What Does the Bible Say About So-Called Homosexual Marriage
President Barack Obama announced that “…same sex marriage is the right thing to do…”. The president referred to the “golden rule” as his rationale for supporting “gay marriage.” Would Jesus support “gay marriage”? Read on to find out.
The Bible addresses homosexual behavior in several passages, including the following:
- Leviticus 18:22
- Leviticus 20:13
- 1 Corinthians 6:9-10
- Romans 1:26-28
Leviticus 18:22. “‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.
Leviticus 20:13. “‘If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with 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.
1 Corinthians 6:9-10. 9 Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men 10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
Romans 1:26-28. 26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error. 28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done.
Critics will ask why homosexuality is a sin when Christians ignore most of the Old Testament laws, such as not eating pork or shellfish. Can Christians also ignore the law against homosexuality?
Tad Cronn in his article, Why Homosexuality is a Sin, but Shellfish are OK1, explains why. After Jesus ascended into heaven, the early church was led by the Apostles and James, the half brother of Jesus. Although the early church began as mostly Jewish converts, many non-Jews began to convert. The Jewish converts wanted the non-Jewish converts to follow the prohibitions and commandments of the Mosaic Law. A controversy arose.
James and the Apostles handled it this way as recorded in Acts 15:28-29, when they sent a letter to the believers in present day Turkey, and concluded with the following passages:
Acts 15:28-29. 28 It seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us not to burden you with anything beyond the following requirements: 29 You are to abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality. You will do well to avoid these things.
The non-Jewish converts were to refrain from four things, one of which was sexual immorality. Eating shell fish and pork were therefore permissible, as long as they were not sacrificed to idols and were thoroughly cooked. Sexual immorality would include incest, fornication, bestiality, and homosexual sex.
Other critics, including the President, consider the Golden Rule as some sort of blanket amnesty from all Biblical rules, particularly those included in the Old Testament. However, Jesus said in Matthew 5:17-19:
Matthew 5:17-19. 17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18 For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. 19 Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
Jesus is saying that He did not abolish the Old Testament law. He fulfilled the Law by dying on the cross for us, humans riddled with sin and unable to keep the Law.
In fact, Jesus reaffirms traditional marriage in Matthew 19:4-6:
Matthew 19:4-6. 4 “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ 5 and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? 6 So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”
The Bible couldn’t be clearer about the prohibition of homosexual behavior and the principle that marriage can only mean the uniting of a man and a women.
To Read More
Tad Cronn, Why Homosexuality is a Sin, but Shellfish are OK (Godfather Politics, May 19, 2012) Available at: http://godfatherpolitics.com/5272/why-homosexuality-is-a-sin-but-shellfish-are-ok/ (May 22, 2012)
Kevin DeYoung, What the Bible Really Still Says About Homosexuality (The Gospel Coalition, May 16, 2012) Available at: http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/kevindeyoung/2012/05/16/what-the-bible-really-still-says-about-homosexuality/ (May 22, 2012)
- Tad Cronn, Why Homosexuality is a Sin, but Shellfish are OK (Godfather Politics, May 19, 2012) Available at: http://godfatherpolitics.com/5272/why-homosexuality-is-a-sin-but-shellfish-are-ok/ (May 22, 2012)