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March 2017


Mission: Stewardship


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A Review of Sexuality, Gender and the Church

By Frank Thornsbury


Identity says something about a person’s faith, heritage, and basic presuppositions. In this age of widespread identity crisis, we must know what we believe.

The authors of Sexuality, Gender, and the Church offer clarity on issues relating to human sexuality and the church’s response through a return to the fundamental truths of our faith and tradition as Free Will Baptists. The result is a volume that is both for the moment and from the past. It is a reminder of who we are so we can meet the challenge of being in the world and not of it.

Obergefell, the Supreme Court decision that effectively legalized same-sex marriage, confirmed in legal opinion the distorted view of sexuality and gender pervasive in television, movies, and social media. What was once a cultural problem became a legal one as well. This problem demands a robust response.

In Sexuality, Gender, and the Church, Pinson puts forth a historical treatment; McAffee offers a theological one; Bracey deals with the legal and political aspects; and Oliver rounds out the analysis with a chapter on what it means to minister to those affected by the recent upheaval in sexual ethics. Indeed, this volume is a veritable toolbox for pastor and layman, young person and parent. It is an indispensable resource for Free Will Baptists looking for clarity amid the confusion of culture.

Pinson writes that we are not the first generation to grapple with sexual immorality. The first-century church dealt with it, our Free Will Baptist forebears in England and America dealt with it, and now we must respond. This is a great reminder that we are not alone in our defense of the faith, and that our defense need not change. Our guide has been, is, and will continue to be the gospel.

McAffee, Bracey, and Oliver help readers understand the application of this gospel response in our various capacities as ministers, citizens, and parents. Analysis centers on the supposition that the gospel has power to change individuals and cultures alike and highlights the necessity of a response characterized by biblical integrity and compassion.

The sum total of their efforts is a book as practical as it is timely. I encourage all Free Will Baptists to pick up a copy soon.

About the reviewer: Frank Thornsbury is coordinator of the English program at Welch College. Order a copy of Sexuality, Gender and the Church: Now available on Amazon.




©2017 ONE Magazine, National Association of Free Will Baptists