A Christian radio host is strongly contesting the claim made by a rabbi that was included in an op-ed piece in the New York Times.
The controversial article entitled "Is God Transgender?" posits that the Bible actually espouses the idea of gender fluidity. In his piece, Rabbi Mark Sameth lamented that Bible scriptures are actually being used to justify social prejudices as in the case of transgenders.
"The Israelites took the transgender trope from their surrounding cultures and wove it into their own sacred scripture. The four-Hebrew-letter name of God, which scholars refer to as the Tetragrammaton, YHWH, was probably not pronounced "Jehovah" or "Yahweh," as some have guessed. The Israelite priests would have read the letters in reverse as Hu/Hi — in other words, the hidden name of God was Hebrew for "He/She," he said.
He added that God was perceived by early worshippers are a dual-gendered deity.
In his response, made through his "Line of Fire" radio programme, host Dr. Michael Brown debunked Sameth's claim, saying that since the Bible was being interpreted in the context of social issues, then it should be clarified to be understood fully.
"There is not a stitch of evidence to support this – and I mean not a stitch. Nowhere do we read in any ancient biblical text that the divine name was read backwards by priests (you might as well argue that readers of this article read my name backwards). This is not suggested in any authoritative writing, and there is zero evidence that YHWH was ever taken to mean "He/She," he wrote.
The radio host also said that in the thousands of times that YHWH was mentioned in the text, it was never referred to in a feminine context.
Brown cited the consistent reference to God in a masculine form in the Bible.
"So, the rabbi is not simply making a mountain out of a molehill, he is making one out of a non-existent molehill... But his attempt to use the Hebrew Scriptures to support transgender activism is utterly misguided, fatally flawed and unworthy of serious consideration," he said.