Friday, August 19, 2005

Sex and the Supremacy of Christ - Review

One of the things that I notice these days when I walk through our local Christian book stores is that there is a great concern about sexuality, especially towards teenagers. I can see why. It is all over television, magazines, movies and even the radio.
The book Sex and the Supremacy of Christ is based on the brain-child of John Piper, a conference in 2004 with the theme of Sex and the Supremacy of Christ. This book is the result of the messages preached at this conference. John Piper and Justin Taylor are the editors of the book while also contributing four chapters between them, if the Introduction can be counted as a chapter.
An added benefit of this book is that 12 very gifted authors wrote the different chapters. I have read some of these authors on the internet via their blogs like Al Mohler and Justin Taylor. It sure has been a wonderful blessing to meet these different authors through this book!
The book is divided into 5 parts. Part 1 deals with God and Sex, and the three chapters in this part are written by John Piper and Ben Patterson. Part 2 covers Sin and Sex written by David Powlison and Al Mohler Jr. Part 3 handles the explosive subject of Men and Sex (chapter 6 was written by Mark Dever, Michael Lawrence, Matt Schmucker, and Scott Croftby  while chapter 7 was written by C.J. Mahaney). Part 4 was written by Carolyn McCulley and Carolyn Mahaney and embraces the subject of Women and Sex. The last part, 5, History and Sex, was written by Justin Taylor and Mark Dever. Well, upfront you now know who wrote this book.
Apart from being a very practical book, it adds a dimension that I do not see in other books on the subject of sex and the Christian: the supremacy of Christ. It is written on the premise that if Christ is truly supreme in our lives, that life's issues--including the issue of sex--will fall into their proper place resulting in a life that honours God instead of constantly falling at the feet of the modern god of sex. It is only Christ that can give us true satisfaction in life. Piper says it so well on page 30: "...not only do all the misuses of our sexuality serve to conceal or distort the true knowledge of God in Christ, but it also works powerfully the other way around: the true knowledge of God in Christ serves to prevent the misuses of our sexuality. So, on the one hand, sexuality is designed by God as a way to know Christ more fully. And, on the other hand, knowing Christ more fully is designed as a way of guarding and guiding our sexuality." If we are small-minded in the area of the supremacy of Christ in our lives, then other issues, like a depraved sexuality, will become supreme.
It is not as if sex is unimportant, it is! Yet, we must learn, like Al mohler says, to speak of marriage when the subject of sex is raised, because that is the only legitimate context within which sex may be found. Sex and the Supremacy of Christ is not just a book about sex and the human problem with sex. It is a book that lays out the theology of sex. It tells us everything from where sex may be legitimately found, to how it should be treated by unmarried people, to finally how it should be enjoyed by married people.
Each of the writers had great value to add to this book. In my opinion this book should not just be on your book shelves at home, but should be well-read and well understood. Sexuality has become such an issue in our day, and Sex and the Supremacy of Christ is an amazingly timely book to help us think about the subject of sex with a Biblical worldview. If there ever was a relevant theology that should be understood by Christians today, it would be the theology of sex as found in the Bible.
Not only is there such a theology in the Bible, Sex and the Supremacy of Christ proclaims that theology with boldness and joy in the face of our Sovereign Lord, Jesus Christ.
In my humble opinion, this is the best book on the subject and it is greatly enriching to those who want to hear the truth!
Sex and the Supremacy of Christ can be found at the online bookstore of desiringGod and comes packed with a DVD. It can also be found here.
Just thinking...

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