Book Review: Is God Anti-Gay?

A book review for our Church magazine

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What is a faithful and loving Christian response to gay people? How can we stay faithful to what God has revealed in the Bible and yet not be anti-gay or homophobic? How do we deal with a society which is increasing hostile to the traditional Christian view? These are questions that have become increasingly pressing for Christians in 21st Century Britain, as issues like gay marriage have been raised in the media and now in law and as the case is pressed by some for the acceptance of actively gay clergy in the Church of England.

In this short (less than 100 pages) and cheap (under £4) book, Sam Allbery, a Church of England minister who experiences same-sex attraction, helps us to see a way through.

The book starts with Sam telling us about his own experience: how he came to faith, how he realized he experiences same-sex attraction and how he begins to puts those things together. He then spends a chapter looking at marriage and sex in the Bible and a chapter looking at homosexuality in the Bible. He shows simply and clearly why the traditional view (that sex outside of heterosexual marriage is wrong) is also the biblical view and deals with a number of common attempts to re-interpret the Bible and a number of common questions people ask (e.g. Aren't committed and faithful homosexual relationships are OK? Jesus never talked about homosexuality, so why is it an issue?).

He then has three practical chapters, dealing with issues for how a Christian approaches experiencing same-sex attraction, how a church approaches the issues of same sex attraction (e.g. how to support Christians experiencing same-sex attraction) and how to be effective in our relationships with the world outside the church on these issues. These chapters are full of wisdom and experience.

This is an excellent, clear and gracious explanation of the Christian position, from someone who is well placed to write it both in terms of teaching the Bible and in relation to his own experience. As these questions become particularly significant in our own situation as churches in the Diocese of Manchester, it will help you understand the biblical position. It will also help you think through some of the questions you or others might have. And it will help you to think about how the biblical position applies to life for Christians experiencing same-sex attraction and for Christians thinking about how they should respond to those who experience same-sex attraction.


 The book is available from Amazon, 10ofthose.com and the Good Book Company.  Sam and some other Christian ministers who experience same-sex attraction have also set up the website www.livingout.org which has some excellent material on this subject, as does the website of the evangelical group on General Synod.

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