Celibacy: The Bible generally promotes celibacy, for the
minority of humans who can experience a complete, fulfilled life without sex.
Sexually active singles: The Hebrew Scriptures contains very severe
penalties, including burning alive and stoning and for sexually active single
women. Some passages in the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures condemn sexual
behavior by both single men and single women.
Committed relationships are strongly supported throughout the
Bible, from the Song of Solomon to Paul's epistles. Although not specifically
mentioned in the Bible, same-sex permanent relationships would seem to be as
beneficial and holy for a gay couple as they are to a heterosexual couple. It
benefits society as well, in terms of lessened promiscuity and greater social
stability. As of mid-2001, only gays and lesbians who are residents
of the Netherlands can actually marry. Americans and Canadians can only
register a civil union in Vermont, U.S. or as a domestic partnership in Nova
Scotia, Canada. This situation is bound to change in the future.
A religious liberal might thus conclude that gays and lesbians are called
by God to either remain celibate or to enter into committed, loving,
supported relationships -- exactly the same lifestyles as God expects of
A conservative Christian might make the following points in
Re: "What the Bible says..." The Bible is a complete
document. It is a full guide to all aspects of life. We must follow what it says
about homosexual behavior.
All of the twelve or so biblical passages
about homosexual behavior are negative. One even calls for the death
penalty for homosexual offenders. One says that homosexuals cannot go to heaven. The passages about Sodom
in Genesis clearly refer to sodomy; that is how we got the term. Leviticus
clearly refers to all forms of gay and lesbian behavior. The condemnations of
Romans and 1 Corinthians clearly refer to homosexual behavior.
Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible; the Bible itself
says so repeatedly.
God created the institution of heterosexual marriage in Genesis
2. The concept of homosexual marriage is nowhere mentioned in the Bible.
There is no biblical passage in which God directly states his approval of
any of the other seven forms of marriage.
Celibacy, or conversion to heterosexuality are the only moral
choices for homosexuals.
If homosexual behavior is sufficient to call for the death
penalty and to prevent a person from going to Heaven,
then it is inconceivable that God would approve of same-sex marriage.