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It’s the hot topic of the moment. Christians, the church and the Bible seem to be out of step with modern attitudes towards homosexuality. And there is growing hostility towards those who hold a different view. So is God homophobic? And what do we say, and how do we relate to to both Christians and non Christians who experience same–sex attraction.
In this short, simple book, Sam Allberry wants to help confused Christians understand what God has said about these questions in the scriptures, and offers a positive and liberating way forward through the debate.
.. But you wouldn't expect anything less from Sam Allberry. The book is incredibly easy to read, and full of compassion towards those who experience Same Sex Attraction (SSA). Allberry speaks from personal experience which makes his arguments all the more compelling. For example the need for Christians to love their gay friends, more than their gay friends do. And the need to dispense with the idea that in order to share the gospel with gay friends that we need to somehow first rid them of their homosexuality (paraphrased by me). Yet he is clear on what the bible has to say to all of us in regards to the need to flee from sin (with particular emphasis on sexual sin, an area in which no-one is exempt). But what is greatest of all is his clear explanation of the gospel and the true freedom and liberation that Jesus offers.
I first came across Is God anti-gay on Carl Truman’s reading list and I am glad that I read this book. Sam has given the Christian community a book that it has needed for years! In this book, Sam carefully and skillfully handles the Bible text. He is pastoral and sensitive. While I would like to have seen Sam answer more questions, those that he has answered are the bigger, more common ones. I found his answers very useful and I will be coming back to read these time and time again. His answer to the question, ‘aren’t we just picking and choosing which Old Testament laws apply today?’ was good, but he could have taken a bit more time to explain the categories of the laws he uses (moral, civil, ceremonial) which may leave those unfamiliar with this categorization feeling a bit lost. Aside from a minor quibble, ‘Is God anti-gay?’ is a readable and biblical response to handing the text and speaking the truth in love to those, who are experience same sex attraction, and yet are created in image of God. He is pastoral and exhorts us to careful listening and prayer, which will shape a Godly response of wisdom, counsel and gentle instruction. Read my full review at http://www.theology-matters.com/2013/10/04/review-is-god-anti-gay/
My friend Sam Allberry has bravely spoken about his own struggle with same sex attraction, what he believes the Bible says about that, and his decision to live a celibate lifetyle as part of his devotion to Jesus Christ. The idea of anybody being willing to lay down his life in this way seems strange to the modern mind. But Allberry believes it is no sacrifice to him to do so. Too few people are able to really listen to those we disagree with, so read this whatever your view on the most controversial issue that today faces the Church and broader society (and their relationship). You will not be disappointed and will understand Sam's viewpoint better, and become more compassionate towards homosexuals. A friend of mine reported that in his workplace he is the only one who has a traditional view of marriage and sexuality. He is also the only friend of the one openly homosexual there. In the world many homosexuals still face discrimination and even hate crimes. Imagine the impact if every homosexual felt the people that were most accepting and loving towards them were the Christians.
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