What Jesus Said About Gender

(More Bible studies available @ www.marktabata.com)

It is written:

Mark 10:6-But from the beginning of the creation, God ‘MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE.’

The world is growing more and more confused regarding the subject of transgenderism. When I was in middle school, I learned in biology class that two chromosomes-XY-are what determines if a person becomes a boy. This was settled at the moment of conception, and was a genetic fact of life. Indeed, science has confirmed this time after time.

“Dr. Grossman confirmed everything Newgent just told me about how medical transitioning doesn’t help mental health. “When we look at the statistics of adults that are years following their transition—their chemical, their medical transition, including surgeries—we see that they’re still committing suicide at a remarkably higher rate than most of the population.” It takes only a little common sense to figure out why all these medical interventions just aren’t working. Unlike other treatments and surgeries that address some real, physical problem to heal the body, transitioning harms the body to address a psychological problem. But people can never be at peace when they rebel against their nature. They certainly can’t be happy when they inflict harm upon themselves during that rebellion. A dress, a pronoun, a new name, a haircut, a hormone blocker there, an injection here, a cut there, a prosthetic here—the litany of illusions and lacerations from the social to the medical heaped one upon another can never change the immutable fact that every single cell in the human body screams “male” or “female.” This isn’t conjecture. It’s science. Dr. Grossman described the process we all learned in school but somehow forgot. “How does that man get a man’s body? He gets it as a result of his chromosomes, his Y chromosome,” Dr. Grossman reviewed. “At conception, when the egg is fertilized by a sperm, the resulting organism either has two XX or an X and a Y [chromosome]. The presence of the Y chromosome is going to direct the development of that fetus in a male direction, not only in terms of his genitals, in terms of his brain as well… That means that in utero his body was masculinized, including his brain. What happened was that at eight weeks after fertilization, his Y chromosome sent out the instruction to his testes to create testosterone, and that testosterone was then distributed throughout the body.” This isn’t some arbitrary process—and it can’t be easily altered later in life. The impacts of this sex-specific development can be seen in other aspects of medicine far outside of “gender identity.” “Let’s say a woman needs a kidney transplant and she gets a kidney from a male,” Dr. Grossman posited. “So each of those cells in that transplanted kidney has a Y chromosome, and her female body can recognize that as foreign. Her female body doesn’t recognize the Y chromosome. It never had a Y chromosome. So it’s best to give a female kidney to a female.” Ironically, at the same time gender theory has spread like a cancer, the field of sex-specific surgery has also exploded. “So we have these two things happening at the same time in history,” Dr. Grossman continued, speaking of research into sex-specific care and the rise of gender theory. “While the libraries, the medical libraries, and the journals are just filling up with articles indicating the vast and profound differences between male and female and how we must recognize that, we have, on the other hand, this ideology that is pushing false notions at us and at our children, and I don’t know how much longer this can co-exist.” Dr. Jordan Peterson attributed this terrifying and unscientific medical experimentation to the very foundational claims of gender theory. It’s not that gender theorists were wrong to want to differentiate between people’s biological sex and their outward or psychological characteristics. It’s that they invented the idea of “gender” with all its implications when we already had a perfectly fine way to understand what was going on. “The issue with sex and gender, a lot of that’s just deep ignorance and confusion, with trifling malevolence thrown in there and some willful blindness,” he told me. “Biological sex [is] binary.” (Matt Walsh, What Is a Woman?: One Man’s Journey to Answer the Question of a Generation, 141-143 (Kindle Edition): Nashville, TN: Daily Wire)

Indeed, one of the powerful indicators of the genetic basis for gender comes from the testosterone wash that male babies receive in the womb. We must also realize that the environment in which a person lives may affect one’s understanding of gender identity.

Sprinkle has noted:

“Gender roles—or stereotypes—exist. But why do they exist? Is it nature or nurture? Are boys typically masculine because society makes them masculine (nurture)? Are girls more nurturing because of biology (nature)? Are gender roles—masculinity and femininity—determined by nature or nurture, our biology or our culture? Certainly, nurture plays some role. Pink and blue are classic examples of this. A hundred years ago, pink was considered a masculine color while blue was feminine. According to the Ladies Home Journal in a 1918 article, “[ P] ink, being a more decided and stronger color, is more suitable for the boy, while blue, which is more delicate and dainty, is prettier for the girl.” 14 (Prior to the twentieth century, all babies were stuffed into white frilly dresses.) And yet today—in the West, at least—boys prefer blue and girls prefer pink. Why? Because we’ve nurtured girls to like pink and boys to like blue. Nothing in our genes hardwires boys to like blue and girls pink. Pink and blue are cultural constructs. 15 And yet nature also has a hand in shaping stereotypical male and female behavior. Higher levels of testosterone, for instance, are linked to higher degrees of physical aggression. 16 In utero, most biological males receive a wash of testosterone (“ T”) during the third trimester that is believed to masculinize the brain. Although the implications of this wash are widely disputed, many believe that a prenatal brain marinated in T predisposes most males to engage in masculine behaviors like rough-and-tumble play. 17 Biological females typically don’t receive the same wash of T in utero and thus exhibit less physical aggression even from a young age. 18 Nothing in our genes hardwires boys to like blue and girls pink. Pink and blue are cultural constructs. Those who argue that masculinity is biologically rooted often appeal to the famous case of David Reimer, who was born in 1965.19 At seven months old, David was the victim of a botched circumcision that irreparably damaged his penis. Since it’s easier to make a hole than a pole, and since—according to John Money (who advised the parents)—gender is a social construct, it seemed easier to surgically transition David to a female and raise him as girl, which is what the parents did. David became Brenda, and she lived happily ever after. Actually, she didn’t. Despite the parents’ best efforts, Brenda couldn’t be socialized into a girl, despite believing she was one. While scientific journals and the media reported that Brenda was getting along just fine as a girl, he later revealed that he had always felt like a boy trapped in a girl’s body. (The pronouns are particularly tough with this story, so I’ll keep flip-flopping around.) In fact, this was exactly the case. “She ripped off frilly dresses, rejected dolls in favor of guns, preferred to play with boys, and even insisted on urinating standing up.” 20 Finally, at age fourteen, Brenda couldn’t take it any longer and said she wanted to transition to a boy. It was then that his parents told him he really was a boy. Brenda took on the name David and lived as a boy. But the view that masculinity is a social construct is not without support. One study looked at a case very similar to that of David Reimer, where a biological male had his penis severed and was raised as a girl. Only this time the results were opposite: “At ages 16 and 26, the patient was living socially as a woman and denied any uncertainty about being a female.” 21 Nature or nurture? Are gender roles biologically hardwired or socially constructed? Like many things in life, the answer to this question is probably not an either/ or. I’m no sociologist, but from everything I’ve read, I think a good case can be made for nature and nurture both interacting with each other to form our conceptions of masculinity and femininity.” (Preston M. Sprinkle, Embodied: Transgender Identities, the Church, and What the Bible Has to Say, 41-43 (Kindle Edition); Colorado Springs, CO; David C Cook)

The genetic basis for gender is indisputable. There are cases where some have abnormal genetic conditions, which result in conditions such as Klinefelter syndrome.

“Our journey with Klinefelter syndrome began in the spring of 1987. I was 38 and four months pregnant with a very much wanted second child, after a number of years of trying to conceive. We had followed the standard recommendation to have amniocentesis because of my “advanced maternal age.” Several weeks later, I received a phone call at work from my obstetrician. She told me that the amniocentesis had shown that I was carrying a boy, and that he had an extra X chromosome, a condition called Klinefelter syndrome. I remember that conversation now as if it had occurred this morning. It is one of the events in my life seared into my memory, much like learning in seventh grade that President Kennedy had been shot, or hearing in the coffee room at work that an airliner had flown into one of the twin towers of the World Trade Center. I remember asking my obstetrician if I could put her on hold to take the call in my office, closing the door, and picking up the phone again at my desk. The doctor asked me if I knew anything about this condition. I told her that I remembered the genetic counselor telling us what the amniocentesis would be looking for, including Down syndrome and other more severe trisomy conditions, which is the presence of three chromosomes where there should be only a pair of two. I had remembered the counselor telling us that sometimes they see extra sex chromosomes, but I had never given it another thought after the procedure. This seemed to be the case with my son, and I sat there trying to absorb it. This physician had been my gynecologist for five years, and had seen me through a number of years of infertility testing and treatment. She had been overjoyed with us when we inexplicably achieved a pregnancy on our own. Now she was telling me that Klinefelter syndrome can cause a wide range of functioning, from barely impaired to more severely affected. It was associated with somewhat lower IQ compared to siblings. Klinefelter men could be tall, but not always. They often had speech delay and learning disabilities, and sometimes behavioral problems and difficulties with fine and gross motor skills. And they were always infertile. She told me that she had already arranged for my husband and me to meet with the medical geneticist, along with our genetic counselor that afternoon. My obstetrician also told me that abortion was an option, but since I was already at eighteen weeks, she would want to do this immediately if this is what we chose. Then she told me that, although he did not have this genetic disorder, her oldest son had a similar range of disabilities, and if we wanted to discuss raising a child with mild or moderate deficits, she would be happy to talk with us. That afternoon, we met with the geneticist, who explained Klinefelter syndrome, showing us the photo of the chromosomes, called a karyotype, while we both cried. She and the genetic counselor had photocopied a number of articles and chapters of books that described the results of longitudinal studies of groups of children with sex chromosome aneuploidy, and they talked with us about the studies and what they could tell us about how our baby might be affected. I did not know at the time that this sort of compassionate and knowledgeable counseling was so rare. They were telling us that with Klinefelter syndrome there are often developmental and learning challenges but that when families are prepared to support their children with speech therapy, additional help with schoolwork, adapted sports programs, and a warm and nurturing family life, a child with this condition can be expected to do well. For families like ours (my husband, Al, is a political science professor and I hold masters degrees in both social work and business administration), the counselor suggested that we might have to adjust our expectations regarding careers, however, because our child might not want to or be able to get a college degree. We left the meeting, however, quite certain that we wanted to continue the pregnancy. It did not matter to us whether our son became a Supreme Court justice, electrician, or truck driver; we just wanted a healthy and happy child, who felt good about himself. We went home and pored over the medical journal articles that we had been given. The range of functioning in the various longitudinal studies from Edinburgh, Toronto, and Yale was very broad, with IQs ranging from 50 to over 120, and descriptions of very well-adjusted children as well as those who had significant behavioral problems. But overall, the picture was of children in intact homes with good schooling who did quite well. We thought that we could probably provide the services that our child would need. I now know, from speaking with hundreds of parents who also received a prenatal diagnosis, that our experience was unusual. Parents have told me numerous times of being informed that the child would probably be retarded, or would likely end up in prison. Other parents have been told that their fetus is a “monster” and that abortion is the only option. I sometimes hear that the genetic counselor was well-informed about Klinefelter syndrome and that the obstetrician was supportive of the parent’s decision to continue the pregnancy, but more often parents are left to surf the Web looking for accurate and current information. Our diagnosis was pre-Internet, and yet the information available to laypersons continues to be limited and sketchy. It is just as possible to find questionable information predicting pedophilia and sexual deviancy today as it is to find more current and credible information based on the latest research. Our son, Jonathan, was born December of 1987. He was a beautiful and sweet baby boy, certainly on the quiet side, and far less active than his older brother had been. By the age of twelve months, we could tell that he was not meeting his developmental milestones, and by fifteen months, he was enrolled in an intensive early intervention program. John then began making steady progress, putting together sentences by age three, and learning his letters, colors and numbers by four. He continued into a self-contained kindergarten, and was mainstreamed two years later into first grade. I will comment throughout this text on his development from childhood through adolescence and into early adulthood. Although I continued to look for and find occasional articles updating my knowledge about Klinefelter syndrome, I really wanted to meet other families with a boy like ours. Because John had a fairly extensive schedule of therapy services, we had elected to tell our families about his extra X chromosome. My mother was the one who saw Melissa Aylstock’s letter to Dear Abby regarding her son’s diagnosis of Klinefelter syndrome, which was written in 1989. The national response to this letter inspired Melissa to found an organization, Klinefelters Syndrome and Associates (now KS& A), that began providing education and support for families and individuals affected by 47, XXY. In 1995, I attended a national conference in Chevy Chase, Maryland. It was the first time that I had ever met another family with a child with Klinefelter syndrome. Over the next fifteen years, the national advocacy groups, KS& A and AAKSIS (American Association for Klinefelter Syndrome Information and Support), provided our most important source of information regarding Klinefelter syndrome and how to manage and treat the various educational and psychosocial issues associated with it. Klinefelter Syndrome &Associates, or KS& A, has since changed its name to stand for “Knowledge, Action and Support” and has broadened its approach to providing information and support to the other sex chromosome aneuploid conditions, 47, XYY, and 47, XXX, and their variations. John had considerable educational challenges and developed a severe psychiatric disorder during adolescence. Other parents were the ones who helped us through these episodes. We learned from national conferences to consult the few medical specialists who had taken an interest in Klinefelter syndrome, and who were beginning to conduct research into the disorder….The trisomy aneuploid conditions, 47,XXY, 47,XXX, and 47,XYY, are characterized by an enormous amount of variability in presentation. Many adults with these conditions are characteristically tall, but there is also a significant number who are of average or short stature. Similarly, although learning disabilities significant enough to require special education services affect about two-thirds, another third progress satisfactorily through school without any special assistance. Several symptoms of Klinefelter syndrome, (47,XXY), are almost universal, however, including hypogonadism caused by testicular failure in early adulthood, and infertility. A tiny percentage of men with KS, probably not more than one or two percent, will escape even testicular failure and infertility or greatly lowered fertility. For this reason, there are many parents as well as adults who contend that having a genetic signature of 47,XXY, does not necessarily mean that a male has Klinefelter syndrome.” (Virginia Cover, Living with Klinefelter Syndrome (47,XXY) Trisomy X (47,XXX) and 47,XYY, 5-10 (Kindle Edition): Virginia Isaacs Cover www.KlinefelterTrisomyX47XYY.com)

Encouraging people to fundamentally (and often irreversibly) alter their physical bodies via transgender procedures can have serious repercussions.

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit, be with you all. Amen.

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