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Teen Vogue Article on Gender-Neutral Words Misses the Meaning of Sex

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On August 27, Teen Vogue published an article titled: "How to Use Gender-Neutral Words, and Why They're Important." In the article, author Danielle Corcione (I assume it is a she, but to be politically correct, I'll refer to Danielle as the "author") tells us that "Gender-inclusive language isn't typically something you learn in school, but its use is incredibly important to make life easier for nonbinary peers."

"Using gendered terms — such as "ladies [and] gentlemen" — is highly presumptuous, especially in today's society, in which many persons are aware that they don't identify as male or female and therefore are uncomfortable with this type of language," Dara Hoffman-Fox, LPC, explains.

Is it really true that "many persons" don't identify as male or female and are uncomfortable with "he" or "she" or other sex-specific words and pro-nouns? In actuality, this is not the truth. In fact, a 2017 study published in the American Journal of Public Health estimated that only .0039 percent of the United States public identifies as transgender – a number that can hardly be described as "many". So why is Teen Vogue and other "mainstream" media outlets pushing this "gender nonbinary" narrative?

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Ryan T. Anderson, policy analyst at the Heritage Foundation and author of the recent book When Harry Became Sally, correctly identified the source of this narrative in a recent interview he did on Catholic television. "After the 2015 Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage, LGBT activists promptly pivoted from the 'LGB' to the 'T' (as in 'transgender') for strategic purposes."

Why, you might ask? Because now that sexual intimacy has been legally removed from the confines of man/woman marriage for life and replaced with "two consenting adults" – there is only one barrier standing in the way of demolishing the Biblical concept of marriage, and that is sex. So, if a generation of naïve, wounded children are successfully indoctrinated that their sex is meaningless, LGBT activists will be one step closer to that goal.

That is why Teen Vogue suggests we stop using words like "mankind" and instead use "humankind", "kiddo" instead of "boy/girl", "machine-made" instead of "man-made", and get this, "nibling" instead of "niece/nephew". Nibling? Sounds like a way I might consume a snack! Take a little nibling, why don't you?

The reality is, when we deny the purpose of our sex, we lose sight of who we are as children of God, male and female, made in His image; and if we're not made in His image, we are free to construct, or deconstruct, ourselves in our own likeness, which tears at the very foundation of the purpose God created male and female in nature.

There is a Purpose in Nature

From the standpoint of General Revelation, or the idea that God's truth is found in nature itself, we need to start with the fundamental principal that God created everything in nature with a purpose.

We see the tragic results in our family and in our society when we deny that there is purpose in nature: Instead of places of learning, schools become centers for merely warehousing children away from their families and indoctrinating them against God.

Instead of places of worship where God is praised and adored in spirit and in truth, too many churches become places where pastors generate income for themselves, rather than focus on the work of God.

Instead of the joyful discovery of what God has instilled in His creation, science has often become the base manipulation of things to produce wealth, aggrandize the ego of the scientist, and further political agendas of ideologues, both on the right and the left.

Instead of a healing art whereby a physician assists nature to work for the benefit of the sick, medicine has become a playground of the ego wherein the physician manipulates the structure of the body to do whatever the patient wants: sterilization, abortion, body-enhancement and gender reassignment surgeries, lopping off fat to lose weight, inserting (and removing) sexual organs at will; the list could go on and on.

Truly, man has removed himself so far from nature that for many years of the 20th Century, doctors were teaching women that it was far healthier for their babies if they used "formula" instead of the natural and nutritious milk that their own bodies provided. Of course, this myth was later disproven by the same scientific community who once said the latter; but isn't it troubling that we couldn't plainly see this truth from what God showed us in our own bodies?

After many years of this mistake, psychology has proposed that a number of neuroses and emotional wounds of men and women in the industrialized world has increased because "the science of nutrition" denied them the basic and fundamental bond that a child should have with his mother from the first moments of life outside of the womb.

While others make proper and compelling arguments that there is, indeed, a purpose in nature, my purpose above is to merely identify the results of several centuries of our world where nature has been inverted.

We, as Christians, need to stand up and admit that we have been complicit in this denial of the purpose in nature. God appointed us stewards of His glorious creation when He assigned Adam the work of tending His garden. But what have we done with that sacred vocation?

If there is purpose in nature, then we need to narrow down our inquiry for a moment and ask a very important question: Is there a purpose for our sex? If we cannot answer this question or if we answer the question wrongly, our inquiry will be in vain.

The reality is that many Christians, even those who profess to be counselors and pastors, abuse our stewardship of God's creation and our role as teachers by denying that there is purpose in our sex, and therefore, do not understand why sexual intimacy should be reserved for man and women in the context of Biblical marriage.

Sin Darkens the Intellect

Why this denial in the purpose of nature for sex? What happened then? Why didn't men just discern God through nature, as it clearly reveals so much truth? Paul provides us with the answer: "So they are without excuse;for though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their senseless minds were darkened (Romans 1:20-21)."

As Paul explains, sin darkens the intellect. When we sin, we can't use our reason clearly. It's hard enough to see God's truth even with the Bible; imagine how hard it was for men before Jesus to see God from nature by themselves!

Paul is fairly clear, however, that these men who failed to see the invisible God in nature suppressed the truth by their wickedness. The Apostle gives no excuses for them. But note that he doesn't say: "Because these men were weak, let's give them a break." Rather, he says: "They are without excuse (v. 20)."

Paul is not speaking about men who refused the Gospel. He's speaking about men who did not benefit from General Revelation and, nevertheless, are accounted guilty for failing to recognize that God exists from the signs that He put into the world.

So, if our sins have darkened our intellects, how do we recover the innocence to think clearly? Paul tells us: "Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth (2 Timothy 2:25)."

This verse states clearly that knowledge of the truth comes about after repentance. Because God is the one granting the repentance, our turning towards Him in repentance originates from His grace for us, which then results in the healing of our hearts and the renewal of our minds.

We see this in scripture when Jesus identified Himself in His coming: "I have come to heal the broken hearted and to set the captives free (Luke 4:18)." How was the Kingdom of Heaven proclaimed? Repent and believe in the gospel. Repentance is the initial stage of healing, and faith in Jesus allows healing to happen in our lives.

How to Respond to the "Gender Nonbinary"

Since the Bible is given to us for training in righteousness, we do well to judge what we discover by the use of reason against those things that we know by faith. Was man created by God or did he evolve from a primordial soup? If what men call science stands against what we know by faith, how do we discern the truth?

The answer, of course, is that sound science must be guided from our faith values, and as sound science reveals itself to us, it will reinforce our faith values. In reality, the .0039 percent of transgender or nonbinary population is not benefitting from our "sensitivity" to their gender identities. Gender dysphoria is a recognizable and diagnosable mental illness in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. As Dr. Michelle Cretella, President of the American College of Pediatricians, has stated so eloquently: "Our bodies declare our sex" – our minds do not.

So how does the Christian respond to this dilemma? The Bible tells us to be "wise as serpents and gentle as doves (Matthew 10:6)." Secular culture would state it another way: "Think globally, act locally."

What that means is that we need to stand up for Biblical values by electing and appointing leaders who represent these ideals, while at the same time, cultivating healthy gender expression with each other in relationships in our local communities and places of worship. You cannot heal a wounded, brokenhearted person by shouting at them on social media. We must cultivate safe places in our faith communities to develop healthy relationships. By this, we can "gently instruct each other," as Paul advises us.

So, men and women in the Body of Christ – rather than be sensitive in your use of pro-nouns and gender-neutral words, reach out and embrace the most vulnerable and wounded among you – invite them into your homes and in your sacred spaces, and become vulnerable with your own struggles as you listen to their hurt and pain. When we do this, we create a place for emotional healing for all of us as we work towards spiritual maturity.

Christopher Doyle, MA, LPC, LCPC is a licensed clinical professional counselor and the Executive Director of the Institute for Healthy Families. This article is based on his new book: The Meaning of Sex: A New Christian Ethos. For more information on how to obtain a copy,

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