I am honored to lead the Resources Division at LifeWay and serve with a team of leaders who are passionate to serve the Church in Her mission of making disciples. Each Wednesday, I share the heart behind one of the resources our team has developed and give an opportunity for you to register to win a free copy of the resource. This week’s resource is A Beautiful Design: God’s Unchanging Plan for Manhood and Womanhood by Matt Chandler.
We find ourselves living in a day in which there has never been more confusion around basic questions of manhood and womanhood. Things are changing pretty rapidly. Terms like “gender dysphoria,” where people emotionally feel that their identity is the opposite gender, are becoming commonplace. It is becoming increasingly contentious to even use the terms man, woman, boy, or girl. Likely you have seen reports of outrage across our nation concerning whether an individual who “identifies” as the opposite gender should be allowed to use a public restroom regardless of the chromosome combination a person possesses.
These are not simply issues of “political correctness.” These are issues of worldview; therefore, churches cannot ignore them. Here are 3 steps we can take to help our people reflect God’s design for manhood and womanhood.
1. Teach the Truth.
Scripture could not be more explicit about what God designed a man and a woman to be. We must commit ourselves to theologically rich and faithful biblical exposition to lead our people to what God, the good and gracious Creator of all humanity, says a man and a woman should be and how they work together in beautiful harmony to present a beautiful picture of the gospel.
2. Express Grace.
At times, churches have wrongly categorized sins and viewed some people as worse than others. The reality is that we are all broken and in desperate need of God’s grace. None of us were deader than another, and we are only alive because Christ has made us alive. Broken people should experience grace at church because only broken people are in the church. If our churches are to be a safe-haven for the sexually broken and gender confused, we must continually remind ourselves and our people that we can only stand before God because of His grace. None of us are able to stand before Him in our goodness.
3. Let Biblical Community Do Its Work.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer famously said, “Sin demands to have a man by himself. It withdraws him from the community. The more isolated a person is, the more destructive will be the power of sin over him, and the more deeply he becomes involved in it, the more disastrous is his isolation.” Bonhoeffer is not describing physical isolation. He’s describing relational isolation. Sexual sins often express themselves because of loneliness, not because of lust. If we are to give our people a robust biblical picture of God’s design for manhood and womanhood, it is essential that we create intentional environments for them to connect with each other in intentional biblical community.
A great study for your groups—a study that teaches the truth while also expressing grace—is Matt Chandler’s new Bible study titled A Beautiful Design: God’s Unchanging Plan for Manhood and Womanhood. Today I’m giving away 1 copy of the DVD leader guide and 5 study guides.
Register here or in the form below before 12:00am Thursday April 28th, 2016 for your chance to win.