Gender roles… Are men becoming more feminine and women becoming more masculine?
The Johnny Cash hit song, “A Boy Named Sue” topped the charts in 1969 and addressed the challenges of a guy having a girl’s name. After all, in 1969 you would have to do a lot of fighting to get through life as a boy named Sue.
Today, it seems the gender lines are being blurred and neutralized. It’s not unusual for boys to be named Leslie, Robin, or Kelly; and for girls to be named Sammy, Alex, or Stevie. Fashion, food, roles, and values are becoming gender neutral. We see this presented in the media, promoted on the political stage, and transitioning to the family structure.
The new norm seems to be a genderless norm.
As a culture, are we heading in the right direction? Are we being presented with something that God cares about?
When you look through scripture you won’t find a lot of direction about fashion, food preferences, or name selection. But we do see God having an opinion about the gender roles, particularly when it comes to marriage and family.
The discussion begins with God creating men and woman.
Genesis 2:15, 18, 22 – The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. …It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him… Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.
The Genesis account highlights that God created woman to be a help or compliment to man and not the same as man. Otherwise, God could have created another man, reworked the procreation piece, and moved on from there.
Instead, God made man and woman fulfill different roles and responsibilities.
We also see this same truth presented in Ephesians 5:22-32, when God’s Word teaches that husbands and wives are to have very different distinct roles and responsibilities in marriage and as a family. I know culture will try to push back on this by saying there are no differences, but once again this was God’s design, not mine. Read it for yourself!
I can tell you that I have yet to see the benefits of neutralizing genders in culture today. It certainly hasn’t helped marriages or families. In my experience counseling couples for 15+ years, husbands and wives are increasingly in conflict over roles, responsibilities, and “sharing the load”.
Rather than embracing the beauty and God-ordained differences that should compliment, culture is putting pressure on both men and women to neutralize in the name of equality.
Unfortunately, this new norm isn’t working and the high divorce rates prove the point.
If you’re still listening, and I hope you are, let me conclude by sharing one final thought to chew on. Men need women and women need men! That’s not a bad thing, that’s a good thing! Humanity depends on it and God designed it that way! God made men and women to have different roles and responsibilities, and this is not a value discussion. Both men and women were created in the image of God and you can’t be more valuable than that! (Genesis 1:27)
I know we could go on and on about “what-ifs”, but I want to encourage you to sit with this topic before you respond. Look up the previously cited Bible passages and prayerfully ponder its truth. It can take some time to adopt God’s view when it challenges our world-view. Thanks for listening!
P.S. I do want to know what you think, so feel free to sound off!
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