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Review: "People not Pronouns" By Andrew Bunt

This short book considers people’s experience of gender in a careful and pastoral way. It particularly focuses on the way people experience pressure to conform to gender stereotypes, and how these stereotypes mislead people on both sides of the gender argument. Andrew comes at the topic with a simple but helpful structure of thinking through “heart”, “head” and “hope” responses. 

In the “heart” response, Andrew helps us consider God’s heart and he encourages us to reflect God’s heart of compassion. Helpfully, we move on to consider cultivating a heart like God’s and how this plays out in action. This is helpful before considering the ideas of gender stereotypes. 

The “head” response is the focus of much writing on the subject. In this section, Andrew considers the question, “who am I?” He guides us carefully through the struggles some face with the question and how we should receive our identities from God.

Andrew helps us consider God's heart and he encourages us to reflect God's heart of compassion

Andrew naturally moves on to the “hope” response, focusing on the hope found in Jesus. This is a clear gospel presentation which includes a theology of suffering. The book comes to some very orthodox conclusions, wrapped up with plenty of grace and hope. 

What the book doesn’t include is the culture of points scoring that our world seems so keen to do. The book doesn’t explore any pastoral situations or case studies in detail, except for Andrew’s own testimony. If the booklet were longer, it may have been good to give a wider picture by including one or two more personal testimonies. 

I would highly recommend this book to people who prefer short reads. It would also be a good book to do in a group or in a 1-2-1 situation. It includes questions at the end of each section, although I would suggest that leaders read wider material (such as those suggested in the notes) to prepare for the deeper conversations that will probably result. At the heart of this book, Andrew clearly wants to show people that their ultimate hope is to be found in Jesus alone. 

“People not Pronouns” by Andrew Bunt
(Grove pastoral, 2021) 23 pages
£3.95 paperback, £3.95 ebook

This article was originally published in the winter 2021 edition of the TFT magazine, Ascend. Click the button below to download your copy.

Download the winter 2021 edition of Ascend