What language is to be used to speak to, or about, a friend who is transitioning to the other gender?
Without answering this question directly, J. Alan Branch urges us to consider both the implications of Scripture and the requirements of compassion.
So, if I choose not to conform to transgender vocabulary, I might ask:
‘First, have I prayed for the person in question and are my actions motivated by love both for the truth and for the person? Second, am I willing to suffer for following my convictions, including loss of employment? Third, if I am dismissed, will I love my enemies and pray for them?’
If I seek to maintain friendship with this person by using the preferred language of identification:
‘First, do I have a clear understanding of the biblical stance on gender, and do I grasp the grievous sin my friend is committing? Second, do I genuinely intend to make an intentional effort to share Christ with this person, given the right time, opportunity, and prompting by the Holy Spirit? Third, am I willing to share my convictions about gender based on Scripture, realizing others in our culture will strongly disagree; or am I looking for a way to avoid the stigma of being a Christian?’
(Quoted in this review by Michael F. Bird)