God: The 1st Iconographer

“The Son, Jesus Christ, is the perfect image, or icon, of God the Father, like him in everything except that he is the Son and not himself the Father. And though not completely like God, the human being is created as an image, or icon, of God. After we have fallen, it is God who restores his image and repaints his likeness in us. By practicing virtues, we are also called to craft God’s likeness in ourselves. In this work of creation and restoration, God is the first iconographer, and we humans are also called to be iconographers as we work to make ourselves into likenesses of God’s virtues. The task of an iconographer painting a wood panel should be seen in this context, as a particular vocation that echoes what is universally human. Likewise, if people who look at icons see in them the presence of God or an anticipation of the kingdom to come, they are also called to discern God and his kingdom in their neighbors as they strive to welcome God within themselves.”

(Nonna Verna Harrison, God’s Many Splendored Image, pgs. 160-161)

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