Tzel, Tzelem, Tzela – A New Look on the Creation of Man
The Torah stresses the word tzelem (image) in its description of how man was created in “a divine image” (Bereishit 1:26-27). It also seems to connect this distinction to the fact that man was created as male and female. According to all explanations, the concept of “in the image of Hashem” relates mainly to man’s spiritual side; this is not related to man’s physical side, which is actually connected to sinning. In the second description of man’s creation (ibid. 2:7), the Torah does describe a physical creation (“earth from the ground”), into whom Hashem breathed, thereby providing him with a living spirit.