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CFS Trustees

Covenant Fellowship Scotland is registered with OSCR as
Scottish Charity SC043628.

Trustees of the charity are:

Rev Professor Andrew McGowan 
(Chairman)
Mr Kenneth Mackenzie
Rev Mark Malcolm
Rev Ann McCool
Rev Hector Morrison
Rev Colin Strong

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In this blog we are publishing short articles on various topics, submitted by different people in our supporters' network. These will aim to inform us and encourage us to think more deeply about our faith. For further information please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

A Guest Blog from Rev Prof A T B McGowan

October 2017 marked a very important anniversary. On 31st October 1517, Martin Luther posted his Ninety-Five Theses on the door of the Wittenberg Castle Church. On the same day, he sent them to the Archbishop of Mainz. This is normally regarded as the beginning of the Reformation and the 31st October is marked by many churches all over the world as ‘Reformation Day’. The Ninety-Five Theses consisted of a series of statements questioning some of the doctrines and practices of the Catholic Church. It sounds very dramatic to nail his theses to the door of the church, but this would not have been regarded as unusual at the time. Luther was a monk and a Professor of Bible in the University of Wittenberg. Before the days of academic journals, posting theses in this way was intended to open up a debate and a wider discussion of the matters under consideration.

Hector Morrison, one of the Trustees of Covenant Fellowship Scotland, has prepared a short 6-minute video reflecting on prayer, drawing inspiration from verses in Habakkuk. This is especially worth a watch as we consider the Church of Scotland's Call to Prayer.

Cover of "Transgender" by Vaughan RobertsThis final web post in looking at this much-talked-about subject covers the last chapter of the book "Transgender" by Vaughan Roberts, published by thegoodbook company, ISBN 978-1-78498-195-2 which can be obtained from your local Christian bookshop or by going to the website. The cost is just less than £3. We hope you have found these summaries to be helpful.

Chapter 6:

In this final chapter Roberts gives us some wise pointers as we try to apply the Bible’s teaching to the complex issues of life.

1. HOW SHOULD WE RESPOND PERSONALLY?
For anyone, the advice is not to struggle alone ‘and especially don’t let shame keep it a lonely battle.’ For Christians, the added advice is ‘not to allow our old desires to define our identity and dictate our behaviour. Rather, we must allow Jesus Christ by his Spirit to give us our identity as sons and daughters of God.’ None of this will happen without significant personal effort, careful thought and persistent prayer.

2. HOW SHOULD A CHURCH RESPOND?
Roberts hopes that church families will follow the example of Jesus and exhibit his love not least in ‘a warm, non-judging welcome to everyone.’ Also, with regard to engaging with Christians struggling with gender dysphoria his wise counsel is not to expect instant Christian maturity. ‘Change will certainly not happen overnight, so we need to be patient in caring for one another and instructing one another.’ Ongoing support and encouragement are required as we seek together the likeness of Christ.

Cover of "Transgender" by Vaughan RobertsThe penultimate web post in looking at this much-talked-about subject covers Chapter 5 of the book "Transgender" by Vaughan Roberts, published by thegoodbook company, ISBN 978-1-78498-195-2 which can be obtained from your local Christian bookshop or by going to the website. The cost is just less than £3. Summaries of the remaining three chapters will follow in subsequent blog posts.

Chapter 5:

THE PERFECT HUMAN

In this chapter Roberts turns to consider our rescuer Jesus Christ, who, though the Son of God, was born, raised and lived as a man, in perfect obedience and submission to his heavenly Father, even to his death on the cross, where he ‘took our separation from God upon himself, so we needn’t face it, if we trust in him.’

But that was not the end. Jesus rose from the dead, a clear indication that God is committed to the material realm which will come to its consummation in the new creation.

Cover of "Transgender" by Vaughan RobertsContinuing to look at this much-talked-about subject, below is a short synopsis of Chapter 4 of the book "Transgender" by Vaughan Roberts, published by thegoodbook company, ISBN 978-1-78498-195-2 which can be obtained from your local Christian bookshop or by going to the website. The cost is just less than £3. Summaries of the remaining three chapters will follow in subsequent blog posts.

Chapter 4:

In this chapter Roberts moves on to the biblical story of the ‘fall’ (Genesis 3) and its effects on humanity and creation. These include the facts that now ‘all of us by nature follow in the way of Adam and Eve, in rebellion against God’, and that ‘the material world, including our bodies, has been spoilt.’ We are all now broken and disordered. This biblical insight that we are all both created and broken ‘is vital,’ claims Roberts, ‘for understanding not just transgender questions but every kind of human affliction – physical or psychological’.

Physically, the bodies of each of us get sick and decline as we get older, while some of us were born with deformities, including intersex conditions. Roberts notes that ‘up to about 1% of people are born with conditions in which their chromosomes or their sexual or reproductive anatomy does not fit with what is typical for men or women.’ For the vast majority of this group, however, their sex ‘is not in doubt’. Nevertheless, there is a small percentage (0.02%) whose sex cannot be identified simply ‘by looking at their genitalia.’ Roberts wants to differentiate this physical intersex condition completely from gender dysphoria, which stems from ‘the mind, emotions and sense of identity’.

Cover of "Transgender" by Vaughan RobertsContinuing to look at this much-talked-about subject, below is a short synopsis of Chapter 3 of the book "Transgender" by Vaughan Roberts, published by thegoodbook company, ISBN 978-1-78498-195-2 which can be obtained from your local Christian bookshop or by going to the website. The cost is just less than £3. Summaries of the remaining three chapters will follow in subsequent blog posts.

Chapter 3:

In chapters 3-5 Roberts presents a Christian perspective on transgender, based on biblical revelation. He begins, in this third chapter, where the Bible begins, with the story of creation by a loving God and he argues that the fact that we are creatures, not machines, ‘has a huge impact on how we think about our liberty.’ ‘True freedom,’ he suggests, ‘is found not in asserting our radical independence and trying to be who we’re not made to be’ but ‘in embracing and being who we are.’

Roberts goes on to argue that who we are has been affected by the ‘fall’ – more of this in chapter 4 – so that human beings are presently flawed masterpieces, but we are God’s masterpieces nevertheless, who need to be restored in much the same way as a damaged masterpiece would be dealt with by an art restorer, in order ‘to bring out the artist’s original intention … so that people can see the original in all its glory’.