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XX and XY Are Not the Whole Story

This blog post is not about gender, how you identify, or who you feel attracted to. Rather it is about cherry-picking science and putting God’s beautiful creation in a small controllable box.

My daughter attends a homeschooling group on Friday mornings. The homeschooling group meets in a church. The room we meet in is used for a child’s Sunday School classroom. One day I noticed a new poster on the wall, it was a beautiful piece of artwork that showed Adam and Eve in the garden spending time with God. As I was admiring the piece and contemplating being in the garden walking with God, I noticed small black letters at the bottom of the poster. The letters were strategically written under Adam on one side and Eve on the other. As I looked closer I saw that under Adam was written XY and under Eve XX. The short chromosome designation for males and females. I immediately felt anger and resistance. The rest of the day I contemplated my response and why it was so strong and continued to reverberate through me.

1. I realized that we now know through genetic testing that XX and XY are not the only way a person's chromosomes can be arranged.

2. This meant that we are not teaching our children a full picture of God’s creation.

3. This meant the church chose to cherry-pick science and not wrestle with the full picture. (I know children might not understand or it is not material that might be appropriate for their age.)

4. I began to wonder if the church really understood, experienced, and believed that God pronounced His creation good in Genesis 1.

5. Did they really believe that God created each human being in His own image?

6. If they believe that life begins at conception, how should the church act differently if there is a miscarriage?

7. If this child at the moment of the egg and sperm meeting bore the image of God, what should our reaction be to their life in the womb, birth, and life no matter how long or short, or difficult?

What I write below is not an exhaustive list, as I did just a quick search on the internet. You can find this information on government health websites, and I am not going to explain all the effects these can have on a child. A “normal” genetic chromosome sex for a female is 23 pairs of X chromosomes, and a male is 23 pairs of XY, a total of 46 chromosomes.

Female Abnormalities:

  • Mosaicism

  • 45, X - Turners Syndrome

  • XX - Male Syndrome

  • XX - Gonadal Dysgenesis

  • XXXXX - Penta X Syndrome

  • XXXX - Tetrasomy X

  • XXX - Triple X Syndrome

Male Abnormalities:

  • Mosaicism

  • 45, X - Turners Syndrome

  • XYY - will present normal

  • XXY - Klinefelter

  • XY - Gonadal Dysgenesis

  • XXXY


  • XXYY

Lastly, I want to mention there are other genes that cause disease, abnormalities, etc. Bottom line we cannot cherry-pick science and put creation in a tiny box we can control. We need to wrestle with these things and have a conversation within the church. How do we love and believe that God created us good and in His image when we are sometimes very broken in our very basic genetic makeup? How does this change our behavior and church rituals and liturgy?

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