How Christians can think biblically, act wisely, and relate lovingly over the issue of transgender.
There’s been huge cultural change in the last few decades. Same-sex marriage would have been unthinkable 20 or 30 years ago. Now it’s almost universally accepted in the Western world. Now suddenly the issue of transgender is the next big social, cultural issue that has dominated the headlines.
Vaughan Roberts surveys the Christian worldview and seeks to apply these principles to the many complex questions surrounding gender identity. This short book gives an overview and a starting point for constructive discussion as we seek to live in a world with different values, and love, serve and relate to transgender people.
Talking Points is a series of short books designed to help Christians think, talk and relate to others with compassion, conviction and wisdom about today’s big issues.
|Dimensions||110mm x 178mm|
|Publisher||The Good Book Company|
In this brief book on a complex subject Vaughan Roberts combines the traditional Christian understanding of gender and the body, with a very careful, loving, understanding stance toward transgender people. The two almost never go together, and that’s why this book is so good!
The sixth and final short chapter – entitled ‘Wisdom’ – is in my view the best part of the book. It oozes biblical integrity; Christian love and pastoral sensitivity; gentleness and patience. Coming at the end of a short but serious book on this difficult question, it reminds us that this is not merely an ‘issue’ to have right theology about, but people – made in the image of God – to be served with truth and love.... continue reading
‘Transgender’ is short, accessible, and yet theologically robust and emotionally sensitive. It answers many of the questions Christians may have, equipping them to speak clarity into the confusion. Every church should have this on their bookstand.... continue reading
Transgender is an essential read for anyone wanting to get to grips with this important issue. Accessible enough to be read by a youth group; deep enough to provide a helpful starting point to church leaders, parents, teachers and others … It’s not the last word on the matter, but it’s a great place to start.... continue reading
This is a wonderful book to lay out clearly key ideas about the topic of transgender. I would recommend this book to everyone.
The author spend most of the pages promoting idea of "body over soul" and comparing racism, species confusion to transgenderism. The author confused between transgenderism and LGB, he attempted to mis-inform the reader. In chapter 2, the author put the blame on technology development. He uses a very bad example of racism, equates it with species confusion, and brought the topic further to transgenderism. This is a tactic trying to create confusion among readers who are unfamiliar with the topic. The author only started to discuss about the Bible in chapter 3. The author further suggest on what the reader should do. Therefore, this book is not a thought provoking book, but a manual according to what he believe as "what the Bible says". Lastly, the author expressed about his concern that his freedom of speech are pretty much suppressed. However, this phenomena happened on both sides, pro-LGBT Christians were suppressed in most of the chruches and in most of the circumstances too. It was a great dissapointment that the author only mentioned about the Eunuchs once in his book. This is clear that the author doesn't give a fair discussion and biblical information to the reader on the great debate of transgenderism and the Bible. As a conclusion, this is not a helpful book for Christian, but a manupulative book.
This book is an excellent intro into the topic of transgenderism from a christian and a solid biblical perspective. One little point of disagreement but other 99,9% brilliant. I think it is a very informed and biblically sound booklet.
A very readable book with concise and thorough Biblical and theological content. However I felt it was less helpful on matters pastoral and practical.
Very clear and readable. Faithful to Biblical teaching yet pastoral and sensitive.
It’s a pleasure to recommend Vaughan Robert’s slender new book, Transgender. For at least a year I’ve felt on the back foot with transgender issues, feeling the tug of the tide of popular opinion in our society as the media sympathises with and celebrates Bruce Jenner and other transgender people. I felt that as a Christian I should have something alternative to say, but I didn’t know exactly what it should be. As a seminary student and now a pastor I was particularly keen to have something to say to people who asked me, but felt ill-equipped.
Some things to note: first, this is a book for Christians. Roberts says as much at the beginning, and the overall tenor is one of explaining from the Bible what we should make of the transgender transgender phenomenon. Second, this is a controversial book. I read it on the Tube in 6 sittings (it’s short: only 74 pages) and it just about passed the embarrassment test: that is, I could just about bear to open it up in public and suffer the glances of fellow passengers as they realised I was reading a bright yellow book called Transgender. Actually, that anxiety I felt showed me how far the cultural tide has gone out: it is no longer easy to even be seen to be considering an alternative view on this topic.
Roberts structures his book with helpful clarity, describing in the transgender phenomenon in chapter 1; the “iWorld” in chapter 2 (which he says is the cultural prizing of autonomy and authenticity and explains why the tide has shifted); the sweep of the Bible story in chapters 3-5 (Creation, Fall, Rescue); and frequently asked questions in chapter 6 (which he calls “wisdom” issues).
The book’s greatest strength is that it fills a gap in the market. As far as I’m aware, no-one has written an entry-level book for UK Christians, and this is short and accessible guide. I have previously read Mark Yarhouse’s Understanding Gender Dysphoria but I found it at least an intermediate-level book, and pulled its punches in terms of pastoral conclusions. Roberts’s book is fair to the transgender phenomenon and fair to the Bible, within the constraints of its 74 pages. I highly recommend it.
If I had a reservation it would be that I wouldn’t want a non-Christian to read it. It comes across as too brief, perhaps too curt, to be understood well. The author understands this - and his own honesty about his struggle with same-sex attraction helps in that - and says that what is needed is for outsiders to know that Jesus welcomed everyone, and the church is called to exhibit that love now. Inevitably, that is a long-term exhibition. In fact, I am struck by the way Jesus did engage with transgender people in the New Testament (Matt. 19:12; Acts 8:26-40) and wondered if more could have been made of this.
Full disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in order to write a review. The thoughts are, however, my own.
Good, clear introduction to this issue from a firm, Christian viewpoint. Suitable to give to young people who may be struggling with this.
Very clear and a compassionate book. Handling a difficult topic with sensitivity. Will be an invaluable tool for Christians wanting to act as Jesus did to those struggling with this issue.
How is one to react when a person tells us that they think they belong to one of the many sexual varieties covered by the description of ‘Transgender’?
Our natural reaction could well be to express disgust, or in confusion, to voice unqualified acceptance. Vaughan Roberts suggests that this desire to so ‘Self - Authenticate’ arises in a soul who has lost both sail and anchor. They need personal friendship in which gentle help can be given to discover the wonder and assurance of their place in God’s creation and of his redeeming purpose in Christ.
This little book is intended to help the individual Christian to have thought about the subject beforehand and so to be prepared.
I recommend it highly.
Really helpful and thoughtful book on the topic of the moment. So many headlines are on this subject at present, and I for one had done little thinking on it. Vaughan has written with biblical clarity, human compassion, and commendable brevity! The final chapter has wise advice on how we should respond to people for whom this issue is personal; how the church should respond, how parents should respond to their children; how to respond to those who are close or not so close to us; and how Christians should respond to our culture. We are doing a sermon series on themes from Genesis, and this will be one of my sources of help in preaching shortly on gender.