In May, our church spent two nights teaching on God’s design for sexual intimacy (here and here). We covered topics such as marriage, pornography, and homosexuality. In preparation, the two teaching pastors at our church (Jason Abbott and I) created the following list of our top eleven books on sexuality.
1. The Bible
We start here, because, well… it’s just the place to start. The key passages from God’s Word that deal with sex generally, as well as all of the passages that deal with homosexuality specifically, are as follows: Genesis 1-3; Genesis 19; Leviticus 18:22 & 20:13; Judges 19; Proverbs 5-7; The Song of Solomon; Romans 1:26-28; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11; and 1 Timothy 1:8-11. (This hyperlink is to the ESV Study Bible by Crossway. I’ve been using it for several years and have found it a very helpful resource for deep study of the Word.)
2. A Celebration of Sex by Dr. Douglas E. Rosenau
Sex is a good gift from God and this book celebrates it as such. As well, Dr. Rosenau addresses typical problems couples experience in marital intimacy, whether physical, emotional, relational, or spiritual. We wouldn’t recommend this book for anyone that isn’t currently married.
4. The Mingling of Souls by Matt Chandler
This is an engaging study through The Song of Solomon. The book moves through dating, courting, marriage, and intimacy. Additionally, there is an excellent small group video series available.
5. What Does the Bible Really Teach About Homosexuality? by Kevin DeYoung
There are so many questions about homosexuality worthy of consideration, but this book answers the question that must be answered before any other questions can be appropriately broached. That question is this: according to the Bible, is homosexual practice a sin or (under the right circumstances) is it a blessing we should celebrate and solemnize? In this book, DeYoung affirms the traditional understanding and also engages the most common objections to this view.
6. Is God anti-gay? by Sam Allberry
This book explores what the Bible says about marriage, sexuality, and same-sex attraction. What is especially helpful in it is Allberry’s perspective on these matters. He is a pastor who experiences same-sex attraction yet is committed to living a celibate life in accordance with his understanding of the Bible. (See my book review here.)
7. Washed and Waiting by Wesley Hill
Like Allberry, Wesley Hill experiences same-sex attraction and, like Allberry, is committed to celibacy for the glory of God. However, Hill’s book is more of a personal memoir of his experience of growing up in the church and grappling with his sexuality. This book is especially helpful for those wanting to consider whether their church provides a healthy, gospel-centered atmosphere for those grappling with same-sex attraction. (See my book review here.)
8. The Bible and Homosexual Practice by Robert Gagnon
This book is for those who want to grapple with the question of homosexuality at a very academic level. Gagnon is perhaps the leading scholar on the Bible and homosexuality. Interestingly, even though he’s part of a denomination affirming homosexual marriage, he sees nothing in the Bible that would support that position. Consequently, he has been much maligned within his denomination for his writings on this topic.
9. Loving Homosexuals as Jesus Would by Chad Thompson
This is a practical book teaching us how we might love our homosexual friends. It is written by a former practicing homosexual.
10. Out of a Far Country by Christopher Yuan
This book is the moving personal story of Yuan’s conversion to Christianity. Like Wesley Hill and Sam Allberry, he’s same-sex attracted. It is also one of the best books available for thinking through why the church and Christians are often seen as enemies by the LGBT community. Yuan does an excellent job of helping believers rethink their approach to sharing the Gospel with LGBT friends, family, and acquaintances.