“When God created man, he made him in the likeness of God” (Genesis 5:1). When Adam sinned, he did not lose this likeness completely, but the image was completely bent. In Jesus, we not only see the image of God fully and perfectly, but through Jesus and the Spirit we are in the process of that image being restored.
We are being transformed into the image from one degree of glory to another (2 Corinthians 3:18). We are being transformed into the image of His Son (Romans 8:29). Our lowly bodies are being transformed to be like his glorious body by the power that enables Him to subject all things to Himself (Philippians 3:21). We are to continue to put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator (Colossians 3:10).
We are His creations and His new creations. The process of salvation and sanctification is a restoration project. He is recreating us to be like He first made man. This work won’t be finished on earth but it has begun here.
Christian, don’t lose heart. Though your outer man is wearing away, your inner nature is being renewed day by day (2 Corinthians 4:16). His plan will not change, His providence will not break, His purpose will not reverse, His promises will not disappoint, and His power will not let you stay the same. You are not who you were and you can expect to see more results because He is faithful.
From Genesis 5 and Hebrews 11 we know that Enoch walked in the presence of God. From Jude we know that Enoch also prophesied about the judgement of God. Jude appealed to his readers to contend for the faith against ungodly men who perverted God’s grace and denied Christ’s Lordship (verse 4). After listing some examples, Jude wrote:
It was also about these that Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of his holy ones, to execute judgment on all and to convict all the ungodly of all their deeds of ungodliness that they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things that ungodly sinners have spoken against him.” These are grumblers, malcontents, following their own sinful desires; they are loud-mouthed boasters, showing favoritism to gain advantage. (Jude 14–16)
Jude quoted an extra-biblical book called 1 Enoch (there were two). Though that book wasn’t inspired by God, this prophecy in the book was true and so included in Jude’s inspired letter. Enoch saw a day when the denied Christ would execute judgment.
Things were bad in Enoch’s day. Within a few generations from Enoch God judged the world with a flood due to the extreme perversity and immorality. But note the sins that Jude connected with the coming judgment. The ungodly in deeds of ungodliness were ungodly (that’s Jude’s repeated descriptor) in their complaining–they were grumblers, in their dissatisfaction–they were malcontents, and in their egocentricity–following their own selfish desires. They were braggarts–loud mouth boasters, and manipulators–showing favoritism to gain advantage.
All these sins describe our age and run dark with the stain of self-sufficiency, a mark of Cain’s line. They characterize the seed of the serpent, the first liar, who told man that God was keeping something good for Himself. Let us not be like those, but instead, praising the grace of God by our obedience and declaring our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ, by our gratitude.