Singleness and the Image of God: What Has Christ Renewed?

In contemporary evangelical circle, singleness seems to be a problem. There are many reasons behind this mindset. One major reason is the incongruity between singleness and what’s said in Genesis, namely, that God created male and female in his/their image and command them to multiply and fill the earth (Gen 1:26-28). Based on the biblical evidence, especially from the New Testament, this paper will demonstrate that with the coming of Christ and through his mission, God created a new humanity in his image and single believers perfectly fit into this new humanity created in the image of God.

The writer will first introduce some common understandings about singleness among contemporary evangelicals, focusing on explaining why there are apparent conflicts between singleness and what’s said in Genesis, especially about the image of God. Then, the main body of this paper will examine relevant ideas such as the new revelation that Jesus brought concerning singleness and marriage, the new humanity created after God’s likeness through Christ’s ministry, and the renewed understanding about God’s image in the New Testament. Finally, the writer will summarize the characteristics of this new humanity created in God’s image and point out the appropriate status and mission that single believers have in this new humanity.

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