Summary: You are the body of Christ. You are created and designed to carry out God’s plan. This is the responsibility that God has given to the church: to pray, to fast, to give, to nurture, and raise up the next generation of the body of Christ.

Christ and the Church

Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it. (Ephesians 5:25)

Genesis lays out God's blueprint. It lays out His pattern for His design of both male and female. We meditated on this topic last week. In the modern era today, society often questions: "What does it mean to be a man?" "What does it mean to be a woman?"

You may have heard of this little story. There once were three men walking down a beach that came across a lamp buried in the sand. They picked it up and began wiping it off. A genie popped out and told them, "I'll grant each of you one wish."

The first man rubbed the lamp and whispered, "I wish I were ten times smarter."

"You are now ten times smarter," announced the genie.

The second guy took the lamp and rubbed it and murmured, "I wish I were a hundred times smarter."

The third man rubbed the lamp and said, "I wish I were a thousand times smarter."

The genie pointed at him and declared, "You are now a woman."

Let's take a look at God's blueprint. In His original design, from Genesis chapter 1, we see that God created humans to be more like God than the rest of His creation, and that male and female share this status equally. They are both image-bearers. "Then God said, Let us make man in our image. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them" (v. 26-27).

Scripture says that God created sons and daughters for His glory, to display the wonder of who He is. In Romans 8:20, Paul explains that there are two very important truths about God that are displayed in creation for everyone to see. "Ever since the creation of the world, His eternal power and divine nature, invisible though they are, have been understood and seen through the things He has made, so people are without excuse" (Romans 8:20).

From the time of creation until now, gender and sex, manhood and womanhood constantly display truths about God. Our bodies tell the truth about God. Paul says that people are without excuse because God's story is displayed everywhere, and it is even displayed in gender and His creation.

Also, according to Paul, God created things the way that He did in order to teach His people. He wants us to know who God is and what God does, and He imprinted that story on us as male and female. Because the same roles given to man and woman are given to Christ and the Church.

Parallels in the Bible

Ephesians 5 connects and indicates that manhood and womanhood and marriage, all point to the story of the Bridegroom, the Son of God, who loved and gave His life to redeem His Bride, the Church.

Turn with me to Matthew 25: 1-13. We all have read and learned about this scripture portion. “At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. The wise ones, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep. “At midnight the cry rang out: ‘Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’ “Then all the virgins woke up and trimmed their lamps. 8 The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.’ ‘No,’ they replied, ‘there may not be enough for both us and you. Instead, go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.’ “But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut. “Later the others also came. ‘Lord, Lord,’ they said, ‘open the door for us!’ “But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.’ “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.

Gender exists to display the love story of the gospel, and that is why God created male and female.

God had the story of Jesus Christ, the Bridegroom, and the redemption, the Church, His Bride, in mind before He even created male and female. We are told that before the foundation of the earth, He had this plan of redemption in mind. Some may say, this was the parallel that God was thinking when He said, “Let us make man in our image” and created us male and female.

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