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Has Woman Been Canceled?

Could it be that being a genuine woman is the biggest scandal of our day? Who in our cancel culture dares to define woman for fear of public shaming? Last year a U.S. Supreme Court justice was asked at her confirmation hearing, “Can you provide a definition of the word woman?” Her reply? “No, I can’t.” A recent documentary titled, “What Is a Woman?” interviewed numerous educated experts who refused to answer that question as well.1 Truly, we are living in the last days. Gender confusion is rampant as the devil wields his influence to yield the word woman meaningless. “Adult, human female” is no longer an acceptable definition among many.  

Yet, being a woman is so much more than being a female. As Christians we must seize this moment to answer the question meaningfully, not only for our own edification, but as a witness to those around us. In this issue of Beacon Lights we will endeavor to share with our readers the subject of biblical womanhood. Biblical, because we believe the Scriptures are God’s word, infallible, inerrant, true, and trustworthy, revealing his perfect will for us. The word of God never changes even though the world is constantly changing.  

Perhaps you are a young girl or a teen on the verge of womanhood. Do you pray to grow in your relationship with Jesus Christ? Do you desire to live for him? If the Holy Spirit is in your heart, then you will have this desire—a thankful, hope-filled, joyful desire. As a daughter of the King you are truly beautiful, like a polished gem shining brightly against a dark background. That carries with it a lot of responsibility to be a witness in this hopeless world. Do not hide your light under a bushel (Matt. 5:15). Let it shine by what you say and how you live. 

God created you with a noble purpose, distinct from boys and men. If you are like most Christian girls, you dream of marrying a godly man someday. That is a God-glorifying desire. It is important to remember that your desire is rooted in how God designed you. In fact, the Genesis creation story explains the who, what, where, why, when, and how of women. 

Marriage was instituted then too (Gen. 2:18–25). It was created for one man with one woman, never two men or two women. When God made man, he saw that it was not good for man to be alone. So God formed woman from man’s rib to be his helpmeet and friend. They were fitted for one another perfectly! She became the feminine complement to his masculinity. Her gifts complimented his gifts such that male and female were truly a blessing to one another. She was given the privilege of being a loving wife and mother, submitting to her husband as unto the Lord. He was given the privilege of being a loving husband, father, and humble leader, submitting to the Lord. “And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good” (1:31). 

Eve did not question her identity, gender, role, or unique function—neither did Adam question his. They knew, as each male and female should know today, that they were designed by the God who never makes mistakes. The question that should be asked is not, “Who am I?” For the answer is clear when one is born.2 Rather, the soul-searching question that must be asked is, “Whose am I?” The answer is in our Heidelberg Catechism: “That I with body and soul, both in life and death, am not my own, but belong unto my faithful Savior Jesus Christ.”3 

Satan does not want you to know what a woman truly is. He attempts to blur God’s wise design and purpose through various means such as social media influencers, gender-confused activists, or even misled friends who share their errant views with you. Further, many nominal Christian churches reject the creation story and the clear teaching of Genesis 1–2. By rejecting a literal, six-day creation and a literal Adam and Eve, the devil hides the reason, purpose, and function for man and woman that our Creator intended. When a church tolerates the teaching that the six days of creation can be understood as millions of years and that man evolved from a single-cell organism, they are going down the road to canceling out God’s purpose and distinction between the sexes.  

It is not a large leap of unbelief to go from the deception of evolution to questioning one’s purpose and gender. Add to that the negative influences of social media, and it is not any wonder why teen depression, anxiety, and self-harm has skyrocketed in America, Britain, and Canada, especially among girls. What is life without living according to the will of God? Tragically, changing one’s gender or sexual orientation is becoming more acceptable in confessing Christian churches. The Bible has something to say about this pride against our awesome Creator: “Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?” (Rom. 9:20). 

But what about Bible-believing churches that hold to the creation story and the authority of Scripture? Satan does not leave us alone, either. He tempts us through our moments of weakness, making use of our sinful nature. Are you lonely? He may tempt you to make the wrong kind of friends—people who do not care about God and his word. These so-called “friends” can lead you astray. Are you curious to watch things on the internet that are very sinful, even pornographic? The devil knows how easy it is to capture your mind and to ensnare you so that you become a slave to it.  

Do not forget you are a daughter of the King! That means you are to live unto him in holiness. If your parents limit your internet use by having you leave your phone and devices with them at night, or use content filters, or have you sit in a public area of the house when you are on the internet, then be thankful. If you do not have limitations, then limit yourself. You will have to do this when you are on your own anyhow, so start now. Do not forget that when we pray the Lord’s prayer, “Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil,” and yet walk into temptation, then our prayer is hypocritical. Our sovereign God sees everything. We must genuinely repent, for our Lord forgives abundantly. 

If you are like most girls, then friends are very important to you. Be the sister in Christ who encourages spiritual growth and accountability with these friends. Include those who may be feeling left out. If you see negative social media posts commenting on a photo of another girl, make it a point to humbly confront the inappropriate things that are being said (“There’s my wifey!” or, “Thank you for blessing my eyes.”) If your friend decides her preferred pronouns are “they/them” instead of “she/her,” or perhaps lists all four pronouns to show how “gender fluid” she is, then you need to have a talk. Talk with her about it from Scripture, reminding her of why our precious Savior shed his blood—that we may live holy lives serving him. Playing with sin is not a small matter! Pray with her. Your humble care and concern will not be forgotten. 

A Christian girl or woman who is thoughtful and gracious is one who has valuable input. It is good to encourage one another to talk about the things we are learning in the sermons we hear and Bible passages we study. The Bereans “received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11). Surely, some of those Bereans were women too. Or think of Priscilla who, along with her husband Aquila, eagerly witnessed about her faith. Together they explained “the way of God more perfectly” to others whom they met (18:26).  

Perhaps you are called to remain single. Remaining single as you serve the Lord is a great blessing too. The apostle Paul was single and said, “I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, It is good for them if they abide even as I” (1 Cor. 7:8). If you believe you have the gift of singleness, then thank the Lord for that and serve him with that gift. 

The father of lies wields his influence to make the word woman meaningless. How scandalous to dare define it. You know why, do you not? The devil hates God and the church. He hates a godly woman, too, because the Lord uses her as a means to build his beloved church. In the book of Ruth, when Boaz and Ruth wed, God’s people shouted a joyous message regarding Ruth. They said, “The Lord make the woman that is come into thine house like Rachel and like Leah, which two did build the house of Israel” (Ruth 4:11, emphasis added). What an honor! The Lord will continue to build his church until he returns, using faithful women as means to accomplish his will. 

Though the world mocks biblical womanhood, the destroyer will not succeed in his evil plans. Whether single or married, your purpose in life is to be the woman God created you to be. May you use your feminine gifts to serve others in service to the Lord. You are blessed, are a blessing to others, and your “price is far above rubies” (Prov. 31:10).  

   

Margaret is a wife and mother of eight grown children. She is a member of Zion Protestant Reformed Church and serves with her husband, Rev. James Laning, who is home missionary for the PRCA.