman of God, you have been redeemed.
This time you spend listening, or reading, is a time simply for you to reflect, to be reminded of the beauty and truth of the Gospel, the good news:
We’ve been on quite a journey understanding what it means to be women who bear God’s image, and last week our story ended discovering how that image in us was tarnished.
But we know, as women of God, the story doesn’t end in Genesis.
The story continues on today as we begin to look at the image of God which was restored through the person and work of Jesus. We’re going to discover together how Jesus is the fullness of the glory of God that humanity failed to be. Then, through being the fullness of God’s glory, seeing how Jesus restores that image of God for all time.
Glory and Honor Lost
If you’ve been following along in our image of God series, you’ll remember in week one we looked at Psalm 8:5 and discovered our significance as image bearers. This passage told us humanity was crowned with glory and honor at our making.
But, as we continued on, we found our image was eventually tarnished. Through Eve’s temptation, she forgets to look up at God – the One who gave her glory and honor – and she only saw herself.
Because Eve forgets, and gives into temptation, humanity’s honor and glory as image bearers was tarnished.
Then, Adam and Eve hide in shame. They no longer see the beauty of their ability to image God, but are consumed by the weight of their guilt. Though God calls them out from the shadows, the damage has still been done.
Our image bearing purpose to keep our gaze upward on God was broken, our ability to perfectly look outward at God’s good creation lost.
Sin has entered the world, and our capacity to fulfill our purpose is veiled by our fallen nature.
Maybe you feel this way today, sister. Maybe you feel consumed by the shame of something that’s happened to you, or the guilt of giving into temptation yet again.
Perhaps the weight of life makes you feel you can’t draw yourself out from the shadows.
Hear this now:
God’s Glory in Jesus
So our story in Genesis was left with a tarnished image, the glory and honor left in shards, and the image bearers hiding from their Creator.
Still, this is not the end.
It’s not the end of God’s story for humanity, and it’s not the end of God’s story in your life either. The story continues, even when you feel all hope is lost and your circumstances beyond repair.
Today, the story continues with the hope, the redemption, the restoration of all image bearers – including me and you sister. Today is about Jesus.
John 1:14 introduces the person of Jesus in this way, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
And there, there is that familiar language. The language of God’s glory.
We’ve heard this before, when God’s glory was reflected in humanity’s image, in your image as a woman of God.
Unveiled Glory in Jesus
Scripture tells us in Colossians 1:19, “For in him the fullness of God was pleased to dwell…”
In Jesus is the fullness of God. Think about this:
All of who God is, the breadth of God’s character, the depth of God’s works, all of it dwells in Jesus.
So when we see Jesus – we study his works, we read of his life, we discover his relationships – we see the fullness of who God is.
We see God’s glory on display – perfect, untarnished, “as of the only Son from the Father.” The fullness of God’s glory exists in Jesus.
And why does this matter?
Restored Glory through Jesus
God’s glory revealed in Jesus has amazing significance for how we see ourselves as image bearers today. We once perfectly reflected God’s image – crowned with glory and honor.
That image of God in us was not lost, but it was tarnished at the fall. And our purpose as image bearers – to look upward to God and outward at His good creation – was hindered because of the consequences of sin.
But now, we see Jesus.
Jesus fulfills humanity’s purpose. He has perfect, upward relationship with God, and perfect, outward relationship with God’s good creation.
In Jesus we see the perfect harmony of our purpose as image bearers, and the full glory of God.
In 2 Corinthians 4:4, Scripture talks of “the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.”
And so this is what Jesus’ glory means for us – it is the light of the gospel, the good news of God.
There is light because Jesus is the full glory of God while perfectly fulfilling humanity’s purpose as God’s image bearers.
Because of Jesus, there is hope.
We see our Savior, and know that when we follow him, our purpose is redeemed.
Redemption is here, and the image of God will be restored.
Do you believe that today, dear woman of God?
Do you believe that Jesus not only redeems all things, all creation, but that he specifically has redeemed you? That he is working to restore that image of God in you?
Jesus Redeems and Calls You Out
Remember back in Genesis 3, right after Eve ate of the fruit, and both her and Adam’s eyes were opened? It was a powerful moment, when Eve focused her eyes only on herself, and because of that, her eyes only saw her nakedness and shame.
Eve desired the knowledge of God, the wisdom of God, but what the first woman to bear God’s image found instead was a tarnished knowledge of herself.
It’s amazing, isn’t it? How temptation can skew the world we see, and how sin buries goodness and beauty.
When Adam and Eve experienced this, they hid. God walks in the garden of Eden to find His image bearers, calls out to them, and they reply that they are hiding because of their shame.
But here is the beauty of God’s redemptive work in history: Today, because of Jesus, we no longer have to hide in shame when God calls out to us.
You do not have to live in shame with secrets only you hold – God holds them with you, and still, calls you forward. Guilt is not a friend of yours any longer – God takes your hand, and leads you far away from that place.
Redeemed & Restored Light
It’s a beautiful moment in the story of God.
At the beginning of the story, in Genesis 1:3, God declares over the darkness of the void earth, “Let there be light,” and there was light.
Then, creation is crowned with humanity being God’s image bearers.
But as we fell into temptation, and marred our image, humanity tried to hide from God.
And through Jesus’ life, we see the perfect glory and restored image of God in humanity.
Just as God declared light to break through the darkness in the beginning of all time, now, again, God breaks through the darkness in the person and work of Jesus.
He is light, shining through.
Redeemed by Jesus
So this is where we end today, my sisters. With Jesus, pouring light into our lives. The coming of Jesus, the Son of God, down to earth, taking on human flesh and bone, means that the image of God has been restored.
We were tarnished at the fall. The image of God in humanity was veiled.
God’s glory could not fully be revealed – until Jesus.
Now, now we know the glory of God again, because it is present in the face of our loving Savior.
Hear this, woman of God:
Jesus redeems you. Jesus redeems all things. The light of the good news of Jesus living, dying, and resurrecting means that you no longer have to hide. That darkness, which has hidden your image bearing purpose away, is now pierced by the light of Christ.
You are free to look upward at God, unashamed when He calls your name. You are free to look outward at the goodness of all God’s given you, and give Him the glory.
God is calling to you sister, Jesus’ face is before you:
Will you respond to him?
Will you love him, and love others, living out your purpose as a redeemed image bearer? A redeemed woman of God?
Shame and disgrace will no longer define you, but light and truth.
Jesus has redeemed you, redeemed each one of us – all of humanity – so we can love God and love others.
And next week, we’ll look at what it means to live that truth out. But for today, I just want you to rest in it.
Take the truth of the Gospel to heart.
Meditate on the Scriptures in this week’s post.
Remind yourself that you are not hidden from God, and that darkness is not where your identity lies.
You, my sister in Christ, are a new creation.
Until next week, hold on to these words from Romans 8:28-29 – “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.”