Apologetics,  Culture,  Current Events,  Health,  Paul Backholer

What is a Woman? And why it Matters to Christians

In the US Senate Judiciary Committee hearings for Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, she was asked, “Can you provide a definition for the word woman?” This accomplished female, who attended Harvard University and served as an editor on the Harvard Law Review was unable to provide a definition. How can you defend women’s rights in the Supreme Court of the United States, if you’re not certain what a woman is? St Paul might say of these experts, “Professing to be wise, they became fools” (Romans 1:22).

In the day that God created man, He made him in the likeness of God. He created them male and female, and blessed them and called them mankind in the day they were created

– Genesis 5:1-2
Being a Woman is not a Feeling; it’s God’s Gift

A woman is an adult human female. Women possess two X chromosomes and are typically capable of conception, pregnancy and giving birth from puberty until menopause. Female anatomy differs completely from the male. On average, women are shorter than men; they retain a higher body fat composition and possess significantly less body hair, especially on the face. The adult female has larger breasts capable of lactation, broader hips and a wider pelvis. She possesses ovaries, fallopian tubes, a uterus, vagina and vulva. To be technical, a woman is a person who can typically produce the large non-motile egg cells (ova) and the type of sex cells (gamete) that fuses with the male gamete to reproduce. A woman may undergo a hysterectomy and mastectomy, and yet her biological, genetic, hormonal and chromosomal sex is intact. She remains in every sense a woman.

Decisive Biological Differences Between Men and Women
  • Height and weight
  • Bone and muscle mass
  • Genitals: male or female
  • Neurological and cerebral differences
  • Lungs and heart: on average they are larger in the male
  • Larynx development: women’s voices tend to be higher pitched
  • Chromosomal differences: female chromosomes are XX, male XY
  • Hormonal differences: men higher levels of testosterone, women more estrogen
  • Sensory perception: men visual acuity, women auditory and olfactory acuity
  • Hirsutism: hormones cause men to have more body hair
  • Metabolism: men tend to have a higher metabolism
  • Fat distribution: estrogen helps women store fat
  • Skin: women’s skin is often thinner and dryer
  • Sweat glands: men possess more sweat glands
  • Body temperature: male blood flow is relatively proportional
Feelings are not Facts

Why are men claiming to be women and why does the elite say their claim must override the rights of real women? When Christians discuss gender ideology and gender dysphoria, it’s crucial to begin with the foundation that all people deserve respect as God’s creation. Their confusion is not their personhood.

Treating Symptoms or Root Causes?

The problem with twenty-first century medicine is experts treat symptoms, not root causes. When a doctor is under pressure, it’s easier for him or her to prescribe an antidepressant instead of detecting the genesis of the patient’s depression. The problem is not remedied; it’s simply repressed for a season.

Feelings and Perception

Today, when a doctor speaks to a patient with body dysphoria, he or she is encouraged to assist the vulnerable patient in reassessing their feelings and perception. But with gender dysphoria, doctors are being pressured to deny over four hundred years of medical progress because the feelings of a patient, they are told, overrule medical science.

Trauma and Healing

Psychologists, counsellors and Christian ministers with experience with those who suffer from gender dysphoria explain that the root cause is often trauma. In their discussions with those suffering, they learn that there was once a child or young person subjected to physical, mental or sexual abuse. This abuse constitutes the foundation of their dysphoria. Therefore, there is no place for hate when we engage in this subject. Jesus said, “Love your neighbour as yourself” (Matthew 22:39).  

Jesus is the Restorer of our Spirit, Soul and Body

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me,

Because the Lord has anointed Me

To preach good tidings to the poor;

He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,

To proclaim liberty to the captives,

And the opening of the prison to those who are bound;

To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord,

And the day of vengeance of our God;

To comfort all who mourn,

To console those who mourn in Zion,

To give them beauty for ashes,

The oil of joy for mourning,

The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness”

– Isaiah 61:1-3

When we realise abuse trauma is the root cause of much of this confusion, how society treats dysphoria is essential. Do we address the root cause or engage in confirmation of this confusion? There is a growing number of adults who formally believed transitioning to another sex was the answer to their problems. Now, they are detransitioning. They tell us the root cause of their confusion never went away and gender reassignment procedures did not solve their problems. Watch out hospitals, costly lawsuits follow patient abuse. Did you protect vulnerable patients or mutilate them?

What is a Woman?

Post-Christian progressives will advise you that there’s a difference between sex and gender. Their playful manipulation of words, syntax and semantics does not change the fact that feelings cannot define sex or gender. Your feelings can change often, your gender cannot.

Emotions and Gender
  • Feelings are powerful, but a feeling cannot transform your genetic sex
  • Opinions from influencers are forceful, but they cannot remodel your chromosomal sex
  • Trends on social media are beguiling, but they cannot change your hormonal sex
  • Feelings, opinions and trends change, but your sex cannot
  • In science, biological sex and gender are always in agreement. Your feelings may disagree, but if after dying your body was exhumed, your remains would tell scientists precisely what your sex was
  • Your sex is represented in every cell of your body
  • Your gender is not fungible

And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free

– John 8:32
Women and Sport

Today the war on women is being raged by post-Christian progressives who think biological men should compete against biological women because a feeling defines their gender. According to these experts, the most successful female athletes are increasingly those who were born male.

Feelings or Biological Reality?

Humans discover our gender in biological, genetic, hormonal and chromosomal reality. Therefore, a biological man can wear a female swimsuit and compete with biological women, but every cell in his body will declare he has an overwhelming advantage because of his hormonal and biological sex. His feelings cannot alter the unchanging scientific reality. A man can receive many treatments to change his body from taking estrogen pills to having his genitalia removed and asking for a surgeon to form the shape of female genitalia, but every cell in his body will declare he is still male.

Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed

– John 8:36
Deliverance and Healing

The Lord Jesus has given His disciples power to renew our minds and to cast out, or off, malevolent spirits that deceive people. Christ came to set the prisoner free and to deliver us to be all He made us to be.

Jesus said to him, “Come out of the man, unclean spirit!” Then Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” And he answered, saying, “My name is Legion; for we are many”

– Mark 5:8-9
God’s Creation

When Christians speak with people with gender dysphoria, we must remember we are speaking to a person who represents God’s creation, one who has experienced trauma and needs to experience a call back to God’s truth in love. Repentance means restoration. We have been given the ministry of reconciliation, not judgment. God defines us by the truth of who we are, not by the confusion we feel. Therefore, God made men and women in His Divine image, equal but different and our feelings cannot distort this immutable truth.  

God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply”

– Genesis 1:27-28

By Paul Backholer. Find out about Paul’s books here.