A three part essay donated by John A. Dixon
"What I believe the Bible
really says about homosexuality"
So let's look at some of those laws:
||If a man has recently married, he must not be sent to war or have any other duty laid on him. For one year he is to be free to stay at home and bring happiness to the wife he has married. (Deuteronomy 24:5). Does ANYONE keep this law? Could you manage a whole year without a paycheck? How would the military react in the middle of a war when a soldier comes up to his commander and says, "Sorry, sir, but my wife is pregnant and the book of Deuteronomy demands that I go home for a whole year now"? Any man whose wife becomes pregnant is here told that he must stay home for a year without working or else he is guilty of breaking the law!
||Do not hate your brother in your heart. (Leviticus 19:17). Don't hate your siblings, even while growing up, or else you have broken the entirety of the law.
||Do not cut the hair at the sides of your head or clip off the edges of your beard. (Leviticus 19:27). Don't shave! Ever!
||Rise in the presence of the aged, show respect for the elderly and revere your God. I am the LORD. (Leviticus 19:32). If you do not stand in the presence of your elders, or get snippy with someone older than you, you have broken the law.
||No one born of a forbidden marriage nor any of his descendants may enter the assembly of the LORD, even down to the tenth generation. (Deuteronomy 23:2). So no one who has been born out of wedlock or born from a marriage that was not approved of may enter a church, nor may any of his or her descendants for ten whole generations after. Who checks this? Who would know? How could this one EVER be kept?
This is where it
becomes more interesting:
||If anyone curses his
father or mother, he must be put to death. He has cursed his father or
mother, and his blood will be on his own head. If a man commits adultery
with another man's wife -- with the wife of his neighbor -- both the
adulterer and the adulteress must be put to death. (Leviticus 20:9-10). Anyone who talks
back to their parents must be killed for it according to the law!
Anyone caught in
adultery must be put to death also! It is in the law!
But in John
8:3-11 we see Jesus show what law we are truly under:
The teachers of the
law and the Pharisees brought a woman caught in adultery. They made her
stand before the group and said to Jesus:
"Teacher, this woman was
caught in the act of adultery. In the Law Moses commanded us to stone
such women. Now what do you say?"
They were using this question as a
trap, in order to have a basis for accusing Him.
But Jesus bent over
and started to write on the ground with his finger. When they kept on
questioning him, he straightened up and said to them:
"If any one of you
is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her."
stooped down and wrote on the ground.
At this, those who
heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only
Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. Jesus straightened
up and asked her,
"Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?"
"No one, sir," she
"Then neither do I
condemn you," Jesus declared. "Go now and leave your life of sin."
In this Jesus
shows us that the law saves no one; all are guilty of breaking the law
of Moses. The fact of the matter is simple: nowhere does Christ Himself
say anything against homosexuality. He reiterates nine of the Ten
Commandments, lifting the Sabbath commandment, as it had become a yoke
upon the people. Consider Matthew 22:36-40:
"Teacher, which is
the greatest commandment in the Law?"
" 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and
with all your mind' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the
second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the
Prophets hang on these two commandments."
So the sum of the
law is in loving God and each other. How does this balance with the
Mosaic law we looked at only a page back? Again, according to James, if
we break even one law under the Mosaic laws, we break them all.
Romans 1: Another commonly
used Scripture that is often mistreated to condemn homosexuality comes
from Romans 1:26-27:
"Because of this, God
gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural
relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned
natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust one for
another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in
themselves the due penalty for their perversion."(NIV)
Again, on its
surface, it seems very straight-forward, but notice how this fragment
begins: "Because of this..." Because of what? This passage really begins
with Romans 1:18.
The wrath of God
is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness
of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness...
It goes on in
verses 22 and 23:
claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the
immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and
animals and reptiles."
taken in context and read for what it says ("exchanged the glory of...
God for images made to look like mortal man... and animals...") is
clearly about idolatry and pagan worship. To strengthen this point of
view, the Scriptures go on to say:
"They exchanged the
truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served created things rather
than the Creator..." (Romans 1:25)
Then it goes on
regarding the passage we first looked at, Romans 1:26-27. Taken in
context, and translated properly, this passage is clearly about the
pagan practices surrounding fertility worship and the sexual acts
associated with that worship, performed with the priest of that false
god, a "created" god. (Romans 1:25) There is simply no other accurate
way to construe this passage. 1
- For an alternate analysis of Romans 1, which reaches the same conclusion, see our site's section on this biblical chapter.
How you may have arrived here:
Copyright © 2004 the author
Originally written: 2004-MAR-20
Latest update: 2004-MAR-20
Author: John S. Dixon