Why Can’t We be Friends?

Avoidance is Not Purity

The conservative church has stood firm on many issues of sexuality―but capitulated in one key area by reducing men and women to little but their sexuality. This error threatens the New Testament picture of the church, damages our witness to the watching world, and introduces fear to our relationships as we treat each other primarily as threats to our purity, rather than as brother and sisters in Christ.

How did this happen?

Aimee Byrd shows how we came to exchange God’s teaching on male-female relationships for Hollywood’s view. As we delve into Scripture, we discover that the challenges of our relationships are different from what we might expect, and the blessings much greater. Men and women are distinct from each other, but neither church nor society should reduce us to our distinctions.

Learn who you are, who your siblings are, and how to flourish alongside them.

“The apostle Paul never called his closest associates “friends” and Aimee Byrd has taken his insight they were siblings, brothers and sisters in Christ — and turned friendship between males and females in the church into a sacred-siblings calling into love, sanctification and celebration. Too many today guard the heart with rules but fear or reputation or gross misunderstandings of who we are, instead of theology, motivate the teaching. In Why Can’t We Be Friends? we are ushered into the deep spaces of Christian theology in a way that it rearranges our relationships. If in the kingdom we will be siblings, it’s time we accepted our future for our present. The best book I have seen on this subject.”

—Scot McKnight

“To be honest, I hate that this book had to be written. But since it is undeniably necessary, I am so thankful Aimee Byrd took up the task. She writes not merely from experience, but with a deep theological orientation and informed pastoral concerns. She reminds Christians to be less influenced by “When Harry Met Sally” than they are by Jesus and Paul. Too often as Christians we actually sound no different from non-Christians in our assumptions. Why can’t we―as the household of God―be courageous in our concern, affectionate in our love, and wise in our practices. Rather than being driven by fear, let’s follow biblical expectations for what it means to be in the family of God; thankfully, Aimee calls us to be faithful siblings who are soaked in the love of the Father, strengthened by Christ our elder brother, and empowered in the Spirit of holiness. By God’s grace, let us learn to live more like a healthy family.”

—Kelly M. Kapic, Professor of Theological Studies, Covenant College, Lookout Mountain, Georgia; Author, Embodied Hope