Genesis

Genesis 1:26-31 Humanity And Dominion.

As indicated in the previous verses, the distinction between beast and cattle was not between carnivores and non-carnivores, for just as the herbs and fruit were given to humans to eat, even so the birds, beasts, creeping things, and cattle also (vv. 29-31). As every other work of God’s creation, humanity also had a place and purpose that they were to occupy, which included the whole earth, for this was the full extent of the dominion mandate which God has given (vv. 26-27). Furthermore this mandate is directly related to and reflective of their uniqueness as that creature who has been created in God’s image. Humanity would act as His vice regents in the whole earth, and being made in his image gives humanity everything that is needed to fulfill this dominion mandate. Our understanding of all that is meant by this image, can be seen in the mandate given. We should also note that subduing was part of this mandate, even here before the fall. Man is called to discipline creation to run in an orderly and productive course, ensuring everything serves its intended purpose.

We also find in these verses a reiteration of what we have already learned about God when He said, “Let us make man in our image. God, His Spirit, and the Word, counselled together to create man in their image. From the very beginning words of scripture, we see that God is One in essence, but three in persons, equally engaged in the work of creation, but taking on their respective roles, nevertheless they together as “us” and “our” making humanity, male and female, in their image and likeness. Furthermore, both male and female are created in His image, and in creating humanity as male and female, and commanding them to be fruitful and multiply, He established that part of that image was society, a community of persons which also is in the image and likeness of the Trinity. At the same time spouses must separate from their parents but nevertheless remain separate persons in the marriage bond. Everything God had made not only had a place and purpose, but it was all declared to be “very good” (v. 31).

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