“….for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things….It is not everyone, however, who has this knowledge” (1 Cor 8:6-7 NRSV).

So-called “Progressives” and liberals often talk of God giving us birth and thus having motherly characteristics; and therefore we should think of God as both Father and Mother.  Some have even gone to the extent of identifying God as “she” without any warrant or justification.  While it is true that God describes Himself as having such female characteristics, in the bible God always identifies Himself in masculine terminology.

God reveals Himself as “The Father”, not “The Mother”; Jesus is the Son, not the Daughter; Jesus calls God his Father, the Father calls Jesus his Son.  God always speaks of Himself as masculine even though He is a spirit.  He likens himself to a husband whose wife, Israel, is an adulteress.  Jesus calls Himself the Groom, and the Church is His bride.  The imagery is very strongly masculine.  When God talks about the womb or giving birth He’s not revealing Himself as a female/male deity; He uses female imagery to illustrate His compassion, love, and creative power.  This female imagery shows the tenderness and strength of love that a mother has for her child, without saying that God is a mother.  But the revelation of God is strictly in male terms.  So there is no biblical reason to speak of God as both Father and Mother, or simply as Mother, or as “she”.

They also urge us to present God in His female imagery when we minister to people with a bad father image but who have a better mother image.  Yes, we do need to be sensitive when presenting the gospel or attempting to bring Scripture to bear when counselling such people; but this must not be at the expense of Truth; we cannot present a false god with a predominately or totally female aspect to them just because they have difficulty in relating to a male.  The answer for such people is to present God as He is, as the Father; He has nothing to be ashamed of.  How can such people ever have a right understanding of what true maleness, true masculinity, true fatherhood is, if they’re not shown it?  How can men ever learn to be men if they have no picture of what a man is?  How can they ever relate as a man to a woman?  How can women ever relate to men if they don’t know the true differences between the sexes, and what to look for in a man?  What model can they use?  How can they ever overcome the effects of abuse by men if they can’t see how wrong the perpetrator of that abuse was?  To present to such needy people a female oriented god is confusion, and it could only exacerbate and perpetuate their problems.  We present the revelation of God to people, whatever their backgrounds, as He has revealed Himself in the Scriptures.  Only then can we expect God to bless it.

“For a child has been born to us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isa 9:6).