The Cueva de las Manos [Cave of the hands] cave paintings from Rio Pinturas Canyon in Argentina.
 Jon Arnold Images Ltd / Alamy Stock Photo

he Image of God

Imago Dei. The “image of God.” For centuries, this profound phrase in the Bible has fascinated, inspired, and perplexed people as they have pondered what it means to think, act, live, and be human.

In the book of Genesis, God creates humans uniquely “in his own image,” making them stewards over creation. People from all walks of life have offered answers about what this tells us about ourselves, often turning to philosophy and science for insight.

Is it our ability to reason? Is it morality? Is it a relationship with God? Is it creativity? For most, then and today, there is no single answer. However, modern science has shed new light on these and other human qualities.

“When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, . . . what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him? Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.”
Psalm 8:3–5

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Imago Dei Today

The idea that human beings are created in God’s image remains a powerful force around the world today. What do scholars, scientists, theologians, and pastors think it reveals about human beings?

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This exhibition explores the Bible’s role in the historical relationship between science and religion. Many today believe that religious faith and the natural sciences are very separate subjects. Indeed, many consider the Bible to be an obstacle to scientific progress. Yet, for centuries, faith and the study of nature were very much entangled. At times, biblical beliefs helped encourage people to study the world. They even influenced the rise of science as we know it today.