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Christian compassion, convictions and wisdom for today's big issues

from 18 reviews

How Christians can think biblically, act wisely, and relate lovingly over transgender issues.

Part of the Talking Points series.

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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.

Product details


  • Introduction
  • 1. Culture
  • 2. Compassion
  • 3. Convictions: Creation
  • 4. Convictions: Fall
  • 5. Convictions: Redemption and Glory
  • 6. Wisdom
  • Further reading

Free extras


Contributors Vaughan Roberts
ISBN 9781784981952
Format Paperback
First published September 2016
Dimensions 110mm x 178mm x 7mm
Language English
Pages 80
Publisher The Good Book Company

Also available in


Tim Keller

Pastor, author and Vice-President of The Gospel Coalition

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!

Independent reviews

"Have this on your bookstand"

Camilla Olim, Christian Concern, September 30th 2016

‘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

"An essential read"

Tom Roberts, Bethinking, October 3rd 2016

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


"A valuable primer"

Samuel James, The Gospel Coalition, September 21st 2016

Roberts’s book offers a helpful summary of what the church should be saying about transgenderism and gender identity.... continue reading

Customer reviews


“Excellent introduction”

A really brief helpful book for Christians wanting an introduction to transgender from a biblically orthodox stand point.

It's not evangelistic/apologetic (and isn't trying to be) so I wouldn't give it a non-Christian.


“Great place to start...”

(Review written for 'Transgender (ebook)')

I was clueless about Transgender. The issue was forced on me when a young person in our Christian community came back from Uni as a transgender person. This book, for me, was a great place to start.


“Balanced and helpful”

The book is clearly written, informative and balanced, without being too long or complex


“light weight but good”

If, like me, you have an interest in the whole lgbt issue, then this book on gender dysphoria or transgenderism will provide a basic introduction. It traces the issues as to why transgenderism is growing and challenges the worldly reaction that either says yuk or yes. I am sure, like me, the initial reaction is yuk, partly because it is so obviously at odds with what God has created. But Mr Roberts makes the very real Biblical point that just as true believers are trophies of grace, so we should see unbelievers as targets of grace and not as yuk. We really can be gracious without condoning the sin and we must remember that for all of us, our sins (whatever they are) separate us from God. We also need to realise that very soon (if not already), lgbt people will come into our churches, get saved and start to grow in Christ. We have to be there to help them in their journey towards greater Christlikeness.


“Helpful, truthful and compassionate”

This is a wonderful book to lay out clearly key ideas about the topic of transgender. I would recommend this book to everyone.


“Manipulative and Mis-informed”

(Review written for 'Talking Points: Transgender (ebook)')

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.

Thanks for your review. Sorry that you found the book less than helpful. We don’t make any apologies that this is a book by a Christian minister, written primarily for Christian people—with the aim of helping Christian believers apply their faith and worldview to this complex and heartfelt question. As we say in the introduction “Transgender" covers so many different expressions that it is impossible to speak precisely and carefully to each person’s experience—if you have been upset or hurt by any of the ways we expressed the things we have tried to communicate in this book, we apologise.

But we do not want to apologise for any of the convictions we have shared in the book about who we are as created and fallen people, and how we are called to grow and be when we are redeemed through Christ for eternity. We also share your desire to help Christians understand more about the pain, difficulty and confusion that many transgender people experience, and a need for churches to love and welcome those who find themselves in this place. Wherever you are in your own journey, we hope you find a group of Christians who will care for you as a human being who will share with you the good news that sets everyone free. With our love and prayers. The Good Book Company Team


“Very helpful introduction”

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.


“Informative but pastorally thin”

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”

Very clear and readable. Faithful to Biblical teaching yet pastoral and sensitive.


“Short, helpful and accessible”

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.

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Transgender | Vaughan Roberts | £4.99 £4.24