Don't worry, this isn't another claim that God is really some hermaphroditic super-being that smiles with delight whenever an oldies station dusts off the Helen Reddy and plays I Am Woman...." However, my premise is, God the Father has nothing to do with maleness, at least not in the way you're thinking. But, before you condemn me to Joan of Arc parish, take a quick read below.
Also, please note that my posting has streamed from my inferior brain without scholarly study on the topic; no doubt there are more learned contributors who will correct me and put me in the right. I welcome the feedback. It's what the blog is for.
What am I talking about? Simply this: God was a "father" long before there was a human man (or woman)-- before there was gender. Then He created a human man and gave him the nature of "father.” You see, it didn't happen the other way around. This is the key. He didn’t invent man and woman, wait for them to figure out their respective gender roles and then adopt humanity’s concept of “father” by copying what had developed as human maleness. Rather, His “fatherhood” nature was imprinted, intentionally so, on human males from the beginning.
God had been the Father for all time, and with the entire nature that we know to be characteristic of “fatherhood:” creator, provider, protector, compassionate forgiver. This is His fatherly role toward humanity. It is the role He designated for human males as well, and thus in His wisdom gave males the physical, emotional and mental tools to be “fathers” for their own children, that is to be creators, providers, protectors and compassionate forgivers.
So, what about the pronouns? Should we use the term “He” or “She,” or just allow them to float interchangeably to suit our whims or to avoid conflict with militant feminists? Of course not! God the Father is properly referred to as “He” (not “She”) precisely because the pronoun allows us to recognize and acknowledge the “fatherly” traits He has decided to imbue in human males.
I look forward to any comments for exchange. Look for Part 2 in the next few days as I go further with distinguishing our Divine "Father" from maleness and other human limitations.