In a sermon summary titled, The Importance of Gender Roles, Part I, the following definition of "biblical femininity" is given.
Biblical femininity is a disposition of affirming, receiving and nurturing the strength and leadership of worthy men. The Bible does not teach that God created men and women as duplicates, but as complimentary to one another. The cultivation of good male leadership benefits women. (excerpted from summary of a Mark Dever sermon [apparently quoting Piper] on the CBMW blog)
According to the site, the sermon used Genesis 1:27 as its launching pad.
So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.
I have a few questions:
  • How is this definition of "biblical femininity" related to the biblical passage cited as the basis for the sermon? [From hearing the sermon, I realize the definition is from the Piper/Grudem book, but the quote was used, I would assume, in support of Dever's homeletical idea, so the question remains.]
  • Since the definition relates femininity only to worthy men, what of a woman's relation to God, the world, other humans, ministry, family, etc.? How does femininity reveal itself in these other areas?
  • Assuming the author meant "complementary" rather than "complimentary," how are masculinity and femininity mutually completing?
  • If the author meant "complimentary" (which, given the three-fold activity of femininity-- "affirming, receiving and nurturing the strength and leadership of worthy men"--sounds possible) what is the biblical basis for this conclusion? If this is not the case, the webmaster ought to fix the typo.
  • How do women image God? How do men and women together image God? (I do not ask about men, because the author gives his understanding of how men image God.)
  • Given a biblical understanding of the nature of humanity in general and women in particular, what ought to be added to, changed, or removed from the above quoted definition of biblical femininity?
Sermon mp3 here.


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“Unless otherwise noted Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.”

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