"So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female, he created them" (NIV)
This passage is one of the early anomalies - some call inconsistencies - of the Bible. This is actually before the narrative which explains that God created Adam, then created Eve from Adam - that story is in the second chapter of Genesis. Now I'm not a literalist when reading Scripture, but many people are. In a literal sense then:
1.) Who is them if Adam was created first and, originally, only?
2.) Male and Female? Shouldn't that be Male or Female? It could be suggested that transgenders are "male and female", that others are "male or female".
3.) And this doesn't specifically say one cannot go from one gender to the other.
Only logicians or English teachers will appreciate the nuances of those three arguments.
One glaring omission from this verse is the Intersexed, those people whose genetic component is atypical. Intersex often presents in a physical manner with genitalia that is not that well defined. (I won't go into a long dissertation about Intersex, please click on the hotlink to further your study on this important topic). Now remember, God does not make "mistakes"...and to that, I would agree. At the very least then, this phrase - and the subsequent narratives about Adam and Eve in the later chapters of Genesis - is incomplete.
As the Creation story continues, God begins with what are essentially "binaries" or "either/or's" if you'd like: Heaven and Earth, Day and Night, Land and Sea, etc. Again, these absolute depictions are incomplete. We often view Heaven - or the skies - as that which is above us. And that Earth is that which is under our feet. What of the space in between, the space where we are? Just how high "up" is it before we reach the sky? We have no word for this space which is neither Heaven or Earth, and yet both...and the Bible doesn't mention one either. We also know of Dawn and Dusk...those periods of the day that are neither "day" nor "night" and yet both. The Creation story does not include them, yet they exist - certainly part of God's work. And what of the shoreline? Due to the tides along the sea and fluctuations in water levels with our lakes and rivers, there is that portion that is sometimes land, sometimes water - neither and both. Again, the Creation story does not mention this in its absolutism, yet they, too, exist - certainly part of God's work. If these "binaries" truly aren't absolutes, then why would Man/Woman be absolute, too?
But let's look at that Male/Female binary. The original Hebrew word for Earth was "adameh". Some Jewish scholars suggest that "adam" (small "a" intentional here) then is the early word for an Earthling - no gender specified. In fact, when God creates adam/Adam, no gender is mentioned. Only when Eve is created does gender become designated. And yet Eve is not created as a binary - like Heaven/Earth, Day/Night, Land/Sea. Eve is created for companionship - Adam complains about being lonely. Eve isn't even created for procreation purposes! Even if this is intended as a binary - another either/or - we've talked about those other absolutes as having areas in between - neither and both. That standard should then also apply to the Scriptural references to gender. I'll add that some transgenders suggest that Eve was the first transgender as she was a woman made out of a man. I'm not that bold.
One last facet is the issue of the "image of God". Many scholars suggest that God's image is not a physical representation, but a spiritual one. In other words, we were not created as a physical replication of God, but were imbued with God's "image" in our souls. There will be further discussion of this issue in a couple of subsequent essays, but there are numerous references that can be construed to support this notion - transgenderism aside. As such, our physical presentation is not a concern to God.