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Gender and Sexuality News Roundup (7/31/19)

July 31, 2019

One mission of CBMW is to help Christians think through secular and ecclesial trends on gender and sexuality. Through this work, we pore over a lot of different news reports and articles as we attempt to wade through the ceaseless flow of information on the web. In our weekly Gender and Sexuality News Roundups, we aim to distill some of the more pertinent information for you.

The articles below are from a wide variety of sectors and publications, organized generally into three categories. They are presented in aggregate, not necessarily endorsed.

If you see an article that you think should be featured in future CBMW News Roundups, you can send it to [email protected] with the subject “News Roundup.”


Ecclesial Trends on Gender and Sexuality

LCMS convention passes resolutions on racism, care for immigrants and gender identity, Reporter (Stacey Egger)

“On Tuesday, July 23, at the 67th Regular Convention of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS), Floor Committee 11 on Church and Culture passed resolutions regarding racism, care for immigrant neighbors, and sexual-orientation and gender-identity issues…Among the points of the resolution are: Reaffirmation of ‘the biblical truth that God created humanity as male and female’; Condemnation of ‘acts of abuse’ committed against all those people — ‘our neighbors, beloved of God’ — who experience sexual-orientation or gender-identity issues; Thanksgiving for those who experience these issues yet ‘continue to live chaste and decent lives in repentant faith.'”

An Evangelical Megachurch Is Sued for More Than $1 Million in Child Sexual Abuse Case, The New York Times (Elizabeth Dias)

“A woman who said she was sexually abused as a child by a pastor at one of the country’s most prominent evangelical megachurches sued the church on Friday, alleging gross negligence and seeking more than $1 million in damages. The case against the Village Church — which is based in Flower Mound, Tex., outside Dallas, and is led by Matt Chandler — is perhaps the most high-profile current lawsuit alleging child sexual abuse in the Southern Baptist Convention…The suit alleges that the church was ‘willfully negligent’ in its failure to protect a child in its care from being sexually assaulted. It also says the church is liable for the actions of the pastor, who was removed from the staff last year. “

Whither Evangelical Purity Culture? Thoughts on the Legacy of a Lost Pastor, National Review (David French)

“If you don’t live in Evangelical-world, you probably missed this news. An influential Evangelical author and pastor named Joshua Harris announced on Saturday that he was in the process of ‘deconstruction.’ His statement was clear. ‘By all the measurements I have for defining a Christian,’ he said, ‘I am not a Christian.’ He apologized to the LGBT community for not affirming gay marriage and for the ways that his writing and speaking ‘contributed to a culture of exclusion and bigotry.'”


Secular Trends on Gender and Sexuality

LGBT superheroes, World (Mary Jackson)

“These absurdities might surprise some, but Marvel has been inching toward LGBT plotlines in recent years under increasingly intense pressure and scrutiny from activists. The staggeringly successful Avengers: Endgame included a short scene of a homosexual man, played by the movie’s co-director, Joe Russo, lamenting the loss of his partner. ‘It was incredibly important to us to have a gay character represented somewhere in [the Avenger] movies,’ Russo told The Hollywood Reporter in May. ‘We felt so strongly about it that I wanted to play that character in the film.'”

This Lawsuit Over ‘Sex’ and ‘Gender Identity’ Will Have Sweeping Implications, The Daily Signal (John Bursch)

“Enacted by Congress in 1964, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act has long protected women, along with racial and religious minorities, from unjust discrimination in the workplace. Redefining the term ‘sex’ in that law to mean ‘gender identity’ would create chaotic, unworkable situations and unjustly punish business owners like Tom while destroying important gains women and girls have made over the past 50 years. Indeed, Tom Rost’s case, in which Alliance Defending Freedom represents the funeral home, is just the tip of the iceberg.”


Gender and Sexuality Miscellany

How Revolutions End, First Things (Dan Hitchens)

“It may seem ridiculous to wonder about the end of the sexual revolution at a time when that revolution appears triumphant: rewriting laws around the world, occupying great cities with its parades, advancing toward new goals like the deconstruction of the male-female binary. But the Soviet example suggests that it is never a complete waste of time to look for signs of the end.”

Transgender to Transformed, The Aquila Report (Al Baker)

“I was with Laura recently when she joined Pastor Geoff Kirkland of Christ Fellowship Bible Church, others, and me as we proclaimed the good news of Jesus Christ at Pridefest, St. Louis, an event advocating homosexuality. I asked her at dinner one night if she ever has any desire to go back to her former lifestyle, and she emphatically said, ‘No. Not at all.’ The Lord Jesus has delivered her from her former bondage to sin.”

Both Purity Culture and Hook-Up Culture Failed Me, Christianity Today (Abigail Murrish)

“My life has changed since I started at Purdue University a decade ago. I’ve long since parted ways with purity culture, which was the prosperity gospel repackaged, as Katelyn Beaty writes. I’m now a woman on the brink of 30, married for five years with a seven-month-old daughter. I count my husband and daughter as two of the greatest blessings, and I give thanks for them. But they are not the prize of my life, nor are they are a reward for my good behavior. They weren’t designed to bear the weight of knowing me and loving me the way I hope to be loved and known by those in my life. Only God can carry that burden.”

A New Feminism, First Things (Stephen G. Adubato)

“The pro-life feminist movement suggests that more and more people are realizing we need a new feminism which affirms the unique gifts of women and men both in the home and in the world—a need that Christians are uniquely able to address. Without a more complete vision of femininity and human personhood, mainstream feminists will continue their harmful campaign to eliminate the supposed ‘obstacles’ in their way, leading to gnostic nothingness.”

Can We Justify Bringing Children into This Dark World?, Public Discourse (Haley Stewart)

“BirthStrikers protest climate change by vowing not to have children. Christians are called to a different response—a courageous one, built on hope rather than despair.”

Homosexuality in the Church, Theopolis (Peter Leithart)

“Talk of sexual identity slips into a story of the self with a narrative force that can carry you where you don’t want to go. The celibate gay Christian movement is attempting to flip elements of the cultural logic toward traditional Christian sexuality. Time will tell whether they’re able to remain steadfast or get caught in cultural currents.”

The Head, the Heart, and the “Gay Christian” Movement, Theopolis (Jonathan Barlow)

“What if Johnson had confessed to an ineradicable, lifelong temptation to animosity towards people from a particular racial or ethnic group? To temptations for sins that could affect the church’s insurance or safety policies? Can one simply resign to be a Racist Christian and give up on God’s plan to bless those who call all men ‘clean?’ How will the PCA deal with this homosexual exceptionalism?”

Pro-Lifers should be wary of empty pro-life rhetoric, Public Discourse (Colin J. Smothers)

“If your messaging to pro-life voters begins with “support Roe” and ends with “heartbeat bills are extreme,” then I don’t think you understand pro-life voters. And I hope that pro-life voters won’t be taken in by the deceptive “messaging” Wear recommends.”

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