Very many people, including not a few Christians, do not find the Christian tradition very helpful for making sense of sex. It is not that people willfully forsake a demanding sexual ethic for a more easygoing worldly one. It is that they often cannot see the point of its demandingness. Thus begins author Adrian Thatchers project of laying out an unashamedly and wholeheartedly liberal approach to sex and sexuality.
Fully aware that for some the word liberal has taken on negative connotations, Thatcher builds on a liberalism in which individuals are encouraged to make up their minds about what faith is and how they are to apply it to their own lives, recognizing that within the boundaries of faith there is much scope for variety in individual belief and practice. Using familiar theological ideas, biblical passages, and Christian doctrines, Thatcher sets out to place them intelligibly in a twenty-first-century context. Subjects covered include desire, bodies, sexual difference, marriage, spirituality, and sexualities.
Table of Contents
1 Making sense of the sources 1
2 Making sense of desire - from repression to expression 16
3 Making sense of bodies - from 'sinful bodies' to the Body of Christ 29
4 Making sense of sexual difference - from difference to indifference 42
5 Making sense of homosexuality - from disgust to delight 56
6 Making sense of marriage - from patriarchy to partnership 69
7 Making sense of Spirit - from crucifixion to inspiration 85
Further reading 102