When Paul declared that Jesus was "the image of the invisible God" (Col 1:15), what did he mean? Was he asserting Christ's divinity, as he alone looks exactly like God? Or was it a statement of Christ's humanity, as he alone perfectly embodies the prototype for humans made in the image of God? Or, considering the prevalence of iconography used within the Roman imperial cult to portray the deification of the emperor, was it a proclamation of Christ's lordship over all pretenders?
In THE COLOSSIAN IMAGE, Manfred P. Hedley offers a careful examination of the Epistle to the Colossians to dig deeper into Paul's understanding of "the image" and his vision for a renewed humanity that shares in Christ's image identity as it enters into death, resurrection and new life "in Christ."