Dianna Anderson offers a fresh approach to the purity conversation, one that opens a new dialogue with the most influential Christian authors of her generation.
Anderson's new sexual ethics draw on core biblical principles and set a standard for today's Christians that may be as influential Joshua Harris' I Kissed Dating Goodbye, Don Raunikar's Choosing God's Best, and Elisabeth Elliot's Passion and Purity. Anderson uses her own illuminating experience with the purity movement to:
- Reach out to women and men trying to reconcile their own sexuality with their understanding of "what God wants," cultural stigma, and media pressures
- Demonstrate how Christian ideas about purity have infiltrated American politics and culture-and why women are losing
- Offer an affirmative, healing path for everyone to understand their sexuality: one that reconciles scripture, culture, and common sense
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About the Author
Dianna Anderson is a 27-year-old freelance writer who writes for and manages the popular blog Faith and Feminism, where she examines questions of women, sexuality, and progressive political issues within the American church. She also writes for various feminist websites and tweets @diannaeanderson. She has a master's in English from Baylor University and a bachelor's in theology and philosophy from the University of Sioux Falls. She currently lives in Sioux Falls, SD.
Table of Contents
1 I Was a Teenage Virgin 1
3 A Review of the Christian Purity Movement 9
3 Let's Get Biblical: Sex in Scripture 23
4 How I Kind of Sort of Lost My Virginity 43
5 Approaching Sexuality with Intention 53
6 Beyond Rings and Roles 59
7 Your Body, Your Choices 77
8 The Question of Individual Rights 103
9 Choosing Celibacy 121
10 Getting to Know Yourself 131
11 Yes Means Yes: Healthy Boundaries Mean Healthy Lives 147
12 Only You Can Define Your Sexuality 171
13 Sex Without Shame 185
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I am going to be honest here. I have never felt more disgusted or sickened by any book I have read. Dianna writes as if God is not static, but changes with the culture. Ugh. God never changes. You cannot create a god that YOU are comfortable with and then claim that is the God of the Bible. I will repeat this statement, “You cannot create a god that YOU are comfortable with and then claim that is the God of the Bible“. Period. Throughout this entire book Dianna is discussing how we need to do what our bodies are telling us. Only we know what’s good for our bodies. ?????? That is COMPLETELY fine if you want to believe that. It is your right. However, it is not OK to claim that is how God works. Maybe your god, but not the God of the Bible. You can reference all of the old testament laws you want, but there are many places where God tells us that fornication is wrong. Look, I am not some innocent purist. I was a single mother (OBVIOUSLY having sex) and I was raped. I became pregnant. You, Dianna, tell us that it is ok to have an abortion if that’s what your body is telling you. YUCK! No. Absolutely no. My son is the greatest gift that could have ever come from such a monstrosity. God gave us laws. Absolutely. He gave us rules. There is a reason for that and it is because there is freedom in Christ. When you listen to the things that He tells us not to do, you can see how disobeying those lead you to boxing yourself in and losing your freedom. There is not one thing that God is asking us to live by that would take away our freedom. I would argue that EVERY SINGLE ONE of those would actually GIVE you more freedom. We should never hate someone that sins. We all sin. There should be no guilt either because God has paid for our sins. So, I am not condoning judgement in any way. I am saying it is wrong. That’s it. I am completely disappointed in Faithwords for allowing this book to be published. I also hate to promote it with a review. It will lead so many more people to think that you can make a “god” up that you are comfortable with and claim he is the real God. The road is narrow, my friend. This is exactly why. 0 stars. Thank you, netgalley, for the book. As always, this is my honest opinion. Here’s to many more (hopefully good) books!
This is such an important book because it paves the way for a deeper and more nuanced conversation about sexuality in the Church. Anderson's writing style is very readable and her tone is knowledgeable yet casual. It felt like sitting across from her in a coffee shop having a very real conversation. I didn't agree with all the theological conclusions Anderson made in the book, but I didn't expect to. While she falls more theologically liberal on the Christian spectrum this book is absolutely accessible to Christians of all stripes, IF they can read with an open mind. Bottom line, the Christian purity "conversation" has been one sided for too long. Whether you are "all in" with books like Harris' I Kissed Dating Goodbye, or not, it is important to recognize that our Christian literature on the subject needs to reflect the greater diversity of opinion in this area. Anderson's book does just that. My hope is that years from now, we will look back on this publication as a watershed moment for opening the dialogue on the issue of sexual purity in the Church.