Created Equal?

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Are Men and Women created equal?

Both have equal worth, value and dignity as bearers of God’s image. Male and female are equally part of the creation that He called “man”

In an effort to not be offensive, some modern translations of the Bible have tried to obscure the gender imagery found in Hebrew text. They have substituted “human beings” etc for the word “man” and “them” for the word “him”. But in the Hebrew text, this verse clearly says that “man” equals “him” equals “male and female”

So why does the Bible call humankind “man”? Genesis 1:27 gives us the stunning truth that all humans bear the divine image- men and women bear it equally. It also states that God refers to us collectively with a singular male pronoun. In choosing the word “man” as the common name, God indicated that male and female would share a common condition for which he would provide a common solution.

God actually underlined the profound unity and equality that exist between us. This common name shows that women comes from man and is not independent of him. It shows that both sexes exist to tell the story of God and that this story is told together- with both male and female as parts of a unified whole

You see the story line of gender is not about male and female, its not about us at all, its about the man JESUS CHRIST! The man whose redemptive work applies to both sexes equally

The Hebrew word for man is adam, which is closely related to the word for ground, adamah. Its a generic term that refers to all human beings. After the fall, Adam becomes the proper name of the first male. And later Jesus Christ comes as the last Adam to redeem “adam” (mankind) and bring many sons and daughters of God to glory!

In God’s eye the female is as much a part and expression of “adam” as the male. This means that both can trace their beginnings to the dirt of the ground. Both bear God’s image fully and individually. It means that God values both equally! Because both are “adam” both are equally represented by the first man, Adam.

Both are fallen and in need of a savior and the good news is that both are equally represented by the second man-the last Adam-Jesus Christ! Together we make up the church, He loves, the bride, He sacrificed His life to redeem. Male and female  are connected. Together-united as a whole- they tell the story of the gospel

Although we are different, we are equally important to God’s plan.

When God named male and female “adam”He had the last Adam in mind. So when we appease the whims of man, we change “man” to something we think is more inclusive, but in doing that we diminish the true meaning of the word

If woman is not part of man, then how can she be represented by the first man, more importantly, how can she be represented by the last man, Jesus Christ.

I would love to hear your thoughts. Email me or drop your comments below!

Stephanie

 

Additional Readings:  Genesis 5:2, 1 Corinthians 5:45, 1 Corinthians 15:22

The Ultimate Plan

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Our first post took us back to the beginning, Genesis, and the fact we are created to display God’s image. God created us in His likeness, our purpose is to put God on display!

The responsibility to reflect God’s image was not just given to us. Mankind was created as male and female in relationship-to display something about the divine relationship that exists within the triune God. Our relationships were created to tell the incredible story of God.

Being created in Gods image gives us dignity, privilege and responsibility. He has crowned us with glory and honor and given us authority over the earth. Its a awesome responsibility to go about our daily life and all the while reflect the image of the Almighty. However the image of God has been marred, it is begging for redemption…transformation…recreation. You see God knew from the beginning that sin would distort and destroy the male female relationship. Amazingly he patterned the first couple’s relationship to  correspond with the amazing relationship that would one day counter all of the horrible tragic consequences of sin

Gods eternal plan comes to light in Ephesians, chapter 3 and then in chapter 5. He ties the mystery of Christ loving the church to the earthly picture of male and female sexuality and marriage. According to scripture, the relationship between a husband and wife is powerfully linked to the story of Christ and his Church Bride. God created male and female to foreshadow and testify about that amazing relationship and event.

Men were created to reflect the strength love and self sacrifice of Christ. Women were created to reflect the responsiveness, grace and beauty of the bride He redeemed! Marriage was created to reflect the covenant union of Christ and His Bride!

Your womanhood has nothing to do with you, but displaying the glory of God and His powerful redemptive plan.

Male and female relationships has little to do with us, and much to do with God! Our marriages and relationships should be truly God ordained, mirroring the union of Christ and his Bride

I asked a fellow friend and my Boaz, his interpretation on Ephesians 5:23. Here are his thoughts…

From A Mans View:

When you look at Ephesians 5:23, it states that the man is the head, however we often take that scripture out of context. Many men take advantage of that scripture and use it to run their home negatively! Some men view that as ‘I am the head of this marriage, this house, I make all the decisions, and my wife must submit to them, regardless” However, if I as the man is not following God, that is a dictatorship and I as the head would be leading us to hell! When we read on further in Ephesians, it breaks down exactly what we as men should be doing as the man and head of our home.  My job as the head includes many things. I must honor my wife, nurture my wife, love her, take care of her, pray for her, seek God to make sound decisions for her and my family. I am responsible for her! God is really the head of our marriage, and we as men need to seek God to become a representation of a Godly head of our home!

Does your marriage or relationship with your significant other reflect that great redemptive plan of Christ?

Stephanie

Additional Readings  Ephesians 5:23, 1 Corinthians 11:3, Ephesians 5:30-32

 

Sparkle City Summers…

Sparkle City Summers

map_of_spartanburg_scMy childhood summers were spent gallivanting around the small yet interesting town of Spartanburg, SC, referred to by many residents as Sparkle City.  It is a small place, yet a big town full of aspiring hopes and dreams! As a young child, I didn’t see much that sparkled there. Our most popular spot was and still is “The Beacon,” owned by the legendary Mr. John White. Hands down, the best restaurant in town! Offering a selection of chili cheeseburgers , slaw dogs and onion rings that would make your neighbors “come calling” and a host of other calorie filled, cholesterol laced cuisine.

It is here that I blossomed into a woman., Building go carts, chasing lightning bugs, fighting mosquitoes and dealing with summer crushes on the neighborhood boys. All of whom seemed to turn into Denzel Washington after just two summers!

I sat on my great grandmother’s porch and “spat” watermelon seeds, made irresistible mud pies and listened to grown folks talk. It is here I learned about my heritage, my elders, the ghosts of the family whom I never met. I found out through humorous, yet true, tales that one of my great aunts once stopped a train in Hamburg. One of my great uncles was blind in one eye, yet smart enough to calculate any amount of numbers with no calculator and I had a cousin who sang the blues on the “Chitlin Circuit!  The stories just kept coming!

I listened and laughed with intensity wondering how many family members, like myself, had no knowledge of “from whence they came.” It was around this time that God gave me the gift of writing, so I quickly put it to use, determined to leave something tangible for the younger members of the family.

Hence my first book, “Reflections of Self” came about, filled with poetry and short stories from the Tucker Purry’s family tree. After the first printing of this book, I watched in awe and satisfaction at family members and friends who laughed until “their bellies hurt” at the tales spun from front porch conversations and family reunion gatherings.

Soon after, I decided that what better to go with front porch blues and a mason jar of homemade lemonade then a piece of apple cobbler!…so my gathering of recipes begin. I must admit that many of the chefs in the family did not take kindly to me publishing their ancient secrets. However as time went on, they were grateful to have a written record they could refer to once the memories became cloudy.

“Hot Water Cornbread” is now an heirloom in my family as well as a favorite among my friends and fans. I receive emails from people who have tried the recipes thanking me for bringing a little southern comfort to their hearts and a taste of home to their belly.

Even though my days of mauling around Sparkle City are over, my writing isn’t finished. I shall forever engrave my lineage and history upon pages. Burning the midnight oil and letting the ghosts of my ancestors guide my pen. I do not ever want to forget “from whence I came,” it has made me the fabulous woman, author, and poet that I am. Now I know what sparkles from the small town of Spartanburg SC! It is the hidden gems of history, heritage and the people who still sit on their front porches drinking homemade lemonade and weaving tales about ancestors long past. The glow of love and laughter is always  present and a piece of apple cobbler is always within reach!

Hence Memorial Day arrived this weekend and Summer is officially here, my memories of summer are vivid. Heres to the golden days..

SUMMER

We count mosquito bites

Spit seeds

Play Jacks

Hide and seek behind trees

Dodge sun rays and rain showers

 Grandma’s switches

Catch fireflies and butterflies

Secret kisses

Beat dusty paths

Aunt Maggie’s rugs with brooms

Hang linen and britches

 Visit church tombs

Eat sweet molasses

Sticky preserves

Pour Mason jar lemonade

Warm ice tea

Lie under Magnolia trees

Counting clouds up above

Waiting for July 4th to bring

Family barbeques

And new summer loves

Peace, Love & Empowerment

~V~