God and the Transgender Debate: What Does the Bible Actually Say about Gender Identity?
By Andrew T. Walker, The Good Book Company, 2022
This book works hard to set a very empathetic tone from the outset. In doing so, it gives many helpful definitions for terms that can be difficult to pin down. The Appendix has clear definitions for many of these terms.
The statistics in this book are out of date. More recent research by the Pew Foundation can be found here: https://pewrsr.ch/3Qi2Ejd. This is a helpful and challenging read. The updated statistics make the points Walker raises even more urgent.
These are the main points Walker sets out under the heading of Jesus And Gender Identity P 58
- God created humanity in his image. We are intentionally made.
- God created humanity in male and female forms–we are not made interchangeable.
- God created humanity in such a way that man and woman are created for one another and each made to complement the other.
- All this was part of God’s “very good” blueprint.
He goes on to say:
“In the same way that fallen desires pervade the hearts of all of us, individuals with gender dysphoria experience real feelings of distress about their gender identity. These are authentic experiences, where their heart’s desire is telling them one thing about themselves while their body is saying something else. No one should dismiss this, or belittle this, or joke about this. To feel this way is to experience real, deep pain.”
“But experiencing that feeling does not mean that feeding it and acting upon it is best, or right. The impulse to live out an identity at odds with our biological sex is to indulge fallen desires that our heart believes will bring peace. But internal longing for peace does not mean that finding peace is possible through breaking the boundaries of human limitations and rejecting the way we have each been created.” Pg. 58-59
Walker raises and addresses several questions about gender dysphoria, many of which I reference in my section on common questions. He also gives helpful teaching on a biblical response to those struggling with these issues.
Walker spends the later part of the book working through the Christian virtues of love, empathy, truth, compassion, and patience. He ends by challenging us to get to know “those people” and offers some clear critique off of how Christians and churches have handled these issues in the past.