“What Do You Say to Someone Who’s Had Sex-Change Surgery?”

I have heard of a man who has undergone a surgery to change his sexuality to female. After two years, “she” is married to another man.

What are the biblical references on sex-change surgery? How do we counsel if we meet someone like this? Furthermore, in an interview with this man, he said that inside him is a woman who is trapped in a man’s body. Please help me understand this issue.

This is a difficult situation since the developments of technology have made it possible to carry through on self-deception in ways the world has never seen before.

There is nothing in the Bible about sex reassignment surgery, but everything the Bible says about male and female pertains to those who are confused about their gender. The most important principle is that God chooses whether a child is boy or girl, and our bodies tell us what gender God intends for us. If someone feels that their gender is mismatched to their genitals, then the solution is not to mutilate one’s body, but to cooperate with God to change one’s confused thinking.

“I am a woman trapped in a man’s body” is a familiar statement made by a gender-confused person, but it’s not accurate. The feelings are real, but the interpretation of the feelings are faulty. Several years ago, here in the U.S., Johns Hopkins University stopped doing sex-change surgeries because they learned that several years after the surgery, people weren’t happy. That’s because having a doctor change the outside, did nothing to change the heart, and the wrong thinking continued. Here is a link to a powerful essay written by the doctor who made the decision to shut down the program: www.firstthings.com/article/2004/11/surgical-sex

Also, here is a website that I think you will find helpful in understanding the regret many people experience post-surgery: www.sexchangeregret.com

How do you counsel someone? Well, it depends on what they think. A person who is happy with their sex-change probably isn’t going to be interested in talking to someone who thinks differently about it. If they’re not happy, and suspect they made a colossal mistake, then I would suggest pointing them to the grace and mercy of God. Sometimes we make decisions we can’t fix, and the only solution for a regret-filled person is to invite God into the mess they’ve made and ask Him to bring glory to Himself through it. God can make all things work together for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Rom. 8:28). He honors our choices, though, and a person who has chosen to mutilate their body will have to live with a mutilated body. But one can do it to the glory of God. The good news for the person who has trusted in Christ is that when they receive their new, glorified body in heaven (1 Corinthians 15), their original gender will be restored.

I hope this helps.

Sue Bohlin

© 2005 Probe Ministries, revised April 2019