The Christian use of God-language has become a matter of debate among laypersons, theologians, worship leaders, and others. Such debates are often heated, because the address of God impinges on what many persons find to be close to the heart of their spirituality.
Combining doxological, Christian, and feminist concerns, Gail Ramshaw examines each of the primary types of Christian language about God and in the process, evaluates gender issues and proposes helpful guideline and solutions.
Many questions are involved in this issue. Can masculine pronouns for God be retained on he basis of biblical usage? Can Trinitarian language be gender-inclusive? What should be the Christian understanding of the divine name of God (YHWH) in the Old Testament? What are the possibilities and what are the hazards of using human images (‘judge,’ ‘shepherd,’ ‘father,’ ‘mother,’ ‘Sophia’) for God? Is all human language-and possibly all human thought-necessarily metaphorical?