I love to see a family resemblance. Whether it’s in my own family or someone else’s, I always smile when I catch a glimpse of a parent in their child. Sometimes it’s much more than a slight resemblance. It doesn’t matter the age, sometimes the similarity is striking. A son may be the spittin’ image of his dad. A daughter looks just like her mom. People tell me all the time, “You look just like your mom!” I consider it a compliment!
Scripture tells us that Adam had a moment like this.
When Adam was 130 years old, he became the father of a son who was just like him—in his very image. He named his son Seth. (Genesis 5:3)
I wonder who Cain and Abel resembled. Because of simple genetics, I’m sure there was a family resemblance. But Seth looked just like his dad. When I read that, I had to read it again. Because a couple of verses earlier, God reiterates this about His creation:
When God created human beings, he made them to be like himself. (Genesis 5:1)
I think it’s interesting that Scripture places these two statements side-by-side. Of course, aside from the incarnation of Jesus Christ, God does not have a human form. He is talking about His character. But God uses this analogy so that we’ll understand.
In the beginning, God created us like Himself in character.
God is everything good (Psalm 100:5; Psalm 136:1).
He is kind and tender (Psalm 36:1; Titus 3:4-6).
He is faithful (Deuteronomy 7:9; Hebrews 10:23).
And God is the definition of love (1 John 4:7-8).
But sin marred the image. Oh, how it ruined us. Outside of Christ, all of us can be (and have been!) the worst (Jeremiah 17:9). Maybe it’s only sometimes. But … We lie. We cheat. We steal. We gossip. We are short-tempered. We are jealous and rude. We are irritable. And we lose faith.
Tough words. I know. Because at times … this is me. At times … it’s all of us.
No matter how hard we try, we will never be perfect (Romans 3:10).
No matter how hard we try, we will never “look like our Daddy.”
Then why does God say this?
So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image. (2 Corinthians 3:18)
Those of us who know Christ, can see and do reflect the glory of the Lord! As the verse above says, it’s a process. We become more and more like God as He does the changing.
Yes, we do have some responsibility. Our job is to be in the Word. As we spend time there–reading, praying, contemplating, getting know more about Who God is and what He’s like, how deeply He loves us–the Holy Spirit works change in our attitudes and actions. The Word washes us clean.
Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. (Ephesians 5:25-26)
Growth and maturity take time. It’s a beautiful cycle.
God draws us to Himself with tenderness and kindness (Hosea 11:4).
As we draw near to Him, He draws even closer (James 4:8).
Our obedience is a love response to His love for us (1 John 4:19; 1 John 5:3).
The cycle repeats. We change. And guess what? Before you know it, people look at us and say, “You look just like your Daddy! You carry the family resemblance!”We bear the family resemblance as the Holy Spirit works change in our lives.
Image: Pixabay (Couleur)