What does Genesis 1:27 mean?
ESV: So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
NIV: So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
NASB: So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
CSB: So God created man in his own image; he created him in the image of God; he created them male and female.
NLT: So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
KJV: So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
Verse Commentary:
The blueprint for Genesis chapter 1 is God speaking His intent, then creating. In the previous verse, God decreed what should be made and why. Now in this verse, He makes the first of all human beings. The verse is written with a poetic structure of three lines. God creates man in his own image. In the image of God man is created. God creates both male and female.

One meaning of being created in the image of God is mankind's unique capacity for moral and rational awareness. God made humans to be inherently different from animals. He built into us some of His own qualities; we share with Him the experience of personality, truth, beauty, meaning, will, and reason. These attributes allow us to relate to God in ways other created beings cannot. Another meaning is that humans were meant to stand as the image of God's authority on the earth as we rule over and subdue the rest of His creation.

That we are made by God, in the image of God, is what gives all men and women deep value. That point is echoed throughout the Bible. James, for instance, points out that we ought not curse human beings because they (we) are made in God's likeness (James 3:9). Those who bear God's image should not be treated disrespectfully or discarded easily. It is not surprising, or illogical, to see that cultures which reject the idea of man's creation in the image of God are cultures which terrorize and abuse other human beings.
Verse Context:
Genesis 1:26–31 describes the origin of human beings, the most unique of all God's creations. As with other aspects of the creation account, very few details are given. The information we are given, however, is unmistakable. Man is uniquely created ''in the image'' of God, invested with authority over the earth, and commanded to reproduce. These points each establish critical aspects of the Christian worldview, and the proper attitude towards humanity. As with other portions of this chapter, debates over certain details do not override the central truth: man is the purposeful creation of the One True God, and represents something special in this universe as a result.
Chapter Summary:
Genesis 1 is nothing less than a bare-bones claim that God created the universe. Setting all of the debates on models and interpretations aside, the chapter undeniably insists on one thing: God means to be known as the Creator of all things. Written in the original Hebrew language according to a rigid, poetic structure, the chapter unfolds in a series of patterns and revelations. For those who believe these words, our response should be nothing less than to worship our Maker.
Chapter Context:
Genesis 1 is the first chapter of what came to be known as the Pentateuch: the first five books of the Bible. Likely written by Moses, Genesis 1 begins the story of God and His relationship with His people Israel. The role of God as Creator is not only important for setting up His work in later chapters, but also in His supremacy and authority for all of the other words of the Scriptures. God intends first to be known to all peoples as the Creator of all things—from sun, moon, and stars, to human life itself. And as the Creator, He is owed worship by all He has made, including and especially human beings
Book Summary:
The book of Genesis establishes fundamental truths about God. Among these are His role as the Creator, His holiness, His hatred of sin, His love for mankind, and His willingness to provide for our redemption. We learn not only where mankind has come from, but why the world is in its present form. The book also presents the establishment of Israel, God's chosen people. Many of the principles given in other parts of Scripture depend on the basic ideas presented here in the book of Genesis. Within the framework of the Bible, Genesis explains the bare-bones history of the universe leading up to the captivity of Israel in Egypt, setting the stage for the book of Exodus.
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