Un/Gendered God

Chris recently wrote a comment about the gender of God, in his post about his parents, which led to Jack remarking that she was going to go away and think about the gender of God. 

I’m fortunate that I had good discussions about similar as part of my baptism classes a few years back.  Since then I’ve also found myself on the periphery of various discussion on gender.  It even ties in with two unrelated strands of my job(s) this year!  

In trying to formulate my thoughts, it has been something of a challenge to think of the most appropriate ways of phrasing what I think, so I hope this makes some sort of sense.

For me the balance of gender across the Trinity is important but each element has, I believe, a predominant gender.  The Spirit is most strongly associated with feminine traits (i.e. old testament Wisdom in Proverbs and the Spirit brooding like a mother at creation).  Jesus, partly through incarnational gender, is as masculine as the Spirit feminine.  The Godhead/father, therefore, is not gendered.  This, for me, is neither a statement of too much nor not enough gender, but represents a balance whereby gender is not of key significance to the being that is God.  Lots of the biblical descriptions of God offer imagery which is prominently masculine, then on other occasions feminine.  I believe that, each part of the Trinity can transcend the human associations of gender attributed to each, and that is why, for me, the presence of this perceived balance is essential to my understanding of God.  I think this language of gender sometimes is a distraction from a God for whom gender is not essential.

4 thoughts on “Un/Gendered God

  1. Don’t remember reading either Chris or Jackies comments on this, but was The Shack mentioned as a book which challenges gender views?!

  2. Pants, it was on the “Let’s see how this goes …” blog, if that’s any help – yesterday ‘s entry I think. Nothing to do with the Shack (which I’ve not read).

  3. Sorry Pants. I should have specified more clearly which chris I meant. I know Christoph better than Chris T so it seems rather alien to call the former by his Internet name. I’m sure I’ll get used to it eventually.

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