Christianity and Sexuality: What We Believe, Why We Don’t Believe It
Recently, a number of books have been published grappling with what the Bible and reality says about same-sex practice. Yet pastor Todd Wilson believes there is a crucial gap in these resources:
I don’t think we’ve dealt adequately with the question of homosexuality in the light of God’s design for human sexuality. Instead we’ve addressed the issue too narrowly—at times almost too exclusively in biblical or personal practical terms. (13)
Our approach typically asks one of two questions: What does the Bible say about homosexuality? How can I love homosexuals like Jesus? Although important, these questions miss something: “We need to put the question in a larger theological context” (14).
Enter Mere Sexuality, a cogent, compact book exploring what Christians have always believed about human sexuality. In a culture that’s deeply confused about…
Gender & Sexual Identity: We Need a Fresh Perspective for Our People
For many years the intersection of gay identity and Christian identity in the United States was a virtual no-man’s land. Nate Collins is one of the more recent voices bridging that gap with his new book All But Invisible.
While similarly focused books emphasize the biblical and theological issues surrounding faith, gender, and sexuality, he provides a renewed vision of gospel flourishing for LGBT people by speaking from his own experience as a gay man in a mixed orientation marriage.
Collins is committed to helping churches include LGBT people in the family life of the church. But first, he addresses two big-picture problems facing Christians who want to explore identity questions at the intersection of faith, gender, and sexuality.
1) Vision Problem: The Abundant Life for LGBT People
This first problem is…
Tamar: The First Woman of the New Testament – An Excerpt from Prostitutes and Polygamists
Since God has a clear plan for how he created sex and prostitution does not fit in that plan, why does he include prostitutes and polygamists in his master plan? Author David Lamb assures us that God can use each of us, even in our brokenness.
In the excerpt of Prostitutes and Polygamists we look at today, David Lamb tells the story of Tamar, the righteous prostitute.
The first woman mentioned in the New Testament isn’t Mary the mother of Jesus or Elizabeth the mother of John the Baptist. When you realize that Matthew begins with a genealogy, you might think the first woman of the New Testament would be the first woman of the Old Testament, Eve. Nope. Well, then, surely it has to be one of the…
Love, Old Testament Style – An Excerpt from Prostitutes and Polygamists
Why doesn’t the Church talk about sex? The topic is often uncomfortable for parents and children, but the Bible certainly doesn’t avoid it. Yet, if the Church does not speak into it, what other voice will our children hear?
In today’s excerpt, David Lamb explains why “Prostitutes and Polygamists” must be talked about.
Love, Old Testament style, was weird, bizarre, and often unholy. The book of Genesis makes it clear what the ideal was — one man, one woman, together, forever — but often for the people of God, the ideal was not the reality. The Old Testament doesn’t just talk about sex but includes many incidents of what would now be considered deviant sexual behavior. Love may be “a many splendored thing,” but in the Old Testament, it went beyond…
Porneia: Sex Gone Bad — An Excerpt from “Faithful: A Theology of Sex”
Most Bibles translate this term “fornication” or “sexual immorality.” But as Beth Felker Jones explains in her new books Faithful: An Ordinary Theology of Sex, (available 5/5/15) “These translations may have lost their ability to convey the biblical idea of porneia.” (43) She goes on:
The word porneia is an umbrella term — one under which a number of different situations fit — for sex gone wrong. Porneia is sex deformed by sin. It is sex that is contrary to God’s good intentions. (43)
The problem is, we can hardly have a conversation in contemporary North America about any…
“All Sex Is Real”: An Ordinary Theology of Sex
Let’s talk about sex.
Perhaps it’s appropriate we have this conversation on the very day the Supreme Court argues issues of sex and marriage. It’s an important conversation, a few characters have in Margaret Atwood’s novel Oryx and Crake.
Jimmy and Oryx are talking about Oryx’s past childhood sexual exploitation when Jimmy asks, “It wasn’t real sex, was it? . . . In the movies, it was only acting. Wasn’t it?”
Oryx responds, “But Jimmy, you should know. All sex is real.”
That’s the foundational premise of Beth Felker Jones’s new book Faithful: An Ordinary Theology of Sex. This short book explores the goodness of sexuality as created and redeemed. It suggests ways to navigate the difficulties of living in a world in which sexuality suffers the effects of the fall.
It begins with the…
McKnight Outlines Ancient & Pauline Views of Sexuality, Offers a Way Forward— An Excerpt from “A Fellowship of Differents”
By “it,” I mean helping regular churchgoers engage Jesus and his world, and equipping pastors to take popular theology to the people in their pews.
His latest book firmly targets ecclesiology and its impact on the Christian life. In A Fellowship of Differents, McKnight’s thesis is simple, yet eye-opening for anyone in vocational ministry:
Church life shapes the Christian life.
One of the more important chapters brings clarity to the biblical text and a cohesive response to a conversation romping through the American church: human sexuality.