Summary: God's design is that man and woman have equal worth but different work.
Good morning. As you all know today is Mother’s Day. This holiday, like many of the others we celebrate, has an interesting background. Our modern celebration can trace its roots back to the efforts of a woman named Anna Jarvis who created the holiday in 1908 as a day to honor one’s mother. Woodrow Wilson made it an official United States holiday in 1914. But the holiday became so commercialized that Jarvis eventually ended up calling it a “Hallmark holiday” and opposing the holiday she helped to create.
Today, Mother’s Day remains one of the biggest sales days for flowers and greeting cards and traditionally has been the day when the most long distance phone calls were made, although I’m not totally sure that is still the case with all the other forms of communication available to us today.
It is my desire to honor all of you who fulfill the essential role of motherhood this morning, not by purchasing cards or flowers or some other physical gift, but by giving thanks to God for you and praying for you. So would all of you who are mothers please stand and allow us as a body to honor you.
As I did some planning for my sermons this year towards the end of last year, I decided that this time between Mother’s Day and Father’s Day would be an appropriate time to do some topical teaching on the family. And even up until a few weeks ago, that was still my plan. But as I have been observing what is going on in our culture regarding the family and praying about exactly what God wanted me to communicate to us as a body, I have decided to deal with a topic that I believe is foundational not only for our families, but for every single area of our lives – recovering the Biblical pattern for manhood and womanhood.
There is so much evidence all around us that our culture has completely rejected a Biblical view of manhood and womanhood. Many of the issues that are such hot buttons in our culture can be traced directly to the fact that as a culture men and women have lost sight of their God-given design.
My decision to preach on this topic was really confirmed over the last couple of weeks. Many of you are probably aware of the current controversy in the Tucson Unified School District where the school board recently adopted a policy that prohibits discrimination based on “gender identity or expression.” As a result students, even elementary aged school children may now use whatever restroom is consistent with the gender they identify with. So if a kindergarten boy decides that he identifies more with being a girl he is now free to use the girl’s bathroom. Such a practice would have been unthinkable only a few years ago.
And obviously other issues like homosexual marriage that seem to dominate the news are ultimately about how we as a culture view the roles of men and women in society.
The fact that the culture in general no longer holds to a Biblical view of manhood and womanhood is not surprising, even though it is disturbing. But what bothers me even more is that it seems that the church has also lost sight of God’s design for men and women. So for the next five weeks, I want to take some time to remind all of us of the Biblical pattern for manhood and womanhood.
Why does this matter?
This issue affects every area of our lives:
• Our view of God and our relationship with Him
Since the Bible reveals that God has created man and woman in His image, how we understand the Biblical pattern for manhood and womanhood will impact our view of who God is and influence the kind of relationship we have with Him.
• Our homes and how they operate
This is the most obvious place where having the correct ideas about manhood and womanhood is essential. How we function as husbands and wives and as fathers and mothers depends in large part on how we view to Biblical roles of men and women. And certainly the whole topic of human sexuality is impacted greatly by how we view manhood and womanhood.
• The church and how it operates
The church has certainly not been immune to the influence of radical feminism that attempts to blur the distinction between men and women in every area of life, including church leadership.
• How men and women relate to each other in the community
How men and women relate to each other in the workplace, in dating and in the other interactions they have in the community is greatly impacted by the way they view their roles in society.