One of the ever increasingly tense conversations going on in our world today is the discussion about gender. Transgenderism is a big and complicated topic. The discussions can often become very heated very quickly because it is a very personal issue for many people, this can sometimes lead to convictions being based on experience rather than evidence. One thing that I really don’t like to see, is a Christian bashing a person over the head with the Bible and neglecting to see that before them stands a person who is hurting. Walker doesn’t do that.
Over the years I have read a number of books on the topic of transgenderism and gender dysphoria. ‘God and the Transgender Debate‘ is probably the best book that introduces you to the different ideologies between the transgender movement whilst also wrestling with what the Bible actually says.
Walker writes with compassion and a genuine care to see hurting people cared for as well as they can be. This book is written for the Christian to help them understand what the Bible actually says about gender identity and to know how to approach certain members of the LGBTQ+ community.
The thing that I like about this book is that Walker really gets you into the Bible, touching on a whole host of topics. For example, you’ll read about God’s good design of two genders and why that’s important, you’ll read about God’s sovereignty, how to love your neighbour well and more. Walker is also super practical giving you pointers on how to engage with people with opposing views and how to have good conversations with your children about gender identity, sin, God’s design for marriage and more.
One of the things that Walker insists on, and raises a few times throughout the book, is the important truth the every single person, regardless of whether we agree with their assessment of their gender, is made in the image of God and is therefore should be treated well and respectfully. The last thing we need are more angry Christians going to war on people who are already hurting, we must learn to lovingly have this discussion with the genuine desire that people would see how God’s design is right and good for all of humanity.
This book was originally published in 2017, so why the need for an expanded and updated version already? Here’s what Albert Mohler says in his forward;
“The updating was not made necessary by any inadequacy in the original edition. To the contrary, this new edition is made urgent by the changes to the moral landscape that have emerged in just the last half-decade and less… the transgender revolution has now reached a critical stage, and it now touches virtually every dimension of society.”
If you want to understand what gender identity is, what gender dysphoria is and what God’s good plan for the world is, this is a great book that will help you think through it all. In about 200 pages, Walker covers a lot of ground, but it’s worth journeying with him through it all. I also like that at the back of the book there are definitions of common words thrown around. It’s helpful to pin-down definitions so that everyone is on the same page in this big and complex topic.
The one criticism I have is that the book has clearly been written with an American audience at times, which make some parts of the book a little bit ‘odd’ for the non-American reader.
Get your own copy of the book and let me know what you think of it, I’m always happy to hear from my readers and how they’ve found books that I’ve reviewed.
Andrew T. Walker (@andrewtwalk) is Director of Policy Studies for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention.
*** I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not change the way I rate the book. My views are my own. ***