The Gender of God

I woke up this morning with thoughts about God’s gender filling my head.

Many of the established and old religions, such as Judaism and Islam, portray God — or the Chief God, in the Roman, Greek and Norse pantheons — as a remote father-figure, ready to deal out judgement and punishment to those who offend him. These characters are almost impossible to please.

Many of the new-age-goddess type religions tend to the other extreme; a god — or goddess — who is a force of love, forgiveness and fluffy pink bunnies. This theology calls to mind visions of raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, but I digress. This God is easy to please — too easy, in my opinion — and he sounds, well… weak.

I find the truth, as is so often the case, lies somewhere in between. The God I claim to worship is a heavenly father who desires that I serve him, but will not force me. He does not need me, my worship, my service or my allegiance, but they please him. Yes, there is punishment — he allows me to be disciplined to break the rebelliousness of spirit with which my species has been plagued since the days of Adam — but only because he does not want me to have to face his ultimate judgement.

And so I follow in the footsteps of a man who claimed to be God in a day where such a claim was a capital crime unless you could back it up. A man who referred to the almighty, vengeful God of judgment as “Daddy” — a term of endearment that must have scandalized the religious folks of the day. A man who gave up his life so that I can do the same.

Amen.

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