Does Romans 1:26-27 condemn homosexuals?

by Ed
(Rochester, NY)

The temple of Sybil in ancient Rome

The temple of Sybil in ancient Rome

No, Romans 1:26-27 does not condemn gays, transgendered people, lesbians or bisexuals. All Christians have a duty before God to interpret scripture honestly, in context, instead of divorcing verses from their context and then insisting they mean something they never meant to the original hearers.

Because all scripture is given in a cultural, doctrinal, historical, linguistic, literary and religious context, those factors must be part of our thinking as we seek to understand scripture. Romans 1:26-27 was given in a very clear context.

There is no cultural indication, no doctrinal indication, no historical indication, no linguistic indication, no literary indication, no religious indication, that Paul intended to blast lesbians and gays in Romans 1:26-27.

Instead, Paul chooses as his illustration, the worst possible transgression of pagan Gentiles, the sin of idolatry, so that the Jews in his reading audience will be saying, "Yes, Yes, they're guilty!" Then Paul will spring his rhetorical trap in 2:1 when he declares that Jewish idolatry is just as sinful as Gentile idolatry and therefore, in chapter 3:23, everyone is guilty. Here is how Paul puts his argument together.

The context of Romans 1 is pagan worship of false gods, particularly Cybele, known in the first century as Protectress of Rome or Magna Mater - Great Mother. I devote three pages on this website to answering the question: Why is Cybele vital to understanding Romans 1?

I also point out that early Christian writers like Aristides understood Paul to be describing Cybele worship. Paul has a particular goal in mind when writing to the church at Rome. That goal involved presenting the glorious gospel of Christ, Rom. 1:16-18.

The gospel reveals and declares the wrath of God against sin, that God punished Jesus for our sins when Jesus died, as us for us, as our Substitute. Yet no one gets saved until s(he) understands that s(he) is a sinner who has transgressed God's holy law for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

Therefore, to make it clear that all are sinners, Romans 3:23, Paul references idolatry, pointing out the idolatry of Gentiles who worshiped false gods, and by implication, the idolatry of Jews because in the OT, they also broke God's law and worshiped the false gods of the Gentiles. Their particular worship of false gods involved same sex sexual rituals, Lev 17:7, 18:3, 21-22, 20:2, 3, 4, 5, 13, Deu 23:17-18.

Paul uses words like akatharsian in Rom 1:24, the same Greek word used in the Septuagint translation of the OT to describe shrine prostitution and shrine prostitutes. Almost everyone who read Romans 1 in the first century would have been struck by the link to shrine prostitution which Paul's use of akatharsian indicated.

To support his argument, in Rom. 1:26-27, Paul cites examples of idolatry utilizing the idolatrous behavior of Gentiles in the OT and the idolatrous behavior which was part of everyday life in mid-first century Rome. That idolatry was the unholy worship of Cybele, also called Minerva and other names, depending on one's cultural heritage.

Cybele as the Phrygian goddess had five temples in mid-first century Rome. As the consort of Jupiter, she also had another temple in Rome besides her five Cybele temples. Cybele was featured on Roman coins used in mid-first century Rome and throughout the empire.

Cybele was also called Magna Mater and Protectress of Rome. Paul illustrates idolatry by using an example with which all of his Roman readers would be familiar - Cybele worship. Yet his intention wasn't to attack lesbians and gays. His intention is to support his idolatry argument with easy to recognize illustrations so that his Jewish audience will be nodding along as they read.

"Yes, those wicked idolatrous Gentiles..." Then, just as his Jewish readers are saying, "Yeah Paul, tell it like it is," Paul drops his bombshell in chapter 2:1ff. when he says, You Jews are just as guilty before God as the Gentiles.

So in chapter 1 Paul indicts and condemns Gentiles for the sin of idolatry. In chapter 2 Paul indicts and condemns Jews because, says the apostle, you do the same things the Gentiles do. In chapter 3:10-23, Paul concludes that all are under sin, both Jews and Gentiles.

That is the historical context, the religious context, the cultural context and the spiritual context of Romans 1. Idolatry is the focus of Paul's argument, not gays and lesbians. The cultural and religious context is unfamiliar to some modern readers because many modern readers are unfamiliar with Roman history and Jewish history in the first century AD.

Paul's point never was
about lesbians and gays.


Early Christians like Aristides and Justin Martyr understood Paul to be condemning shrine prostitution. Our rule of interpretation is:

Scripture cannot mean NOW
what it did not mean THEN.


If Paul was not describing committed faithful non-cultic same sex partnerships in AD 58 when he wrote Romans, then it is wrong to insist that those verses are dealing with committed same sex partnerships now.

Christians need to do more reading and study before concluding that the first notion that pops into our head when we read Romans 1 is infallibly correct. Sometimes, the first thing we think when we read a verse of scripture is wrong. That is why we are encouraged to "Study to shew yourselves approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." -2 Timothy 2:15

Helpful Links


How does shrine prostitution figure in our understanding of Romans 1?

Good Person Test.

What does against nature mean in Romans 1?

Does Romans 1:26 condemn lesbians?

Are lesbians treated the same as gays in the Bible?

How did you decide that Romans 1:26 does not condemn lesbians?

Click here to return to Gay Christian FAQ Page.

From, Does Romans 1:26-27 condemn homosexuals? return to Gay Christian 101 Home Page.



Ed's original question:

"In the book of Romans it is clear that Paul characterizes having same sex relations as a willful and sinful act, so how can we justify it? Just because two people love each other does not make it alright, does it? It is not within God's design for human sexuality."



This page revised June 19, 2014

Comments for Does Romans 1:26-27 condemn homosexuals?

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Feb 20, 2011
It's Not A Choice
by: NJel

One cannot choose or be turned into a homosexual anymoreso than one can be turned into or choose to be a heterosexual. Any heterosexual who has never exhibited feelings of arousal or affection for another person of the same sex has ZERO grounds to proclaim that homosexuals CHOOSE to live this way.

Would someone choose:

1.) To be ridiculed everyday by religious bigots.

2.) To be harassed even beaten for being gay.

3.) To be under the constant threat of physical abuse because they are gay.

4.) To be told that a loving God ultimately HATES you for being gay.

Would you choose these things? No, you wouldn't, so why would we? Homosexuality is NOT a choice.

Apr 20, 2011
Being led astray?
by: Anonymous

I have struggled with having a right understanding of homosexuality within the context of Christianity. I have come to this, God is the determiner of your salvation, not me. He warns against the acts of homosexual behavior, not the innate desires you have. He never says that having the desire is wrong, it is the acts that proceed that he condemns.

Just as there are every conceivable malady and mutation of our genetic makeup, so it is possible that because of the fall the desire for same sex relationships exists. Just as my desire as a heterosexual is to have sexual relations with as many women as possible, I am to discipline my nature and not do this.

As a Christian with a strong faith, I don't condemn you for your desires; these are no different than mine. I don't condemn you for your behavior. That being said, having read much of your FAQ, taking a view that homosexual acts are no different than heterosexual acts is a gross distortion of the Bible. You can manipulate your understanding so your readers feel good about themselves but the judgement will be upon you in the end. As Proverbs says, there is a way that seems right unto a man but, therein lies death.

It is better to error on the side of righteousness than feel-goodness. If it were me in your position I would, "take up my cross daily and deny myself" so that I would live a life as holy as possible all-the-while relying on the gift of salvation to get me to heaven.

Apr 20, 2011
As usual, you ignore what the Bible SAYS
by: Rick Brentlinger

Thanks for demonstrating the emptiness of your belief by refusing to engage any of the scriptural arguments on this page and on this website.

Why do anti-gay christians who comment always ignore what the Bible says in context? Are you so blissfully unconcerned with God's truth that you will lie about, twist and pervert the scriptures to support your anti-gay opinions?

Your passive-aggressive slip is showing.

You say, I do not condemn you for your desires and I do not condemn you for your behavior. Then you do condemn us citing gross distortion, manipulation and being on the way of death.

Obviously the Bible in context does not support your anti-gay opinion and you know it.

Apr 21, 2011
We can't justify what "we" want to
by: Anonymous

A gay friend of mine once told me that being gay is all he has ever known since he was very young. So I asked him when he first started to do homosexual acts, was there any voice or conscience inside telling him it was not right?

He paused for a moment in brief thought and said, Wow, Yes!

He never focused on that fact before, just what he wanted to do. So after that I said, So my friend, you see, being gay is not the only thing you have ever known.

Apr 21, 2011
Why do you refuse to deal with what the Bible says in context?
by: Rick Brentlinger

Interesting anecdote but why do you refuse to deal with what the Bible says in context? The question was, Does Romans 1:26-27 condemn homosexuals?

Instead of answering that in context, you share an anecdote which does not answer the question. Bible believing Christians do not base their life on anecdotes. The written word of God in context informs our thinking.

What is it about you anti-gay christians which renders you incapable of dealing honestly and in context with the Bible you profess to believe?

Apr 21, 2011
Aren't you being mean toward people who disagree?
by: Anonymous

I think you are being mean toward Christians who disagree with you. After all, they have a right to their opinion. Can you just live and let live?

Apr 21, 2011
Real Christians allow what the Bible says in context to inform their views
by: Rick Brentlinger

Okay, you have raised an interesting question. I do not intend to be mean toward anyone. I do intend to confront opinions which masquerade as Biblical truth.

When anti-gay christians post Comments on this website which do not engage the issues but which instead, promote only their opinion, they need to be confronted.

The truth of God is not a matter of opinion. Real Christians allow their views to be informed by what the Bible says in context. It is not asking too much from anti-gay christians to have a solid in-context basis for their views.

And frankly, it is difficult to respect the views of people who post anti-gay Comments as if they are gospel truth when they do not have the courage to put their name with their anti-gay views.

May 12, 2011
Teachings....
by: Anonymous

Firstly there is no such thing as a Gay Christian: You ask why? Well, if you believe in Christianity ( implies living Christlike) you will find that he promoted love not hate, forgiveness not revenge, etc and did not promote same sex affections or fulfilling desires that were UNnatural. In Romans 1 which you have so often quoted, Letter of Paul to the Romans (he wrote several other letters/teachings, the Bible is a collection of Books, letters Teachings of various people) to instruct reproof and repent and give instructions on living Christlike (charged to do by the Holy Spirit), he did this by starting the context that ungodliness and unrighteousness of men is WRONG (obviously there was plenty of that in Rome at the time) and that some of the people changed the word of God into a lie and 'worshiped' created things rather than Creator, so God gave them up to their uncleaniness (in the sense that God allowed them to have their way because of a coming judgement when all deeds will be judged Rom 2:6) and to the lust of their hearts and UNNATURAL affections. Now, if it is un natural and UNrighteous, why would anyone assume it is right? (Answer Romans 1:22, 28 justifying actions based on 'feelings' rather than God's truth). Just the same way as there is no such thing as a Murdering Christian, etc. FACT, if you are a Christian you are Christian and although you may sin, call a spade a spade and realize that even though unnatural feelings is not in anyway directly (in today?s English) condemned explicitly in the bible it is NOT directly approved of too. An analogy, that if I grow up with incestuous desires, I should say 'That?s the way I am?? Or should I say that if I have UNnatural feelings for animals I could claim that I am an Animal Loving Christian? NO, sorry, Even though Paul was getting to a point in Rom 1(point in Romans 2) the fact is that he didnt approve of it in Rom 1 but instead in Rom 2:8,9,10, he told them what to expect. Secondly, direct passages that it is unnatural and wrong ; Leviticus 18:22 ? 22- Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination. Also Look at Gen 19: 1-13 (the men of Sodom wanted to ?know? (check the Hebrew meaning) the two angels who appeared in human form. Because of that God destroyed SodomandGom. I do not judge anyone and try to love everyone including Christians (practicing ones and otherwise), Muslims, gays, etc (as Christ directed), but the acts themselves I don?t approve of and will never love. I know Christians who lie, steal, fornicate, etc and although I love them, I disprove of the act or propagation of its nature as Truth! What is truth, ask yourself, that God made you in his image to have a clearly UNnatural feeling for another man by which you practice sexual acts through anal passage rather than with a woman whom your should love and practice an intimate sexual act with to culminate in bringing to life young ones? No! Please pray hard. May God save us all! Amen

May 12, 2011
Blissful ignorance
by: Rick Brentlinger

What a blissfully ignorant, "I don't care about no stinkin' context" attitude you have.

Please do not attempt to walk AND chew gum at the same time. Wouldn't be prudent.

May 19, 2011
Respond to The Teaching Please...
by: Anonymous

Hello,
Please be aware that if I took out time to respond to all your comment and all you can respond is 'blissful ignorance - i have a no stinking care about the context' is all you can reply to, then surely, this website as well as blog doesn't deserve my time.

Like Paul said, exhort one another, consider your teachings like the people of Berea, and understand the truth. So, what context am i missing here? Or what am i being ignorant of in the Bible? (i assume we are reading the same bible). Why don't you read the passages i have clearly referenced and make an educated response with facts, bible passages and 'im'-possibly reference to where Christ, his teachings and other apostles made it OK to 'kill, fornicate, lie, cheat, or even have Same Sex marriages/Affections'.

if you can, then please pray for me to see this 'light' and i will read carefully and respond, BUT if not, As Christ directed and Paul said being filled with the holy spirit, 'I will pray for you'... that you may see the Truth and Light.

May 19, 2011
I am happy to answer your comments
by: Rick Brentlinger

This entire website is a response to your Comments. If you read the NavBar under, What The Bible Says, you will discover that I have answered the topics you mentioned, including Genesis 19, Leviticus 18:22, Romans 1:26-27, Beastiality and a lot more.

I called you Blissfully Ignorant because you ignored the truth as it is in Jesus and blasted us without investigation or study.

I do hope you will continue to read, study and believe the Bible, always taking it in context and always understanding that your opinion is not as important as what the Bible says in context.

May 20, 2011
Sometimes I feel like Jeremiah the prophet
by: Rick Brentlinger

Jeremiah the weeping prophet was hated for speaking the truth. The word which was so sweet to him was bitter to his hearers, yet he was accepted of his Lord.

Jeremiah spoke boldly and truthfully, performing winnowing work (separating wheat from chaff) upon the religious folk of his day, and the Lord gave him this word: Thou shalt be as my mouth, Jeremiah 15:19.

What an honor for God to speak by us! What a marvel! We speak pure truth from the Holy scriptures and we speak it with power. Therefore many Christians who profess to love God get angry because in their heart of hearts, they do not love God's truth.

Our words will not return void. They will be a blessing to all who receive them and those who refuse the truth of scripture do so at their peril. Our lips shall feed all who hear the words of God joyfully.

Adapted from a quote by Charles Haddon Spurgeon, the great Baptist preacher of Metropolitan Tabernacle fame.

Jun 17, 2011
It's not a choice
by: Jason

I have no problem with this concept. I have no problem that some people are born with a natural inclination towards homosexuality.

I think this is true for everyone. EVERYONE has some natural inclination towards some sin or other. Some have by nature addictive personalities, others have personalities given to anger, lust, arrogance, etc.

It's called a sinful nature. We all have it. What we are called to do is repent and turn from those sins. Even after we put our faith and trust in Christ, most will continue to struggle with those sins.

I'm a Christian of 15 years and yet I still struggle with a short temper and lust. I don't say, "I was born that way and therefore it's not a sin." Instead, every time I have a thought of anger or lust (or act out in anger or lust) I call it what it is, sin, confess it, ask God for his merciful forgiveness through his Son and then work to not do it again.

Homosexuality is no different. Just because one is born with that inclination, doesn't make it not a sin anymore than I can say that anger issues are not a sin for me since I was born that way.

Our faith is most highly tested where we have to fight (through God's strength) the hardest. For the homosexual Christian, this is where he has to fight the hardest. And even after 15 years, if he still struggles in thought (and occasionally in deed), God is still as quick to forgive as he is to forgive me when I have a burst of anger or a lustful thought.

Jun 17, 2011
Why are you ignoring context?
by: Rick Brentlinger

Hi Jason- Life is easier when we go by what scripture says, in context. I wish you would engage what I wrote instead of making up arguments no one here makes.

No one on this website makes the argument that if we are born with homosexual inclinations, that makes it okay.

2 Timothy 2:15 tells us to rightly divide the word of truth and that means, understand and interpret verses in context. God bless as you continue to study and obey 2 Tim 2:15.

Jun 30, 2011
coming from a transgender guy :D
by: Richard

I found this site very interesting, I've just recently started to believe in God. I have alot of gay friends, who are believers of Christ. And I am transgender, FTM.

Since I am a recent believer, I have not researched yet all there is, there is just so much to understand. Rick I have been reading about the points you make about the scripture, reading your points I do plan on reading trying to understand the context of some of the scriptures that everyone keeps saying condemns homosexuality.

I thought I would just throw out my view, I have been reading both sides, people that don't disagree with Rick, and ones that do.
Just thought I would say. both sides can't be right, and I do believe when people read the bible everyone can interpret the bible differently, especially like rick points out, ones that are reading the English version, and not understanding the historical text, of the Hebrews and Greek and trying to make a clear understanding of what the bible was attended to mean, WAY BACK when.

The bible talks of slaves, having sex with more than one woman, people being stoned to death, brutal beatings..it blows my mind people focus so much on the few verses that think has to do with homosexuality, it automatically put it as a sin about the others.

IF it is a sin, it is not about the others..we all sin, my sin, is no greater from yours just as your sin is no greater then mine. we are not greater than, we are less than. God is Great, and is Perfect. and scriptures such as these.


DEUTERONOMY 22:13-21
If it is discovered that a bride is not a virgin, the Bible demands that she be executed by stoning immediately.
* DEUTERONOMY 22:22
If a married person has sex with someone else's husband or wife, the Bible commands that both adulterers be stoned to death.
* MARK 10:1-12
Divorce is strictly forbidden in both Testaments, as is remarriage of anyone who has been divorced.
* LEVITICUS 18:19
The Bible forbids a married couple from having sexual intercourse during a woman's period. If they disobey, both shall be executed.
* MARK 12:18-27
If a man dies childless, his widow is ordered by biblical law to have intercourse with each of his brothers in turn until she bears her deceased husband a male heir.
* DEUTERONOMY 25:11-12
If a man gets into a fight with another man and his wife seeks to rescue her husband by grabbing the enemy's genitals, her hand shall be cut off and no pity shall be shown her.

do we obey by these today? This is the year 2011, I honestly believe that if God came down today from the heavens above, He would give us better understanding of these verses like these and the the ones that everyone thinks condemns Gays.


Jun 30, 2011
pt 2
by: Anonymous

WE DON'T KNOW EVERYTHING,
BUT GOD DOES KNOW EVERYTHING,
BECAUSE GOD IS ALL KNOWING.

if you read all the comments on this site, the people that agree that the bible condemns gays, they might agree on it but when you read farther all of them make different points and different explanations.

it's like when someone sees someone shoot someone all those witness's say they all saw the same thing, someone got shot and they all tell a different story on how it happened or what the guy is wearing. you get the point.

For those of you that DO believe the scriptures mean homosexuality is a sin, and gays are going to hell and all of this. Gays do sin, just as every straight person does, and those gays that believe in God, and repent I highly doubt God is going to send them to hell, he a all loving God.

can you picture a devoted christian gay man, who truly believes and loves his creator and is a sinner, just like every straight person. you really think God is going to look past the love this person has for him and just go yep, your gay, to hell you go.

because IF Gay is a sin, it's not going to be greater than the person that don't believe or the person that commits murder

and if the bible speaks nothing of homosexuality and it's not a sin and how rick interprets the scripture bc he gets his information i'm sure, from christian scholars. Just like you have christian scholars that believe it is a sin.

but not both can be right, and people that interpret the scripture, your going to get people that say it means this and your going to get people that say it means that.

but we dont know everything
God does. so let him be the judge of this.
and everyone that places there comments your entitled to your opinion on what you believe the scripture means but keep in mind this is 2011, do we go by everything the scripture says?

No we don't so IF homosexuality is a sin, then it's a sin but do you think if God came down today, he would see it that way? The bible was written back in the day, and since it was written so long ago, the many that wrote it, they prolly had no idea it would be in today's society. I'm saying that because I do believe that. I also believe I heard that in a sermon too but don't quote me on that.

God is all knowing, I know he knows his word would be here today..and since he sees everything, he knows how people are going to interpret his word.

we're not perfect, all we can ask is that God hopes us understand his word, and pray he makes us see it clearly but no matter what there are always going to be people twisting the word and believing what they think it means. we try our best to understand his word, that's all we can do.

Aug 30, 2011
Get it RIGHT or be left behind
by: Gods child

I can tell you this, there is no way my HOLY, CLEAN and sinless God is going to let a single homosexual into the kingdom no more than he's going to let a liar, thief or murderer in. God did not design homosexuality. Why can't homosexuality create life? Why is it that the vast majority of homosexuals were abused as children? It's a curse and it must be broken in Jesus name!!!

Aug 30, 2011
Pride goeth before destruction
by: Rick Brentlinger

@ Gods proud child - Our holy God blessed Abraham and Sarah's marriage even though they were brother and sister AND polygamists. Are you outraged about that?

Our holy God blessed Jacob's polygamous marriage to four women and formed the nation of Israel from the children of that polygamous marriage. Are you outraged about that?

Why are you anti-gay folks so obsessed with sex when our holy God isn't?

Since you've never studied 1 Cor 6:9, I hope you will take time to do that. Believing Bible study will change your bad attitude toward your gay brothers and lesbian sisters.

Jan 09, 2012
The truth
by: God's Own

One thing I've noticed is that gay people tend to use the Old Testament to bring their point across although we don't live under that covenant anymore,but we live under a New Covenant.Did you forget that woman who was caught in the very act of adultery,and she was brought to Jesus to be stoned and what did Jesus do?He saved her from being stoned and let her go and told her not to sin again.Under the old covenant she would have been stoned but under the New Covenant she was given mercy.That's why we don't stone people to death in this age when they sin.But instead we try to be merciful towards them.

In the beginning God created one man and one woman.And what does the Scripture say about marriage?That a MAN shall leave his MOTHER and FATHER and cleave to HIS WIFE.I used to be bisexual myself and I remember feeling bad about it although I wasn't aware back then that it was a sin.It was accepted where I live and yet,I still felt wrong about it.Sin makes us feel ashamed and guilty.Thats how I know it was wrong.

By the way,God's word stays the same.You're supposed to be molded by the word,not by the world.The fact that it's now 2012 doesn't change the word,therefore it shouldn't influence you.

We'll pray for you.God bless.


Jan 09, 2012
Major fail! Ignorance is NOT a fruit of the Spirit
by: Rick Brentlinger

@ God's Own - I understand why you ignore truth. God's truth in scripture does not fit your preconceived opinions so you must ignore it or change your opinions.

My prayer for you is that in 2012 you will change your mind, accept God's truth in scripture and stop promoting anti-gay lies to your gay brothers and lesbian sisters.

Mar 06, 2012
taking a lot of people with you to hell
by: Betty C

Rick Brentlinger evidentally you are the one who is changing the meaning of the words in the Bible only you and other homosexuals and you will pay dearly for this at judgement Day..next you will probably tell us there is no judgement day and that we Christians are translating it as such.
You need to go to a good Freewell Baptist College and study up on the Bible badly because you are headed down the wrong path and taking alot of people with you to hell.

Apr 06, 2012
I'm not going to call you an idiot but...
by: Rick Brentlinger

...I'll bet you've spent more time in the last twenty years watching Wheel of Fortune than you've spent reading and studying your Bible. How cavalier you are in condemning people to hell when you cannot even intelligently discuss the verses involved.

Your blast of condemnation while ignoring what Romans 1:26-27 says in context, speaks volumes. If you think I'm being hard on people in my comments here, imagine your distress if you make it to the judgment seat of Christ (I have no idea if you're saved or not) and He confronts you with your wrong-headed condemnation of your gay brothers and lesbian sisters.

Apr 16, 2012
I'm sorry but I believe you are wrong
by: Anonymous

Remember that in Romans 1:26-27 does speak out against homosexual tendencies and just like heterosexuals we are called to be sexually pure, so i believe that even the desires are sin (although this goes the same for me for the opposite sex). That means the lack of a desire as well.

I understand that later in Roman it tells us that we are all guilty of sin. Yes, This is true but nowhere in Romans does it take back what is said in verses 26 and 27. God Bless, Remember that I am no better than you, Sin is a daily struggle and I am only righteous through Christ my Savior.

Rick's comment: I hope you will do a lot more study than you've done so far on this issue. Anyone can say, I think you are wrong but it takes diligent Bible study to be able to give a scriptural reason why you think I am wrong. You have not done that in your comment. Instead, you've offered your opinion.

By the way, your idea that Romans 1:26-27 speaks against homosexual tendencies is not what ancient Christians believed about those verses. Ancient Christians like Aristides, within 70 years of the writing of Romans, linked those verses to shrine prostitution.

Here is good information to help you do further study: Romans 1:26-27

Apr 30, 2012
I am a lesbian, and I disagree
by: Ravena

I want to start off and say that I am an atheist and a lesbian, this discussion intrigued me, so i decided to take a look.

I looked at the verse IN context and OUT of context. It doesn't change the meaning at all. I even used the most reliable translation. It is against homosexual tendencies/acts, as much as I wish it wasn't...

Rick's comment: Thanks Ravena. You asked some great questions so I made a new page where I provide all of your comments and my answers. I intentionally deleted some of your comments here so the search engines will not penalize these pages for posting the same information on two different pages of the same website.

Ravena's questions answered.


Jul 31, 2012
Remember the New Covenant
by: Anonymous

The context of the scripture is clear and defined no matter the volition that's conjured up. It's very dangerous to give an interpretation and others to take that as true when it isn't there as a matter of discourse.

In observation. Today we see some very vocal homosexuals who want to express their sexual preference without hindrance, in other words acceptance and approval. Since the vast majority cannot cope with a society that exposes their perversion of practicing their unnatural lusts through rewriting the definition of marriage. We see this in governments itself but albeit they only reflect the people.

Rick's comment: Sexual preference? Perversion? Unnatural lusts? While I appreciate you sharing your caustic views with us, unfortunately your views indicate you have not studied the Bible about gay issues. I hope you are willing to do a bit more reading and investigation before condemning millions of your fellow citizens.

If so, please read my Romans pages including the text links to additional information. This issue is more clear-cut in favor of gays than you might imagine. Thanks for doing additional study.


Anonymous continues: I don't mean this in an ill-manner but let's be careful on not being deceived ourselves that we maybe held an account for others gone astray to Him. LORD GOD knows if thy heart is true to Him and not the ways of the world for we are not of the world. The Great One cares more about thy love for Him then our transgression but it does not mean we are free to continue to transgress. His new commandment is very clear on that.

Oct 16, 2012
Moral Relativism
by: Monty

The context of the day in which Romans was written was one of moral ambiguity. In other words just like today everyone did what they thought was right in their own eyes. Again there is a way that seems right unto a man but in the end leads to death. Christianity demands a set of absolute moral conduct and we can have arguments about what that conduct should be. However under no circumstance or in any instance do the scriptures approve of same sex, sexual relationships. Any time same gender sex is mentioned it is always forbidden. Leviticus gives a long list of forbidden behaviors and declares that those who practice such evil that the very land will vomit them out and such has been the case throughout history without exception. Dear people nothing would make me happier than for you to be happy, but homosexual behavior is the path to the destruction of not only those who practice the behavior but to an entire nation. Don't just take my word for it I humbly recommend a book by a non Christian anthropologist written in 1934. The book is called Sex and Culture by J D Unwin. Good hunting finding a copy. There are those who have tried to suppress this book for political reasons. In closing let me say I have malice toward none I only desire the truth and there is only one truth; it has no agenda.

Rick's comment: Monty, an in depth Bible study of the clobber passages would certainly help you understand where we are coming from. You have not done that to date, perhaps because you are content to believe what you've been taught INSTEAD of studying. I hope you will make it your goal to read, memorize, obey and always apply 2 Timothy 2:15 from now on, every time you read the Bible. Many thanks!

Jan 10, 2013
Christian and Gay?
by: Anonymous

You can't be a Christian and be a practicing gay. Of course gays will try too defend themselves in front of God, but it will not work.

Rick's comment: This is so sad. "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge." Hebrews 4:6. How long will you continue in your ignorance?

Dear people, please understand. Ignorance is NOT a fruit of the Spirit. Mindless repetition of your opinion while refusing to study, believe and obey what the Bible says in context is not godly.

Jan 14, 2013
Why the lack of grace?
by: Jason

Hey Rick, I don't understand your amnimosity. You keep accusing others here who disagree with you that they are clearly unstudied. As if, by studying these Scriptures, the only clear interpretation is yours. That is arrogance. If this was any other issue you wouldn't take such a stance. Consider Calvinism vs Arminianism, or credobaptism vs paedobaptism, or the dozen different end times views (everything from Ammillenial to Post Trib Premillenial.

Some of the greatest theologians have studied, and studied and studied the Scriptures and have yet come to different positions. We don't sit there and say that RC Sproul is more or less wise and studied than Charles Spurgeon though they disagree on Baptism do we? We can debate and disagree and still be amicable and skip the name calling.

This goes both ways, lots of those who see homosexuality as a sin, sin themselves in their very ingracious attitude towards the issue but I've read a few comments here by people that sound like they have studied it out and come to the conclusion that homosexuality is a sin and yet have been polite about it. People not concerned about proving their point but more concerned about the heart of someone they see blinded by their sin and wanting to see them come into a closer relationship with Christ. Those people deserve respect and not insults simply because they came to a studied conclusion different than your own.

Rick's comment: Jason, it is not lack of grace and it is not animosity. It is my respect for scripture rightly divided. The gay issue is different than the other issues you listed. Anti-gay Christians insist we are not saved if we disagree with their anti-gay views. They are the ones without grace.

Anti-gay Christians use the power of government to attack us and deny us our civil and human rights. They are the ones showing extreme animosity.

If any of them had truly studied it out, they would be able to produce verses which, in context, support their anti-gay views yet they never present any in context verses. Their hackneyed arguments do not gain force simply because they repeat them ad nauseam.

Finally, it is not insulting to point out that people have not studied the issue. It is not insulting to point out that they never cite verses which, in context, support their anti-gay views. Hope this is helpful.

Feb 17, 2013
Honest Question
by: Anonymous

Please do not feel like I'm on the offensive here, but out of all of the great Bible scholars there have been through history, and even in the present time, why do you believe that your interpretation is more correct than theirs? Also, for some reason 2 Timothy 4:3-4 is coming to mind. Thanks for your time!

Rick's comment: For most of the last two thousand years, Christians and scholars have NOT understood the clobber passages as prohibitions of two gay guys or two gay gals falling in love or spending their lives together. The anti-gay animus of many Christians is a recent thing, in the last 150 years.

If you'll take time to read through my website and my book, you will notice that I frequently cite anti-gay Christian writers and scholars who agree with the views I present. For example, please read my shrine prostitutes page. There I cite recognized Christian scholars, who although they are anti-gay, still agree with me on a number of important points.

On 2 Timothy 4:3-4, why would you assume that I am the false teacher? Many Christians and many scholars throughout the last 20 centuries of church history were dead wrong about slavery and usury and women's rights. Given their defective track record, wouldn't it be safer to assume that they are just as wrong on the gay issue as they were on slavery and usury and women's rights?

Mar 23, 2013
ORIGINAL INTENT OF SEX - WHAT IS SEXUAL IMMORALITY?
by: Anonymous

This is an interesting article.

However, I would like to ask the author what he considers to be sexual immorality? At what point to we cross the line?

Here is my point.

The bible does not speak/teach against sex with children. The bible does not set an age where a child is considered to be an adult and permitted to express him/herself sexually.

So are we so set our own rules? One could make the argument that because the bible does not preach against 'child' sex that it is acceptable.

Do you think sex with children is ok? If not then why?

Rick's comment: No, we are against sex with children. We view that as gross sin. Yet in Biblical times, those ancient cultures believed that when a child was twelve years old, they were adults and could marry. This was Jewish thinking and this was the thinking in first century Rome.

Our modern western culture is quite different and we do not recognize twelve year olds as adults or as old enough to get married.


And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.”

Let's tackle the real issues. God's intent of sex was for procreation (having children). Man has turned sex into a tool for his pleasure and imagination. Just my thoughts. Submitted in the spirit of love.

Rick's comment: The procreation argument is often raised as "proof" that gay marriage is wrong. Yet you are stating your own view, that God's intent for sex is procreation, which is not a Biblical view, instead of what the Bible actually says. Please carefully read 1 Cor 7:1-9. Sex is about far more than procreation.

I would also note that you have no problem with elderly widows and widowers marrying even though they can no longer procreate. And you have no problem with infertile opposite sex couples getting married even though they cannot procreate.

The real issue is that you must rip verses out of context and use the out of context verses to "prove" your opinion because if you left the verses in context, it would be clear that they are not dealing with the issue of two gay guys or two gay gals falling in love.

Mar 31, 2013
its easy
by: Dale.

If all of us on this page believes in god then we all ready have the answer. God speaks to all of us in different ways. If we all believe in prayer then let's put are own personal fellings aside, this goes for gays and straights. And truly focus on God for a week and when we wake up take 10 min to realy pray and to the same at lunch and bedtime. In your prayer don't ask for anything but the light ask God to tell you what you need in life to help others and yourself. If you do this and I say you must realy pray hard I know God will answer. This world we live in is changing so fast. All u see is YOLO, and if it feels good do it. But this is not how we should live, and I'm just as guilty I struggle with things every day , so let's pray hard this week or maybe the next two and let's see what God wants us to do.

Rick's comment: And please remember to read and believe and obey what the Bible says in context while you pray.

Apr 04, 2013
Self contradiction
by: With love

It is interesting that you read into and add to the bible in verses such as Gensis 2:22-24 and then when fellow Christians reasonably assume things from Romans 1:26-27 you explode that they are adding to scripture. Which they are not.

Rick's comment: Strange that you ignore the context of Romans 1, which is idolatry, and insist that the chapter is about lesbians and gays. I note that you did not engage anything I wrote. And your description of me as "exploding" is quite silly. If truth was on your side, you would not have to ignore context; you would not attempt to portray me as angry, as if that will make your out of context argument more true.

"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."

What is the focus here? It is women loving women unaturally. It is men committing shameful acts with men.

Rick's comment: I'm going to insist that you go back and read Romans 1 slowly and reverently. Take particular notice of the idolatry Paul describes. It is beyond ludicrous to argue that Paul starts an argument about idolatry and then suddenly, in vs. 26-27, he switches from idolatry to arguing against lesbians and gays.

The behavior Paul describes in v. 26 is not lesbian behavior. Most Christians for the first 300 years of church history believed Romans 1:26 described female temple prostitutes, not lesbians.

The behavior Paul describes in v. 27 is male-male sex to worship the fertility goddess through temple prostitution. It is not two gay guys in love with each other and spending their lives together as a couple.

Continued in the next comment.



Apr 04, 2013
With love
by: Self-contradiction

Is there ever a time in God's Word where men with men sexual relations were described like the following?

"He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the LORD.

May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth. A loving doe, a graceful deer-- may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be captivated by her love.

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.

"Haven't you read," he replied, "that at the beginning the Creator 'made them male and female,' 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' ? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate."


The point is there is nothing in scripture where God clearly blesses sexual relationships with a huband and a husband as with a husband and a wife.

Rick's comment: It would be to your credit IF you took time to read about Adam and Eve and what Jesus said about eunuchs. You can find those pages on the NavBar under, What The Bible Says.

You are taking the absolute complementarian position, which even God does not believe. Time for you to do more reading and prayerful study.


Did you know for thousands of years before christianity gay relations was normal and in some societies it was promoted?

Rick's comment: No dear, you are wrong. What you refer to as gay relations was really temple prostitution.

Did you know after the rise of Christianity gay relationships were discouraged for hundreds of years?

Rick's comment: Discouraged by the secular Roman government eventually. Yet the early church allowed gay men to be deacons and bishops and elders. Again, you need to do more reading, more study.

Did you know that the Holy Spirit is in each Christian?

Rick's comment: Yes, of course. We have a book about the precious Holy Spirit on this website.

Why is it with the advent of Christianity that those relationships became so unacceptable? Is it because The Holy Spirit guides Christian into sinful beliefs in this area? Is it because of the rise of Christianity people became more ignorant of what is good and righteous? Or is it because God is guiding them in this area, taking care of them, and watching out for them?

Apr 10, 2013
What came to mind while reading all the comments...
by: Ash

I a currently not for or against whether or not homosexuality is a sin & after reading all the comments my mind has still not been made up, however I do want to share a scripture that came to mind constantly while reading all the above.
 
Romans 14:1 Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters. 2 One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. 3 The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them.

And then the last verses:

22 So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the one who does not condemn himself by what he approves.23 But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin

Maybe my interpretation of this scripture is wrong but I believe its about more than just food...and from what I have been reading both sides seem to think the other weaker in faith which is why I felt the above scriptures needed to be shared :-)

I still have so much to learn & I'm excited for what God will reveal to me over the years of my life & I believe that if we keep our eyes fixated on him we will be welcomed with open arms :-) bless you all xx

Apr 14, 2013
So Qadesh should always be translated as "ritual prostitute"
by: Anonymous

I'm always trying to learn more about the Bible, so from what I read on your ritual prostitution page, Qadesh or Qadesha should always be translated as "ritual prostitute" and never as "homosexual".

So basically, all of the English translations of the Bible are wrong. And as I understand what you are saying, wherever the English version of the bible ever uses the word "homosexual", the words "ritual prostitute" should have always been used instead.

This is very concerning to me, because I don't think most people would ever take the time to learn Hebrew. I wonder how the translators could get it so wrong or why God would allow a Holy Book to be worded so that most people could never understand it's true meaning?

I was always taught that God's holy word is "the truth". But if a simple translation can corrupt the meaning, it makes me question the entire Bible, really. And I don't know or understand Hebrew, so I could never possibly learn or read the entire Bible in Hebrew in my lifetime.

Rick's comment: In the King James Version, qadesh is ALWAYS translated as some form of temple prostitute, NEVER as homosexual.

Think about it for a while. The problem scripture addresses where ever qadesh is used was NOT two gay guys or two gay gals falling in love and covenanting to spend their lives together as a couple. Is that so difficult to understand?

Please reread my article on Romans 1. Isn't it crystal clear now, that Paul was not railing against lesbians and gays in Rom 1:26-27? The issue was idolatry and using sex to worship false gods. THAT is the thrust of Paul's argument.

Concerning your statement about all of the English translations of the Bible being wrong, that is way off base. The ones who get it wrong were published after 1948 so really, only some of the English translations after 1948 get it wrong on translating qadesh.

Apr 19, 2013
sharing the word of God with meekness
by: j Anonymous

hello rick, how are you doing?
when I read romans chapter 1, I agree with you that it talks about idolatry which is mention in romans 1:22-23 - 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.

then paul said because they are worshiping their idols and not God, God allow sin to be their master. romans 1:24-25 states, - 24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, 25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

paul also said because they were worshipping the creature and not the Creator(God), God gave them up to vile passions (immoral or wicked desires, love, or feelings). romans 1:26-27 describes what these vile passions were.

26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

and I believe that these sexual acts were being committed while worshipping these idols that they created. as you can see, one sin lead to other sin. they were in idolatry and idolatry lead to them engaging in sexual immorality (for example, fornication, homosexuality, etc...) verses 26-27 is speaking about sexual relationships between the same sex. homosexuality was being practiced openly in rome and greece back in those days. that does not mean that God was please with what was going on.

Rick's comment: You've got it partially right but you are wrong to label as homosexuality, the sexual worship of false gods. THAT is idolatry and THAT is what Paul points out in Romans 1:26-27, NOT two gay guys or two gay gals falling in love and spending their lives together as a couple.

Apr 21, 2013
sharing the word of God with meekness
by: j Anonymous

hello rick - homosexuality, in the webster dictionary states, erotic activity with another of the same sex. this is what takes place between a couple of the same sex. the act of it, not because it took place during idol worship, is wrong in the eyes of God!

Leviticus 18:22 says you shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination. In God's eyes, it is an abomination to commit this type of sexual act, which occurs in gay relationships. I did not say it, the Bible, that you and I read, says it. we all have sin and fall short of the glory of God, romans 3:23. but the difference between some one who accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior, and some one who has rejected Him, is the Holyspirit. the Holyspirit will always speak the truth in your heart. The spirit will convict your heart if you are doing something wrong. When I am doing something wrong, I can tell because I feel so guilty and there is something that keeps trying to let me know that
what you said or did is wrong. Let me tell you, it is not a good feeling. I am not at peace, Until I confess my sins and ask God to forgive me.

I am not sure what your relationship with God is like, and that's between you and God, but if you ask Him for the truth, He will reveal it to you. Forget what you have learn up to this point or what you have heard others say here in this forum or on the pulpit.

I have a cousin, who does struggle with homosexuality, and has been in relationships with the same sex. she goes back and forth from the church to the world, from the world to the church. so it is a battle. But it is not a physical battle, it is a spiritual battle. Ephesians 6:12, For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Rick you are an intelligent person, and seem to know a lot about the bible, Aramaic translation, and so forth, however, even the smartest or the most knowledgeable person in the world can be decieved. If satan, in genesis could decieve adam and eve, with whom God spoke directly to and they had power over the earth, animals, etc, then we who can't be in the same presence as God, unless thru the Son, can be easily deceived as well.

Rick's comment: j Anonymous - Has it ever occurred to you that you have never studied the clobber passages?

1. You do not know the Hebrew and Greek words used.

2. You do not know the meaning of the words used.

3. You do not know the cultural historical religious situation those passages addressed.

4. You do not know how ancient Jewish believers understood those passages.

5. You do not know how our early Christian ancestors understood those passages.

Isn't it more likely that because you do not study the Bible much, you are the one who is deceived by Satan?

2 Timothy 2:15 is your assignment for this week. Read it. Memorize it. Obey it. Many thanks.

Apr 22, 2013
sharing the word of God with meekness
by: j Anonymous

you are right, i have never read the cobblar passages before, but please tell me what is your definition of studying the bible. I agree that I am not a scholar like you, but I have read the bible and search the bible for answers. a lot of things from the bible are reveal to you thru the Holyspirit. that is why Jesus spoke in parables, the people did not understand, but He revealed to the disciples what the parables meant, Matthew 13:11, 13. somethings you will not understand unless it is revealed to you by the Holyspirit...

Rick's comment: When we read the Bible, we need the Holy Spirit to illumine its words to us so that it speaks to our situation today. That said, we interpret the Bible in context, so that from generation to generation, its unchangeable message is as fresh as when originally given.

There is a basic set of questions we always ask of the text.

1. Who said it?

2. What did they say?

3. Who wrote it?

4. Who did they say it to?

5. What words did they use?

6. When was it said/written?

7. Where was it in force?

8. What was the intent?

9. What were the circumstances?

10. What was the cultural, doctrinal, historical, religious context?

Answering those questions helps us understand the text and orients our thinking as we figure out what the text means for us today. Here is a page which answers your question from a slightly different perspective.


http://www.gaychristian101.com/how-can-i-understand-the-bible.html


Hope this is helpful.

Apr 24, 2013
Some people will never accept truth, pt 1
by: Isaiah Thompson

First of all i would start off by saying that man has a natural way of interpreting life. It's how we were all made. Man has a way of thinking what is and isn't right. But remember that in the bible, all of the ones who spoke the truth were condemned and called blasphemers. One thing that struck me to find out was that there was another race of humanity before Adam. Genesis 1:26 says, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness." verse 27 says "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him" Man was already created and Adam didn't come until chapter 2 of Genesis verse 7. I remember trying to discuss this with my mother and she did not believe it. Why didn't she? She said that God was simply pre-talking the creation of man. But it literally says that God already created man. She didn't believe because of her own knowledge and personal experience, which ever human being goes by.

Apr 24, 2013
Some people will never accept truth, pt 2
by: Isaiah Thompson

In order to seek truth, one must have qualities such as self-deception, virtue, and humility. One must risk being either deceived or not and it comes in to play where truth is used to deceive the falseness that one already possesses. Virtue is a quality that is considered morally good or desirable in a person. Without it, there is morally no good in a person and therefore they will lack the hunger for truth. Condemning anyone for what they do is morally wrong and victims of condemnation who condemn is also morally wrong. With the David & Jonathan story. Most Christians in this world would believe that they only had a strong friendship, but if I was a straight man with a strong friendship, I would never tell any man that his love for me surpassed the love of women. To y'all that might be an opinion but so what? Also the bible was originally written in separate books until years later scholars came and put the documents together. Now with the natural way of man's thinking that I mentioned earlier, some parts were managed to not be put into the bible on purpose and those documents are stored in churches in Jerusalem and Israel. Why would certain parts be taken out of the bible? Because the scholars didn't see certain scriptures as worthy to them to be in the bible.

Rick's comment: You have an inaccurate grasp of how the Bible came to us. I disagree with your statements on this topic.

This is why people aren't clear on a lot of subject matters. Now on to the gay argument, earlier statements by an anti-gay person stated that all gays were abused as children. I am currently attracted to both sexes but I as a child was never abused in any way, shape or form. So we can all put that statement to a close. I read the bible in context and it's plain and clear, there's nothing confusing about it. And those who bring up Leviticus, remember that was the law that God gave to the Israelites to separate them from other nations.

Apr 24, 2013
Some people will never accept truth, pt 3
by: Isaiah Thompson

That law is a curse according to Galatians 3:6-7 and 3:10-13. Vs. 6-7 says "Consider Abraham: 'He believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.' Understand, then, that those who believe are children of Abraham.

Vs. 10-13 says: "All who rely on observing the law are under a curse, for it is written: 'Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.'

Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because, 'The righteous will live by faith.' The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, 'The man who does these things will live by them.' Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: 'Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.'"

Romans 13:10 says: "Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law." So if love is the fulfilling of the law, that means God will judge according to that so why can't we all just base our lives off of love for one another? If everyone who claims to be a Christian stops judging - condemning gays to hell, God's love will show. But we can't have that because Satan is the master of confusion and wherever he is there is no love.

Apr 28, 2013
Bible versions after 1948 corrupted
by: Anonymous

Hi Rick, I'm the one who asked about versions of the Bible being corrupted earlier. So I just want to check with you about the following versus in King James (apparently the only English version that is not corrupted). The following verses still seems to have controversial interpretations about the actual act of sex with a person of the same gender.

Leviticus 18:22 (I'm having trouble finding contexual arguments that this means anything other than a law telling men not to have anal sex with other men.

Rick's comment: Leviticus 17:7 helps set the context for chapters 18 and 20.

"They must no longer offer any of their sacrifices to the goat idols to whom they prostitute themselves. This is to be a lasting ordinance for them and for the generations to come.'" Lev 17:7 - New International Version

"They are no longer to slaughter their sacrifices to the goat demons, with whom they have been committing prostitution. This will be a perpetual statute for you throughout your generations." International Standard Version

Also, please read my page about shrine prostitutes.


But I am always open to what other people have to say about this because I really am very curious about this subject). While I realize that Christ's death on the cross redeemed us from "The Law", I don't believe this means that we can just keep on sinning and be saved by grace. I've always believed that God wants us to try our best to follow the law, even though He knows that it is impossible for us to be perfect like Christ, which is why Christ died to save us from the sins we will inevitable commit, despite how hard we try not to.

Rick's comment: God does not want us to keep the Old Testament Law because we live under grace. What is grace?

Are Christians under Law?



Apr 28, 2013
Bible versions after 1948 corrupted, cont'd.
by: Anonymous

Secondly, this verse just leaves me wondering, because I can't find anything in the Bible about a man leaving his parents for a husband.

Genesis 2:24. Why would the Bible speak about a man leaving his parents for a wife, but never say anything about a man leaving his parents for a husband? Honestly, I'm not trying to be facetious, it's just that this subject is the one subject which always tears me in two different directions. I want to know the truth, and I have prayed for the truth, so I'm hoping what I learn on this forum leads me in the right direction.

Rick's comment: 95% of humanity is not gay so God uses hetero analogies in the Bible. Genesis was written around 1450 BC. At that time, no one had a gay-straight paradigm. They did not view gays the way we view them today. The 5% of us who are gay understand that the biblical analogy as it applies to us is same sex instead of opposite sex.

And what about this verse? Psalm 12:6-7

"The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever."

Doesn't this imply that all versions of the Bible (FOREVER) are pure? How can the average person know which versions of the Bible are corrupt without intensive study? It seems to me that God would not want to allow that to happen.

Rick's comment: That guarantees God will preserve His word. Sometimes translators and printers make mistakes. That men make mistakes does not invalidate God's promise to preserve His word.

Apr 29, 2013
Grace
by: Anonymous

Rick's comment: God does not want us to keep the Old Testament Law because we live under grace. What is grace?

Hi Rick, I understand Grace, but as I was saying in the previous comment, I don't feel like Grace gives us an excuse to keep on doing "bad" things in general.

Rick's comment: True. Yet the Bible never tells us that grace allows us to continue doing bad things. And no one in their right mind would suggest that. Instead of being under Old Testament Law, when we get saved, we are justified by faith so that God regards us as perfect and as sinless as Jesus Christ Himself.

Orthodox Christian teaching for 2000 years is that once we are saved, we are not under the law and do not need to keep the law in order to stay saved. Must Christians keep Torah?

In Galatians Paul contrasts the OT law with the law of Christ, Galatians 6:2. John 13:34-35 explains that the law of Christ is love.

As Christians we are freed from the law of Moses, yet we are under the law of Christ. Instead of laying unnecessary burdens upon others, as did the Judaizers who urged the observance of Moses's law, it much more becomes us as Christians to fulfil the law of Christ by bearing one another's burdens, i.e., loving others enough to walk with them as they grow spiritually.


In other words, once a person is "saved" by God's Grace, shouldn't that person make his/her best attempts to follow The Laws of the Old Testament? Your Red answer above makes it sound as if we can just keep on sinning because "Grace" will always save us.

Rick's comment: No, because the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ. The Law shows us that we cannot keep it. Jesus kept the law perfectly for us, in our place. Once we are saved, we are no longer under a schoolmaster (the Law), Galatians 3:25.

I guess I was always taught that the CONSEQUENCES of disobedience changed because of Christ's sacrifice, for example, we don't have to sacrifice animals anymore in redemption of our sins; I was never taught that God does not want us to follow His Laws anymore.

Rick's comment: What is grace? explains and contrasts law and grace.

Apr 29, 2013
a question about 1 Corinthians 6:9
by: Anonymous

Hi Rick, I just also have one more question for you, since I am on the topic of corrupt bible versions. How do you view the word "effeminate" in the context of 1 Corinthians 6:9, since the surrounding text all have to do with sexual misconduct?

Rick's comment: Effeminate refers to a temple prostitute, in particular, the Galli priests who grew long hair like a woman and wore women's clothing, some of whom even castrated themselves to further their service to the goddess.

The word translated effeminate in the KJV is malakoi. I explain its meaning at these links.

What does malakoi mean?

Define malakoi.


Was it a misinterpretation for man to translate using that particular word, and if so, can we trust the King James version? For if there is even one mistake in the King James version of the Bible, then do we have to throw out the whole thing as "corrupt"?

Rick's comment: By translating the Greek word malakoi as effeminate, the KJV translators avoided falling into the trap which ensnares so many translators, of inserting the completely unsuitable word, homosexual, into the Bible. Of course, the word homosexual was not even in the dictionary in 1604-1611, when the old KJV was being translated.

God promised that His Word would be preserved, so I would assume that means there has to be at least one Bible version that can be understood by those who only speak and understand English.

If we were to interpret the word "effeminate" as "soft", it just seems unfathomable to me that scripture would imply a "soft" man cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. If we were to interpret the word "effeminate" as "male prostitute" then that makes more sense. If that is the case, why wans't a different word used in the translation that would make more sense to the average English speaking person? You can imagine how this could be very confusing to your average person.

Rick's comment: Yes, which is why God commands us in 2 Timothy 2:15, "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." We need to study and we need the Holy Spirit to open our understanding of His marvelous book.

May 12, 2013
Rick is a moron
by: Anonymous

Sorry - I don't have a dog in this fight; I just felt it necessary to say what everyone else is thinking. Your reply will be futile as I will never return to this site. Have a great day.

Rick's comment: No problem. Insulting comments from Anonymous cowards are par for the course.

"If we were not strangers here, the hounds of the world would not bark at us." - Samuel Rutherford

May 16, 2013
Show me where Jesus himself says bring gay is wrong
by: Anonymous

Show me where Jesus himself says bring gay is wrong. Show me where God himself says it's hell condeming. I really don't think God is going to punish me for who I love. Last time I checked God is love. A homosexual couple is no different then a straight couple that chooses not to have children. Tell me this who is getting hurt when two women love each other? When the Bible tells us not to do something it's because it's harmful in some way to someone. Adultery- someone gets hurt, stealing- someone gets hurt, coveting- someone gets hurt (because coveting spurns hate and that always ends with someone getting hurt) the list goes on. Even when the Bible talked about not eating pigs it was because they eat everything and anything which gets stored in their tissue so when eat them who knows what toxins your digesting. If you were to some up all of Jesus' teachings into a single word that word would be love. And you can try all you want to say you tell them they are going to hell out of love for them all you want but really all you're trying to do is scare them into submission. Think about it long and hard and tell me you scare them out of love. Then I dare you to show me where Jesus does it in the Bible. I'm just say people need to step back and think about why they feel it's necessary to tell homosexual people they are going to hell.

May 28, 2013
Words of God as strong today as when he spoke them
by: Anonymous

How can you say that when God spoke to Moses for example, His words do not mean the same today? If this is the case, I will no longer attend church because when the Holy Bible tells us that Homosexuals are abomination, I believe and accept it as it is said. The Holy Bible tells us that not one word or syllable can be taken away/added nor moved. I also understand that the Holy Bible tells us that we must abide by the laws of the land. I have to accept this however, I have a very strong faith. And, will not accept your believe that what was ment in Mosses day is not ment today.

Rick's comment: Somehow the meaning of context continues to elude you.

Jun 11, 2013
Contorting the Bible?
by: Anonymous

All I know is that Adam needed a "help mate" and God gave him a woman to be his companion. God did not create another man to comfort Adam and be his partner, he created a woman for that purpose. So same-sex unions are like saying God made a mistake that that he clearly did not know what he was doing in creating Eve from Adam's rib.

Again, God could have created another man but he didn't. So, you can twist and turn scripture any way you like but the fact is, God had a design in mind and gays are basically saying that he got it wrong.

Rick's comment: No, Anonymous, gays are not saying that at all. Your comment indicates you are not thinking clearly. We are not Adam. Adam was heterosexual therefore God gave him Eve for an help meet for him, Genesis 2:18. If you are heterosexual, then you also need a female for an help meet for you.

Gays are not heterosexual. For us, an help meet for us is another man or another woman for lesbians.

Beyond that, your heterosexual marriage in no way matches the hetero marriage of Adam and Eve. You pick and choose which parts of the Adam and Eve story you will enforce on us while ignoring the rest of it.

Why don't you and your wife run around naked? Adam and Eve did - that you refuse to run around naked means you are basically saying God made a mistake, that He got it wrong. That is the precise reasoning you used against us. Can you see how foolish that reasoning is?

Again, in the Adam and Eve marriage story, their children intermarried with each other yet you would go bonkers if your children intermarried with each other. Yet Adam and Eve's marriage was not an anomaly in scripture.

About 1800 years after Adam and Eve, Abraham married his half-sister Sarai, Genesis 20:2, 12, 16. Yet instead of commanding them to divorce, God intervened in their marriage to give them their son Isaac, Genesis 21:2 AND then sent the line of Christ through Isaac.

That you would condemn that behavior in the lives of your own children shows that you are basically saying, God made a mistake, He got it wrong and we do not need to follow what God blessed in that particular story in the Bible. Again, I have employed precisely the reasoning you used to condemn us. Is any of this sinking in? Do you see how "off" your reasoning is?

Of course, I am using absurdity to make a point. Your thoughtless approach to scripture is rarely applied to your own life. You make it up as you go and expect us to agree with your less than thoughtful approach to the Bible.

It is time for you to get serious. It is time to do some genuine introspection to discover why you are so prone to go after your gay brothers and lesbian sisters, trying to foist your opinion upon us as if your opinion is scripture. We are not amused.

Jun 13, 2013
Misconceptions
by: Anonymous

All I see here is misconceptions. If gay is a sin mentioned in the Bible. Then sin is natural according to the world. However, God is not sin, therefore He would never put sin on anyone. Sin is of this world, not of the Kingdom of Heaven. You can control how you feel with Jesus. Jesus is not sin and defeated it. It says various times in the Bible Homosexuality is a SIN therefore it is natural only to human nature. God has put free will on His people (everyone) and He has not made any person Born that way. Why would He force sin on anybody? God is Love plain and simple. Should we hate gays? No! Judge them? No! Gay marriage? No! The definition of marriage is first defined in the Bible, and that's where the term comes from. I know a Pastor who had a gay guy come into his church. He accepted Christ and before you know it he had changed and now has a wife and kids. It's the Devils lie that it's okay. If you have Christ it's impossible to be gay. Anyways God Bless!

Rick's comment: As well intentioned as you probably are, your comments reveal appalling ignorance of the Bible and of gay issues. Your attitude and false beliefs about gays will damage many of your gay brothers and lesbian sisters if you keep making comments like this.

I hope you will accept your responsibility to do some serious reading and study. You owe that to the rest of the body of Christ. Ignorance is NOT a fruit of the Spirit.

Jul 14, 2013
Natural use and against nature
by: Anonymous

if the term natural use and affections don't mean homosexuality, what does it mean? don't twist scripture to your own meaning. IF it is not an abomination then what about Sodom and Gomorrah?

Rick's comment: Ignorance is NOT a fruit of the Spirit. There is more than one possible meaning of the word, natural, in the first century.

Against nature?

You have an obligation to God to study and to rightly divide the word of truth, 2 Timothy 2:15. It will be helpful to your spiritual life to watch the video and read the info on our Sodom page.

Jul 23, 2013
No affirmation?
by: Chad

Rick, if your interpretation is 100% correct concerning homosexuality in the Bible, in that it is only condemned in the context of idol prostitution, then why don't we see any cases of homosexuality used in a positive sense within the scriptures? Every mention of homosexuality in the Bible is connected to idol worship, and is therefore condemned.

If homosexuality is acceptable, why doesn't the Bible affirm this anywhere? It seems important for the world to know that it is acceptable before the eyes of God, yet no affirmation is found. It mentions husbands and wives, but no same sex couples. All we have are scriptures that at first glance appear to condemn homosexuality.

The Bible was not designed to be misleading, and not every one who reads it have the tools necessary to study it closer. Why shouldn't people take the word at face value? It is suppose to be so easy a child can understand it.

I have reviewed your evidence and I respect your views, but I still don't believe homosexuality is of God. However, I also believe it is a sin to judge others and hate others, something many 'Christians' are guilty of. I love you regardless of who you are and God does too. Mat 22:36-40.

Rick's comment: Jonathan and David, Daniel and Ashpenaz, the centurion and his beloved in Matthew 8, are examples of same sex couples in the Bible.

If we follow your "no affirmation" view to its logical conclusion, that if the Bible does not affirm it, then it must be wrong, we could not drive cars, eat ice cream or get married in church buildings. The Bible is not always so easy a child can understand it. Parts of the Bible are easy to understand, like Jesus dying on the cross for our sins.

But the Bible also contains some things "hard to be understood," 2 Peter 3:15 and we are told to "study" so we can rightly divide the word of truth, 2 Timothy 2:15. Hope this is helpful.

Aug 02, 2013
Hold on
by: Mark Aldridge

There is difference here. The bible not mentioning something because it didn't even exist (Cars, ice cream, etc.) is different than not mentioning something that DID exist at that time (homosexuality).

Rick's comment: Mark, you're assuming that Paul suddenly departs from his idolatry argument so he can blast lesbians and gays and then immediately goes back to his idolatry argument.

You're also assuming that Paul is talking about homosexuality instead of making an argument indicting pagan idolatry which involved same sex activity.


I'm assuming if we are going under the impression that you can be born homosexual then there would have been those born that way in Christ's time as well.

Also, I don't see exactly how we could assume that Romans 1:26-27 refers to idol worship when the verse clearly expresses that LUST is involved. The sexual acts done in idol worship would have been initiated out of obedience, not lust.

Rick's comment: Again, you're assuming something which, with a bit of introspection, you would surely admit does not necessarily follow. You're also ignoring the testimony of early church history, where almost everyone who wrote about Romans 1 believed Paul was writing about shrine prostitution.

Also, it isn't soley referring to pederasty either as that was an issue specifically between a man and a boy. That is ruled out because the verse speaks of women as participating in this lustful act as well.

Sep 17, 2013
Face the truth.
by: Dawn Marie

We are supposed to bring people to God okay not lead them away. Homosexuals may not understand why being gay is wrong, but it is. Is just not natural, that's not the way that God wants us to be. Yes, by all means, he still loves you and wants everybody to have a personal relationship with him. I believe in my God and my savior Jesus Christ with all my heart. I am a homosexual. I had a girlfriend whom I loved dearly and we were together for 2 years and a half. I've also did plenty of other sins.. Hey I'm a sinner BUT in the past 2 months.. I renewed my vows with Jesus (lol a Christian joke as to getting saved) and I've done my best to make sure I stay on the right path... Do you know how hard it was for me to cut off ties with my ex girlfriend? It was really hard. But I LOVE The Lord and he loves me. You really have I understand what love really is. when you really love someone you make sacrifices for them. in my mind being gay was okay. I really LOVED my girlfriend. You're still going to think about it. But God is going to see that you are truly trying not to do such unnatural things. You do necessarily have to date the opposite sex, Jesus was single his whole life. it's better to be by yourself then to be tempted. Y'all this world is only temporary. The devil has put in our minds that we have to live it up. Lol YOLO but no we aren't even living yet. Y'all we are dead right now. We were born into sin bc of Adam (that's in the bible) but we are made ALIVE only through Christ. This is why we die. But our spirits, that's what's going up with God. We won't even remember or know this world once God destroys it. As humans, it hard for us to grasp that. We are toremember you can't take anything with you when you die. Not your money, not you clothes, houses, wives or husbands.. Every man is accountable for only himself. Yes, murder, lie, cheat, steal, incest, homosexuality, judging others, glutting(eating when you're not hungry) being jealous of other ppl's possessions, all that is a sin but once we repent and try to obey The Lord we are delivers of these thins. Right now that seems impossible but it can happen only though God and Christ. That's faith. I mI mighI will fall on my knees and ask God to give me the strength to resist temptation. God doesn't like when you purposely disobey him. I know we feel that it is right but that's only bc the devil has us deceived. This world and desires or not ours. We do not belong here.. Pray and ask for deliverance and please pray for me as well. If any of you need help or guidance I can help y'all.

Rick's comment: Dawn Marie, I'm so glad you got saved but you are very confused. Please stop listening to human reason and start reading studying believing your Bible, in context. Many thanks!

Jan 02, 2014
Paul condemned homosexual behaviour
by: Philip

For Paul there was no such thing as a gay Christian. He did not recognise a class of people who defined themselves through their sexual attraction for members of the same sex.

For Paul men (and women) were complementary and made for each other. For a man to reject this and engage in homosexual activity was seriously sinful.

Some people claim that Paul was condemning heterosexuals who participate in homosexual behaviour because it is against their personal God given nature.

This is entirely wrong. Why? Because Paul did not believe that God created human beings with opposing natures. Male and female He created them and they complemented each other.

Rick's comment: Hi Philip - thanks for stating your incorrect opinion. You are in agreement with the majority of professing Christians who have never studied this issue and who therefore reach a conclusion which has no relationship to biblical truth.

2014 will be a year of spiritual growth and blessing for you IF you commit to read, memorize and obey 2 Timothy 2:15. Will you do it?

"Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." 2 Tim 2:15, Old King James Version

Jan 25, 2014
What?
by: Sam

I understand how you would seem to think that Romans 1:26-27 was not condemning homosexuals. However, where in the world did you get that Paul was talking about temple prostitutes?

Rick's comment: Romans 1 and temple prostitutes - short video and lots of carefully sourced proof.

1 Conrinthians 6:9-11 clearly says that "neither the sexually immoral, nor idolators, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality... will inherit the kingdom of God." I don't believe that being gay itself is a sin, that's just how people are born, like skin color. But the ACT of homosexual sex is a sin. Similarly, the act of sex (whether straight or gay) outside marriage is a sin as well...

I strongly believe that while God condemns homosexual acts, He DOES NOT condemn homosexual PEOPLE. People cannot change their genetic makeup, but they certainly CAN change their behavior. Just like how He condemned the woman who committed adultery and who was about to be stoned ("Go, and SIN no more" - John 8:11 tells us that Jesus indeed says that adultery is a sin), but He prevented the stoning from happening because He loved and had mercy for that woman. Just because Jesus prevented the stoning does not mean that He thought adultery was not a sin. He saved her out of love and in order to EDUCATE the woman so that she could REPENT and leave her sinful life for a sacred one. It is the same for gay people. GOD DOES NOT WANT YOU DEAD. HE LOVES YOU VERY MUCH. However, He wants you to LIVE A LIFE BASED ON HIS TEACHINGS and MAKE SACRIFICES FOR HIS SAKE. It is not just gay people who are suffering for the kingdom of God. Straight people must also sacrifice their desire to have sex before marriage and outside marriage (even if they oh-so-want-it) in order to become more like Christ, as we are called to do as Christians. Thus I have the utmost respect for homosexual and straight people who can control and sacrifice their earthly yearnings so that they may serve as living proof that God has changed their lives. Those people have it hardest and I am proud of them. Keep fighting the good fight!

Rick's comment: Hi Sam, thanks for giving your opinions, even though they are generally wrong. I'm hoping that in 2014, instead of parroting what someone told you the Bible means, you will accept your responsibility to read and study the Bible for yourself, in context.

Do you know anything about the historical context of ancient Corinth? In order to understand what Paul meant in 1 Cor 6:9, don't you think it's important to know the cultural, historical and religious context that Paul addressed? 2 Timothy 2:15 is very important. May I encourage you to memorize it and then obey it every time you read your Bible?

"Strongly believing" something is not an argument; it is an overused rhetorical device. Many thanks.

Jan 27, 2014
My Own Interpretation
by: Sam

Actually, I do read the Bible on my own and have read it several times, so thanks very much for the (unfortunately wrong) assumption. Those words are not from someone else. They are from MY OWN INTERPRETATION. Please stop promoting sin and believing/reading only what you like to hear because they fit your lifestyle. That is not what the Christian life is about. Hopefully you will accept YOUR responsibility to do as the scripture says and strive to please God by repenting your sins before you tell me to go home and read the Bible. You can keep 2 Timothy 2:15 to yourself as it seems that you are the one who cannot handle the word of truth.

That will be the end of the debate from my side because this discussion has proven to be quite meaningless. Good day.

Rick's comment: Hi Sam, "Are ye also yet without understanding?" Matthew 15:16, old King James Version

1. You ripped verses out of their biblical cultural doctrinal historical and religious context, specifically Romans 1:26-27 and 1 Cor 6:9.

2. You put your own spin, your own interpretation on the verses, ignoring the context.

3. You misapplied the out of context verses, as if they were talking about gays and lesbians.

4. You made false accusations against us, our integrity and our lifestyle when you have no idea how we live.

It is time to grow up spiritually, stop being lazy, start being honest and read, memorize and obey 2 Timothy 2:15.

Apr 02, 2014
GOD condemns homosexuals
by: Prophet

Read humans !
Lev. 18, 22
I Cor 6, 9 11
Lev. 20, 13
Rom. 1, 26 27
Gen. 19, 4 11

Rick's comment: Hello fake prophet. Just for the record, you are not in any way a prophet, LOL, not.even.close. I'm just sayin'

For anyone interested in what those verses mean, in context, look on the NavBar under, What The Bible Says. Many thanks.


Apr 30, 2014
homosexuality and lesbinism
by: humanitirian

my dearest brothers and sisters ,i first would like to greet you and tell you that i am a christian and have had the experience of meeting people of all races and religions and even sexual choices and what i have found is that all of humanity have sinned and come short,but the unlined fact is that we were all born in sin ,and because of that people have what is called determanisms with will determine how a person thinks and untimately act.there are many veribals why a person beleives like beleives if a person beleive he is gay than that makes him gay,no right but gay by virtue of his belief,proverbs 23:7 so as a man think in his heart,so is he.that leads me to my next point which is we all humanity have an obligation to do something since it wasnt our fault how we were born,that is to be born again,simply being saved according to romans 10;9,10 what this inclued is once you are born again you must do romans 12;1-2 dont conform to the world ,but be transformed by the renewing of your mind to be able to think the way god wants you to think .now concider the fact that god is a god of purpose and he do things by design and with purpose .god is a god of growth and increase that is his nature ,no one can change that ,genesis8:22 as long as the earth stands seed time and harvest shell never cese,so god call some things an abomination not because was the worse sin in the world ,but because the potenial for growth is not there so its useless,i beleive that god is not so concern about same sex as much as he is about a person that is doing the thing and becoming a crusader for it ,you see all of us has to fight the good fight of faith in every area of our life,so the bible say work out your salvation not work for your salvation. i hope to have shed some light on the subject,the true answer is still love.

Rick's comment: LOL, the correct answer is, No, Romans 1:27 does not condemn or describe gays.

May 08, 2014
Wow
by: Mark Lyon

I became dumber for having read that.

You are a true piece of work.

Jun 20, 2014
Rick, Idk if this helps but I've read it several times.
by: Jay

Matthew 19:11, also if you notice it's never been said once in the bible homosexuality is wrong, in fact if it was I'm sure jesus would have said something, I'm a nondenominational chtistian. And I don't appreciate people who bash others. I believe salvation was given to us, and when we judge others we forget about salvation.

Jun 21, 2014
Huh?
by: Brandon

So I'm a little confused. Maybe I read thru it too fast. But as I understand it, you say that the main focus of Romans 1 is to show that all have sinned. Therefore, it is ultimately spiritual audultrey he is addressing? If that's your point then so far I agree! Great point and good deciphering the word in its context.

However, this brings up in another question: if Paul is using homosexuality as an example of to show how everyone has sinned then would this not still show homosexuality to be a sin? It seems as if you uncovered the over all meaning of Romans 1. And again I agree. This is not a chapter about homosexuality. however is still unavoidably addresses homosexuality - am I missing something?

Rick's comment: Hi Brandon - Yes, you are missing something quite important. Paul never uses homosexuality (two gay guys or two gay gals falling in love and spending their lives together) as an example of how people sin.

Instead, Paul uses shrine prostitution, using sex to worship the fertility goddess, as an example of sin. That is an enormous difference. The truth about Romans 1.

Jul 21, 2014
In Context
by: Kathryn

Hi Rick, Very interesting that you seem to feel that you are the only person who can interpret the Bible "in context". This somewhat condescending toward others don't you think? You mentioned that there were a few early Christians who believed as you do and that is correct but hardly evidence that they (or you) are interpreting correctly. As for context, the passage in question has several important words worth looking at, but for our examination we'll look at the words “natural function” ("natural use," KJV). Let's take a look at how different Bibles translate the Greek into English.

"natural function"--NASB
"natural relations"--ESV, NIV, RSV
"natural use"--ASV, Darby, GNT, KJV, NKJV, YLT
"natural sexual function"--ISV
"natural intercourse"--NRSV

We are not talking about a person's alleged natural sexual orientation. Instead, we are talking about "natural function," natural use. If the text only said "natural" and not "natural function/use," then your argument might be stronger. But, this text doesn't help your argument. If the word "natural" in this context means "natural sexual orientation," then why does Paul add the word "function" and not something like "preference" (Rom. 12:9, NASB) or "choice" (Rom. 9:11) or "inclination" (1 Cor. 11:16) or "desire" (Rom. 1:27; 10:1)?

Furthermore, verse 27 says that the "men abandoned the natural function of the woman." By definition, "men" and "woman" are gender specific words. What is the man's natural function of the woman? Sex! Is Paul saying the natural function of the man with the woman is really about natural desire of men with men? That would be ridiculous. Instead, the words are used in the context of sexual activity--a man's natural function with the woman (v. 27). "Function" and "use" here are not about preference but about sex.

Rick's comment: Hi Kathryn - I do address your against nature argument on my against nature page and I address other aspects of Romans 1 on my Gay Christian FAQ page. Hope this is helpful Kathryn.

Jul 22, 2014
In Context
by: Kathryn

Hi Rick, I think you misread my posting. You said you addressed my "against nature" issue but my post referred to natural "use" not "against nature" and the link you provided did not touch on natural use at all. When Paul addresses men abandoning the natural USE of women he went on to say that these men committed shameful ACTS with one another - it was the act that was shameful and there is no distinction drawn regarding whether or not the relationship was committed because it is the acts that he is referring to. I hope this makes my statements more clear for you. Kathryn

Rick's comment: Hi Kathryn - "natural use" vs. against nature is the argument the anti-gay crowd makes when attempting to explain Romans 1. My point is that Paul's argument has nothing to do with lesbians and gay men. In plainer words, Paul is not arguing, as you suggest, that heterosexual sex in marriage is good and lesbian and gay sex is bad.

Paul's argument has everything to do with the moral and spiritual uncleanness - akatharsian, of idolatry and idolaters. Paul sets up his argument and his readers by using a Greek word for uncleanness (akatharsian), in Romans 1:24, that everyone in the first century, Gentile or Jew, understood was associated with idolatry.

Down the centuries, many conservative Christian commentators have also recognized that akatharsian describes uncleanness associated with idolatry. That is not a gay viewpoint - it is the commonly understood view of ancient Jews and Christians for more than 2000 years.

To read into Romans 1:26-27, that Paul intended to proscribe lesbian unions and gay unions as not being natural function, is to ignore Paul's argument about idolatry. Hope this is helpful Kathryn. Context, context, context.

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