Monday, March 22, 2010

Male & Female Function of God

Continuing from the last post{click here} we are discussing the male and female aspects of God. Not that God is part male and part female; God is a spirit. But God can and does function as both male and female. The male function tending to be through God the Father and Jesus His son; the female function being through the the Holy Spirit. We don't need the bible to make God neuter in order to see this. Any thought that the Bible needs to refer to God as an "it" instead of a "he" is silly and at the very least impersonal. God is a personal God and he personally functions as both male and female. I want to draw out these functions to give women especially a sense of who they are and who they can be in God.

On that same note we don't need the Bible to be neuter when referring to mankind either. The Bible is the word of God to his people, not just men and not just women. So if you come across verses that seem to be just talking to "men" don't think that you can glean from it as a woman. Same goes for the opposite. God tells us that male and female are mankind. So read His word as such.

"He created them male and female and blessed them. And when they were created, he called them Adam {mankind}." Genesis 5:2

Women were equally created in the image and likeness of God but have seemed to be but a shadow among their male counterparts through history. {We have discussed much of this in the last several posts}. So for a quick review lets look how it all started.

"Then God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness and let them have dominion"...So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them."
Genesis 1:26-27

"And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him." Genesis 2:18

So we have the Trinity creating male and female in their image and giving them both dominion. Eve is created after Adam as a "help meet". The Hebrew word for "help meet" is 'ezer which is better translated counterpart. Robert Alter notes in his commentary " 'Help' is too weak because it suggests a merely auxiliary function, whereas 'ezer elsewhere connotes active intervention on behalf of someone..." In fact this same word is used quite a few time in the book of Psalms{33:20, 70:5, 115:9, 124:8} to describe the "help" of the Lord. So with that said who comes to mind in the Trinity that is the "Helper"?

"But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me." John 15:26

Right, the Holy Spirit. The word in the Greek is parakletos which means called to one's aid, comforter or advocate. So this is sort of our starting point for the the male and female functions of God and how they apply to us as men and women. Showing that the function of a woman is no less important than the function of the Holy Spirit. Even though the old testament seems to be overrun by masculine symbolism I would like to show you that the feminine was always close at hand working as a comforter, facilitator and sustainer. The beauty is how they complement each other, just as the Trinity does and just how we should.

The old testament seems to be very male dominant and in a way it is. God the was creating a nation through father Abraham. The kings of this nation were male, the priests of this nation were male and most of the prophets of this nation were male. Reading the old testament it seems that the women sort of get lost in the mix. Also interesting to note, there is not much mention of the Holy Spirit. What we see most of was God and man both functioning as the originator or the head of what was being created; a nation, a priesthood, a Savior. But likewise the female function was that of being the facilitator. Eve's name means "mother of all living". So while God as Father functioned as originator, head and leader the feminine Holy Spirit functioned as facilitator, life-giver from the womb and nurturer. Though often times in the old testament "God three in one" functions as both.

"A father of the fatherless, a defender of widows, Is God in His holy habitation." Ps 68:5

"For whom the LORD loves He corrects, Just as a father the son in whom he delights." Prov 3:12

"Surely I have composed and quieted my soul; Like a weaned child rests against his mother, My soul is like a weaned child within me. O Israel, hope in the LORD From this time forth and forever." Ps 131:2-3

"But you shall serve the LORD your God, and He will bless your bread and your water; and I will remove sickness from your midst. There shall be no one miscarrying or barren in your land; I will fulfill the number of your days." Ex 23:25-26

One of the most awesome workings of the masculine and feminine together in the old testament in when the tabernacle was built. This was one of the few times that the Holy Spirit was poured out on both men and women as sort of a precursor to Pentecost. It is also cool to see the symbolism of what was in the tabernacle when looking at the gender of the Hebrew words. Male and female both.

"Then everyone came whose heart was stirred, and everyone whose spirit was willing, and they brought the LORD's offering for the work of the tabernacle of meeting, for all its service, and for the holy garments...All the women who were gifted artisans spun yarn with their hands, and brought what they had spun, of blue, purple, and scarlet, and fine linen. And all the women whose hearts stirred with wisdom spun yarn of goats' hair...He has filled them with skill to do all manner of work of the engraver and the designer and the tapestry maker, in blue, purple, and scarlet thread, and fine linen, and of the weaver--those who do every work and those who design artistic works." Ex 35:21,25-26,35

"And I have filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom{feminine}, in understanding{masculine}, in knowledge{masculine/feminine}, and in all manner of workmanship{feminine}..." Ex 31:3

"And the LORD went before them by day in a pillar of cloud {masculine}to lead the way, and by night in a pillar of fire {feminine} to give them light, so as to go by day and night." Ex 13:21

Isn't it cool to see it side by side like that? You can really see how the Holy Spirit was involved. The other key symbolism's of the Holy Spirit in the old testament were FIRE, WATER, & OIL. All of which are feminine nouns in the Hebrew. BLOOD on the other hand is a masculine noun. I love how the the feminine wisdom and the masculine understanding is what brings knowledge for both the man and woman. Which again shows the God as the originator but the Holy Spirit as the facilitator, God as the provider but the Holy Spirit as the sustainer. Man and God was creating a nation but woman and the Holy Spirit were birthing a nation. God and man were king of the nation but the woman and the Holy Spirit gave birth to the king, they anointed him with life, they sustained him. The wife was the one that gave counsel to her husband who was king. We see very clearly in the old testament that sometimes it was Spirit lead counsel {for example Abigail} and sometimes it wasn't{for example Jezebel}.

So women should not feel left out when reading the old testament. We can see the close relation that they had to the Holy Spirit. This this was foundational to their perception of the Spirit in Jesus in the new testament. We will discuss that next...

{sorry if this post seems a little choppy. The kids are on school holiday so I have had to write a little at a time. :D}


  1. Deutoronomy 28* and research the trans atlantic slave trade ...then read Psalms 83*
    Research the twelve tribes of Jacob(the true chosen people of YAHUWAH)

  2. The "adam" (="earthling") is male and female, that it, bisexual. When Eve is pulled out of the side of adam, then and only then, is there duality--male and female in separate skins. And, in Genesis, this explains the force of the mutual attraction: "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife."

    The English translation you use fails to show this. The translation supposes that one sex (male) was created first and then, as an afterthought, the other sex (female) was created.

    When Adam [=ADAMAH:OF THE EARTH or "earthling"] was first created, it was "in the image of God." That meant that Adam was neither male nor female. In fact, the passage quoted above from Genesis, chapter 1, which says that God created "people" was translated from the Hebrew as a plural in order to avoid using a male pronoun. The actual Hebrew word was Adam. We now think of Adam as a male name, but notice that Adam was created "male and female," not just male.


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