The Song of Songs is a controversial book. Erotic poem or allegory of Jesus’ love for the Church? Aimee Byrd’s latest offering sets out to explore this often-misunderstood portion of scripture, using it as a lens through which to explore the issue of male-female relationships.

The Sexual Reformation contains some fascinating insights into desire, sexuality and the hierarchical division between man and woman, arguing that this was not God’s design but a consequence of our sin. Now, we live in “unresolved tension” rather than the mutuality that God intended, argues the author. Male supremacy is not a divine right nor a prerogative; female subordination is not a divine decree nor a woman’s destiny.

This is ultimately a book that preaches a redemptive theology. Byrd makes some fascinating points, but this is no light read. Instead, the book contains rigorous, original thinking that tackles the intersection between Christian faith, sexuality and feminism. Just keep a dictionary close by.