In the beginning, God established guidelines for men and women. One of those was sexual immorality.
We have been looking at sexual love in the beginning—the beginning as in the creation of man and woman as described in the book of Genesis.
If you recall, we started with the creation of man and woman. We have looked at sexual love from a biblical perspective. What does the Bible say about sexual love? Are there do’s and don’ts to sexual love? According to God’s Word, yes.
We now look at what the Bible says about homosexuality in the beginning.
Our verse of the day comes from Leviticus 18:22.
“You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination.”
In a previous blog, we looked at incest, and our feature passage came from Leviticus 18:6-18. I note that none of those passages reference the actions being an abomination to the Lord but wicked and perverted. However, in verse 22, we see the word abomination.
Some translations use the word detestable for the word abomination.
What does the word abomination mean? According to Strongs Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, it means something disgusting, an abhorrence.
The sin of homosexuality was well known in the land of Canaan. Homosexual practice was open and common among the men of Sodom.
How do we know that? Genesis 19 records the events of Sodom and Gomorrah, two cities destroyed because of their wickedness. In the account of Lot, he is visited by two angels. The town men showed up at Lot’s door and demanded he send out the two visitors (angels) to have sex with them.
Lot tried to discourage the crowd of men, but they ignored him, instead pressing hard against his door to get inside and take the two visitors for themselves. They also verbally accused him of being judgmental.
Ultimately, God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah by raining down burning sulfur. Only Lot and his two daughters survive. Lot’s wife? She became a pillar of salt.
God’s people were given instructions concerning interpersonal relations and morality, reflecting God’s holiness.
Leviticus Chapter 18 marks the boundaries for marriage and sexual relations.
Chapter 20 specifies the penalties for violating God’s standards. Verse 13 highlights the penalty for homosexuality, “If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.”
Over the years, I have heard various arguments about looking at Old Testament passages for current events. What’s interesting to me is the practice of homosexuality is not a current event. 21st Century persons are not the first ones to practice homosexuality.
One can also argue that we no longer live under the Old Covenant. The New Covenant takes precedent. Are there any passages from the New Testament that speak against the practice of homosexuality?
1 Corinthians 6:9-11, “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the Kingdom of God. And such were some of you.”
The Apostle Paul names two kinds of sexual immoral actions, adulterers and men who have sex with men. In Romans, he adds women with other women as among sexually immoral.
Another argument is the fact that Jesus never speaks on homosexuality. While it’s true, we don’t have specific passages from Jesus on homosexuality; there are several passages he quotes in his teachings from the Old Testament. So the Old Testament was not irrelevant in his eyes, especially when you consider that there are many prophecies about Jesus in the Old Testament.
And lastly, another argument I hear is that homosexuality is the greatest sin of all. I don’t know that I agree with that assessment after reading the Bible. An abomination? Detestable? Against the Lord? Unholy? Yes, I see all of those descriptions in the Bible. But the greatest sin of all sins? I haven’t found that passage yet.
After reading the passages above, we are told we shouldn’t practice sexual immorality, including homosexuality. To do so is to go against what God’s Word says.
My youngest brother was gay. Unfortunately, he passed away 11 years ago after a 20 year battle with HIV/AIDS. He died from colorectal cancer. According to his cancer doctor, colorectal cancer is prevalent among gay men with AIDS.
As a Christian, how should I have treated my gay brother? With love.
My brother and I had no real relationship for many years due to his lifestyle – his decision mainly not mine until he got so sick, he didn’t have much choice. At the time, I could have rejected him because of his choices – drinking, drugging, and sexual perversion.
But who was I to say that his sin was worse than my own? While I don’t partake in those lifestyle choices, there are things the Bible says are sins that I still struggle with daily. So did those make me better or worse than him?
In the final year of his life, what he needed to see from me was love and not condemnation. He was already suffering the consequences of his choices over the years. Whether right or wrong, I chose to love him till the end. I chose to be a light that pointed him to the greatest love I have ever known – Jesus Christ.
I couldn’t undo all the years of pain and suffering, but I could introduce him to the one who died on the cross for him and me. My brother needed to know Jesus.
In the end, my brother confessed his sin, and I believe was forgiven. I remember asking the chaplain if he could still sin as he lay there in the nursing home and ultimately in hospice. He said no. They had many talks together for weeks prior, and he felt confident Joe had repented of his sins and had accepted Jesus as his savior and was going to heaven when he passed.
Homosexuality has come a long way in the last 30 years since Joe first found out he was HIV positive as far as being visual and out in the open. But when we look at what the Bible says, it has been around since the beginning of society. God wasn’t pleased with it then, and I don’t believe he is pleased with it now.
All I can do is go by what the Bible says about homosexuality because I believe it to be true.
I continue to work on my own sin struggles that the Lord says are not pleasing in his sight. I have come a long way in the last 25 years. With the Holy Spirit’s help living in me, I will become more like Christ and less like the person I was 25 years ago. More holy, as God is holy.