• God and the Gay Christian

  • The Biblical Case in Support of Same-Sex Relationships
  • By: Matthew Vines
  • Narrated by: Matthew Vines
  • Length: 5 hrs and 54 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (642 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

God and the Gay Christian is a game changer. Winsome, accessible, and carefully researched, every page is brought to life by the author’s clear love for Scripture and deep, persistent faith. With this book, Matthew Vines emerges as one of my generation’s most important Christian leaders, not only on matters of sexuality but also on what it means to follow Jesus with wisdom, humility, and grace. Prepare to be challenged and enlightened, provoked and inspired. Read with an open heart and mind, and you are bound to be changed.” (Rachel Held Evans, author of A Year of Biblical Womanhood and Faith Unraveled)

As a young Christian man, Matthew Vines harbored the same basic hopes of most young people: to someday share his life with someone, to build a family of his own, to give and receive love. But when he realized he was gay, those hopes were called into question. The Bible, he’d been taught, condemned gay relationships. 

Feeling the tension between his understanding of the Bible and the reality of his same-sex orientation, Vines devoted years of intensive research into what the Bible says about homosexuality. With care and precision, Vines asked questions such as:

  • Do biblical teachings on the marriage covenant preclude same-sex marriage or not?
  • How should we apply the teachings of Jesus to the gay debate?
  • What does the story of Sodom and Gomorrah really say about human relationships?
  • Can celibacy be a calling when it is mandated, not chosen?
  • What did Paul have in mind when he warned against same-sex relations?

Unique in its affirmation of both an orthodox faith and sexual diversity, God and the Gay Christian is likely to spark heated debate, sincere soul search­ing, even widespread cultural change. Not only is it a compelling interpretation of key biblical texts about same-sex relations, it is also the story of a young man navigating relationships with his family, his hometown church, and the Christian church at large as he expresses what it means to be a faithful gay Christian.

©2014 Matthew Vines (P)2014 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"For anyone who wants to know why some evangelicals find that the Bible does not condemn same-gender marriage, Matthew Vines’s book answers the question. Christians who oppose gay marriage should consider what he has to say." (Tony Campolo, professor emeritus, Eastern University; coauthor of Red Letter Christians)

"Many people believe you can either hold a high view of Scripture or affirm gay relationships, but not both. Matthew Vines proves them wrong. Provocative and relentlessly Bible-focused, God and the Gay Christian offers hope and insight for Christians who have felt conflicted on matters of sexuality." (Justin Lee, author of Torn: Rescuing the Gospel from the Gays-vs.-Christians Debate)

"A must-read for all Christians, but especially parents. Matthew Vines brings great insight and wisdom to the conversation so urgently needed by today’s church. God and the Gay Christian has the information I was searching for when my son, Tyler Clementi, came out to me. This book will have a great impact on families, freeing parents of misunderstandings about their LGBT children while letting them hold securely to their faith." (Jane Clementi, cofounder of The Tyler Clementi Foundation)

What listeners say about God and the Gay Christian

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The revisionist side of the discussion

Matthew Vines is gay and is a Christian. This book tells his story of coming out and trying to reconcile his Christian faith with his local church, friends, family and his physical/emotional attraction to the same sex. While I don't agree with his conclusions or interpretations of scripture, I completely empathize with the hurt, rejection and self-doubt he and others like him have to endure with same-sex attraction. I can't say I understand how he feels, I am not attracted to other men, but I can feel his pain and understand (and identify with) his desire to find a way to reconcile his faith with his identity as a gay man.

What he writes is often painful to read and it is sad that our society treats people who are different poorly, many of those doing so identifying themselves as Christian. What he writes about is his journey and studies in reconciling his faith with his identity. Where he ends up is, in my and other's opinion, contrary to where he said (and concludes) he is going. He ends up offering views and conclusions which do not treat the Bible the way orthodox Christians do, as a whole written by God using human agents. He claims a lot of cultural influence in the Bible which he claims twist and alter God's intended meaning. He is definitely not holding to a High view of the scripture.

I don't want to belabor this and I know folks will disagree with my views/interpretation.

Regardless of which side you are on, YOU SHOULD READ THIS BOOK. It offers a clear perspective of this side of the discussion.

32 people found this helpful

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You'll Find What You Want in this Book

You will find what you are looking for in this book. For those in the Gay Community, you will latch on to the Author's justification in the passages. For those "non-affirming" (his term for Christians who don't accept the concept of Gay Christians), you will see his lack of being honest with the context. He reads his viewpoint into the scripture and comes out with conclusions which are skewed. There are some interesting points, but I would not take this stand into a debate. It's one thing to take a position and quite another to have it tested by opposing viewpoints. I agree with James Pyle's review (which see) for the most part. For those of us Christ followers who have spent decades in His Word, we find it interesting how he came up with some of the conclusions. I read the book to see what positions are out there in this world that I should know about. For that reason alone, some should read this book. I wasn't convinced by his scholarship, only by his sincerity. One other point is that he acknowledges no sin on his part in causing a church split. That, along with other points along the way, tells me he is more interested in justifying his position than anything else.

31 people found this helpful

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"Trading the Gospel for modern, unbiblical catagori"

The reader did a good enough job reading his own material. Beyond that, he completely botched the Biblical presentation of gender and sexuality. He read categories back into Scripture that the author of Scripture (God) absolutely never had in mind. I'm afraid this book will lead many people astray from the biblical gospel that truly does change hearts, minds, and actions.

18 people found this helpful

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Influential and full of grace

I first came across Matthew Vine’s argument in 2015 when I was in a very dark psychological place because of having repressed my sexuality for five years. His speech gave me the message of grace and affirmation that I was yearning for and his work has inspired me to finally speak against the homophobic beliefs held by people in my family. I was delighted to listen to his more detailed argument in this audiobook.

This, Vine’s first published scholarly work, is well researched and quite an impressive opus for a writer aged 24. Some of the arguments he touches on here are so deep and complex that it is unfortunate that Vines could not have spent more time delving into them, but to me this books marks the beginning of his promising authorial career and I expectantly await the publication of more book and resources penned by this inspiring scholar and activist.

9 people found this helpful

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Ambiguous

The author constructs his arguments from many logical fallacies often leaving his own position ambiguous.

8 people found this helpful

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Praying for Matthew Vines' Soul.

“and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭1:32‬

8 people found this helpful

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bad logic. sets up a false dilemma.

the author has some touching stories. but misses it from a christo Centric perspective. where are the affirming cases in scripture? what did Jesus affirm as marriage.? what is sin?

7 people found this helpful

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Changed My Mind

This book, along with three others helped to change my mind about how LGBT people are viewed in the eyes of the church and elsewhere. It was so good that I listened to the audio 3 times. Matthew Vines is a gifted researcher and writer and his approach on this topic is one of the best I have ever heard. While the audiobook is handy and can be listened to anytime, I suggest purchasing a printed copy for reference and study purposes. Thank you, Matthew Vines!

7 people found this helpful

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Sincere arguments but...

LGBTQ here - No doubt Matthew is sincere in his beliefs ... but his argument fails . If you have to research for four years and spend six hours explaining remarkably clear scripture away , well there is your first red flag. There are a couple of points that are agreeable : Sodom and Gomorrah were likely not destroyed because of homosexuality alone or perhaps at all , what was considered homosexual was probably defined differently in biblical times , However , affirmation is clearly not in line with scripture . But It’s a shame Christianity (some of it ) treats homosexuality as either a lightning rod or something that a blind eye is turned to. In a scholastic style , Matthew tries to change perceptions of scripture . It’s a decent argument but doesn’t hold up .

5 people found this helpful

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BEWARE of false teaching

The author proves nothing to his cause except that he has a bizarre way of thinking. Not only does he contradict himself through the entire book, but his evidence to his claims come from like minded sources that have no biblical authority. He had no problem stating scripture, but then disregarded its relevance. Sadly, if the sin he acts on and desires in his heart does not destroy him, his abuse of scripture will. I pray that this blasphemous teaching of his is destroyed before it destroys more lives and takes people from God!


2 Timothy 4:3-4
For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.

Romans 16:17-20
I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive. For your obedience is known to all, so that I rejoice over you, but I want you to be wise as to what is good and innocent as to what is evil. The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

2 Peter 3:16
As he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures.

Revelation 22:18-19
I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book, and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.

4 people found this helpful

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  • M. Price
  • 02-19-20

The answer to prayer

I was brought up with the statement 'love the sinner not the sin'. Having family and friends who are gay, it worried me that according to scripture (as taught to me) these good people would not achieve their reward. A friend gave me this book and once I started I couldn't put it down. The book is thoughtfully written and has made things very clear to me, it covers all aspects of gay life and satisfies me that we have been looking at things through the wrong end of the telescope. If you are a Christian you know that God is omnipotent, perfect, all seeing, all knowing - He doesn't make mistakes. Nor does He have unrealistic expectations of us, He is all forgiving...He is LOVE. I have finished the book with a weight off my shoulders, secure in the knowledge that my friends and family are not going to be punished for something that they cannot change. God loves us all, end of story.

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  • Catherine Henderson
  • 08-25-21

A new way of thinking

I have been really challenged by this book as I’ve discovered much about the bible that I thought I knew and realised I didn’t. Although I’ve not firmly changed my mind about certain aspects of Christian thought, this book has encouraged me to look again and be open to seeing things differently

1 person found this helpful

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  • Ian Whitham
  • 09-18-19

Food for Thought

as an open evangelical within the Anglican church in the UK ok I found this one of the best books theologically so far I have read on this subject much food for thought

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-13-21

Timeous

I needed this book at this point in my life! God is the God of all and we are called to be obedient to His true word.

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  • Mum of 2
  • 07-11-21

God is good - this is a weight off my shoulders

Difficult scriptures around homosexuality are addressed head on here with detailed context and cross referencing. I loved this book. Thank you so much Matthew Vines for loving Jesus and writing this book with such thoroughness and care.

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  • Poshboy
  • 05-30-21

Thank you Matthew

This book has been informative and life affirming. With prayer and like minded support, there is hope for a brighter tomorrow in the Christian church.
Onward Christian soldiers!

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  • Anthony Washington
  • 12-05-19

great and full of info

what a great book full of info and a great insight. this book is the truth