Language for God draws readers into the necessity of language and images for God that are expansive and inclusive of all genders. People hunger for scriptural and theological explanations that adequately answer criticisms and support dialogue. Using Lutheran perspectives as a compass, Mary J. Streufert offers scriptural, theological, and historical insights that advance Christianity's ongoing reformation of androcentric images and language for God.
This book is for a variety of people, including those who are unsure of why language and images for God matter; those who need assurance that language and images for God include all genders, including people who identify as queer; and those who want language for God to be faithful to the Scriptures and to the witness of the Christian theological tradition. It is also for people who need convincing that God is Mother as much as Father, pregnant Christ as much as crucified Christ, and Godhead beyond all gendered appellations.
The book is pastoral in that it explores the deeply personal, communal, and social ways language and images influence who we are and how we live. It takes seriously the hunger for more--for God beyond the Father. This book is also intellectual in that it challenges contemporary arguments for Father and Son as exclusive names for the first two persons of the Trinity by exploring historical developments in the ways people define sex, gender, and sexuality. Without a rigorous assessment of how these views affect Christianity, Christian language and images for God will remain androcentric. Insights from the Reformation, most pointedly from Martin Luther and the Lutheran tradition, offer points on a compass toward the reformation of Christian language and images for God in our day.