Line upon Line: Genesis 1:26–27
October 2015

“Line upon Line: Genesis 1:26–27,” New Era, October 2015, 40

Line upon Line

Genesis 1:26–27

What does it mean to be created in God’s image?

Line upon Line

26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

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

The image of God

Thomas S. Monson

“The recognition of a power higher than oneself does not in any sense debase; rather, it exalts. If we will but realize that we have been created in the image of God, we will not find Him difficult to approach. … This knowledge, acquired through faith, will bring inner calm and profound peace.”

President Thomas S. Monson, “The Lighthouse of the Lord,” Ensign, Nov. 1990, 95–96.

Let us

This plural construction makes it sound like God is talking to someone else—because He is. Joseph Smith taught, “In the beginning, the head of the Gods called a council of the Gods; and they came together and concocted [prepared] a plan to create the world and people it” (History of the Church, 6:308). This council included the Lord Jesus Christ and others (see Moses 2:26–27; Abraham 4:26–27).

After our likeness

“God Himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens! That is the great secret. If the veil were rent today, and … if you were to see Him today, you would see Him like a man in form—like yourselves in all the person, image, and very form as a man.”

Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith (2007), 40.

“Man is the child of God, formed in the divine image and endowed with divine attributes, and even as the infant son of an earthly father and mother is capable in due time of becoming a man, so the undeveloped offspring of celestial parentage is capable, by experience through ages and aeons, of evolving into a God.”

The First Presidency, “The Origin of Man,” Improvement Era, Nov. 1909, 81; Ensign, Feb. 2002, 30.


“The earth and all things on it should be used responsibly to sustain the human family. However, all are stewards—not owners—over this earth and its bounty and will be accountable before God for what they do with His creations.”

“Environmental Stewardship and Conservation,” mormonnewsroom.org; see also Doctrine and Covenants 104:13–15.

Male and female

“All men and women are in the similitude of the universal Father and Mother and are literally the sons and daughters of Deity.”

The First Presidency, “The Origin of Man,” Improvement Era, Nov. 1909, 78; Ensign, Feb. 2002, 29.

“Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.”

“The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” Ensign, Nov. 2010, 129.