Continuing with the exploration and reflection through a series of articles written in a conversational language about Catholicism, about God, about Jesus, about the Church and many other faith related topics. Here we present:
Question 10 – Is God a man or a woman?
No, God* is not a man. He is not a woman either. Being a man or a woman is about sexuality and procreation. God transcends the distinction between man and woman. Thus there is no point talking about the gender of God.
Yet Jesus* speaks of his Father*. He invites his disciples – and thus also Christians – to pray to God* as ‘our Father’. Even before Jesus, the Bible* called God ‘Father’. It is an expression of God’s tender love, but in the Bible, God is also compared to a mother who loves her infant. Jesus also compares the care and love of God in different places with that of a woman. A lot of people are happy with that, because for some people it is difficult to use the word ‘father’ when they talk about God.
It is normal to describe God and his attitude towards people with human images about love, giving life, being faithful, protecting. These human images have the advantage that they are appealing and familiar. At the same time they are limited and imperfect. Fortunately God is more than these images.
– What words, images or gestures do you use when you speak to God?
– Do you find the word ‘Father’ meaningful to express the relationship with God?
Feel free to leave your thoughts, reflections or comments below.
Watch this space! Coming up: Question 11 – Can you be a Christian without believing in Jesus?
Follow these links to go back to Question 1 – Is believing exceptional? , Question 2 – Is Faith for simple souls? , Question 3 – Can you be a Christian and yet doubt your faith? , Question 4 – Can a believer be critical? , Question 5 – Can faith and science get along? , Question 6 – Are you born a Christian?, Question 7 – Can a human being meet God?, Question 8 – Did God create the world in seven days? , and Question 9 – What did God do before he created the world?
If you wish to learn more about this resource follow this link “52 Questions and Answers about faith”
About the author:
Nikolaas Sintobin, SJ, joined the Society of Jesus in 1989, following a short career as a lawyer. He was trained as a Jesuit in Brussels, Paris, and Santiago de Chile. Today he is a spiritual director who is keenly interested in online ministry and discovering new ways to help people find God.
This text is republished with the permission of Messenger Publications, Ireland. To buy a hard copy of the book click here.