How Do Bodies Matter?

From First Thoughts

In the most recent issue of Christianity Today , Andy Crouch has an excellent editorial on the church’s future and matters LGBTQIA. Please do read the whole thing. He writes, There is really only one conviction that can hold this coalition of disparate human experiences [i.e., the experiences . . . . Continue Reading »

After Exodus, What?

From First Thoughts

Here are a few preliminary thoughts and questions about the recent announcement that Exodus International, the largest and most influential of the so-called “ex-gay” ministries, will be closing its doors : 1. Like many younger people who are Christian and gay, I have shied away from much . . . . Continue Reading »

On Reading James Brownson

From First Thoughts

In the latest issue of The Living Church , I review James Brownson’s new book Bible, Gender, Sexuality . Here’s my summary of the book’s main argument: Brownson argues that . . . gender complementarity is nowhere “explicitly portrayed or discussed” in Scripture. Genesis . . . . Continue Reading »

Morally Exemplary Friendships

From First Thoughts

We often hear that friendship is undervalued today because it’s been eclipsed by romantic love. If marriage (or simply sexual partnerships of one sort or another) are the places to experience true love, then friendship gets demoted. But in his book The Feast of Friendship Paul O’Callaghan . . . . Continue Reading »

The Destinations of Love

From First Thoughts

Jonathan Rauch’s brief memoir, Denial: My Twenty-Five Years Without a Soul , published recently as a Kindle Single, describes how powerful it can be to find that your previous unnamable self has a place . For much of the story’s first half, Rauch tells about trying to interpret his . . . . Continue Reading »

The Problem of Monastic Cliques

From First Thoughts

In his warmly pastoral Friends in Christ: Paths to a New Understanding of Church , Brother John of Taizé discusses the rise of monasticism as a response to Scriptural injunctions to brotherly love. Monasticism, in this account, was the place where a uniquely Christian theology of friendship . . . . Continue Reading »

Church Before Sex

From First Thoughts

When I was in seminary, one of the hot topics we students debated was where each of us stood on the matter of women’s ordination. In our evangelical world, this issue was talked about in terms of “ egalitarianism ” (i.e., women are equally gifted alongside men and are called to serve . . . . Continue Reading »