Genesis 1:27

Genesis 1:27

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1:27

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So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.

Here both men and women are depicted as being created in the image of God. There’s a lot of discussion over what, exactly, is meant by “the image of God”. Most agree that it is not meaning a physical image. If both men and women were fashioned after God’s physical body it raises some strange questions regarding what, exactly, God could look like. Most instead favor the idea that men and women were made in the spiritual image of God.

Targum Onkelos: And the Lord created the Adam* in His image, in the image of the Lord** He created him; male and female He created them.

*Sam. Vers. “fashioned.”

**Some copies, “in the image of Elohim.”

Rashi: And God created man in His image: In the form that was made for him, for everything [else] was created with a command, whereas he [man] was created with the hands (of God), as it is written (Ps. 139:5): “and You placed Your hand upon me.” Man was made with a die, like a coin, which is made by means of a die, which is called coin in Old French. And so Scripture states (Job 38:14): “The die changes like clay.” – [from Letters of Rabbi Akiva , second version; Mid. Ps. 139:5; Sanh. 38a]

in the image of God He created him: It explains to you that the image that was prepared for him was the image of the likeness of his Creator. — [from B.B. 58a]

male and female He created them: Yet further (2:21) Scripture states: “And He took one of his ribs, etc.” The Midrash Aggadah (Gen. Rabbah 8:1, Ber. 61a, Eruvin 18a) explains that He originally created him with two faces, and afterwards, He divided him. The simple meaning of the verse is that here Scripture informs you that they were both created on the sixth [day], but it does not explain to you how they were created, and it explains [that] to you elsewhere. — [from Baraitha of the Thirty Two Methods , Method 13]

Rambam: On the first day, God created humanity from nothingness like God, that is, God created the upper soul of humanity from nothingness — like God, God created the upper soul of humanity from nothingness; male and female God created them from nothingness — and on the sixth day, God set the upper soul into its proper place in creation.

Ibn Ezra: God created humanity in God’s image. In the image of the angels — with an eternal, incorporeal soul that fills the body — God created the human being. With a male and a female aspect, God created them.

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