He Created them Male and Female (Biblically explaining gender confusion to your teenagers)
Genesis 5:2 says that God created male and female, blessed them and called them mankind, so how did that order get so out of whack in recent days?
In today’s world, we are suddenly being faced with the issue of “transgender” identity – girls trapped in a boy’s body and vice-versa. Yet, in order to believe whether or not this is a legitimate and real issue, we must first understand the spiritual connotations to this new dilemma.
If we literally take Genesis 5:2 at face value, we understand that God created two genders which were different, anatomically, emotionally and visually. The fact that he blessed them already displays God’s lack of error, judgment or confusion. To be blessed means to have God’s stamp of well-being, legitimacy and measure of success. So if gender confusion did not emanate from God, then from where did it enter?
The answer is also found in the very beginning of time – among the first two gender species, Adam and Eve. In fact, Genesis 3 gives a full account as to where all lies and confusion emanate.
The serpent is described as being more “crafty” than any of the animals God had made. The dictionary describes the word “crafty” as skillful in underhand or evil schemes; cunning, deceitful and sly. These definitions are very much akin to lying and a total lack of honesty or being forthright.
From this, we understand a couple of important concepts. Firstly, the serpent, also known as Satan, is very adept at disguising and cloaking his message in deception, evil and dishonesty. A good, positive and blessed message does not need to be veiled in lies. It is attractive right from the start and doesn’t need to be disguised. Secondly, the fact that Satan would take such great pains to be that skillful in advancing evil shows that he is neither a friend of mankind nor one who wishes to respect the blessing given to God’s creation. From this, it can be deduced that he actually is set on destroying the blessing, deceiving all creation and humiliating it to a point of depravity – yet in a way that no one will suspect, which is why he must be crafty and sly.
Knowing all this, we can clearly see that any messages which come from the enemy, Satan, are intended to injure, wound and destroy mankind. How does he transfer these poisonous missives in order to accomplish his goal? Simple – he uses what appears to be reason and logic to question God’s intended order.
As we read Genesis 3, we see that Satan reasonably questions Eve, asking her, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” Immediately, he cleverly plants doubt and confusion into what was a clear and irrefutable command of God. As she, herself repeats the full text of God’s command, she begins to wonder if it’s really possible that eating the forbidden fruit will cause her to truly die. This is where her own sense of justice and equity begins to take over. At that point, Eve begins to spiritually extrapolate that such a good, gracious and generous God could not have possibly meant that death would result in disobeying His command.
Once she entertains that thought, convincing herself that she must’ve understood wrong, (self-rationalization) Satan empowers her thinking by assuring her that she hastily misinterpreted God’s warning. With 100% certainty, he authoritatively states, “You will not certainly die.” It is then that he very cunningly tries to “paraphrase” the “real” intent of God in making such a command. “For God knows that when you eat from it, your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
Mission accomplished. Satan has successfully sown the seed of doubt, disbelief, confusion and distrust. He has opened the door for deception to not only enter but to be fully nurtured and acted upon. It was so simple. All he had to do was have the conversation with Eve. Her willingness to respond was the entrance to the fraud.
Of course, once the act was committed and the consciousness of sin was understood, “Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked,” there had to be a level of cover up, “So they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.” Yet, the cover up is just the beginning. There must also be a justification as to why the disobedience took place and even a transference of blame. Who is blamed? Adam says, “The woman you gave me.” He isn’t just making an excuse, he’s blaming God. After all, he reasons, God was the one who made her, and so if a transgression took place, God only has to look as far as His faulty creation. The Adam continues to accept responsibility by pointing out that it was “the woman who gave him the fruit from the tree to eat.”
This is followed by the woman attempting to justify her part in this event by shaking off her share of blame and placing it onto the serpent, “The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
Satan’s plan is now complete. He sowed the doubt, he challenged God in the mind of His creation, he took on illegitimate authority, he got Adam and Eve to cooperate with deceit, he watched as sin was birthed for the first time, and then he delighted in the fact that the guilt was now being covered, justified and transferred back on to him. In short, he attempted to stick his finger in the eye of God, almost as if to say, “My way is more enticing than yours. They’ll always choose to go against you. What you have created will never be the same. I’ll see to that.”
Of course, none of this came as a surprise to God. He was not taken off guard, because God knows the weakness of humanity. In Psalm 103:14 He reminds us that “He knows our frame, that we are just dust.” Yet, together with that knowledge, He also reminds us that He has given us a choice. “This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.” Deuteronomy 30:19.
In Genesis 4, just before Cain kills Abel, God makes a case to him not to give in to his desires. “If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.”
In this passage found in Genesis 4:7, he is emphasizing two important things. He is saying that sin desires to have us. It is the enemy of our soul who is so desperate to grab hold of us and ruin our lives and our eternal destiny. However, the hope is found in God’s advice, “You must rule over it.”
Would God even utter those words if it was not possible? Would God demand that we refuse sin if it is beyond our ability and not within our power to control the urge? Would he condemn us for something that is not our free will and circumstances we are unable to change?
Many in today’s world claim that the tendency towards homosexuality or transgender preference is something with which one is born and that it’s chemical, an uncontrolled and unintended desire or a freak accident of nature. Of course, if all this is true, then there is no guilt, no blame and certainly no personal responsibility.
After all, if we are struck down with an illness such as cancer, we are not held to account by God. Disease is beyond our control, and there are no spiritual consequences. This is exactly how some would like gender confusion to be viewed – as something that “happened” to you which is beyond your control. This way, you are relieved of any consequences.
Yet God always says that sin is both a choice and one which bears serious consequences.
“Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken.” Genesis 3, 17-19
23 So the Lord God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken.
Separation from God’s plan is what ultimately took place. In fact, it was Satan’s goal to breach the relationship which God intended for mankind to have with Him. The Garden of Eden represented the best God had to offer, and a new plan had to be formulated whereby we could reconnect with God under His terms.
How does this simple and ancient story connect to today’s transgender issues which are now so prevalent in the news?
We are able to understand that there is someone, a real force, who is invested in whispering lies into our spirit in order to get us to believe that God made a mistake and that we are not responsible for that mistake. That same liar wants us to doubt God long enough to reject His plan, the way He created us and then come to the conclusion that our own plan is better, more satisfying and more true to who we really are.
Is there a choice? Yes!!! God says we MUST rule over those false desires, and that command confirms that we have the power and the ability as well as the choice.
Giving in to transgender feelings means that we have believed a lie and that we know better than God who we were born to be. It also flies in the face of God’s balance of nature, for a transgender woman cannot give birth in the way that God intended.
A transgender can never be a full and complete version of the way we were created – it only serves as a counterfeit replacement which will never be fully authentic and fully natural. In other words, there is a replacement for the real to the artificial. Give me a fragrant live rose any day over a plastic imitation with no smell and no life.
Those who make the choice to “go with what they’re feeling,” end up placing themselves under the same curse which was pronounced when Adam first chose to disobey what God commanded. Blessing escaped his life, and hardship was now what would accompany him and Eve all the days of their lives.
As bad as all this is, it’s still not enough for Satan. Although he successfully achieves his goal of degrading a person each time they believe his lies and act upon them to their detriment, he also seeks to transfer shame to society as a whole. How does he do that?
The next lie he propagates is to advance the sin act as legitimate. Society must recognize that this alternative lifestyle is valid, reasonable and acceptable. In fact, to object in any way shows a personal phobia or fear which is both undesirable and chalked up to one’s own prejudices or inability to embrace diversity.
This lie must be repeated enough times until not only is it believed and accepted, but those who refuse to fall in line are labeled and shamed as outcasts and bigots.
Satan has now created a new narrative – one which rejects judgment, personal belief in God’s word or even common sense, decency and morality. The next progression is to make a special accommodation for that sin to become an accepted lifestyle.
There are many ways that is being done. One way would be to liken the acceptance of transgenders into society by comparing them to the struggle for racial equality or women’s rights. After all, shouldn’t they also be a protected class?
And how should those protections come about? The first thing that should happen is that transgenders should be free to choose the restroom or locker room with which they most closely identify. The fact that it may cause someone in that same restroom or locker room to be forced to view body parts which are different from theirs is of no consequence.
The comfort of the transgender individual must be the prime consideration, even trumping the privacy and comfort of mainstream society which is almost 100% of the population.
To reject this accommodation is to be labeled insensitive, uncaring and unprogressive. The message being furthered is that society is changing, and we must change along with it. We have no choice. Not to do so is to show your indifference to others who are unable to change their situation. Therefore, it would be both cruel and ungodly to not make such an accommodation for these individuals.
To seal that even further, a cool, new icon has been designed to show an individual with one leg covered by a dress and one leg covered by pants, entitled, “We don’t care.” To sum it up, gender is not or should no longer be a factor to anyone.
Satan’s desire to blur the gender lines not only affects bathroom preference but it also affects gender roles, role models, matters of reproduction and much more. It is his attempt at totally distorting God’s order and God’s creation.
It starts with a whispered lie, but it ends in the destruction of a whole society through the begetting of one new lie after another in order to successfully change the natural order set up by God.
If you can understand both God’s plan and Satan’s plan, then you can also understand your choice and your destiny. It comes down to whom you believe to have the better plan for your life.
You can believe Jeremiah 29:11 which says, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
There is a future and a hope for someone who claims that he or she is a transgender. That future and hope begins with rejecting the lie whispered by the enemy of God, by believing that God did not make a mistake, by understanding that His order is best for you, and finally by ruling over the deception and lies of the enemy.
“So let God work His will in you. Yell a loud no to the devil and watch him scamper. Say a quiet yes to God, and he’ll be there in no time. Quit dabbling in sin. Purify your inner life. Quit playing the field. Get serious, really serious. Get down on your knees before the Master; it’s the only way you’ll get on your feet.” James 4:7-10 Message Bible
The writer Cookie Schwaeber-Issan is Managing Director of Makor HaTikvah Messianic Hebrew School, Jerusalem, Israel