God’s image in earthly skin. That’s what humankind is. Male and female. And the Creator said it was good. No, God doesn’t have a body. He is a Spirit, as Jesus explained to the Samaritan woman in John 4. Jesus took on a body that we could recognize so He could minister as one of us. How did God decide on the form of the human body on that long ago creation day? I’m not sure. But He was pleased with His handiwork. And then He breathed His very own breath into a motionless, play-dough man and that man became a soul, a living eternal soul. God knew the picture wouldn’t be complete without a woman, but He let Adam discover that for himself. And then finally, there was a couple, a complete representation of the nature of God. Man embodies His strength and power; woman reflects His majesty and tender love. And this is seen not only in their physical forms, but in their very natures, their souls which are heaven-breathed.
The handprint of God stamped upon the genders is the defining mark of each. It is rather an instinctual understanding. Even in primitive peoples, men are most often the hunters and warriors while women are the gatherers and nurturers. It is written somewhere in human DNA.
God defines manhood and womanhood by His image, His design for the human family. Throughout history, people have defined the genders with clothing, occupations, hobbies, and relationship roles. These are right and good if they mesh with the principles of God’s Word. But I think the culture is wobbling on the precipice. Because the present generation scoffs at traditional roles and accouterments, they look for other ways to differentiate the genders. And too often, it seems that society is defining gender through sexuality. Women today feel compelled to confirm their femininity by revealing those parts of their bodies which prove it. Men are emotionally baffled, wandering in a borderless land, unsure of what masculinity is all about. And those who find themselves unhappy with the obvious gender with which they were born are now “becoming” another gender because they feel like it better “fits” who they were meant to be (and they procure the bodily apparatus to confirm their “choice”).
I fully understand the fact that humans are prone to error and have, in the past, imposed unfortunate restrictions and burdens on one gender or the other. And, thankfully, men and women of sensibility have tried to correct those errors. Yet, not every “victory” has been a good one; the ranks of confused souls grow daily.
As women of faith, it is our calling, our delight to showcase the beautiful plan of God for womanhood. It need not be proclaimed by sensuality in dress or manner, but is most wonderfully affirmed through our daily lives which are conformed to the image of Christ and displayed in the gentle and quiet spirit (1 Peter 3:4) which God values in His daughters. And that attitude will affect every detail of our living.