In the beginning God created sex and it was good! While this is not a direct quote from Scripture, it is certainly an important truth in Genesis chapters 1 and 2.
These first two chapters of the Bible provide the foundation for understanding God's design for marriage and gender identity.
To begin with, we read God created us (humanity) in His image and He designed us with two distinct genders, male and female (Genesis chapter 1, verse 27). This first couple, Adam and Eve, were blessed and instructed to bear children (Genesis chapter 1, verse 28).
Then, at the end of chapter 1 we receive God's perspective on all that He had created, and it was described as “very good” (verse 31).
In the second chapter the same truth is taught. Thus, we read in Genesis chapter 2 verses 5-8 that God created Adam (male) and then in Genesis chapter 2 verses 20-23 created a suitable match for him, Eve (female).
Following the creation of Adam and Eve, God instituted marriage at the end of chapter 2, stating a man would leave his parents (“father and mother”) and become one with his wife (verses 24-25).
Briefly, both chapters teach us that both gender identity (male and female) and marriage and sex (between male and female) are God's design and are good.
God’s design abused
Continuing through the book of Genesis (and the whole Bible) we see that while sex was created by God, it has always been abused since the fall in Genesis chapter 3.
This abuse and the response from God or others involved, demonstrate such actions are wrong and are not part of God’s good design.
For example, it seems fallen angels slept with women and God cut short the years of a person's life (Genesis chapter 6 verses 1-3). Adultery was condemned by God (Genesis chapter 12 verses 11-19; chapter 20 verses 2-3) and we read about the messy story of Abraham having two wives at once (Genesis chapters 16, 21). Homosexuality was declared wicked in Sodom (Genesis chapter 19 verses 4-7) and the city was destroyed under God’s command.
The rape of a girl enraged her brothers to deceive and slaughter the males of a whole city to execute revenge (Genesis chapter 34 verses 1-31). A dishonourable sexual act resulted in God killing a man and then the pregnancy of an unmarried woman was condemned (Genesis chapter 38). Even in Genesis workplace sexual harassment was a problem (Genesis chapter 39 verses 6-12).
These are just some of the examples of God’s design for marriage abused. More teaching and examples could easily be given throughout both the Old and New Testaments, but hopefully this is sufficient to reinforce the truth that God has designed marriage between one man and one woman.
God's design attacked
Unfortunately, in Canada (and other countries) this truth becomes increasingly in opposition to the government and society’s agenda. As of January 2022, necessary teaching and discussion on God's design for marriage, and gender identity will become illegal in Canada.
The new law has been masked behind an intolerance of harassment toward conversion therapy but has taken a very broad and dangerous approach to help those who suffer from the sad reality of abuse.
It must be clearly stated that abuse of any form is not right and should be addressed as a sin issue. There is no biblical reason for behaviour that would intentionally harm others either physically, verbally, or emotionally.
However, the recently passed Canadian bill seems to ban people discussing the issue of homosexuality and gender identity with those who need help understanding God’s design in these areas. This prohibition is even applied to people who ask for help, meaning a friend, parent, counselor, or pastor will be acting illegally if they enter a loving and important conversation on this topic, even if it is initiated by the struggling person.
This sounds as ridiculous as letting a blind person get hit by a car, because the government said it’s illegal to help a blind person cross the street and therefore, you’re unwilling to help them.
In light of this new bill (and the similar one in Victoria, and the one going to parliament in England), the church and individual Christians are faced with fines and imprisonment for upholding God's truth on marriage and gender identity.
Assuming you uphold God’s design for marriage and gender identity, as stated clearly throughout the Bible, how should we respond?
God's design addressed
A few necessary responses should characterize how we address the attack on God’s design. Firstly, prayer is essential and can include prayer for the government, other believers who are facing persecution for their perspective, and those who struggle with these issues.
There may also be opportunity to engage with the political or legal spheres through respectful conversation, advocacy, and processes.
It is also our responsibility to teach God's truth to others, even under the threat of persecution. Although, this should be done with wisdom (e.g. the right audience at the right time) and in love.
In addition to teaching this truth, we are entrusted with the hope of the Gospel. This is a Gospel that declares God forgives sin, because He paid the penalty for sin through the death of Jesus Christ. Now, for anyone who believes in the Lord Jesus Christ and what He achieved through His death and resurrection, they will receive the gift of eternal life and not face the eternal punishment we all deserve for our sin. What a message of hope and salvation we can offer those who are involved in sexual sin (and any type of sin)!
Genevieve Wilson is Canadian. a happily married home-schooling mum of 3, whose passion is to see people come to know Jesus. She is a seminary wife to her amazing husband.