God loves you. We love you. Tell us what it’s like to be you.

Andrew Wilson recently preached a message at King’s Church Eastbourne on “Transgender and Intersex.” His text is Matthew 19:1-12, and he does a faithful job with it. He is a really fantastic communicator, and he clearly sets forth the teaching of scripture and how it applies to our thinking about transgender and intersex.

This message is not mainly polemical but pastoral. I like his line about how we ought to communicate with those wrestling with gender identity issues: “God loves you. We love you. Tell us what it’s like to be you.” Of course there’s more to say than that, but we certainly shouldn’t be saying less than that, right?

On a related note, Andrew also participated in a podcast discussion with Megan Defranza about her book on intersex. You can listen below.

At one point during the discussion, Andrew asks Defranza a pointed question. He presses her to explain how her views on intersex challenge a more conservative reading of scripture. I’m not sure that she ever answers his question directly. If I were to characterize the challenge her book brings, I would do it this way.

Conservative evangelicals have argued that the “givenness” of the male/female binary is the basis for the givenness of the gender role distinctions. Defranza believes that intersex persons prove that the male/female binary is not a “given.” In other words, the male/female binary of Genesis 1 and Matthew 19 is no norm at all. One implication of this view is that evangelical Christians can and should embrace transgender identities as normal and good.

As I have said before, the revision that she proposes is a theological earthquake and completely at odds with what the Bible teaches.

I am grateful for Andrew’s willingness to address these issues with clarity and pastoral concern. More pastors need to be doing the same.

7 Responses to God loves you. We love you. Tell us what it’s like to be you.

  1. johnhughmorgan3 May 25, 2016 at 6:00 pm #

    Talking about people who identify psychologically as being “transgendered” and people who have rare physiological intersex conditions is like comparing apples and oranges. They are not even in the same ball park. And to assume that transgendered people are included in Matthew 19 is blasphemy.

  2. Luther Wesley May 25, 2016 at 6:46 pm #

    The binary of male/female is a given. Using the subject, but very real, experiences by some in this fallen world does not refute that.

    It almost always comes down to one’s view in the authority of scripture.

  3. Sam Jenkins May 25, 2016 at 8:17 pm #

    This comment won’t make the feed – but you’ll read it at least, Denny. Why are you so fascinated with Transgenders? Why are you preaching so hard against free will? If they want to, or feel like they need to live like this, why are you so arrogantly pushing against them? Do you really think this makes people want to follow your “Christian” (but very-un-christian) values?
    You don’t preach like Jesus would approve of. At all. You smite, you judge, you arrogantly feel like you are so high up that you are anointed to tell who is wrong and who isn’t?

    Why are you so bothered by homosexuals or transgenders? It’s been going on for years…thousands actually; but it seems to be the main subject you are focused. Which means you think about them constantly.

    A very strange approach to Christianity you have, and definitely not a right one.

    • John May 26, 2016 at 2:33 am #

      Sam – I agree that Denny has spent a great deal of time on this and his never Trump position. And at times, it does seem tiresome. There is more to discuss.

      However, Denny and many other faithful Christians (including myself) are standing for biblical fidelity and the authority of Scripture. He and the rest of us have a responsibility to admonish the Church when it is faced with this type of depravity. Hard truth will never be accepted by the world, but it is the only way to soften a heart. The Christ of the Bible, will emphatically cast those who live in purposeful rebellion to the lake of fire. We pray that you, Sam will have the veil removed and that you will be enlightened by the truth of God’s word.

    • steve hays May 27, 2016 at 12:45 am #

      “If they want to, or feel like they need to live like this, why are you so arrogantly pushing against them?”

      The issue Denny generally addresses isn’t whether gov’t should punish homosexual or transgender activity, but whether gov’t should punish those who dissent from homosexual and transgender activity. If you’re going to frame the issue in terms of freedom, that’s a two-way street. What about freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and freedom of association? What about the freedom to op-out of the homosexual/transgender movement?

      “You don’t preach like Jesus would approve of. At all. You smite, you judge, you arrogantly feel like you are so high up that you are anointed to tell who is wrong and who isn’t?”

      Well, Jesus said, “For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander” (Mt 15:19).

      So it sounds like Denny is taking his cue from Jesus.

      “Why are you so bothered by homosexuals or transgenders? It’s been going on for years…thousands actually.”

      Yes, it’s been going on for centuries or millennia. What hasn’t been going on until recently is gov’t conscripting everyone to endorse and facilitate the homosexual/transgender revolution.

      “Which means you think about them constantly.”

      That’s such a disingenuous question. The power elite is forcing everyone to think about it constantly. Threatening everyone to conform to that radical dictatorial agenda.

  4. Brian Wright May 26, 2016 at 7:26 am #

    Yeah, DeFranza’s book is not good and completely missing her target audience. Something I tried to point out in the short review I was asked to write for the ETR about it:

    https://www.academia.edu/15019315/Sex_Difference_in_Christian_Theology_Male_Female_and_Intersex_in_the_Image_of_God._By_Megan_K._DeFranza._Grand_Rapids_MI_Eerdmans_2015

  5. steve hays May 26, 2016 at 10:33 pm #

    The existence of intersex persons does nothing to relativize the gender binary. It’s just an example of genetic defects in a fallen world. That hardly neutralizes what’s normative. It’s like saying we shouldn’t attempt to surgically correct a congenital heart defect.

Comment here. Please use FIRST and LAST name.

Powered by WordPress. Designed by Woo Themes