ON THE 7th FEBRUARY THIS YEAR, news reports on a meeting of the ‘synod’ (legislative organisation of the Church of England) were filed documenting that “the Church of England is considering whether to stop referring to God as ‘he’, after priests asked to be allowed to use gender-neutral terms instead” (The Guardian, February 7th, 2023). So the Church of England’s synod made a decision to start seriously looking into using gender-neutral words to refer to God and Jesus. In the image accompanying this article, you can see a picture of some of the folks from that synod meeting which made that decision (note well the rainbow-featured lanyards around some necks).
This is by no means a new development but has been smouldering for many decades in the mainstream denominations. For example, more than two decades ago the introduction of the new “Worship Book for the Millennium” in 1999 by the Methodist Church in the United Kingdom caused something of a storm in the religious scene and among the media. An article at the time carried the title “Methodists to Worship ‘God the Mother’” (Daily Telegraph, 18th Feb. 1999). The contentious element in that worship book was a prayer which contains a reference to God as “our Mother”. The full prayer reads as follows:
“God our Father and our Mother, we give you thanks and praise for all that you have made, for the stars in their splendour and the world in its wonder and for the glorious gift of human life. With the saints and angels in heaven, we praise your holy name.”
Although this designation of God as “Mother” is not new among liberals and some new evangelicals, this is the first time that it had actually been enshrined in the official liturgy of a mainstream denomination. Neil Dixon, the then secretary of the Methodist Faith and Order Committee, said in defence of this prayer that “it was not an attempt to change the gender of God”. At a press conference in the historic Wesley Chapel in the City of London, Mr Dixon said:
“God is not a person. God is a spirit and is neither male nor female. He is beyond gender. The fact we have used male imagery for centuries has reinforced the image of God as a man. But if all human beings are created in God’s image then feminine as well as masculine attributes must reflect God’s nature”.
Now this is a very clever but highly disingenuous argument. Although some elements of Mr Dixon’s statement about God are true, they should not be used to extrapolate a prayer to God as “Mother”. First, it is true that “God is a spirit and is neither male nor female. He is beyond gender”. But the very fact that Mr Dixon said that “He is beyond gender” highlights that although God is beyond gender, male pronouns and words are used to characterise Him for very special reasons, as I will open up further below. Second, the fact that “feminine as well as masculine attributes must reflect God’s nature” does not denote the existence of “God the Mother”. It is true that the creation of both man and woman in the image of God must manifest a complementarity which represents the being of God (Book of Genesis, chapter 1, verse 27c); but this is not at all indicative of an actual “Mother God”. In fact, the image of God in Scripture is not so much represented by gender but by the attributes of righteousness, holiness and knowledge (Letter to the Ephesians, chapter 4, verse 24; Letter to the Colossians, chapter 3, verse 10). Those aspects of the image of God were lost to humanity through the fall, but they are renewed in those who are transformed through metanoia and thus become a new creation and thereby disciples of Christ. To root the image of God in the notion of gender is a “red herring” and has only become vogue because of political correctness and in the interests of feminism and the ‘wokeness’ in gender ideology.
Second, it would seem that to address God as “Mother” is being falsely justified on the basis of certain Scriptures which attribute feminine characteristics to God. The secretary of the Methodist Faith and Order Committee is quite correct to say that God is spirit and therefore cannot possibly be either male or female. He is also correct to say that feminine imagery is used metaphorically in Scripture to describe the character of God (e.g. Isaiah, chapter 66, verse 13; Book of Psalms, 131; Gospel of Matthew, chapter 23, verse 37). But while the use of such imagery is perfectly acceptable — our great God being a nurturing God, displaying a ‘motherly’ characteristic — it is entirely specious to then make the leap into directly addressing God as Mother in prayer, which is part of an agenda to castrate God and bring the Divine Logos into the service of the feminist narrative.
It is important for us to understand exactly what is being confused here? The fact that feminine imagery is used to convey an aspect of the character of God does not give us leave to address God as if He is a female person. It is not because God happens to have ‘fatherly attributes’ that we pray to Him as “Our Father”. The reason we pray in this manner is because He IS THE Father! Let us examine this a little more closely.
Obviously we can have no truly complete conception of God, but we can certainly say that He is neither exclusively male nor exclusively female, since both men and women were originally made in His image. But it is also just as mistaken to speak of God as being androgynous or hermaphroditic — i.e., both masculine and feminine — as some evangelicals do today, in line with their Jungian analysis of human psychology. God transcends gender altogether, in spite of the fact that the Bible speaks of God with male pronouns. Why this should be I will explain below. In this light, it is completely unnecessary for women to become embroiled in tortured debate about whether or not the Bible is offensive to them because of the constant references to God as ‘Father’ and ‘He’, or because the Redeemer of the world incarnated in a male body.
However, it is worth asking why it should be that male pronouns are used to speak of God in the Bible. Surely there must be a good reason for this. The Scriptures could never refer to God as “It”, for that would remove the essentially personal nature of the Almighty. Men and women are not made in the image of an “It”! God is surely referred to as “He” because the male is the Leader and Pioneer and Author, Originator and Designer of all creation and of all genuine authority. Feminists despise that idea and give it the nickname of “patriarchy”. But what they disparagingly call “patriarchy” — the leadership and initiative of the male and the masculine — is how this created world operates. The moral degeneration of feminism and its hatred of God finds that repugnant. Feminists are so caught up in vain gender-ego and their rampant penis-envy that they cannot bear God to be characterized as male or masculine in any way. This is why the current battle is raging concerning gender-pronouns and God as mother.
Another related aspect, and an absolutely crucial one, regarding,the use of “He” or “Him” to refer to God, is put into perspective by Professor Roger Nicole when he states that God had to be represented as a male in the Bible because
“to do otherwise would have undoubtedly severely curtailed the understanding of his majesty; and the licentious developments in religions where female deities are found would manifest the appropriateness of avoiding this representation in Old Testament times”.Walter A. Elwell, Ed., Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, Baker Book House, 1985, p.1177
This is a very perceptive point and is especially relevant today because the very feminists who are pushing to have God as “Mother” are also heavily into “the Goddess” as a religious emblem of their cult. (See, for example, “Why Women Need the Goddess”, https://www.goddessariadne.org/why-women-need-the-goddess-part-1 ). See also the publicity image to the left about “Goddess workshops” for feminists, a common occurrence these days. A few decades ago, this stuff was confined to a relatively small number of whacked-out witches. But now Wicca has gone mainstream. So here you can see the real agenda behind the removal of the one true God referred to as “He”.
It is no coincidence that many of the people who are clamouring for the removal of male pronouns which refer to Deity in the Bible are those who are avidly worshipping the goddess today, or promoting the “Gaia” concept, or — at the very least — conspiring to replace male headship with a contrived “equality”. There is nothing new under the sun. God’s wisdom in representing Himself as male through His servants who penned the Bible can therefore be seen to be highly astute and entirely appropriate because “licentious developments” and the exaltation of “female deities” are as rampant in the present apostate times as they were in Old Testament times.
Furthermore, to take away the male pronouns in reference to Deity would be to do irreparable damage to the teaching of the Trinity — Father, Son and Holy Spirit — upon which a true understanding of the Godhead of Scripture depends. Above all, we speak specifically of the ‘Father’ and the ‘Son’ precisely because Jesus did so (Gospel of John, chapter 6, verse 40; chapter 10:36; chapter 14:13). Even more to the point, we can wholeheartedly pray to God as Father because Jesus did so (Gospel of John, chapter 17, verse 1). Only the most fiendishly rebellious persons would dare to set themselves against the pattern laid down by the Founder of our faith. In truth, the whole Gospel message is offensive to the entire unregenerate human race, and no mere tampering with a few pronouns will remove that offence. For the world hates Christ, and it hates those who are disciples of His (Gospel of John, chapter 15, verse 18; chapter 17, verse 14). This world which is under the power of Satan hates Christ because He “testifies that its works are evil” (Gospel of John, chapter 7, verse 7). This is what the world cannot tolerate, because it is the truth. So the world has to keep beavering away in the vain attempt to negate the power of that truth. The attempted detection of so-called ‘sexism’ in biblical literature and the parallel campaign to ‘unmale’ God is one of those vain attempts and is a superfluous activity carried out by messed-up women consumed with demonic anger and “woke” men hellbent on the attempted castration of a God who delights in His ‘fatherdom’.
It is surely something of an embarrassment that while Protestant denominations are running helter-skelter to abandon the necessary teaching of God as “Father”, one can find numerous excellent defences of this teaching even in Roman Catholic circles. A superb example of this sort of apologetics can be found at the following web address, https://www.ewtn.com/catholicism/library/does-the-bible-support-the-feminist-goddess-12316 , in an article entitled “Does the Bible Support the Feminist God/dess?”. In the past few years there has been an increasing number of Catholics who — despite their blind spots on Transubstantiation, the corruption of the Papacy and the over-exaltation of Mary — appear to be more aware of a number of the deceptions of this age than many of today’s wishy-washy Protestant evangelicals. What a judgement on the Church!
Rest assured that this is no mere side-issue. It is part of the vital ground on which the faith will be seen to stand or fall during the coming years. (I speak of appearance only). This can be witnessed in certain events which are shaping up at this point in history. Let me pose a couple of provocative questions. How would you respond if a so-called ET or alien (androgynous, of course) was to appear on earth claiming that the God whom all have been worshipping under different names for millennia is really an alien from a parallel universe? What if such a being also claimed that it was paving the way for the second coming of Christ which has been awaited by followers of Christ for 2000 years? Do you think this is far-fetched? Friends, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet! Some very flaky global events are going to take place in the coming years. Such outlandish things are by no means impossible in the light of Scripture’s teaching on the Antichrist and the “signs and pseudo-wonders which will surround this mysterious event.
The direction in which the Church of England is heading has been its inevitable direction for decades. Theological liberalism, “wokeness” and a blind eye turned towards the large number of sexual perverts in its midst all go hand in hand with the apostate castration of God the Father. Understanding the nature of God, the Manhood of Christ and the need for Divine Fatherhood (and its derivative male leadership in this world) in the face of the pagan, Christ-hating, genderbending outburst of evil currently afflicting humanity is most necessary as we come closer to the end of “this present evil age” (Letter to the Galatians, chapter 1, verse 4). Who says that the disciples of Christ have no need to get genned up on essential apologetics?
© 2023, Alan Morrison / The Diakrisis Project. All Rights Reserved. [The copyright on my works is merely to protect them from any wanton plagiarism which could result in undesirable changes (as has actually happened!). Readers are free to reproduce my work, so long as it is in the same format and with the exact same content and its origin is acknowledged]