"(An) ...observation is this: Man and woman together are the image of God. We have already made the point... that man's having been created male and female is an essential aspect of the image of God. Karl Barth, as we saw, lays great stress on this point: man's existence as male and female is not something secondary to the image, but is at the very heart of the image of God. This is so not just because of the difference in sex between man and woman - since this distinction is found also among the animals - but because of far-reaching differences in personality between the two. Man's existence as male and female means that man as a masculine being has been created for partnership with another being who is essentially like him but yet mysteriously unlike him. It means that woman is the completion of man's own humanity, and that man is wholly himself only in his relationship with woman.
This implies that man is not the image of God by himself, and that woman cannot be the image of God by herself. Man and woman can only image God through fellowship with each other - a fellowship that is an analogy of the fellowship God has within himself. The New Testament teaches that God exists as a Trinity of "Persons" - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Human fellowship, as between man and woman, reflects or images the fellowship between God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. And yet there is a difference. For persons as we know them are separate beings or entities, whereas God is three "Persons" in one Divine Being. Human fellowship, therefore, is only a partial analogy of divine fellowship - yet it is an analogy.
It is there unfortunate that the English language has no word like the German Mensch or the Dutch word mens, both of which mean "human being, whether male or female." The English word man has to serve a double purpose: it may mean either (1) "male or female human being" (the generic sense) or (2) "male human being." This double use of the word man seems to betray a typical masculine kind of arrogance, as if the male is the carrier of all that is involved in being human. But man can only be fully human in fellowship and partnership with woman; woman complements and completes man, as man complements and completes woman. When we use the word man in the generic sense, therefore... we must always keep this in mind.
The fact that man and woman together image God will still be true in the life to come. Jesus once said, "When the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven" (Mark 12:25). The similarity to angels, however, means only that there will be no marriage at that time; it does not mean that the differences between men and women will no longer exist. In the final resurrection we shall not loose our individuality; that individuality will be not only retained but enriched, and our maleness or femaleness is the essence of that individual existence.
In the life to come, therefore, not only shall we continue to image God as men and women together, but we shall then be able to do this perfectly. We do not know how such fellowship and partnership between men and women will be carried out in a situation where there will be no marriage. But we do know this: Only then shall we see what the relationship between men and women can be like in its richest, fullest, and most beautiful sense."
- Created in God's Image, by Anthony A. Hoekema
Preserve me, O God, for in You I put my trust.
O my soul, you have said to the Lord,
"You are my Lord,
My goodness is nothing apart from You."
As for the saints who are on the earth,
"They are the excellent ones, in whom is all my delight."
Their sorrows shall be multiplied who hasten after another god;
Their drink offerings of blood I will not offer,
Nor take up their names on my lips.
O Lord, You are the portion of my inheritance and my cup;
You maintain my lot.
The lines have fallen to me pleasant places;
Yes, I have a good inheritance.
I will bless the Lord who has given me counsel;
My heart also instructs me in the night seasons.
I have set the Lord always before me;
Because He is at my right hand I shall not be moved.
Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices;
My flesh also will rest in hope.
For You will not leave my soul in Sheol,
Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.
You will show me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
~ Psalm 16
In the attempt to broaden my Woody Allen repertoire, I requested Annie Hall from Netflix almost three months ago; unfortunately, it sat forgotten on a shelf until tonight when I finally decided Trey and I needed a little cultural education. We enjoyed the movie well enough, but really, apart from the typical review I could write (Woody is a sad, but brilliant man; Diane Keaton is charming and absolutely deserved her Oscar; the sexual revolution has been as full of hypocrisy as anything else; were the 70s really that drug infested?), I only have one real takeaway from the film and it has nothing to do with Annie Hall. In fact, it has to do with (500) Days of Summer, or as I will now be calling it The 2009 Movie That Completely Ripped Off One Of Woody Allen's Most Brilliant. I mean, really, the two films are almost identical! Except that one was an original idea with iconic scenes and dialogue delivered by some of Hollywood's greatest and the other was a hipster rip-off by someone who either didn't care enough about the history of film to know he was copying a classic or who did know exactly what he was doing and had the gall to recognize that the average American under 30 wouldn't. The most surprising thing is that nothing has changed in 30 years concerning our views on wisdom; the moral of both movies remains the same - romantic/sexual relationships burn us, but we need them, so let the cycle continue.