The North American shift towards the expectation of the celebration of sexual sin and brokenness is continuing unabated. So what do you do, what will you do when you are asked to celebrate it? How do you respond, how will you respond to those who argue that the pursuit of sin can be reconciled with identification with Christ? How do you, and will you minister to your family members or friends who have been captivated and persuaded of the rightness of spiritually devastating “alternative” lifestyles? How do you deal with your own struggles with sexual sin?
The good news is, as the apostle of Paul wrote to the church at Corinth, “such were some of you. But you were washed…” The grace of God in Christ is always sufficient for our needs–past, present, and future. And in His grace, God continues to raise up a contemporary generation of men and women who are sharing and applying that same gospel to all.
In fact, it seems that every passing month, at least in the English-speaking world, brings with it new doses of excellent scriptural teaching and pastoral counsel for those struggling with (or captivated by) the power of sexual sin, and for those called to minister the Word and grace of God into their lives. One of the most recent helpful resources is Adam Barr and Ron Citlau’s Compassion Without Compromise. Barr and Citlau’s easy to read book speaks from personal and ministry experience, as their title suggests, with compassion, and without compromise–following Christ. The Compassion Without Compromise website includes both short discussion videos and a helpful discussion guide.
For a more extensive personal narrative of life and conversion from a life pattern and culture including sexual sin, Rosaria Butterfield’s Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert: An English Professor’s Journey into Christian Faith gives profound encouragement, hope and reality–and challenges readers to the richness of simple, faithful Christianity. Butterfield’s testimony to the grace of God in Jesus Christ has been widely influential in evangelical Christianity in America.
A more exegetical and theological short work, valuable for church leaders, as well as members, is the study produced by the Reformed Presbyterian Church in North America: The Gospel and Sexual Orientation. Finally, Sam Allberry’s short book, commended by a number of evangelical theologians, is also worth a read: Is God Anti-Gay?, along with helpful resources he and others have brought together at Living Out.
Each of these resources brings the truth of God’s Word to us. God’s grace and strength in Christ is sufficient for all of us, for every sinner who comes to Him: “whoever comes to Me I will never cast out.” (John 6:37) “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9). None of us are beyond being washed, sanctified, and justified in Christ, by the Holy Spirit–to a new and growing life, reconciled with God, and welcomed into His kingdom.