Quantcast
About this site
About us
Our beliefs
Your first visit?
Contact us
External links
Good books
Visitor essays
Our forum
New essays
Other features
Buy a CD
Vital notes


Twitter icon


Facebook icon

About this site
About us
Our beliefs
Is this your first visit?
Contact us
External links

Recommended books

Visitors' essays
Our forum
New essays
Other features
Buy a CD of this site
Vital notes

World religions
BUDDHISM
CHRISTIANITY
-Christian definition
 -Shared beliefs
 -Handling change
 -Bible topics
 -Bible inerrancy
 -Bible harmony
 -Interpret the Bible
 -Persons
 -Beliefs & creeds
 -Da Vinci code
 -Revelation, 666
 -Denominations
HINDUISM
ISLAM
JUDAISM
WICCA / WITCHCRAFT
Other religions
Cults and NRMs
Comparing Religions

Non-theistic beliefs
Atheism
Agnosticism
Humanism
Other

About all religions
Main topics
Basic information
Gods & Goddesses
Handling change
Doubt & security
Quotes
Movies
Confusing terms
Glossary
End of the World?
True religion?
Seasonal events
Science vs. Religion
More information

Spiritual/ethics
Spirituality
Morality & ethics
Absolute truth

Peace/conflict
Attaining peace
Religious tolerance
Religious freedom
Religious hatred
Religious conflict
Religious violence

"Hot" topics
Very hot topics
Ten Commandments
Abortion access
Assisted suicide
Cloning
Death penalty
Environment

Same-sex marriage

Homosexuality
Human rights
Gays in the military
Nudism
Origins
Sex & gender
Sin
Spanking
Stem cells
Transexuality
Women-rights
Other topics

Laws and news
Religious laws
Religious news

Sponsored links

 

!!!!!!!! Search error!  If the URL ends something like .htm/  or .htm# delete the character(s) after .htm and hit return.

What the Bible says and means about homosexuality

Conflicting interpretations of 7 major passages
about same-gender sexual behavior. Resolution.

Sponsored link.

Major or "clobber" passages:

Of the 20 or so bible passages that have been interpreted as involving homosexual behavior, the seven listed below are mentioned most often. They are commonly referred to as "clobber" passages, because they are used by many social and religious conservatives to condemn homosexual behavior. The remainder are minor passages and are described elsewhere.

The following very brief descriptions are necessarily over-simplified. They do not cover the full range of conservative/progressive beliefs. However, you may well find the beliefs that you have been taught in one of these columns:

Location Typical interpretation by religious conservatives Typical interpretation by religious progressives & secularists
Genesis 19 Condemns all same-sex sexual behavior, whether by two men, two women, within a loving committed relationship or a "one-night stand.". Condemns anal raping of strangers for the purpose of humiliation.
Leviticus 18:22 Condemns all same-sex sexual behavior. Condemns gay ritual sex in a Pagan temple and/or males having sex in a woman's bed.
Leviticus 20:13 Condemns all same-sex sexual behavior. Condemns gay ritual sex in a temple and/or males having sex in a woman's bed.
Romans 1:26-27 Condemns all homosexual behavior as unnatural. Describes a group of heterosexuals who, against their basic nature, engage in same-sex behavior during ritual orgies.
1 Corinthians 6:9-10 Sexually active homosexuals will go to Hell, not Heaven, at death. Once truly saved, homosexuals will become heterosexuals. Male child molesters and the children they molest will go to Hell, not Heaven, at death.*
1 Timothy 1:9-10 Condemns all same-sex sexual behavior. Refers to child molesters and the children they molest.
Jude 1:7 Sexually active homosexuals will go to Hell, not Heaven, at death. Humans who have sex with other species -- angels in this case -- will go to Hell, not Heaven, at death.

*Concerning 1 Corinthians 6:9-10:

There are various interpretations of 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 of which this is one. The Jerusalem Bible, New American Bible, and James Moffatt translation use the word "catamites," or the phrase "boy prostitutes" to describe one group of individuals that Paul believed will go to Hell because of their behavior on Earth. Catamites and boy prostitutes were often boys or male youth who was kept as a sexual partner/slave by an adult male.

The verse is profoundly immoral by today's secular and most religious moral standards because it transfers punishment from the guilty perpetrator to the innocent victim. This type of transfer is seen many passages throughout the Bible from Genesis to Revelation. Many religious liberals believe that these passages are immoral and should be ignored because they are clearly opposed to the will of God.

Sponsored link:

Summary of opposing interpretations of the clobber passages:

bullet

To many -- not all -- conservative members of religions that revere the Bible -- primarily the Baha'i faith, Christianity, Islam, and Judaism -- the Bible condemns homosexual behavior and states that, after death, persons who have been sexually active with members of the same gender will end up in Hell, not Heaven.

Most fundamentalist and other evangelical Christians believe that because God is all powerful and hates same-sex sexual behavior, he will either:

  • Change a repentant lesbian or gay who is saved into a heterosexual, or

  • Help a saved lesbian or gay choose and later maintain a celibate lifestyle.

English translations of the Bible are far more supportive of these beliefs than are the original Hebrew and Greek manuscripts.


bullet

To many -- not all -- liberal/progressive believers, the Bible is silent same-sex sexual behavior within a on loving, consensual relationship or same-sex marriage. God accepts persons of all sexual orientations and approves of sex that is consensual, non-manipulative, safe and within a loving, committed relationship. Liberals and progressive have a range of beliefs concerning safe, consensual, and casual sex by heterosexuals, bisexuals, lesbians or gays.

However the Bible condemns:

  • Males raping other men. In fact, it condemns all non-consensual sex.

  • One of two behaviors:
    • Either men engaging in ritual sex in Pagan temples, or

    • Men having sex in a woman's bed.

Thelogians have translated passages in Leviticus 18 and 20 both ways.

  • People having sex that violates their sexual orientation -- their basic nature. For example:
    • Persons with a heterosexual orientation having sex with a member of the same sex.

    • Lesbians or gays with a homosexual orientation having sex with a member of the opposite sex.

  • Men sexually abusing children. One passage also condemns young victims of sexual molestation.

  • People engaging in bestiality: having sex with non-humans, including angels.

horizontal rule

A solution to the conflict:

As with many other religiously-based conflicts like abortion access, equal rights for transgender persons and transsexuals, and -- in past years -- interracial, interfaith and inter-ethnic marriages, we see two opposing groups strongly disagreeing with each other, even as they tenatiously hold firmly to their beliefs. Harmonizing their beliefs would require dialogue. This involves sitting down together, explaining their beliefs to each other, and discussing their differences. The process encourages both sides to seek the truth, and to avoid trying to convince the other side to change their mind.

Webmaster's personal opinion; potential bias alert: Unfortunately, both sides tend to stay apart, throw verbal rocks at each other, and teach their followers only one side of the conflict as absolute truth. Dialogue on sexual orientation is essentially non-existent. In the meantime, about one in four lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth are thrown out of their homes when they come out of the "closet" to their parents. Suicide ideation and completed suicide rates among LGBT youths are much higher than average. If a concensus were reached, there is every chance that these dreadful figures could be reduced. With no consensus, the trail of coffins lengthens daily. Our opinion is that both sides exhibit depraved indifference when they do not actively engage in dialogue.

horizontal rule

Site navigation:

 Home page > Christianity > Bible passages > Bible homosexuality > here

or Home page > "Hot" topics > Homosexuality > Bible homosexuality > here

Copyright © 2009 to 2012 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Original posting: 2009-FEB-14, by coincidence, Valentine's day
Latest update: 2012-FEB-29
Author: B.A. Robinson

line.gif (538 bytes)
Sponsored link

Go to the previous page, or return to the "Homosexuality & the Bible" menu, or choose:

Google
Web ReligiousTolerance.org

Go to home page  We would really appreciate your help

E-mail us about errors, etc.  Purchase a CD of this web site

FreeFind search, lists of new essays...  Having problems printing our essays?

Twitter link

Facebook icon

Google Page Translator:

This page translator works on Firefox,
Opera, Chrome, and Safari browsers only

After translating, click on the "show
original" button at the top of this
page to restore page to English.

 

Sponsored links: