This is a question I have heard my liberal Christian friends, and my non-Christian friends ask. Why do Christians hate homosexuals? Unfortunately, some Christians give the rest of us a bad reputation. We have the choice to respond to these questions lovingly, rather than defensively, to help people understand and apologize for those who act so poorly on Christ’s behalf.
Here is a detailed response regarding homosexuality from our Dean, Dr. Joe Parle. Also, make sure to check out our YouTube channnel, www.Youtube.com/CBSHouston so see the short answer on this question on the CBS Insider. Leave your comments there, follow us on Facebook and Twitter, and let us know what questions you have for next week.
Dr. Parle’s reeponse:
Calling Good Evil and Evil Good: A Biblical Analysis of Homosexuality
By: Joseph Parle, Ph.D. Academic Dean of the College of Biblical Studies
An old Cherokee once told his grandson, “A fight is going on inside me. It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego. The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. This same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.” The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked, “Which wolf will win?” The old Cherokee replied, “The one you feed the most.” This story illustrates the fight within the heart of every man. Romans 1:25-27 says, “For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.” Paul portrayed a fight between the truth of God and the passions that war against the truth. He told the Romans that they could either choose to feed their souls with the truth or exchange that truth for a lie. As the Episcopal and Anglican denominations investigate the issue of homosexual priests and states are reviewing sodomy laws, it is critical that every Christian have a biblical perspective on homosexuality. A biblical analysis of this issue will reveal that the Bible considers homosexuality sinful because it is contrary to the created purpose of man and against the will of God.
At the core of this debate is where the authority for defining morality lies. For the Christian, the Bible is the sole authority for establishing morality. 2 Timothy 3:16 says, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” The Bible is the breath of God and is a completely reliable source for determining the Christian doctrine as well as for instructing them in righteousness so they might be thoroughly equipped for the Christian life. Following the commandments contained in the Bible is at the very essence of Christianity. Jesus said in John 14:21, “He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him.” By contrast the Bible never gives man the authority to determine truth for himself. Isaiah 5:20 says, “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” Proverbs 21:2-3 says, “Every man’s way is right in his own eyes, but the LORD weighs the hearts. To do righteousness and justice is desired by the LORD more than sacrifice.”
Consequently, as one determines how homosexuality weighs on the scale of God’s righteousness, a biblical perspective is in order. The Bible consistently says that homosexuality violates the original created order of man. As previously cited, Romans 1:26-27 says that homosexuals have exchanged the natural function for the unnatural which was based on their burning desire for one another which resulted in indecent acts. In the Bible, marriage is a divinely ordered institution designed to form a permanent union between one man and one woman for one purpose (among others) of procreating or propagating the human race. That was God’s order in the first of such unions (Gen. 1:27-28; 2:24; Mat. 19:5). If, in His original creation of humans, God had created two persons of the same sex, there would not be a human race in existence today. It should also be noted that the church was to require their leadership to be heterosexual as all bishops were to be the husband of one wife (1 Tim 3:2, Titus 1:6). Thus, the Bible prohibits homosexuals from exercising leadership over a church.
Furthermore, the Bible consistently labels homosexuality as an illicit lust that is forbidden by God. In Genesis 19:5-7 the men of Sodom called to Lot and said, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.” In response, Lot said, “No, my friends. Don’t do this wicked thing.” The Bible specifically calls homosexuality a wicked thing. In fact this act was so wicked that all homosexuals were called Sodomites and God said that there should be no sodomites among the people of Israel (Deut 23:17). Furthermore, God said to His people Israel, “You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination” (Leviticus 18:22). It also says, “If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death. Their bloodguiltiness is upon them” (Leviticus 20:13). In these passages homosexuality is condemned as a prime example of sin, a sexual perversion. In Leviticus 20:13-16, it is placed on par with having sexual relations with one’s mother and having sexual relations with an animal.
Like the Old Testament, the New Testament is equally clear in its description of homosexuality as sinful. 1 Timothy 1:8-11 says, “But we know that the Law is good, if one uses it lawfully, realizing the fact that law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers and immoral men and homosexuals and kidnappers and liars and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching, according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, with which I have been entrusted.” Jude 7 calls homosexuality an act of gross immorality. Thus, God’s consistently describes homosexuality as an immoral act.
In light of this truth, how should the church view homosexuals? The Apostle Paul, writing by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, declares that homosexuals “shall not inherit the kingdom of God” (I Corinthians 6:9; 10). In this passage Paul not only addresses homosexuals but also fornicators, idolators, adulterers, thieves, covetous persons, drunkards, revilers and extortioners. After discussing these sins he says, “And such were some of you: But ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the spirit of our God” (I Corinthians 6:11). All of the sins mentioned in this passage are condemned by God, but just as there was hope in Christ for the Corinthians, so is there hope for all Christians. The hope is that Jesus Christ offers a healing alternative in which the power of sin is broken and the person is freed to know and experience his or her true identity in Christ and in the fellowship of his Church. It should be noted here that while Christians should detest the sin of homosexuality, they should love the sinner as one who is an object of God’s great love. Whatever biological or familial roots of homosexuality may be discovered, Christians should not sanction or excuse homosexual behavior, though they would deepen compassion and patience for those who are struggling to be free from sexual temptations. In essence, all Christians have inherited a certain proclivity to sin from Adam and as such while no excuse for sin is acceptable, homosexuals must deal with their sin in a similar way to which heterosexuals must deal with theirs. They must recognize homosexual behavior as sin, renounce the practice of homosexual behavior, rediscover healthy, non-erotic friendships with people of the same sex, embrace a moral sexual lifestyle, and in the age to come, rise from the dead with a new body free from every sinful impulse.
In conclusion, the Bible consistently calls homosexuality sinful because it violates the created nature of man as well as the will of God. In light of that truth, while homosexual behavior is sinful, all homosexuals should be accorded the same dignity, compassion and respect as heterosexuals who are struggling with sinful habits. While not endorsing the behavior, a Christian should lovingly provide hope through the love of Christ and a willingness to lovingly assist these individuals throughout their battle with the sin of homosexuality.
Biblical Passages Dealing with Homosexuality
Leviticus 18:22, 29
1 Kings 22:46
- Romans 1:26-27
1 Corinthians 6:9-11
1 Timothy 1:9-10
Biblical Passages Dealing with God’s Created Purpose for Sex in Marriage
- Genesis 1:27-28
- Genesis 2:24
- Proverbs 5:18-19
- Song of Solomon 4:10
Song of Solomon 4:1-7
- Song of Solomon 5:10-16
- Song of Solomon 6:4-9
- Song of Solomon 7:1-9
- Matthew 19:5
- 1 Corinthians 6:16.
- 1 Corinthians 7:2-5
- 1 Thessalonians 4:3-6
- Hebrews 13:4