Sophia Wisdom works in the world for gender and racial equality. She guides us to lay a foundation for gender and racial equality through inclusive names and images of Deity in our worship. Wisdom guides us to use multicultural divine images that include female and male and more.
Human beings of all genders and races are created in the image of the Divine (Genesis 1:26-27). When we include female and male and more in our naming of God, e.g. “She” and “He,” “Mother and Father,” “Sister and Brother,” and “Friend,” and when we include various races in our imaging of God, then all people can truly believe we are in the divine image and all people are given equal value in the divine image.
Among the many biblical images of the Divine are Mother, Father, and Friend. The Bible names and images God as a loving Mother who not only gives birth to Her children, but also comforts and nurtures them toward their full potential (Isaiah 66:13); and as a Mother whose relationship with her children is so strong that nothing can ever break it (Isaiah 49:15). The picture of God as a tender Father, loving and caring for his children (Psalm 103:13), is just one of the many divine images in the Bible. God is also a Friend to everyone (John 15:12-15). The biblical divine image of Friend is inclusive in gender and race, and suggests mutual, reciprocal relationship.
Rev. Larry E. Schultz conducts the Chancel Choir and Children’s Choir of Pullen Memorial Baptist Church, Raleigh, North Carolina, in “Our God Is a Mother and a Father” to a familiar hymn tune, with pictures from various artists.
Words © Jann Aldredge-Clanton, from Inclusive Hymns for Liberating Christians (Eakin Press, 2006). Recording © Jann Aldredge-Clanton & Larry E. Schultz, from Inclusive Hymns for Liberating Christians CD (Eakin Press, 2007) For permissions, contact Jann Aldredge-Clanton; for additional inclusive music for all ages.
Performed by: Chancel Choir and Children’s Choir of Pullen Memorial Baptist Church, Raleigh, North Carolina. Conductor Rev. Larry E. Schultz
David Clanton: photo of Pullen Memorial Baptist Church Choir and Congregation and photos of children in performances of Imagine God! A Children’s Musical Exploring and Expressing Images of God
Rev. Dr. Angela Yarber: “Gaia (Mother Earth)” © Angela Yarber. Used with permission.
Hartwig Kopp-Delaney: “His Hand” © Hartwig Kopp-Delaney
Recorded by: Ward Productions, Pinehurst, North Carolina