Was Jesus intersex? Dr. Susannah Cornwall of Manchester University's Lincoln Theological Institute suggests this in a paper titled "Intersex and Ontology: A Response to The Church, Women Bishops and Provision." The Telegraph wrote about the paper and, shocker!, a controversy ensued. The Telegraph followed up the article with a blog post by Rev Dr. Peter Mullen titled "Jesus was a man: look at the evidence, Dr Cornwall." Cornwall responded to that editorial on her own blog here. She writes:
Dr Mullen is right to observe that those who met and interacted with Jesus seem to have had no doubt that he was a man – but, crucially, this is not the same as certainty that he was biologically male. Most of us will meet people on a regular basis who identify as completely unremarkable men or women, but who also have an interest condition. There will hardly ever be any need for us to know about the specificities of someone else's chromosomes, gonads, hormone levels or sex cells – but if we did, we might be surprised by the number of people whose physical sex varies in some way from what we consider "normal".
Some of those who argue that women should not be consecrated as priests or bishops do so because they believe that there is something intrinsic to maleness which makes males able to govern and lead in a way females cannot. Others who oppose women priests and bishops argue that a priest or bishop somehow participates in Jesus' own priesthood, standing in Jesus' place, and that since Jesus was male, a female cannot take on this role.
However, I believe that most people who argue in this way never make the distinction between sex and gender which I have outlined above.
The paper that started it all, Intersex and Ontology: A Response to The Church, Women Bishops and Provision