Reference: Salīm, ʿAmr ʿAbul-Muniʿim (2006), al-Masāʾil al-ʿIlmiyyah wa al-Fatāwā al-Sharʿiyyah Fatāwā al-Shaykh al-ʿAllāmah Muḥammad Nāṣir al-Dīn al-Albānī fī al-Madīnah wa al-Imārāt, First Edition. Ṭanṭā: Dār al-Ḍiyāʾ.
Question: “Who does the pronoun in the statement of the Prophet “Indeed Allāh created Ādam in his image” refer to?
Response: This ḥadīth, according to my knowledge, does not require interpretation [taʾwīl] because Imām al-Bukhārī narrated in his Ṣaḥīḥ with a supplement that frees it from taʾwīl which is:
“Indeed Allāh created Ādam in his image, his length being sixty cubits.”
So the pronoun in the word ‘his image’ does not refer to Allāh but only to Ādam.
As for the ḥadīth mentioned in some of the books of the Sunan with the wording: “Indeed Allāh created Ādam in the image of the Most Merciful”, this ḥadīth is weak with this wording because it is from the narration of Ḥabīb b. Abī Thābit who is a mudallis [one who obscures his source] and he has narrated it muʿanʿan [not indicating direct transmission] in all of the routes we have come across and all of them revolve around him.”