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In my other question, I asked what the biblical basis was for considering gender to not be merely physical, but also present in a person's soul and/or spirit. However, there are some who believe that gender is purely physical, so it seems necessary to ask that question as well.

So, what is the biblical basis/argument/rationale that supports the idea that gender is something that is only physical/biological and does not have any presence in a person's soul or spirit?

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It has been nearly a month and I have attempted to solicit more responses in chat, however, the one that has come since seems to miss the point to me. Is there something lacking in the current answers that you are hoping for? –  fredsbend Mar 12 '13 at 8:13
    
No, I'm just giving it time. I upvoted your answer already. –  Narnian Mar 12 '13 at 12:38
    
Not really looking for rep. I am far more interested in the answers. I am thinking that there must be more to the argument for this point of view than these answers provide. –  fredsbend Mar 12 '13 at 18:33

3 Answers 3

The only "evidence" I have seen for this is the time when the Pharisees are attempting to trap Jesus by asking who would be the husband in heaven of a woman widowed seven times. His answer is none; we will be like the angels in heaven.

Some people think that this automatically means that there will be no sex or procreation and also no gender.

A few issues:
1) Jesus only said there will be no marriage in the Kingdom of Heaven; nothing to do with sex or gender.
2) Assuming He included sex and procreation, too, in that statement, does not mean that we will be without gender, although gender would seem unnecessary.
3) Like the angels seems to me that we should examine angels and their lives for an answer on this issue. Frankly, there is very little on angels in the Bible, but quite a bit in the Apocrypha.

So, with that I would say only this, assuredly: The angels to not marry and neither will we after our resurrection into the Kingdom of heaven.

But you already pointed this out, sort of.

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See my answer to your other question, since it applies here, and provides the necessary biblical quotes and citations. In this question, you seem to be asking for a definitive verse in scripture that states or implies that only the body has a gender. There is no such verse. In both questions, though, you seem to be asking "does the Bible say that gender is in the body, or in the soul?" The answer is "yes."

Humans have a male or a female nature, since God created humans male and female. Humans are persons consisting of both body and soul, since human heavenly perfection consists of having both soul and glorified body.

A body is a male body in the sense of being the body of a male person: a person with a male nature. Your hand has no gender, your blood has no gender. In that sense a body has no gender. What is the gender of flesh never animated by soul?

You might ask: do we have gender because we have a soul, or because we have a body? If that question makes sense, the answer is likely: we have gender because humans have both a body and a soul, and are made male and female by God.


Matthew 22:30 is sometimes wrongly invoked as saying that there is no gender in heaven, on the heretical assumption that our bodies will not rise again. It reads:

For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven.

But Jesus is saying that there is no marriage after the resurrection, not that there is no gender. Though this passage also seems to imply that angels do not have a gender (no marriage, so no procreation, so no gender).

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There doesn't need to be a Biblical reason for this. There are some terms that mean a certain thing because that is the definition of the term.

From http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/gender?s=t

gen·der 1 [jen-der] Show IPA noun

  1. Grammar . a. (in many languages) a set of classes that together include all nouns, membership in a particular class being shown by the form of the noun itself or by the form or choice of words that modify, replace, or otherwise refer to the noun, as, in English, the choice of he to replace the man, of she to replace the woman, of it to replace the table, of it or she to replace the ship. The number of genders in different languages varies from 2 to more than 20; often the classification correlates in part with sex or animateness. The most familiar sets of genders are of three classes (as masculine, feminine, and neuter in Latin and German) or of two (as common and neuter in Dutch, or masculine and feminine in French and Spanish). b. one class of such a set. c. such classes or sets collectively or in general. d. membership of a word or grammatical form, or an inflectional form showing membership, in such a class.

  2. sex: the feminine gender.

There are certain terms that are simply what they are. We don't ask the the Biblical basis that the word "desert" means a hot, arid place, nor do we ask for the Biblical basis for calling a certain tree a "cedar", even though the Cedars of Lebanon are found in Scripture.

It wasn't until certain groups came along and tried to redefine terms in nonsensical ways that this even became a matter for Christianity to speak out upon. Until that time it was simple understanding of the English language, combined with a lack of political correctness (a.k.a.insanity, a.k.a, calling black white, and white purple).


Put another way, we don't call oxen "oxen" because there is a Biblical basis for it. The term "oxen" has a definition, which is why the translators chose to use the word. If someone wants to call an oxen a "goat" it's not a Biblical issue. It's one of correct usage of the English language, and not redefining terms to suit a political agenda.

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I don't get the feeling that there is any political agenda involved here. –  fredsbend Mar 12 '13 at 6:28
    
I don't think Narnian has a political agenda here, but the idea that gender isn't defined certainly comes from one. –  David Stratton Mar 12 '13 at 12:59
    
Well, if we define gender merely as the phenotypic traits, then yes, it is pretty obviously only the two exist and the Bible authors knew of nothing else. With today's knowledge of sex chromosomes and the various disorders there in, plus the in utero developmental conditions that can masculize or feminize the genitalia against the chromosomal norm, gender is not so obviously and easily defined. Today, a gender test is typically performed by searching any somatic cell for a barr body. That leaves Turner's syndrome in an odd spot, lacking the barr body but having feminine genitals. –  fredsbend Dec 19 '13 at 7:36

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