BOOKS | Author exposes sexual lies within the Church
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Rosaria Butterfield’s 2012 book, The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert, powerfully describes her journey from lesbian to servant of Christ. In Five Lies of Our Anti-Christian Age, Butterfield turns her attention to life within the Church. Specifically, Butterfield seeks to equip believers to stand against “five lies” related to sex and gender. As she writes in the introduction, “We are of no good to God or our loved ones if we believe the lies the culture feeds us about what it means to be a man or a woman.”
Butterfield’s short list includes the lies that homosexuality and transgenderism are normal, that feminism is good but modesty is bad, and that being “spiritual” is “kinder than being a biblical Christian.” She demonstrates that such lies now thrive in Christian circles by quoting numerous authors like Greg Johnson, Preston Sprinkle, and Kristin Kobes Du Mez. And she measures an author’s claims (e.g., the idea of “queer treasures in heaven”) with Scripture and historic Christian doctrines. The book comes across more like a family discussion than a professorial presentation—she rambles at times but always with an eye to build up the faith of the reader.
In seeking to present a positive view (and not just call out lies), Butterfield does seem to go beyond Scripture at times. For instance, she says of Genesis 1, “At its most basic distinction, God created men for strength, women for nurturance.” But aren’t women often strong in Scripture? And male leaders—like Jesus—nurturing?
And unlike author Nancy Pearcey, who quotes studies and statistics, Butterfield draws most of her insights from literary analysis and personal experience. She is therefore tethered to truth in important ways, but readers should look elsewhere to unravel lies about sexuality and gender on the political right.
Still, Five Lies of Our Anti-Christian Age offers conservatives strong arguments to stand against LGBTQ and Side B propaganda, especially when cloaked in Christian verbiage. Families struggling with loved ones held captive by that propaganda will find it both bracing in its forthrightness and healing in its Christocentric focus: “Pray for your prodigal as you cling to Christ and his promises.” For sexual sin as any other, “rescue is found in the gospel.”