In an age of compromise, it is refreshing to read a work that takes a firm stand on a controversial topic. This book is both faithful to Scripture and pastoral in its approach. Although the sin of homosexuality is clearly described as contrary to God’s will, the presentation of the Gospel is applied clearly and powerfully in a way that should bring comfort and hope to the repentant. I pray that it will be widely read. It will offer clarity to many who want to believe the truth but don’t always know how to defend it.
—Rev. Daniel Preus, DD
Third Vice President, The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
President of the Luther Academy Board of Directors
The long run of conservative morality in this country that has been shaped by Christian ethics is coming to an end. In a wonderful, biblically faithful way, Rueger shows what it means to be a confessing Christian in the twenty-first century as he turns our attention to the bold witness of the first-century Christians who stood out among a promiscuous society and turned the world to the Gospel. This book will help those suffering under sexual confusion with a biblical sexual morality that is both compassionate and Christ-centered.
—Rev. Gary W. Zieroth, DMin
Senior Pastor, St. John’s Lutheran Church and School, Chaska, MN
Adjunct Professor, Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, IN
Interim Director, PALS (Post-Seminary Applied Learning and Support)
We live in a world where traditional views on sexuality and marriage are collapsing. How do we stand up for a Christian position when it is rejected simply because it is Christian? Dr. Rueger uses Scriptures and early Christianity to show that we are not alone, nor is there anything new under the sun. His discussions are thoughtful and clear, compassionate and Christ-centered. Biblical sexual morality will always be countercultural. This book is a helpful, welcome apologetic.
—Deaconess Sandra Rhein
Hymnal Consultant, LCMS Office of International Missions
Deaconess, Emmaus Lutheran Church, South Bend, IN
Against all odds, this timely book offers a beautiful contribution to the ongoing challenge of sexual morality. At a point when many of us are tired of hearing about it, Dr. Rueger has managed to engage the topic in a gently compelling way. He has written elegantly about a decidedly inelegant subject, demonstrating enviable dignity and a gracious decorum throughout. His firsthand participation in the public debate has evidently served him well. His arguments are well organized, thoroughly developed, and consistently evangelical. He is faithful in bringing both the Law and the Gospel to bear, and in his cogent use of reason and sound logic. I honestly did not expect to enjoy this book, but was surprised to find how pleasant and encouraging it is.
—Rev. D. Richard Stuckwisch, PhD
Pastor, Emmaus Evangelical Lutheran Church, South Bend, IN
Matthew Rueger reminds us that wider social opposition to Christian sexual morality is no recent, contemporary development. Christians have been mocked and sanctioned to varying degrees for their opposition to social sex practices since the first century. Their courage encourages us today to remain resolute with Scriptural testimony—even when we might be mocked or sanctioned—not for the sake of culture wars or condemnation of others, but to continue to set forth the new life in Christ. Rueger calls for steadfastness in the face of increasing social opposition while offering deeply-reasoned pastoral insights to serve repentance from immorality, reconciliation with God, and healing in the Spirit.
—Rev. Gifford Grobien, PhD
Assistant Professor of Systematic Theology
Director of DMin Program
Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, IN
“The world’s goin’ to hell in a handbasket!” So lament many modern Christians, surrounded by confusing ethical issues of our day. While believers in Christ may be tempted to throw up their hands in an increasingly challenging social context, we have hope. This hope is clearly and compellingly laid out in Matthew Rueger’s excellent book.
Instead of hand-wringing, Rueger gives advice for remaining true to the Christian witness. Not only does he present a Christian perspective on many sexual ethical issues; he does so by providing a clear contextual, historical, and biblical background in a way that provides hope and guidance for modern Christians. It is scholarly and yet accessible to an average reader. This book would be a terrific resource for adult Bible classes, or for older teens and parents to provide discussion material for navigating the moral and biblical questions of our time.
—Professor Scott and Julie Stiegemeyer
Authors of Your Marriage by God’s Design (CPH, 2014)