Man the Image and Glory of God
1 Corinthians 11:7
For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, for as much as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man.

The Bible is the book of paradoxes; and, if it were not, it would not correspond with the facts of human nature and history. Nowhere do we find such an exposure of human sin and such denunciations of human guilt as in the Scriptures. And, on the other hand, nowhere do we meet with such majestic representations of man's grandeur and dignity. There is a depth in this simple but inspiring language which we cannot fathom; but we may remark some particulars in which it is verified by facts.

I. MAN IS GOD'S IMAGE AND GLORY IN HIS FORM AND FEATURES. This seems to be asserted in this passage. Why must not man's head be veiled when in the sacred assembly he draws near to the Father of spirits, the Lord of the universe? Because "he is the image and glory of God." This does not imply that the Divine Being possesses a body as man does. No such anthropomorphism is suggested in the text. But so far as matter can be moulded into a form which shadows forth the Divine majesty, it has been so fashioned in the construction of the human frame and features. High thoughts, noble impulses, pure desires, tender sympathy, these - the glory of humanity - are written upon the countenance of man.

II. IN HIS INTELLECTUAL AND MORAL ENDOWMENTS. This is probably what is meant by the declaration in Genesis that God made man in his own image. In his capacity to apprehend truth, in his recognition of moral excellence, in his power of will, man resembles his Maker. And there is no way by which we can arrive at a knowledge of God in his higher attributes other than by the aid of the nature with which he has endowed us, and which he has declared to be akin to his own.

III. IN HIS POSITION OF SUBORDINATE RULE OVER THE CREATION. The psalmist asserts that God crowned man with glory and honour, and set him over the works of his hands, putting all things under his control. Thus did the Lord of all delegate to his vicegerent an authority resembling his own.

IV. IN THE BROTHERHOOD OF JESUS CHRIST. The assumption of human nature by the eternal Word was only possible because man was originally made in the Divine image. It is wonderful to find language so similar used concerning man and concerning the Son of God, who is described as "the emanation from the Father's glory, and the very image of his substance." The Incarnation seems a necessity even to explain the nature of man; it casts a halo of glory and radiance around the human form, the human destiny. For the Incarnation was the condition, not only of a Divine manifestation, but of the redemption of humanity; and Christ's purpose was to bring many sons unto glory.

V. IN HIS FUTURE OF STERNAL BLESSEDNESS. All things which show forth God's glory are passing and perishing. Man alone of all that is earthly is appointed for immortality. The mirror that reflects so bright a light shall never be broken; the glory which man receives from heaven and returns to heaven shall never fade. - T.

Parallel Verses
KJV: For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man.

WEB: For a man indeed ought not to have his head covered, because he is the image and glory of God, but the woman is the glory of the man.

The Proprieties of Public Worship
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