Gospel Coalition writer Emily Cobb has written a review of the book A Brief Theology of Periods (Yes, really): An Adventure for the Curious into Bodies, Womanhood, Time, Pain and Purpose—and How to Have a Better Time of the Month By Rachel Jones, recommending that Christians everywhere get this book in order to understand the theological implications of what it means to have Christian women undergoing a menstrual cycle, and how that affects their relationship to Christ.
Published by the Good Book Company, which is generally regarded as a conservative publisher who carries such authors as Tim Keller, Matt Chandler, John Piper, Alistair Begg and Sinclaire Ferguson, Cobb quotes Jones then explains:
…for roughly 50% of the population, for a large section of our lives, periods are a regular reality. 400-500 times in your lifetime—and for 60 days of the year—you’re on your period (p.10).
What a staggering statistic. A women’s period shapes her choices, her emotions, her energy-levels, and in our churches—generally filled with more women than men—it means that, on any given Sunday, many are experiencing their period, or the lead up or aftermath of it.
Cobb assures her readers that “God isn’t afraid to talk about blood,” and this book is so valuable because Jones “urges her female (and male!) readers to see a woman’s monthly period as a testament to the gospel. When we feel unclean, it isn’t really because we are having our period and shedding blood; it is because our spiritual condition in and of itself is unclean.”
I do need to remember it; because it’s only when we’ve appreciated the depth of the problem—when we’ve felt appropriate shame not at menstruation but at our unclean spiritual condition—that we’re ready to hear afresh the words of peace offered by our Saviour. (p.65-66)
Noting that a proper understanding of one’s period is a way to properly understand the gospel, Cobb concludes by saying this is a must-read for both men and women because:
…a woman’s period doesn’t just affect her. It affects men she comes in contact with too, and I believe a book like this can help men become educated on a Biblical view of this topic just as it is for women. May we start seeing wonderful resources like this as a way to equip us as saints in gospel-living. When we lift the veil on these topics, we allow God to shine his wisdom on parts of our lives we often keep hidden.
We await for her some young enterprising man to write the sequel, The Theology of Seminal Emissions: What the Shooting of Sperm has to Say About our Faith, Fears, and Being Fearfully and Wonderfully Made, which would use 90% of the same argumentation and bible verses to justify its existence, so that the church may be doubly and richly blessed by this exceptionally necessary works.
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