I plan and am working towards being more like God in my various roles as a layman. I think it is the easiest thing in the world to do, because you have all power in heaven and earth backing you up. As I was reflecting on how to go about this, I asked myself why be like God? I am continuing to think about this but I feel the need to put forth my train of thoughts so far. They will form the basis for my actions and there is a risk that they enlighten or encourage someone.
We are phantoms, original phantoms but phantoms all the same. I know Darwin thought differently and he had every right to, just as I have a right to stand on this truth, but we are creatures, created in God’s image. An image is not the thing itself, it only looks like it – we were created in God’s likeness, so we are not God but we were made to look like God, to be the image of God, just like a mirror reflects the image of an object before it. Each of us is in a sense a mirror that is uniquely crafted. When the object is removed, there is nothing there, just a mirror, blank. When God is removed, we reflect whatever takes His place. We were not designed to exist without reflecting God – we are images, phantoms of God. That, I choose to think, is why God said to our first parents that they will die if they disobey God. If the original object is pushed away from the mirror, the mirror loses its true life. When we human beings lose that true Life, at the minimum, we think we are animals and that is not entirely wrong when the vital force is missing. At the end of the spectrum, we may think we are God, when the Life is missing, and that tends to create all forms of calamities
We are images, phantoms, but who or what we look like depends on who or what we allow onto the throne God created for Himself. The deceiver exploits this to the limit. When the original object is pushed aside, the deceiver takes over, because we must reflect something or someone. We cannot be empty We were created to reflect. Jesus Christ illustrated this when he spoke about the person from whom an evil spirit was cast out, who later became worse because the evil spirit found him empty. We cannot be empty. We either reflect God or reflect the deceiver. Obviously, the Creator took a huge risk when He created phantoms who could choose who or what to reflect. At least I think He did, because I can decide not to reflect the One I was created to reflect and that is disastrous.
Becoming more like God is not a religious matter. It is the rational, reasonable, intelligent and expected way of being for creatures created in God’s image and likeness. When you have such a desire, you are only fulfilling your maker’s expectations because that is our true reason for being and our glory. Reflecting God is my fullest potential and the good thing about the image in the mirror is that it looks exactly like the original object. It would be foolish though for the mirror to think it is the object. When you remove the original object and replace it with something else, the mirror looks different. Another way I thought about this is that when you switch off the only light source in a room, you have darkness. Darkness is not original, it is only an absence of light. When light appears, there is no darkness.
The more I reflect the Creator, through deliberate increase in the knowledge of and walking in the Truth, the more I will look like the Creator in human flesh, who is Jesus Christ. The more I move away from reflecting God and reflect the deceiver, progressively allowing myself to be deceived, the more I will look like the deceiver in human flesh, who is anti-Christ. We are phantoms who can grow to our fullest potential in either of two mutually exclusive directions. One problem which is also a good thing, is that most of us do not grow to our fullest potential on earth. It is the reason we have few outliers. Imagine if there were many more people who achieved their fullest potentials as phantoms of evil. There would be no need for hell. But also imagine if many more people were like Christ. We would almost not need heaven.
One of the books I am presently reading is Winston Churchill’sThe Gathering Storm, which in addition to showing how a man took upon himself the task of saving the world from Hitler, also gave some insight into Hitler’s mind. I have not read Hitler’s manifesto Mein Kampf but the little I read in Churchill’s account is quite telling. Hitler basically surrendered himself, it seemed, to an idea he thought was right, and he was used mightily. It is precisely what God expects us to do, although not to the deceiver. Greatness results when a human being is totally surrendered to a principle, a truth or a lie, when a human being is a real phantom, or a living sacrifice. It gives you an Adolf Hitler but also a Winston Churchill, who practically led the whole world in World War 2, away from Hitler’s designs. Being a complete phantom gives you Jesus Christ, who said, if you have seen me, you have seen the Father but it also gives and will give the world anti-Christ, who is a complete phantom of the deceiver.
We choose which direction we want to go. We must be heading in one of two directions per time. Step by step, I am heading in Jesus Christ’s direction, willing to be a living sacrifice, a complete but unique image, an original phantom of the Creator. Let’s do it.