“Goodbye to ‘he’ and ‘she’ and hello to ‘ze’? (CNN.com) Have you ever wondered why God is referred to as “He”? I know some who talk about God as “She”. Currently, when the lines between the sexes have become blurred, an alternate pronoun is being suggested…he, she and ze. “Ze” is being using to define someone other than by sexual orientation. Without going further into that…I see “Ze” as a way of describing God. Goodbye to “He & She”! ;-) Jack
FROM FACEBOOK LIZ: ridiculousness. the college crazies think they will do away with biology, & come up with a whole new label. now we have safe spaces for "people of color." discrimination, segregation... many steps backward. while rome burns.====JACK: Personally, I don't have a problem with God as "he or she", because I understand the limitations of language. But, I do believe in helping people to see God in a way that brings understanding. There are many "walls" in society, and many of them need to come down, or be lowered.
FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE: I hadn't thought of that before. I will think about it.====JACK: I chose this quote for two reasons. First, as a way for showing that God is a spirit, not bound to a sexual body. God is a God for all. God chose to reveal himself in humans as a male. He could just as easily reveal herself as a female. "Who has known the mind of God?" Secondly, I picked this quote to show sensitivity to those people who, for some reason, have trouble identifying their sexual orientation. It seems reasonable to have a way of identifying people, other than male or female. "Ze" is a way of removing that demarcation and saying that "people are people." I appreciate your comment, "I will think about it." That's what I try to do through Winning Words...to get people to think.====GEORGE: I have studied homosexuality. People aren't born with an opposite sexual orientation. Much of it comes from abuse and we have to love them into the orientation that God gave them. I remember listening to Focus On The Family years ago, when a former homosexual spoke about sexual orientation. He said that "There are no gay gays." And I got to know a Christian straight in Youth For Christ who overcame his problem thru his acceptance of Christ as Lord. He was a happily married man when I met him and had him speak to my senior SS class.====JACK: My comments are relative to those people who have difficulty understanding their sexuality...and there are many of them. I see "ze" as being a way to recognize this, without necessarily voting up or down based on my feelings. But, as I wrote at the outset, "ze" is a way of talking about God in a spiritual way without the limitations of he or she.
FROM HONEST JOHN: I don't. That is more of an elitist term....won't fly with average people....have to do away with accurate translations of the scriptures....====JACK: Usually new ideas don't fly with average people, because the "average" is inclined to stay with the comfortable. As you know, the written scriptures have their limitation, because they are trying to put God into words. Even referring to God as He, is a limitation.
FROM LBP IN PLYMOUTH: I've heard moms of teens say that using they in the singular is common. I've uncomfortably done it in situations where he/she isn't right. The uncomfortableness coming from grammar rules drilled in my head. Just as this CNN story suggests it's hard to break our habits around rules that are so hard wired in our language. In worship settings I've heard the pronoun replaced with the proper noun when gender assignment isn't wanted. I thing God as "they" would be an especially hard replacement because it confuses the singularity of God.====JACK: I, too, am a stickler for the rules of grammar. But I'm also a believer in situation "ethics." There are times when it's OK to break the rules...grammar, societal and even theological. BUT...reasonably.
FROM CR IN MICHIGAN: I like it a lot. It feels like progress.====JACK: Reading over the comments so far...the proposed addition of "ze" as a noun has moved into pro and con regarding sexual orientation. I thought that "ze" was a worthwhile solution as to how to refer to God and to people who are confused about who they are.
FROM TARMART REV: I'm finding we have a lot of "Goodbyes to . . ." nowadays when it comes to those longstanding traditions of truths found in what has been called the Word of God these past thousands of years . . . Interestingly (for me anyway) to note the prophets of old and writers of the Epistles found in the New Testament of our Bibles spent a great deal ink and parchment correcting those of that day saying "goodbyes" to what was previously established as truths taught them by Christ Himself and His chosen apostles. Paul, who came along later, said on more than one occasion this was not what I taught you nor left with you (Romans 16:17; I Corinthians 2:13; Galatians 1:12; II Timothy 3:10-17). I guess we'll have to wait and "Ze"?!====JACK: Situations have sometimes changed from biblical days. Goodbye to "the 4 corners of the earth." The earth is no longer flat. The Bible is meant to help us better understand our relationship to God. God as 'father" is meant to describe God as the creator, the originator, not the male dominator...or so I think.====REV: Jesus somewhat described heaven as a place where male and female were not given the same role as here on earth, in the role of "husband and wife" anyway . . . certainly angels are not represented as "he" and "she". Jesus replied, “Are you not in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God? When the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven" (Mark 12:12-25).====JACK: The interpretation of marriage and divorce today is different than it was in Jesus' day. I wonder how the Sermon on the Mount would sound if Jesus were to preach it today?
FROM JM IN DC: Have always thought the same since "WE" are made in God's image. God is both he and she, so I think "Ze" is a reasonable compromise.====JACK: You seem to think as I think on this subject. It's surprising (maybe not so) that in today's socio/political climate people are inclined to see it, using other glasses.
FROM BB IN ILLINOIS: I do not have another language but understand that many of them assign masculine or feminine pronouns for many words and inanimate objects. That’s always puzzled me.
Your thought were thought-provoking today; why do we use gender signifiers in English for only individuals….====JACK: Language is simply a means of communication. Whatever makes the communication more accurate is OK with me.
FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY: What is this world becoming? I haven't heard this "ze" thing but it's unbelievable!!!====JACK: In referring to God, which do you prefer, he, she, ze or it? Which is the most correct?====JUDY: Well, the Bible says he so that's what I think.====JACK: The B-I-B-L-E, that's good enough for me. I stand alone on the Word of God, the B-I-B-L-E.
FROM GUSTIE MARLYS: Really???STUPID! What difference does it make what we call him—just THAT we call him!====JACK: Tell me what you really think. And, while your at it, tell me what you think of making the words of hymns politically correct. OOPs! I think I already know. ====GUSTIE: I hate it! I am usually singing along loud and clear and all of a sudden I am singing the wrong words. I like them the old way! I ALWAYS sing Joy To the World the old way and I don’t care if the whole congregation hears me! Ha! Last Sunday we sang “Guide me O Thou Great Jehovah”. They changed the whole last phrase of the first verse! I didn’t! Ha!====JACK: Ha! Ha!
FROM FM IN WISCONSIN: Interesting! I have forwarded to a couple of theologians. If I get any reaction, I’ll forward them.====JACK: Who are the "experts" on the unknowable (God)? I trust those who have studied the subject...but I also have an ear for the hoi polloi. If you haven't done so already, you might take a look at the blog responses. There were more than I expected.====FM: Jack, you hit a home run, and you were not in the lineup in Cleveland!====JACK: In the World Series there are avid fans for both teams. Some cheer for the home run, while others boo. It's something like that with controversial social/religious issues, as you can see by reading the blog. I see my role as...getting people to "re-think" their thoughts about some of these issues.
FROM CS IN ROYAL OAK: 👍😊====JACK: Read the blog to see reactions====CS: Woah! Lots of opinions! I guess I've always been more comfortable connecting spiritually without the "limitations of gender"====JACK: We're on the same page.
FROM JT IN MINNESOTA: Well, how about that. It would make my and Danielle's life easier. I continue to refer to "her" as "he". Thanks again.====JACK: What's that old moralism? "You have to walk in someone's moccasins in order to understand." Many have responded to today's WWs...but yours is the best! Thanks.
FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL: ====SP: well, you like to get people thinking and in that, I believe you have more than succeeded, Jack. nice work...====JACK: Just like with the congregation in the pews, I know that there are varieties of opinions out there. I see my role as being a pastor who "comforts the afflicted and afflicts the comfortable." In the case of today's WWs, I tried to do that.