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Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Why the Bible condemns homosexuality: “Male and female He created them”…

Posted by Gary on July 6, 2015

Genesis 1:26-28 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth. God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply…”

In the debate over homosexual marriage we hear again and again that sexuality is a personal matter. According to LGBT advocates, it is hateful, bigoted and homophobic to insist that there is one truth and standard for human relationships and sexuality. “What business is it of yours who I love and have sex with?” Is a common refrain. “We love each other and you have no right to tell me who I can love or not love” is another.

It appears that the reason that the United States and mankind is to embrace homosexuality is found in the individual and there is no universal truth that governs all human relationships and sexuality. For thousands of years civilizations have understood and declared that it is the male/female relationship that mankind is built upon and needs to continue but somehow now, we have seen the light. I am sure that many may point out that homosexuality has been in the world for a very long time which cannot be denied. What can also not be denied is the truth that the fall perverted and distorted all that is good and beautiful from God our Creator. The fact that homosexuality has existed from the early days does not make it right. Lying, murder, rape, drunkenness and violence have been around a long time too, it proves nothing except that the fall happened. If you are offended to see homosexuality listed alongside other behaviors that at least most people admit are evil, your quarrel is not with me but with Scripture:

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.”

So, who wins the debate over human sexuality? What settles the matter? If you insist the Supreme Court has settled the matter, let me remind you that the Supreme Court at one time seemed to settle the matter of human value in the Dred Scott decision. Was the court right? Is it infallible?

As you decide where truth lies in this debate I would encourage you to consider the Word of God and what it says to us about human relationships and sexuality. I have posted verses from the book of Genesis above for you to read and consider. What these verses (and many others in Scripture) reveal is that humans did not create themselves but have been created by God. This deserves contemplation. If we did not make ourselves, how can we insist that we get to determine what human existence and purpose is? If there is a Creator, did He create with no specific purpose? Did He intend nothing? Did He intend everything? Anything?

If God is the advocate of sexual preference and choice as so many blasphemously insist that He is, why did He leave no such option in creation? Why did He make only one man and one woman and declare the woman the man’s helpmate and bring her to him? Why did He not for example make three men and three women and tell them to pair off however they prefer in accord with their orientation and preference?

The response to these questions for many is that I am speaking of the Old Testament ogre of a God who was harsh, angry and judgmental who one day took a long hard look at Himself in the mirror and turned over a new leaf and became the God of love found in Jesus Christ. Let’s talk Jesus for a bit shall we? Scripture records a conversation between Jesus and the Pharisees on the topic of marriage:

Matthew 19:3-6 “Some Pharisees came to Jesus, testing Him and asking, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any reason at all?” And He answered and said, “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE, and said, ‘FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH ‘? “So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.”

Remember now, this is Jesus, God with His act together having turned over a new loving leaf speaking about marriage and what do we hear from Jesus? We hear the Genesis account of creation by the God of the Old Testament who “from the beginning” made them “male and female”. Jesus then says, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife.” See, there is a reason, there is a purpose in God’s creation. It is not willy-nilly. It is not left unsettled or open to question, it does not depend on what I think or what you think. Male and female is the stated purpose of God the Creator, it is this union that He has blessed, it is this union that He calls marriage.

Would this not have been the opportune time for Jesus to have straightened things out if the view that marriage is only a man and woman was wrong? Could He not have cleared His throat and said something like:

Hmmm, Hmmm. By the way, while we are talking about marriage let me clarify a few things. I know the Scriptures say that in creation My Father made just a man and a woman and united them in marriage but don’t misinterpret this. In no way should you understand Scripture to mean that this is My Father’s universal design binding upon all people. My Father merely knew that you couldn’t have more people without the male/female relationship (author of this post clears his throat emphatically) but He intended that after a good pool of people came into existence they could then pair off however they wanted to in accordance with their preference and orientation.

He might have said further:

You may now disregard all those statements forbidding sodomy in the Old Testament because these were all authored by My Father as He used to be: harsh, angry and judgmental. But He has turned over a new leaf and has sent Me to set things right and He really hopes that because of me you will like Him again. Also, about thirty years from now when My Apostles write things that condemn homosexuality and insist that the kingdom of heaven will be closed to all unrepentant homosexuals, fornicators and adulterers, don’t pay any attention. You must understand that sometimes when the Apostles will write they will be truly filled with My Spirit and write infallibly under His inspiration but will on other occasions reject My Spirit and write from their own thoughts. My Apostles mean well but they were raised in a patriarchal society and have a male headship fascination. They are traditionalists who actually think I would expect two unhappy people to keep their wedding vows. Most of all, they are homophobic and so when you read anything from them on these topics just know that they are not under inspiration but are speaking their own limited, unprogressive, Neanderthal like minds. Nevermind what this infers as to my Godhood, foreknowledge and sovereign power. I know it would seem that if I were God I would know what My Apostles would write in the future and if I didn’t want certain men saying certain things I wouldn’t chose them. I know you would think that if I am the Supreme Being I could author My Word infallibly but I must admit that what you will end up with in the Bible is a book of some of My thoughts and a lot of the thoughts of narrow-minded men. I am sorry, this is the best I can do.

If you know the God of truth and fear Him, everything I just wrote sounds blasphemous and it is. But blasphemy is the road you must be willing to walk down if you are going to insist that homosexuality is blessed by God. This is what America has done. More tragically, this is what the Church in America is doing increasingly. We are to believe now in a Creator  who created with no specific intention but has left all these matters to the creature. We are to believe that everything that the Bible says about homosexuality is for the past, uttered by an angry, unloving God who could seem to think of nothing but holiness, righteousness and judgment. We are to believe that this God has nullified everything He ever intended and said about sexuality because you or I feel something inside ourselves that we could never imagine that we should say “no” to though the Word of God and the consequences in our own bodies shout, “sinful”!

To think that God had no intention for human relationships and sexuality is ludicrous, dishonest and eternally dangerous. If this is the case, why does Scripture speak only with blessing upon men and women, husbands and wives and the families born of them and never one commendation but only condemnation upon homosexuality? Why is monogamous, heterosexual union naturally healthy and why does it lead to the furtherance of the human race? In contrast, why must homosexuality be practiced “safely”? Why is it not naturally safe? Why does it lead to disease? Why does homosexuality condemn itself? Because, God the Creator made them male and female. This is His intention for all His creatures, it is only this union that brings Him honor. It is only this union that can bring us His blessing and continue the human race.

He who has an ear, let him hear.

Comments

7 Responses to “Why the Bible condemns homosexuality: “Male and female He created them”…”
  1. Ally says:

    Gary, I respect your post very much and understand that you are speaking out in truth. I believe that the world as it is is broken and sinful, however, our God is Sovereign and is not allowing anything to happen that He will not redeem in His time.
    For the time being, I think that it is our call as forgiven sinners, to speak in grace and truth. We are called to love God and love people. This love is one out of fear for the Lord and an eternal perspective. I do not believe that any action of service in love towards a homosexual person will go void. We know what the Bible says about sin and we know what he says about how He wants none to perish (2 Peter 3:9). Let us as followers of Jesus Christ be a shining light on a hill for the brokenhearted. There are many very broken, confused, and wandering men and women around us, who just need the Light to cling to.

    • Gary says:

      Dear Ally,
      Thank you for spending time reading my post and for your thoughts. I agree with you that that our goal after the glory of God should be the salvation of the lost. I was lost, but now am found. T’was blind, but now I see, all by the grace of God. For sake of time, I would ask you to read my responses to Daniel and Stephen (listed in the comments)but let me just say that there are times to respond boldly and firmly with the truth on these matters as there is a deliberate, evil movement to defy God and His order of creation. This movement has had much success in destroying our understanding of God’s will, ruining the family and riddling our bodies with disease. At the same time, there are individuals that God intends to save and we must be discerning and wise as we fish for men. There is a time for boldness and a time for gentleness. May God help us to discern between them when the opportunity comes.

      Thank you again Ally.

      Gary

  2. Daniel says:

    Gary,
    First off I want to say I agree with you, I believe marriage is between a man and a woman and think homosexual relations are sexual immoral. However recently I have been exposed to the arguments of the other side and it has resulted in two distinct shifts in my thinking.

    Firstly I find myself less sure of my skills and abilities at interpreting the original meaning of Biblical texts, especially in this matter. I believe in divine inspiration, meaning God inspired the very words He intended through human authors. However I’ve learned that moving from the hermeneutical process of unearthing what the words meant to those people at that time, to what the timeless truth God meant to convey, to then applying it to people now in this time, is a much more complicated process than I ever imagined. People must smarter, more trained, and probably better Christians than me seem to land on both sides of the debate. Therefore while, as I said, I still hold my beliefs on the truth, I have become more aware of the uncertainty attached to the issue. This uncertainty led me to the second shift in my perspective.

    Because I have become relived of the burden of knowing for sure what is right and being tasked with exposing it to everyone, I felt overwhelming compelled to respond with love and guanine interest in hearing the testimonies of individuals in the midst of all kinds of identity issues (sexually and otherwise). Some of my most fruitful conversations recently have come from engaging with a good friend of mine who feels compelled to work specifically with troubled members of the LGBT community. Her views are drastically contrary to mine by we both immensely enjoy our conversation because neither of us feel burdened with the need to convince the other of how right we are. I am not undermining the importance of knowing and believing truth, I truly believe marriage in between and man and a woman and that marriage is the only healthy place for fruitful sex. But when I engage with people now I have come to an awareness that sometimes my role is not to confront them verbally with the truth I know. Instead I can communicate God’s truth of love through presence, His truth of priorities through service, or His truth acceptance through… well acceptance. When asked I am always honest and up front about what exactly I believe in the realm of sexual expression, but more often than not I find I am given an opportunity to show truth through almost any other way first.

    I immensely enjoyed your article and am with you in the hope that the future holds for us a shift back to a non-distorted view of what marriages and just relationships in general should look like. Until than though I will be loving and praying every day that God helps to remind me of how little I actually know and how much His grace actually covers.

    • Gary says:

      Daniel,
      Thank you for taking time to read my post and for your thoughts. I would like to encourage you not to overthink this issue as it comes to Biblical interpretation. While I readily grant that some passages of Scripture may be more difficult to understand than others, much of Scriptural interpretation rests with taking words at their simple meaning. I fear that the devil is very successful at getting us to think that we may not really understand what God has said so plainly. Remember his method with Eve in the garden, “Did God really say”? Mark Twain is reported to have said once, “My problem with the Bible is not the sections I cannot understand, but the ones I can.”

      How the Church speaks toward the homosexual movement and powers-that-be should often be different from the Christian’s approach to the individual homosexual. Certainly love should motivate us and love knows when to be patient and tread lightly and when to deal in force.

      I am afraid that many Christians react to the world’s accusation of hatred against us. Is it hateful to speak the truth? Is it loving to watch someone ruin themselves both in this life and the next? I maintain that I do not hate homosexuals and actually love them more than they love themselves. If making someone upset in what we say means that we do not love them, then God must not love us for He says many things to us that we do not like.

      Stay the course, let Scripture speak in its plainness and be careful not to let the world set the standard for love and hate. The world does not have a very good track record in doing so.

      Thanks again,
      Gary

  3. Stephen says:

    One thing that is often left out of this discussion is a conversation of mercy and an understanding of man’s universally shared sinfulness. All sexuality has been tainted because of the fall, and as a result sexually deviant acts and thoughts are pervasive. It is not just same-sex attraction or homosexual acts that lead to damage and harm to human beings, but also pornography, adultery and lustful fantasies. I think that the response of the Christian is certainly to uphold the created order and design God put in place, but our response to this ruling must be tempered by mercy, love and a shared understanding of our human brokenness. The gospel message is not about hating our enemies or despising others as worse off, but rather an understanding that none can be saved by merit, only by grace.

    • Gary says:

      Dear Stephen,
      Thank you for reading my post and for your thoughts. I have no disagreement with what you have said, actually strong agreement. I do think we have to be careful not to let the world define love and hatred. Speaking the truth is not hateful but the world thinks it is in most cases because it hates the truth (as I once did). Nor is it loving to watch people ruin themselves both in this life and the next. Jesus was very merciful toward overt sinners who humbled themselves before Him and was ruthless with the unrepentant, especially the religious unrepentant. This all requires wisdom from the Holy Spirit. We must know when gentleness and patience are required and when a firm, bold stand is necessary. Gentleness can be as hateful as brash truth if gentleness never speaks the truth.

      Thank you again Stephen.

      Gary

  4. Laura says:

    Thank you for the time and thought you put into this article! I think you made an interesting point in your argument that if Jesus meant for us to embrace homosexuality (or transgender identities), he would have mentioned it; I wanted to offer a little more light on this argument. Homosexual marriage was not even an option in the minds of those in the NT: they knew that marriage should be between a male and a female, since heirs could only come between a husband and a wife.

    This, then, requires us to concede that Jesus’ addressing this issue would have been entirely out of context. It at first doesn’t seem like good reasoning to say that because homosexuality wasn’t mentioned by Jesus as being ok to practice, that we have his complete thoughts on the subject (if there would have been no reason for Jesus to mention it here, or if it would have even been revolting for the Romans or Jews to hear Jesus say it was alright). In the Roman culture, for a male to be penetrated by another male was shameful and dishonoring; but it was entirely honorable on the side of the penetrator. This view of sexual activity would mean that a male marriage relationship was culturally offensive (or a female marriage relationship, since it was dishonorable for a female to penetrate). Therefore, along with the common understanding that homosexuality could not produce offspring, homosexual marriage was not even an option among people at the time that the New Testament was written. So Jesus would not have had reason to condemn it if it was already seen as wrong.

    It does seem important to recognize, though, that if Jesus had wanted homosexuality to be welcomed in his kingdom, since he was already pushing against cultural norms, he could have mentioned it as good and welcome in the heavenly kingdom. But if, for argument’s sake, Jesus did not happen to mention it as acceptable in his kingdom but actually did view it as so, this new teaching (like you said) would not line up with the Old Testament’s attitude toward homosexuality and the Apostles’ later stance. It is important for an interpretation of the Bible to line up with what is written before, and after.

    Therefore, I agree with your conclusion, but wanted to hopefully offer a more thoughtful consideration of why Jesus would not have affirmed or condemned homosexuality in the Gospels.

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