The Triune Creator God intends that a similar sense of fellowship, obedience, and love be the hallmarks of human relationship with Him, and that humans are united in love.
Now, to understand even more about the image of God, we will address the character of Jesus and his actions, since He is the perfect example of what human nature should have been. Again, and as presented by Erickson, we will refer part of his analysis for the purpose of this study, thus:
- Jesus had a perfect fellowship with the Father. A magnificent example of this is seen in John 17, through which it is affirmed that Jesus and the Father are one (v. 21, 22). Also, that Jesus glorifies the Father and that the Father glorifies Jesus (v. 1, 4, 5, 22, 24).
- Jesus obeyed the Father’s will perfectly. And for that matter, it is important that we quote a couple of passages, like this:
“Jesus said to them: My food is that I do the will of Him who sent me, and to finish His work.” (John 4:34)
“I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me.” (John 5:30)
“…Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away f from Me; nevertheless, not My will, but Yours, be done.” (Luke 22:42)
In these three shared passages, Jesus’ total submission to the Father is observed during his earthly life, such submission even in the Garden of Gethsemane, submission that led him in obedience to death and death on the cross.
- Jesus always displayed a strong love for human beings. Again, let’s share a couple of passages for the respective analysis:
“But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd.” (Matthew 9:36)
“Then Jesus, moved with compassion, stretched out His hand and touched him, and said to him, ´I am willing; be cleansed´.” (Mark 1:41)
“When the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said to her, ´Do not weep´. ” (Luke 7:13)
“Then Jesus said, ´Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do´.” (Luke 23:34)
We observe here Jesus’ concern for the lost sheep of Israel, his compassion and sorrow for the sick and suffering in general, as well as his patience and forgiveness for those who have failed.
The Triune Creator God intends that a similar sense of fellowship, obedience, and love be the hallmarks of human relationship with Him, and that humans are united in love. Erickson emphasizes that we are fully human only when we manifest these characteristics.
And so, we human beings who are bearers of the divine image, learn from Jesus, the image of the invisible God. The apostle Paul makes this clear in chapter 1 of his Epistle to the Colossians:
“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.” (Colossians 1:15)
And in fact, Colossians also corroborates it, in chapter 2:
“For in Him [Christ] dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.” (Colossians 2:9)
It is extraordinary to understand through Scripture (Colossians 1:15-17) the great creative power of Jesus; and at the same time, how Jesus divests himself of this great divine power and incarnates himself, so that He comes to dwell on Earth and not only that, but also humbles himself and gives his life for the sin of humanity. Jesus existed before the foundation of time. Jesus reveals God to us and teaches us human beings, bearers of God’s image, how to act as such bearers. Philippians 2, is a very good example:
“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore, God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name…” (Philippians 2:5-9)
Returning to Colossians 1:15, it is important to highlight that when speaking of Jesus as the “image of the invisible God”, in the Greek the word εἰκών [eikon] means that He is the exact projection, the photograph, the very reproduction of the invisible God. Jesus Christ himself said it in John 14:8-10, that he who has seen Him has seen the Father. Therefore, Roberto Miranda affirms that whoever has seen Jesus in his person, in his character, in his perfect power, in his glory, in his perfect Word, in his teachings he has definitely seen the Father. The essence of Jesus is the very essence of the Father.
 Millard J. Erickson, Christian Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2003), 533-534.