Male and Female He Created Them – Father’s Day-4

“God created man in His own image; in the Image of God He created him; male and female He created them” [Genesis 1:27] is a description repeated in chapter 5, verse 3.  At first glance one might ask, “So what that mankind was created as ‘male and female’ – are not all higher animals in two genders?  Why should there be such an emphasis on ‘male and female’?”  It does provoke thought as to why there should be such a repeated accent for only the human.

There is no coincidence that “the Image of God” is also spotlighted in the above statement.  It accents the mystery of Jehovah’s choice: more than just a reflection of the Lord, humans are made to be essential as He reveals Himself to the universe.  In fact, so essential that some, even crucial, things just will not happen if they are not done by human hands.  Just as when a parent refuses to do a child’s duties or chores for him – the angels will not do these things, nor will God step in to do them Himself.  Jehovah is that committed in making the male and the female true partners with himself, seeking that they be “faithful over a few things” so that He might make them “ruler over many things” [Matthew 25:21].

Then in Genesis 2, the human genders are separately created with deliberate emphasis surrounding each act of creation – more is at work here than that they are merely counterparts for procreation.  There are concepts involved for which the umbrella terms of “human” and “mankind” are just not adequate – there is something just so unique about the male and the female individually that the reader/listener is reminded about both.

“The Image of God” will haunt this whole discussion.  This responsibility is not a part-time role for us, as if it were some sort of recreational option, rather it describes our basic identity, a reason why we exist at all.  We are so designed that when all creation looks at us at any time and at any place, it should catch the picture of God.  As noted in previous posts, that “Image,” however, is carried out differently by each gender: Jehovah’s dominion is reflected through the man; His “helper/savior” or “motherhood” through the woman.

As they perform their respective service, each gender is equipped with certain traits and characteristics, which we refer to as “masculine” and “feminine.”  Just where do these traits come from in the first place?  Are they merely the product of human contrivance, or do they run deeper than that?  Are they merely options from which to pick and choose what appeals to us and to discard what gets in our way, or are there more profound meanings to them?  Are they some sort of evolutionary accretion that we should “throw off” now that we have “progressed” further?

It is hard to realize that such traits do not spring from within us – they are not “our property” –, rather each are reflections of the facets of God’s character, Who has all the traits always.  The “masculine” and “feminine” traits are not what we culturally determine is to our advantage “a la mode,” nor with what is “superior” or “inferior” to each other, but rather these are the ways by which Jehovah demonstrates Himself in us.  The traits are distributed as He wills so that together in the male and the female is the full range of His “Image” made tangible and concrete.

This combined approach gives what would otherwise be vague idealistic pronouncements an explicit real-world expression.  So, borrowing from I John 1:1-2, “God Loves you,” “God cares about you,” “God will uphold you,” “God forgives you,” and any other such statements now can be actually “heard … seen with our eyes … looked upon … handled … manifested … witnessed,” in the full scope within the balance of masculine and feminine expression.  And then a person, particularly a child, can catch a glimpse of the God Who stands behind these assertions.

Even when a parent is single, so often we hear the recommendation to have involved in the child’s life an opposite gender adult, whether a friend, grandparent, “big brother/sister” or whoever it may be, in order to provide a needed balance for a healthier concept of the human genders.  Many single parents do do a good job in their child-rearing, but there needs both “male and female” to see what Jehovah intended when He designed the human race.

Unfortunately this design has been terribly distorted by sin, a rebellion that seeks to avoid the extraordinary honor  and responsibility which Jehovah has placed upon human beings.  We act as if the masculine and feminine traits have nothing to do with revealing God’s character, but rather are merely expressions of our own selves, reflecting only our transient ideals.  They have no real significance, but are merely cultural burdens imposed by generations of misguided people or even repressed fools.  Or if the difference is within the biological, then we seek to make it technologically immaterial.

And so the concept of “unisex,” which attempts to have no gender identity at all, is toyed with, yet it is an “ideal” which constantly meets with frustration because gender is ingrained not only into our genetic make-up, but also into our spiritual as well.  Homosexual marriage, especially with its attempt to have children by adoption or artificial insemination, boils down to the attempt to dispense with the need of an opposite gender, and reflects the rebellion against Jehovah’s spiritual intent for “male and female.”

Satan’s sales line haunts us even today.  We want to “become like God” [Genesis 3:5], able to do all things, do be all things, to basically be self-sufficient and complete in and of ourselves.  We want to fiddle with ourselves, to tweak ourselves into being what is our current idea of perfection, not so unlike the Nazi attempt to breed the “super race.”  Rick Evans’ “In the Year 2525 (Exordium and Terminus)” has an echo here:

In the year 3535
Ain’t gonna need to tell the truth, tell no lie
Everything you think, do and say
Is in the pill you took today.  [, retrieved 2012-07-17]


Following which you get blasted with emails advertising all things from to hardcore porn and Russian babes. official storefront cialis 5mg We make sure that you will get a satisfaction. All these herbs are blended in right combination to make NF Cure capsules one of the best herbal pills to reverse the aging effects. Purchasing online gives you the possibility of easy procurement of medication as well as giving you better offers/discounts than your local pharmacy. The overriding theme, of a world doomed by its passive acquiescence to and overdependence on its own overdone technologies, struck a resonant chord in millions of people around the world in the late 1960s. [, retrieved 2012-07-17]

The gender traits are powerful: they determine who we see ourselves to be, what we are about, even our value and worth.  When disconnected from Jehovah, they bring confusion and struggle, hostility and envy, superiority conflict and rejection.  Only when the male and the female start from the position that each step they take, each expression of their gender, must reveal God to those around them, only then will they realize that in the power of the Holy Spirit they are prophets: they are declaring the mind, heart and will of the Creator in this world.

So the feminine traits will emphasize the nurturing of God, an environment of love, mercy and grace that is to envelope a child from infancy to adulthood.  Of course, since she is also “the mother of all living” [See previous post  The “Helper” from God – Father’s Day-3] then this extends outward toward all creation as well.

Since these traits are in the woman, does that mean that “love, mercy and grace” are not found in the man?  But they should be as well!  The difference is that the woman, who represents the “help/savior” of God, will come from a different approach than the man, who represents the dominion of God.  The same happens in regard to spirituality, morality, compassion, discipline, and everything else that involves the bringing up of a child, the running of a family, and the management of creation – in a sense they both have the same tasks, only the way that they will carry them out will be distinctively different – that is what will mark the difference between the feminine and masculine.

No, the masculine traits have nothing to do with cruelty, injustice, force and the like.  When these are expressed, they are the result of a self-centered “power trip” – a most visible demonstration of the rebellion of sin –, and most definitely these kinds of things are not found in only the men.  Instead consider the challenge that Jesus gives, “that you may be sons of your Father in heaven”:

But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.  [Matthew 5:44-45]


But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil.  Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.  [Luke 6:35-36]

Is this the way God carries out the dominion of the universe?  Really?

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. … For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.  [Romans 5:8,10]

Yes, Jehovah has control; yes, Jehovah, has discipline; yes, Jehovah has to stand forcefully against the rebellion that destroys His creation – and yet He is also a God Who will give the ultimate sacrifice of Himself for His enemies!  He will not treat rejection trivially, He will not applaud injustice, He will not blindly support the selfish whims of people – and yet look at what He will do to give them the opportunity to come to His salvation!  If the man and the woman is to give the universe a glimpse of this God, they certainly have their work cut out for them:

… as the writer Armstrong Williams remarks in the article The Definition of Father, “…every father must take the time to be a dad as well as a friend, disciplinarian, shoulder to cry on, dance partner, coach, audience, adviser, listener, and so much more.” Williams, the writer quoted above, goes on to say that he viewed his father as the driving force in his family and also someone who brought strength and compassion to his family.  [; retrieved 2012-07-18]

It is no secret, though, that even when working together, because of sin, “male and female” will fall far short of being that “Image of God” which had been the design from the beginning.  An image is reflected only insofar as the reflecting material is able, and when that material has been contaminated and twisted, not only does it lose clarity, it can also lose the subject that it is to reflect.  As mentioned in a previous post, even the “helper/savior”(woman) needs a Savior, as well as does the  man.

There is One Who is the perfect reflection, Image, of God [II Corinthians 4:4; Colossians 1:15] – in fact He actually is also Jehovah Himself come in the flesh, Jesus [John 1:1].  Although He is male, remember the emphasis from the beginning: “male and female He created them” – there is a female counterpart!  It is His Bride, the Church.  The picture of the masculine and feminine from the opening chapters of the Bible is reflected in St Paul’s Ephesians 5:21-32 comparison.

However, notice that the marriage of Jesus and His Bride is not compared to a husband and wife, but rather the other way around.  And notice that although the wife is exhorted to submit to her husband, the husband’s model goes even farther: he is to give himself up, sacrifice himself for her, which occurs in both the big and the little things.

Jesus willingly gave up His own “comfort and security” for His Bride – He gave up His position on the throne of heaven; He had no basis for conceit [Isaiah 53:2: “He had no form or comeliness that we should look at Him, and no beauty that we should desire Him“]; He washed feet; He suffering unjustly, He experienced total loneliness, He was forsaken even by God, He was “despised and rejected … One from Whom people hid their faces” [Isaiah 53:3]; He was misunderstood; He was betrayed – and the list is much longer.  This also is the definition of masculine, at least in God’s expression of it; it is not merely just the authority and control that the human concept of dominion suggests.

But Jesus did not do this in order to be a model for what is masculine.  He did this in order to save men, and in order to save women.  It was not for the sake of a show, it was not for the sake of an object lesson, He genuinely sacrificed Himself so that we, His Bride, might live.  It is by observing the actual expression of God’s masculinity that

we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being changed into His likeness from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord Who is the Spirit.  [II Corinthians 3:18]


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