"The Lord said, 'Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.' So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them." (Gen. 1:26,27).
We have before us a profound and awesome truth that everyone needs to understand: God created the first man and woman in His own image! Truly, man is the most important creature among all the creatures that God made. Only man was created in the image of God.
With what did God create the first human body? The Scriptures say that the Lord formed it from the dust of the ground. In the modern age in which we live, we know that the dust of the earth is composed of about twenty chemicals. Scientists tell us that all twenty of those chemical substances are found in the human body. That is why God's Prophet David wrote in the Psalms, "The Lord knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust!" (Psa. 103:14) Yes, the body is made of dust, but this does not mean that it is worthless! In the human body, there are more than seventy thousand-thousand-thousand-thousand (70 trillion) parts we call cells. And all those parts are woven together and designed to function in perfect harmony. The human body is a miracle! In our bodies, God has placed the brain, heart, lungs, stomach, liver, intestines, bones, muscles, skin, eyes, ears, nose, mouth, and many, many other amazing parts. Every part "knows" its role. Only God could have created it! That is why the prophet David also wrote, "Lord, I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well!" (Psa. 139:14).
From this Scripture we learn that when God created man, He first formed a body. Why did God make the body first? He made the body first because it would be the dwelling place into which He would place man's soul. Do you know that your body is your house; the temporary "tent" in which "the real you" (your soul) lives? That is what the Scriptures teach, saying, "The body we have on earth is like a tent." (2 Cor. 5:1) God created the human body for the soul to dwell in.
What does the Word of God mean when it says: "God created man in His own image"? God, who is a spirit, did not create the physical form of man in His own image. God created the spirit of man in His image. Spirit thus gave life to spirit.
When God created the first man, He created him:-
i ) in his image
ii) with a soul and iii) a body.
Thus man is a tri-partite being – spirit, soul
and body. It is with his spirit that a man worships, and may contact God. The
soul includes the conscious and subconscious minds, the realm of emotions and
the will. Soul gives a man
personality, self-awareness, rationality and natural feeling. The body is a complex physical creation by which a person relates to this world and to other people in the world. We now know that every person's body is in large measure a product of their DNA code which exists in every cell of the body to program its amazing development. As marvellous as the body may be, man has a non-physical aspect.
The "soul" [life] and the "spirit" are different in their reference. The "soul" is man's horizontal view of the world. The "spirit" is man's vertical view of the world, it acknowledges, seeks and has a relationship with God. It is important to understand that both refer to the immaterial part of man, but only the "spirit" refers to the man's walk with God. The "soul" refers to man's walk in the world, both material and immaterial.