I am trying to understand the doctrine of man being created in the "image of God", and I wondered if you might be able to help me?
Genesis 1 states that God created man "in the image of God", and this is usually understood to imply "moral and intellectual likeness". When people imply a visible aspect is included in this "image" (as I believe the 'Word of Faith' people do), this is usually condemned as "idolatrous" and Mormon. However, in R.A. Torrey's work, "What the Bible Teaches", the author seems to conclude that "the image of God" does indeed seem to imply "visible likeness" also. Torrey is careful to note that God is, "in essence", "invisible", but he seems to accept that God still has a peculiar "visible form", and we are created in its likeness. Perhaps I am misreading him?
It is often supposed, with good reason, that any visible appearance of God is actually Jesus Christ. But some scriptures do not seem to fit this:
Acts 7:56 "Look," he said, "I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God." (Are we to take the first part as visible, and the second part as merely a figure of speech?)
Php. 2:6 "Who, being in very form God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped (The Greek word is 'morphe' here, which implies a visible form. Does God therefore have a visible form other than Christ?)
As someone who has studied theology, and is familiar with both the Mormon and the 'Word of faith' perspective, perhaps you can shed some light on this matter, even explaining the differences, say, between the Reformed idea, Torrey's idea, the 'Word of faith' perspective, and the 'Mormon" idea, and which you believe to be correct. How much diversity of opinion is acceptable on this subject?
Your thoughts would be appreciated, if you have time.