Living Light

Stirring The Deep


Why God Calls Himself a He?

Why God Calls Himself a HE?

Part I

Someone made a comment on my blog the other day asking why I refer to God as a He. It got me thinking . . .

Why do we assign God a gender when in reality He is spirit and far exceeds a limitation like gender? The issue came up because poor physical representations of a male figure – like an abusive husband or controlling father – can impede upon someone’s desire to draw near to God when we call Him our father or our husband.

God ascribes the male gender to Himself in His Word, the Bible. The question isn’t should we ascribe a gender to Him because it isn’t our decision to make because it is His as the Creator and Master Designer, but why did He ascribe a gender to Himself in His Word? This world and God’s Word are His design and it isn’t for us to change – however I believe He does want us to ask why?

So why?

God has a purpose and reason for everything. This is part of His nature that we see clearly in His Word and His creation. Therefore, what is the purpose of assigning a gender to Himself? I think the underlining purpose is to teach us about Him and our relationship to Him.

God put us in the physical flesh world for several reasons, but that is a different conversation. I want to stay focus on the fact that we are flesh and bones, and how we learn, including about God, is in accordance to the physical world.

This physical world was designed in such a way to teach us about the spiritual world. The two worlds interact and parallel each other. Because we learn best from experience, we experience truths in the flesh that point to truths in the spirit. However, even though God uses the flesh to teach us, He is still teaching us about spiritual things. Therefore if you don’t have His spirit in you, you can’t understand His instruction. 1 Corinthians 2:14

In designing the structure of this world, God created male and female; the males to represent God and Christ and the females to represent us – His people. He could have created something completely different but didn’t because this design accomplishes what He wants us to learn if we seek.

Examples of What We Learn:

For example, we learn how we are to relate to God – like we would our spouse. We are intimate, devoted, loyal, open, caring, loving, and so on. We grow in intimacy by talking one-on-one, listening, being honest and vulnerable. And when we don’t do these things we see the ramifications. When God says He is our Husband, then we understand how we are to relate to Him. When we take time to draw near, talk, open up, get to know Him, then a healthy relationship blossoms. If we don’t it doesn’t. Without this physical representation how would we know how to relate to God in this intimate way? How would we understand the consequences of not doing so?

Also with this design, we get a sense of what God feels when we turn our back on Him and don’t cultivate an intimate relationship of trust and love. When you read in the Bible in Hosea, Jeremiah, and Isaiah how God’s people have played the harlot, the imagery gives us an idea of how God feels and sees those who put their trust in something or someone other than Him. He compares Himself to a husband who has been cheated on. Something we can relate to. Now, if you have been cheated on you know now horrible that feels. Even if you haven’t you can imagine! From our flesh experience we can understand a spiritual reality. And for me it breaks my heart and makes me want to draw closer to God so I will trust Him more – because I love Him.

Why Not One Gender?

Why not just make everyone one gender? Because the two genders which are very different from each other yet share similar characteristics, teach us that we are different from God, but our differences create a perfect union – like two puzzle pieces coming together. In addition, having two separate genders teaches us we aren’t God, a lesson we all need in today’s world.

We need to remember that the physical didn’t come first then God related Himself to it. He designed it specifically to teach us certain things in this life and about Him. There are many, many lessons to be gained if we accept the fact it is His design and move on to seeking the lessons to be learned. If we do we will be greatly blessed in the truths we discover.

For Those with Negative Experiences

As for those who have had negative experiences with these physical representations, it is a huge travesty. However there is a great treasure waiting for them. What some of my friends have found, who have had these bad experiences with male figures, is that God filled the deep dark hole in their lives by being the perfect Father or Husband they never had. Yes, it was challenging because of the past, but the rewards were tremendous as they persisted. If we seek God He will fill the emptiness in our hearts and souls left by others. Our depravity is to push us into Him. We need to be open to His healing in this area. We need to realize that every need is ultimately to be filled by Him. We need to learn He is capable of fulfilling every need.

God’s design is perfect to teach us what He wants us to learn. We need to realize it is only an illustration, but He chose it for a reason. What we have done with that design is far from perfect – but there is another lesson altogether.

More next week . . .


The Father Connection

The Father Connection


From personal experience and from a multitude of conversations, I see a very strong correlation between the type of relationship we have or had with our earthly father and the type of relationship we have with God . . . initially.

Unfortunately, many of our dads have given us negative ideas of what a father is: selfish, controlling, neglectful, abusive, overbearing, pushover, passive, and tyrannical. These poor images are often obstacles to overcome when we are seeking the truth of the character of God. Our dads’ traits create a framework of what a father means to us. Initially, we place that structure onto God, good or bad.

If your dad abandoned you, you believe God will leave you, if he was difficult to please, you think God is never satisfied, if he was distant, God seems inaccessible, if he gave conditional love, God will withdraw His love, if he was judgmental, God is seen as critical, and if he rejected you, you believe God will. On the other hand, if your dad gave you security, God is secure, if he protected you, God is your shelter, if he gave unreserved love, God gives unconditionally, if he was accepting, God will receive you no matter what, and if he was involved, God is too. Our challenge is to seek who God truly is and not what our particular experience of a dad dictates.

Whether we call him dad, daddy, pop, pops, poppa, father, sir or nothing because he wasn’t there, we all have dads who made a tremendous impact on how we view God. To understand that our natural inclination is to put our dad-filter onto God is the first step in learning the truth about Him. Without this self-reflection, we walk around unknowingly believing misconceptions about God. We will relate to Him not as He is but as our filter dictates. Our beliefs are everything and therefore it is important to abide in the Word to get to know Him as He is. It is essential to our lives, because God is life, to remove our old dusty filters and replace it with the pure, true reality.

John 8:32 “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

Understanding and acknowledging the impact that our dads have on our perception of God helps us to move closer to understanding who He is and therefore gain the relationship we were meant to have with Him. His intimate presence in our lives is His desire for us and to realize that most us have misunderstood who He is as a father is a monumental step to a fulfilling that purpose.

I have an amazing father. I am very blessed because he instilled in me trust, security, mercy, and love, which made it easier for me to believe and accept these traits in my relationship with God. However, it doesn’t require a good dad to be intimate with God. I have friends whose fathers were distant and negligent and God has filled a very special void in their lives creating an incredible bond. We didn’t choose our fathers. God chose them for us regardless of how they were to draw us to Him.

Me and My Dad

Me and My Dad

The intense hunger for an idyllic dad was placed in us by God to be ultimately for Him. Therefore, we are to seek Him to fill this role because He is the only One who can. If we continue to look to our earthly dads to fulfill it or have suppressed the desire out of continued disappointment we will never find what our souls hunger for. God created us with this yearning that we might grope for Him.

Just realizing this connection doesn’t change it but it is an essential step because it puts our hearts in a seeking mode. We have to personally dive into God’s Word and learn who He is. Our heavenly Father far surpasses any concept we have a dad and He wants to reveal this side of Himself to each one of us in a personal way. As always, our part is to seek.

Take a piece of paper divide it into two columns. Write down all the characteristics of your earthly father. On the other side write down all the characteristics you currently believe about God and be honest. Don’t write what you have heard, write what you believe. How does He respond when you do something good? How does He respond when you do something bad? What does He think about you? And so on.

Then start seeking out who God truly is in the Word. Write down the verses where He is telling you who He is as your perfect eternal Father. Try not to filter but come with an open heart to know Him as He is. If we seek, we will find.