Andrew Nichols has some great thoughts on this subject in a recent article published on the 9Marks website. It’s entitled “Embedded Portraits: A Theological Vision for Families 3″. I commend it to all who are young parents, like myself, and thus thinking about how to raise godly sons and daughters in ways that honor the scriptural roles for each sex, insofar as they are distinctly different at several points.
Nichols follows John Piper’s thinking on the subject and helpfully distills some of Piper’s insights on this important topic. I’ll be writing about this in days to come. I would encourage you to read the whole piece.
Nichols comes to the following conclusion: “The home is full of embedded portraits of redeemed relationships. Parent-child relationships model something of the relationship between the Father and the Son as well as our relationship with God as Father. Brother-sister relationships model our relationships with each other in the church. Children are therefore no afterthought in God’s plan, but one of his key means for preparing humans to grasp the basic truths of the gospel. Nor is gender an afterthought in God’s plan, especially as it’s expressed in families. It, too, is one of his central means for preparing us to grasp basic gospel truth—the truth of the very different roles of the co-equal persons of the Godhead.”
This is an excellent summation of what I would argue is the basic biblical approach to gender. In a world that offers a very different take on the sexes, Nichols’s article is a helpful starting point for responsible biblical thinking on a question of significant import for our families, our churches, and in some sense, the gospel itself.