Read: Genesis 2:18-25, Psalm 8.
When our teacher tells us that man was created in the image of God, he adds, “. . . that he might rightly know God his Creator, heartily love Him, and live with him in eternal happiness to glorify and praise him.”
Adam was created with a body and soul, in the image of God, in order that he might represent God in the creation God had made. He represented God by his relation to the creation, by subduing it, and by using the whole creation in the service of God. He was God’s covenant friend who brought the creation as a sacrifice of praise to his Creator. In this way, he was office bearer.
As an office bearer, Adam was prophet, priest and king. As prophet, Adam could know God and speak God’s word in the creation. When Adam named the animals, Adam was functioning as God’s prophet, knowing God’s glory through and in each animal, and giving a name to each animal, which expressed how that animal revealed God’s greatness.
Adam was also priest. As priest in God’s house, he dedicated the whole creation to God and brought it all as a sacrifice of praise and glory to God. As a king, Adam ruled over the creation in God’s name. He ruled, not as a cruel and heartless tyrant, but as a benevolent ruler who was kind and gentle to God’s world.
One can notice a certain beautiful pattern in this creation of man. Adam was created:
With a body – to be righteous in God’s image – to rule as king.
With a soul – to have the true knowledge of God – as a prophet.
With a spirit – to bear God’s image of holiness – to be priest.
What a glorious creature Adam was! How wonderful Paradise was and how man could fully enjoy God in a creation in which was no blemish, no death, no struggle for survival, no conflict, no darkness. Only pulsing life and light; only peace and happiness; only beauty and the glorious knowledge of God. Only joyful service in God’s creation.
And yet, although we are jumping ahead in our lessons, it is well to remember that God’s purpose to glorify himself was in a better way than in Paradise I. God was looking to Christ, Christ is God’s true Prophet, Priest and King – in God’s house, the new heavens and the new earth. And we are and will be prophets, priests and kings with Christ forever and ever.