Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Ending the gender war .................. Parables 421

May 17, 1994

Dr. Donald Joy says women have minds like computers. A computer searches through bits of data scattered all over its hard drive then brings together all related information. Dr. Joy says this is an excellent parallel to the way a woman’s intuitive reasoning works.

He also says men think in a logical, line-by-line order. While this type of reasoning can be slower, there is greater opportunity to spot flaws in the process. However, men often become frustrated when women solve problems in what seems a random fashion, especially when correct answers appear without any explanation of their origin.

Furthermore, some research indicates boys are generally better in mathematics, while girls excel in language arts. Men are supposedly more aggressive and women more emotional. Research in this area also says the left side of the brain controls logic, analytical ability. Because of some changes in the brain caused by male hormones, boys are born with a tendency to use that side more than the right.

In contrast, women are generally inclined to being right-brained. This side controls feelings, imagination, speech, relational faculties, etc. Since girls do not experience the same hormonal changes, they are more adept at simultaneously gathering data from both brain hemispheres. While not everyone agrees with Dr. Joy’s simplified explanation, it certainly describes some commonly observed differences between men and women.

If it is true that men and women think differently, then comparing intellectual skills and mental abilities is unfair. In the battle of the sexes, each tries to make the other feel inferior, but both miss the point of being different.

According to Genesis, God made the man first and gave him a job to do; he had to name all the animals. Without a modern zoologist’s classification system of families, orders, and species, giving names to thousands of variations was a gigantic challenge.

Even though Adam was able to do the job, God observed that “it is not good for the man to be alone” (Genesis 2:18). Then God added, “I will make a helper suitable for him.” Various versions say “a helper corresponding to him” or “a companion for him, a helper suited to his needs.”

Some might think the term “helper” is demeaning to women, describing them as second-class citizens. Not true. This word is used elsewhere ONLY to describe God Himself. He is the “helper” of His people. If being a helper makes women slaves, then God would also be understood as subservient, but He is not. Further, the Bible never speaks in a demeaning manner about anyone who helps others.

When God created Eve, Adam was delighted. He was no longer alone; he had a companion to help him. Most important, God designed her so she would perfectly complement the way God designed him. Each had their own strengths. Together they were a terrific team.

Unfortunately, sin entered the picture. Eve blamed the snake, Adam blamed Eve, and God put them all out of paradise. The mess has multiplied ever since, which is no surprise. God said it would. He told both of them to expect hard work and difficulties, but He also said because of sin the man and woman would fight each other. The woman would “desire the man” which if carefully compared to Genesis 4:7, says she will want to rule him. He then adds, “but he will rule over her.”

The good news is that the battle between the sexes does not have to continue. Those who find victory over sin through faith in Christ experience a reversal of this curse—instead of competition and fighting, they are given the ability to appreciate the difference and begin to truly complement one another.

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