Far from an “alternate lifestyle”, the Bible specifically places homosexuality and homosexual behavior on the things not to do list. In this study we want to focus on what the Bible has to say But before I do, please bear with me, I want to state that we must not be drawn into an atmosphere of condemning or hating the individual homosexual. It is distinctly unChristian to use derogatory terms toward sinners, to call them names, to hate the person rather than the act of sin. God is very plain on His attitude toward sin:
Ezekiel 18:20-24 “The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him. But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die. All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live. Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord GOD: and not that he should return from his ways, and live? But when the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and doeth according to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth, shall he live? All his righteousness that he hath done shall not be mentioned: in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die.”
God’s attitude is as ours should be: Homosexuality is a sin, a sin that leads toward eternal death just as all other sins (Galatians 5.16-26, called “Works of the Flesh”) lead toward death. Our Father takes no pleasure in the death of a sinner. He wants all men to be saved, even the homosexual. To God, sin is sin, and all sin is corrupt in His sight. Our attitude as Christians is that we must hate the sin, preach against the sin, and yet lead the sinner in love to the foot of the Cross for salvation in Jesus. Once truly saved the homosexual will be no more: in his or her place will stand a Believer, saved by the blood of Christ, cleansed from that sin which enslaved them, the sin of homosexuality. Let’s start this study.
Clearing Away The Clouds Of “Gay Theology”
Fifty years ago there was no doubt in anyone’s mind that homosexuality was sinful behavior, completely out of touch with that which God’s Word teaches. Yet during the 1960’s “Flower Child” movement, the buzzword became “do your own thing”. As drugs and alleged free love started to be acceptable, homosexuality started coming out of the closet. The homosexual movement, once it became public, started to gather force. Gay Rights advocates staged parades and political rallies to show solidarity, as well as to foster the impression that the homosexual was no different than the heterosexual. They were nice people, clean people, but they just had an “alternate lifestyle”. The movement continued to gather momentum through the 80’s until, today, many Gay advocates are lobbying for the legal right to perform same sex marriages.
In the midst of this movement Gay theologians came forward to explain that Orthodox Christianity was misled for over 1900 years. These Gay theologians started churches composed of practicing homosexuals based on the platform that their lifestyle was a God condoned alternative to heterosexuality. In order to make this platform work, Gay theology had to explain away various passages in the Scripture. Let’s look at a few of these texts, and answer the false claims that homosexuality is an alternate lifestyle acceptable to God.
Sodom and Gomorra
Genesis 18:20-21 “And the Lord said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorra is great, and because their sin is very grievous; I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know.”
Genesis 19:4-9 “But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter: And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to the this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them. And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him, And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly. Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof. And they said, Stand back. And they said again, This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came near to break the door. ”
“The Biblical story demonstrates the seriousness with which these early Eastern people took the important customs of Oriental hospitality. It appears that, if necessary, they would even allow their own daughters to undergo abuse in order to protect guests. The sexual aspect of the story is simply the vehicle in which the subject of demanded hospitality is conveyed. It is clearly interpreted in Ezekiel 16:49: “Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, surfeit of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy.” (Bailey, Homosexuality and The Western Christian Tradition, page 5)
“No doubt the surrender of his daughters was simply the most tempting bribe Lot could offer on the spur of the moment to appease the hostile crowd . . . . This action, almost unthinkable in modern Western society, was consonant with the very low status of female children at the time. . . .” (Boswell, Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality, p. 95)
Gay Theologians teach that these cities were judged for rape, pride and inhospitality, and not for homosexuality. The residents merely wanted to “know” (in a social way) Lot’s angelic visitors. Such an explanation of the text is simplistic at least, and pure context twisting at best. If the men of these cities merely wanted to get to know the visitors, this still doesn’t explain why the men were willing to break down the door and injure Lot in order to be hospitable. Nor does it explain Lot’s statement: “I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes” . Why would Lot offer his daughters (who were virgins. See have not known man ) to the crowd if their advances were other than sexual? Their advances were obviously sexual, in this case homosexual, and Lot sought to placate their desires rather than have the messengers of God attacked. Sodom and Gormorrah were guilty of a variety of sins, including rape, inhospitality, pride. The role of homosexuality in these cities’ destruction cannot be explained away.
Leviticus 18:21-24 “And thou shalt not let any of thy seed pass through the fire to Molech, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the Lord. Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination. Neither shalt thou lie with any beast to defile thyself therewith: neither shall any woman stand before a beast to lie down thereto: it is confusion. Defile not ye yourselves in any of these things: for in all these the nations are defiled which I cast out before you:”
Leviticus 20:10-14 “And the man that committeth adultery with another man’s wife, even he that committeth adultery with his neighbour’s wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death. And the man that lieth with his father’s wife hath uncovered his father’s nakedness: both of them shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them. And if a man lie with his daughter in law, both of them shall surely be put to death: they have wrought confusion; their blood shall be upon them. If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them. And if a man take a wife and her mother, it is wickedness: they shall be burnt with fire, both he and they; that there be no wickedness among you.”
“That the very pronounced Old Testament judgment against a man’s having sexual relations with another man is included in the priestly Holiness Code of Leviticus (18:22 and 20:13) is significant because the concern of the priests was one of ritual purity. It was not the moral preaching of the prophets. From this priestly point of view, it is clear that above all else, Israel was to be uncontaminated by her pagan neighbors. In all things, she was to remain a separate “pure vessel unto the Lord.” At this time, male prostitutes in the temples of the Canaanites, Babylonians, and other neighboring peoples, were common features of the pagan rites. There, it is understandable that this “homosexuality” connected with the worship of false gods would certainly color Israel’s perspective on any and all homosexual activity” (Ralph Blair, An Evangelical Look at Homosexuality (Chicago: Moody Press, 1963), p. 3)
Gay Theologians teach that God discouraged homosexuality to encourage Israel’s population growth. They teach that if this law still stands, then the dietary prohibitions on eating lobster, rare steak, rabbit, and so forth also still stands. Finally, they say, if the law against gayness is reinstated, then the punishment of death by stoning is still valid. Let’s look at each of these claims.
First, it’s clear that God in no way discouraged homosexuality in order to encourage population growth. As a Biblical Literalist, I always look at the context of a verse in order to interpret it’s meaning. In Leviticus 18, homosexuality is one of three sins mentioned, each given equal precedence as sinful. In order, God condemns child sacrifice (shalt not let any of thy seed pass through the fire), homosexuality (shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind), and bestiality (Neither shalt thou lie with any beast). God then groups all three sins under the same warning: for in all these the nations are defiled which I cast out before you. In other words, God said “I destroyed the other nations that used to be in this land because of these sins, and the same warning applies to you”!
IF we are to say that homosexuality was given equal billing with child sacrifice and bestiality, and IF we were to say that homosexuality was only temporarily forbidden in order to encourage Israel’s population growth, and IF we are to believe that homosexuality is now acceptable to God in this current age, then we must believe that child sacrifice and bestiality are also acceptable in our current age. You cannot have it both ways: either homosexuality, bestiality, and child sacrifice are forever sinful abominable acts in God’s sight, or all three are acceptable “alternative lifestyles”. A conservative, common sense interpretation of Leviticus 18 demands that we understand that all three acts were and are sinful in God’s sight, contrary to His Will for mankind.
Leviticus 20 is even more specific. The sins listed as forbidden are, in order, adultery (adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death), incest (man that lieth with his father’s wife), non related incest (man lie with his daughter in law), homosexuality (man also lie with mankind), and intra-family fornication (man take a wife and her mother). All are given equal billing, all are equally evil in God’s eyes. If homosexuality was only temporarily forbidden, then we can conclude that incest between parent and child is now acceptable. How foolish! None of these sins were temporarily forbidden, all were and are abominations in God’s sight.
“It is interesting how lightly evangelicals have taken other proscriptions found in the same Old Testament Code, e.g.: rules against the eating of rabbit (Leviticus. 11:26), oysters, clams, shrimp, and lobster (Leviticus. 11:10ff), and rare steaks (Leviticus. 17:10). Evangelicals do not picket or try to close down seafood restaurants nor do we keep kosher kitchens. We do not always order steaks “well-done.” We eat pork and ham. The wearing of clothes made from interwoven linen and wool (Deuteronomy. 22:11) does not seem to bother us at all. Evangelicals do not say, in accordance with these same laws of cultic purification (Leviticus. 20:13), that those who practice homosexual activity should be executed as prescribed. Evangelicals do not demand the death penalty for the Jeane Dixons of this world (Leviticus. 20:27) nor do we “cut off” from among the people, as is demanded by this same Code, those who have intercourse with women during menstruation (Leviticus. 20:18) and those who marry women who have been divorced (Leviticus. 21:14). Evangelicals do not keep out of the pulpit those who are visually handicapped or lame or those “with a limb too long” (Leviticus. 21:18ff ).” (Blair, An Evangelical Look at Homosexuality. p. 3)
As to the Gay theologian charge that the dietary laws would have to be enforced if we enforce the Levitical code against homosexuality, this is mere smoke and mirrors. First, the dietary laws are not even represented in these Bible texts. Second, the dietary laws were just that, dietary laws, they were not moral laws (which the above texts represent). The dietary laws were enacted for Israel because, as a nomadic people, they required high protein slow burning food to sustain their lives. Pork, one of the forbidden foods, provides nourishment. However it, like all the forbidden foods, have been scientifically proven to metabolize quickly in the human body. You could not eat these foods, and maintain the type of life that the ancient Israelite did. When we reach the time of Christ, Israel ceased to be nomadic. As they no longer needed a specialized diet God Himself rescinded the dietary laws (Acts 10.14-15). But He never rescinded the command against these sins, in particular, the sin of homosexuality.
Finally, the reason that homosexuality (like adultery and incest) is no longer a sin that you must be stoned for is that we live in the era of Grace. Christ paid the penalty for all sin on the Cross of Calvary, even the sin of the homosexual. In this era we do not stone sinners, we preach the Gospel of Christ to them. The homosexual, like the adulterer, needs the salvation that Christ can bring. They do not need to be stoned, they need to be saved so that they can “go and sin no more”.
Jonathan and David
1 Samuel 18:3-4 “Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul. And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.”
1 Samuel 20:41 “And as soon as the lad was gone, David arose out of a place toward the south, and fell on his face to the ground, and bowed himself three times: and they kissed one another, and wept one with another, until David exceeded.”
Gay Theologians teach that These Old Testament references prove God sanctions homosexual relationships. They claim that the word “exceeded” in the passage is taken from Hebrew verb which suggests orgasm. Again, this is a blatant attempt at twisting the context in order to prove the false as true. exceeded is the Hebrew gadal, which simply means to do more than. The verse means that David cried more than Jonathan, nothing more and nothing less. Both David and Jonathan were overjoyed at their reunion. The kiss was an ancient form of greeting, much like our handshake today (see Romans 16.16; 1 Corinthians 16.20; 2 Corinthians 13.12; 1 Thessalonians 5.26). There was no more sexuality expressed in this kiss than there is between two good friends who give one another a firm handshake or a quick brotherly hug. If both had been caught in homosexual acts they would have been quickly stoned (see the Leviticus verses above), as they did not live in the age of Grace.
The Book Of Romans
Romans 1:26-27 “For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.”
“Note these key words: change, leaving. In order to change from or to leave heterosexuality, one must first be heterosexual. What we have is an account of bisexual lust — and St. Paul does say lust, placing this behavior out of the higher realm of love and devotion. It is interesting to note that this is the only Old or New Testament scriptural reference to sexual relations between females.” (Kim Stablinski, “Homosexuality: What the Bible Does and Does Not Say,” The Ladder, July 1969)
Gay Theologians teach that these verses support the concept of inherent gayness, and do not apply to constitutional gays. To them, a constitutional gay is not going against his or her nature by remaining gay, for they were born with these desires. The Gay theologians teach that Romans is a warning to heterosexuals who make or allow themselves to practice homosexuality against their nature. Again, this is only smoke and mirrors, a theory proclaimed as fact by twisting Scripture out of context. There is no text in the Bible that supports the concept that there are people who are homosexual “by nature.” I have counseled those who followed the gay lifestyle and who, in fear that they contracted AIDS, came to me for comfort. One man told me that he was repeatedly molested by his uncle when he was a child, and, “my uncle taught me this way of life”. The overwhelming evidence is that gayness is learned, not inborn. IF we accept the idea that some people are born gay and some become gay, how do you decide which is which? We must order our lives on what God’s Word teaches, not on what we feel, or what we desire. If we follow the teachings of God’s Word (which is His best Will for our lives) we can lead happy and secure lives. If we twist God’s Word to allow for sin in our lives we must reap the consequences.
Paul makes it very clear what God’s attitude toward the practicing homosexual is. gave them up (parevdwken) in the above text describes a judicial act from the Almighty. He did not merely remove the restraints of sin from their lives, He judicially abandoned those who maintained the homosexual lifestyle as incorrigible. This is a terrible reality! Doctor S. Lewis Johnson, Jr, of Dallas Theological Seminary, had the following to say about this judicial decision:
“The interpretation is also in harmony with the occurrence of the precisely identical form in Acts 7:42 where, in speaking of Israel’s apostasy in the days of Moses, Stephen says, “Then God turned, and gave them up (Gr. parevdwken) to worship the host of heaven.” Both the Romans and the Acts passages describe the act of God as a penal infliction of retribution, the expression of an essential attribute consistent with His holiness.” (S. Lewis Johnson, Jr., “God Gave Them Up,” Bibliotheca Sacra l29 (April-June 1972):127-28
I maintain a file of old newspaper clippings and articles, dog eared and yellow from years of storage. While working on this study I came across a clipping from the Christian News dated September 24, 1984 (entitled “Homosexuality: A Sign of Civilization Decadence”) which gave this information: Of all the deadliest diseases prevalent in America at that time, homosexual behavior contributed to 72% of the AIDS cases, 44% of the male syphilis cases, 35% of the hepatitis cases, 51% of the throat gonorrhea cases, and 53% of the enteric disease (intestinal infection) cases. Homosexuals have a rate of infectious hepatitis 8 to 25 times higher than heterosexual males. 66% of all homosexuals have or will have at least one venereal disease. In San Francisco, since the passage of the “Gay Rights” laws, infectious hepatitis A increased 100%, infectious hepatitis B increased 300%, amebic colon infection increased 2500%, and the VD clinics are treating 75,000 patients per year, of whom 70-80% are homosexual. This is not God’s best for man, this is the result of man ignoring the warnings of God’s Word. Homosexuality is not a harmless alternate lifestyle, it is a lifestyle that threatens to destroy all those who engage in it’s practice.
Homosexuality Forbidden Even During The Age Of Grace
The greatest argument that the gay theologians use is that we, as believers, are living in the Age of Grace rather than the Age of the Law. Because of this, regardless as to how we interpret the Old Testament, these Laws are no longer viable for the Church Age believer. In other words, “If we can’t argue for homosexuality in the light of the Old Testament Teachings, then we will negate that text entirely and rely on the New Testament alone.
I have warned believers before about picking and choosing what Biblical text we consider to be viable based on our own biases. This is a dangerous path to tread! It is also a foolish waste of time. What God affirms as true in the Old Testament, He will surely maintain as true in the New. God is unchangeable, as His Word is unchangeable (Malachi 3:6 “For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.”) As God does not change, nor does His Word, we can naturally assume that the commandments against homosexuality would be reiterated in the New Testament. And they are!
1 Corinthians 6:9-10 “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.”
“In his catalog of vices in which homosexual behavior is listed, it should be noted that it is included with what the apostle regarded as certain heterosexual sins such as adultery, fornication, Epicurean over-indulgence, and general abuse of the body. For perspective, note should be taken of Paul’s equally weighty inclusion in this passage of drunkards and the repeated censure of the greedy, the grasping, and those who steal. Here are simply other examples of sinful abuse, since, for example, Paul advocated alcoholic temperence but not necessarily abstinence. He recommends to young Timothy that he drink some wine for his health (1 Tim. 5:23). Elsewhere, Paul urges whole-hearted enthusiasm in all that one undertakes, but that does not mean the abuse of over-indulgence, greed, or coveting in the process (1 Corinthians. 10:31). One should not assume uncritically that there is in the Corinthian passage a proof text against all homosexuality or even all homosexual acts. Of course, homosexual behavior can be perverted and sinful and exploitative just as heterosexual activity can be — or any kind of activity can be — but this is not the same as rejecting either sexual orientation or specific acts as sinful as such.” (Ralph Blair, An Evangelical Look at Homosexuality (Chicago: Moody Press, 1963), p. 6)
This passage is disastrous to those who profess the pro gay theology. There is absolutely no question that Paul is alluding to homosexuals. The word effeminate, Greek malakov, is defined as “soft of things, persons who are soft, effeminate, especially of catamites, men and boys who allow themselves to be misused homosexually” (William F. Arndt and F. Wilbur Gingrich, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1957). 4th rev. ed., s.v. “malakov”,” pp. 489-90). abusers of themselves with mankind is the Greek ajrsenokoivth, which literally means a “male homosexual or pederast” (Arndt and Gingrich, A Greek-English Lexicon, s.v. “ajrsenokoivth”,” p. 109). Though the gay theologians attempted to go against all scholarly lexical research, it was useless. So they interpreted the passage from a different angle, that of moderation.
The gay argument is as such: “If Paul includes drunkenness in the list with homosexuality, and yet in another text tells Timothy to take a little wine for his stomach, then neither alcohol nor homosexuality are absolutely forbidden. What is forbidden is taking these allowed pleasures without moderation, for this in itself is gluttonous.”
To me, beyond being blasphemous, this is twisting context far beyond what was intended by God. As before, when you interpret the Scripture, you must always allow the context to be your guide. Let’s say (and this is only for illustration) that the gay theologian is right, and homosexuality is fine if participated in in moderation. IF this statement is true, THEN it must equally be true for the other activities in the same Biblical text. Ten sins are listed here: Fornication, idolatry, adultery, effeminacy, homosexuality, theft, greed, drunkenness, orgy type parties, and extortion. If you are going to be consistent you MUST apply the same interpretive standards to the other nine activities as you do to homosexuality. Can you honestly say that IDOLATRY is fine with God, as long as you do it in moderation? Is THEFT perfectly acceptable behavior for a Christian, as long as we don’t steal too much? Can you, in a Godly way, EXTORT money from another brother or sister in Christ? You see, when you twist Scripture to suit your own preferences, you often end up with a confusing mess that edifies no one. Homosexuality is sin just as extortion is sin, and those who practice it shall not inherit the kingdom of God. That, my friend, is Biblical and fully in context.
1 Timothy 1:8-10 “But we know that the law is good, if a man use it lawfully; Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine;”
defile themselves with mankind is again the Greek ajrsenokoivth, which literally means a “male homosexual or pederast” (Arndt and Gingrich, A Greek-English Lexicon). The gay theologians teach that homosexual love is neither condoned nor condemned in the Scriptures. In this, they are right! God does not recognize sexual activity between same sex partners as love, but regards it as a perversion of His created order. Homosexuality is consistently placed in “sin lists”, equally billed with MURDER, PROSTITUTION, KIDNAPPING, and LYING. Homosexuality is intrinsically evil, a damaging lifestyle that only earns God’s judgmental abandon. Some gay theologians, knowing that the Scripture is firmly condemning of this poor life choice, have sanctioned “selective recognition” of the Scripture:
“We need the Bible as a source to understanding Christ — but we need to spend more time observing His spirit as related there rather than the “letter of the law” given by His followers in attempting to spread His message. Pick up an edition of the Bible with Christ’s recorded statements printed in red. Study only His words, comparing His positive approach throughout the Scriptures. Notice His emphasis on love — His silence on the means of sex but concern only with the motives behind it.” (Stablinski, “Homosexuality”)
If I use this type of selective recognition then it would be easy to justify any type of life choice, even murder. You see, Jesus came to seek and save the lost. As an Orthodox Jew, Jesus was (in the flesh) fully supportive of all that the Levitical Law taught, even the injunctions against homosexuality. When the woman taken in adultery (John 8.3-9) was brought to Jesus, He never said “No, no, don’t stone her”. He never said, “That’s under the Levitical Law, and I’ve nullified that”. No, Jesus recognized that, by the Law, she was supposed to be stoned if she were indeed guilty of this sin. His response what “Let him who has not sinned throw the first stone”. Not, “The Law is negated”, but “Are you sure you didn’t do the same thing?”.
The primary question to ask the homosexual is this: Are you secure in your salvation? Did you accept the historic and real Jesus Christ as your Savior, or are you following some religion that justifies your lifestyle? Jesus said:
Matthew 18:11-14 “For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost. How think ye? if a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray? And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish.”
We all, outside of Christ, whether homosexual or heterosexual, are lost and destined to Hell. Once any man accepts Jesus Christ as Savior:
Romans 10:9-11 “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.”
We become saved, Children of God, destined to eternal life in Heaven with the Godhead. At the moment of salvation we also begin the process of progressive sanctification, that is, we become “new creatures” in Christ:
2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
You cannot be a practicing homosexual and be a Christian, no more than you can be a practicing murderer and be a Christian. Once you are saved God cleans your life, and continues cleaning it, helping you daily to be more like Christ. If you do not know Christ as your Savior, now would be a good time to meet Him. And if you are a practicing homosexual following the lies of gay theology, now would be a good time to re-examine your life in the light of what we just studied. It’s never too late to be saved while you are in this life! God Bless!
Family News From Doctor James Dobson
The following letter is from Doctor James Dobson, who is the Pastor of “Focus on the Family”.
The letter is timely, Biblical, and highlights the problems inherent to Gay Theology and our society today. This materiel is used by permission. This letter may be reproduced without change and in its entirety for non-commercial and non-political purposes without prior permission from Focus on the Family. Copyright (c) 1998 Focus on the Family. All Rights Reserved. International Copyright Secured.
Several weeks ago, I was approached by a congenial man in his early 20s who told of his journey into the world of homosexuality. In desperation and all his father’s suggestion, he attended a conference sponsored by Exodus International, an organization that ministers to gays and lesbians. While there, he dedicated himself, heart and soul, to Jesus Christ and was delivered from the homosexual lifestyle. It was an inspirational testimony.
As we stood and chatted, this young man described for me the deep anger and hurt that is widely felt by those in the homosexual community. Many blame Christian organizations such as Focus on the Family for wounding them, believing sincerely that they and their friends are the targets of hate. Of course that is not true. Never in the history of this ministry have we insulted or ridiculed homosexuals or anyone else for that matter — including those with whom we disagree. We believe every human being is precious to God and is entitled to acceptance and respect. There is great suffering among homosexuals, and it is our desire to show compassion and concern for those caught in that lifestyle.
There are, however, two great barriers to our efforts to build bridges of understanding with gays and lesbians. First, we have no authority to sanction or approve behavior that Scripture clearly defines as sinful. The Bible’s attitude toward sexuality can be traced back to the creation of the very first man and woman in the Garden of Eden. Two parallel passages in Genesis provide the basis on which all specific prohibitions toward homosexuality (and any other sexual behavior beyond that which exists within the context of heterosexual marriage) are to be understood:
1. So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground ” (Genesis 1:27-28, NIV).
2. The Lord God said, “It is, not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” . . . So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, He took one of the man’s ribs and closed up the place with flesh. Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib He had taken out of the man, and He brought her to the man. The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman’ for she was taken out of man.” For this reason a man will leave his father and his mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame (Genesis 2:18, 21-25, NIV).
These passages provide the eternal standard for human sexuality. Try as we might, we cannot make any other behaviors – premarital intercourse, adultery, prostitution, male and female homosexuality – conform with what God has decreed from the beginning. The book of Leviticus issues this decree about homosexual behavior: “Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind; it is abomination” (18:22, KJV). Why is that wording so emphatic? Theologians tell us it is because sexual deviancy distorts God’s original intention and corrupts the relationship between men, women and their Creator. When God looked at His arrangement in the Garden, He called it “good.” There is nothing in Scripture that provides a basis for making this pronouncement on any other form of sexual expression.
This is why the practice of homosexuality is morally equivalent to heterosexual promiscuity in the Biblical text. Nothing can change the fact that God abhors any form of sexual sin. Paul explained it to the church at Rome in this way:
Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator who is forever praised. Amen. Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion. (Romans 1:24-27, NIV).
These and other scriptures clearly reveal that homosexuality is immoral and contrary to God’s plan for the human family. And if homosexual behavior is condemned, then so too are heterosexual promiscuity, bestiality, pedophilia and any other behavior defined in Scripture as sinful. We must begin with the presupposition that the universe has a Boss, and He has defined the dimensions of right and wrong in immutable terms.
Nevertheless, we as believers are commanded in numerous Biblical passages to care for and love all men and women, regardless of their sin. Each of us has sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and there is no justification for self righteousness or disdain among those who have been forgiven. Our mission is to proclaim the good news of Christ Jesus to a suffering and dying world.
The second difficulty for Christians hoping to build bridges to homosexuals involves our necessary opposition to the radical social agenda advanced by gay activists. We believe their ideas are dangerous to society at large and to the family in particular. Nevertheless, their advocates seem to be everywhere at once. The gay lifestyle is aggressively promoted throughout culture, especially in television sitcoms, Hollywood movies and on university campuses. Yet there is scarcely a politician or a national leader anywhere who has the courage to oppose it publicly. I suspect that many pastors and priests also avoid the subject because of the intimidation factor that has become so pervasive in recent years. It is one subject most influential people are afraid to address, unless, of course, they are echoing pro homosexual rhetoric.
A case in point: On November 8, 1997, President Clinton spoke at a fund-raising dinner on behalf of a homosexual activist organization dedicated to the radical gay and lesbian agenda. It was the first time in U.S. history that a sitting president had given the status and authority of his office to a group defined by their sexual behavior. That alone should have created a political backlash, but nary a peep was heard from the conservative community. During his speech, Mr. Clinton referred to the writings of Thomas Jefferson and said, “We are redefining in practical terms the immutable ideals [of the Founding Fathers] that have guided us from the beginning.”1
How does one go about redefining immutable (that is, unchangeable) ideals? It was an outrageous moment in a presidency marked by outrageous moments! Without the consent of the governed or their elected representatives, Mr. Clinton was telling the American people that he had reinterpreted our most cherished foundational principles to make them suit his post-modern presuppositions. “What audacity!” I thought. “Surely, someone will rise to challenge the president.” But silence prevailed in the nation’s capital.
Two days later, the White House and the president hosted a “hate crimes” conference at George Washington University during which Mr. Clinton told participants that public schools across the nation should institute pro homosexual diversity programs. They should be designed, in his words, “to teach [children] a different way.”2
Here we find the president of the United States telling the nation’s parents that their children should be taught ideas and concepts most of them find offensive. Nevertheless, there was not the slightest suggestion of protest or disagreement from leaders of either political party or anyone with visibility and influence. Only one national figure, Dr. Bill Bennett, weighed in on the other side of the issue.3 I have searched the Internet and media reports from that period, and can find no other statement in opposition to the president’s widely publicized words.
How do we explain the lack of moral outrage – or courage – from anyone in Washington, D.C., or on the local level? The answer can be found in the unparalleled political clout of homosexual activists. In the course of two decades, they have succeeded in intimidating Washington, D.C., and most of the rest of the nation. Few dare step in front of the gay and lesbian juggernaut for fear of being labeled “homophobic,” “hateful” or “politically incorrect”.
Indeed, the Senate in 1996 came within a single vote of passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would have wreaked havoc on American culture.4 This legislation would have made sexual orientation a protected class equivalent to racial minorities under federal civil rights laws. On my recent visit to Capitol Hill, I was warned that this measure will almost certainly resurface soon in the Senate. The question is, how many senators will cave in to pressure from homosexual activists?
Another illustration of the awesome political power of radical homosexuals can be seen in the support provided by the federal government for AIDS research and related programs advocated by that community. Returning to the president’s speech on November 8, he confidently bragged to the partisan audience that his administration had allocated more money for AIDS research than to breast or prostate cancer combined.5 How do you think that comment made victims of those other diseases feel? Unfortunately, cancer patients and those with other diseases lack the political muscle of gay activists.
More to the point, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released figures in 1996 to show how much federal money was spent per death (in fiscal year 1994) on each of the five deadliest diseases. The findings are striking:
Heart Disease: $1,056
Why are we so concerned about the bias toward the homosexual agenda in the United States? Because it has profound implications for the well – being of our society. Any change in the traditional understanding of the family will undermine its legal foundation and render it meaningless. If, for example, marriage can occur between two men or two women, why not three men or four women? What about between siblings, or between parents and children? How about one man and six women, which reopens the polygamy debate of 116 years ago? To change the definition of marriage from the exclusive union between one man and one woman is to destroy the family as it has been known for 5,000 years.
To see where activists want to take us here in this country, we need to examine what is happening in other parts of the world. There is a highly coordinated international effort to redefine marriage, lower the age of sexual consent for minors, secure the rights to adoption by gays and lesbians, teach pro homosexual concepts to elementary school children, gain control of high school and college curricula, achieve special rights regarding hiring and firing, guarantee taxpayer funded marriage benefits for homosexuals, eliminate restrictions on military service, and pass laws that penalize and silence citizens who are morally opposed to the gay lifestyle. Most importantly, activists want homosexuality to be seen and sanctioned as the moral equivalent of heterosexuality. This is the common agenda pursued by its proponents throughout the industrialized world.
Nowhere is the homosexual agenda more successful than in Canada, where, unbelievably, it is becoming illegal to oppose or even criticize the movement. Several Canadian provinces have enacted human rights legislation that prohibits the publication of any statements deemed as “discriminatory” toward homosexuality.7 Additionally, the Canadian Radio – Television and Telecommunications Commission, equivalent to our Federal Communications Commission, now monitors programming that portrays homosexuality in a negative light.8 Even Focus on the Family Canada is Muzzled on this topic. So much for free speech north of the border.
Just last year, the British Columbia College of Teachers (BCCT) refused to accredit a teacher education program offered by Trinity Western University (TWU) – a Christian school. The reason? TWU requires its students to sign a code of conduct that prohibits homosexual behavior among other things. According to a BCCT lawyer, students “need to be exposed to other lifestyles.”9
Likewise, King’s College in Edmonton – another Christian institution – fired a lab instructor because of his openly homosexual conduct. The individual filed suit against the province of Alberta, charging that it refused to extend human rights protection to homosexuality. In April, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that legal protection (preference) must be extended immediately to Alberta’s homosexual community and that sexual orientation must be part of the province’s Human Rights Code. One Supreme Court justice said “…… I believe that judicial intervention is warranted to correct a democratic process that has acted improperly.”10 Get it? The people of Canada can’t be trusted to make their own decisions.
Dr. Ted Morton, a professor of political science at the University of Calgary, had this to say about the two cases mentioned above: “There will be strong pressures to define and isolate any private – especially religion – based educational institutions that do not embrace ‘gay positive’ policies. The argument has already been made before the courts in Canada that ‘equality rights’ are more important than freedom of religion and freedom of association.”11
Meanwhile in Ontario, the highest court in the province recently ruled that the traditional definition of “spouse” is unconstitutional and demanded that the federal Income Tax Act be rewritten to include same sex partners.12 And on it goes – even very young children are not safe from the repercussions of Canada’s sexual permissiveness. The age of consent in that nation is 14, which places very immature boys and girls at the mercy of adults who would exploit them for sexual purposes.13 Pro family advocates in some provinces want to raise that age limit. to 16 for girls, but haven’t been successful.
And the problem certainly isn’t confined to the North American continent. In the Netherlands, where prostitution, pornography and pedophilia are already rampant – and in many cases, legal – the Dutch government recently allowed homosexual couples to form legal unions, with the same inheritance and tax rights as heterosexual married couples.14 Homosexual couples have now gained the night to adopt children and share parental authority.15 Though not widely publicized, there are also efforts in the Netherlands to lower the legal age of consent from 14 to 12 years of age!16
Truly, the homosexual movement has become a steamroller in nations around the world. Just last week, I received a letter from my friend Lyndon Bowring, who heads the Care for the Family ministry in the United Kingdom. He wrote, “We are up to our eyes here in London with the rampant advances of the militant gay lobby. Our Parliament is planning to reduce the age of consent for homosexual intercourse between ‘adult’ males from 18 to 16. Apart from a sovereign miracle of grace, we will not succeed in persuading them not to do so. We are doing everything in our power to prevent it and calling on His divine power to intervene on behalf of our young boys.”17
There is hardly a place on the globe where similar struggles are not occurring, except where no fight remains in discouraged or outnumbered Christians.
But what about here in the United States? How is the movement doing locally? Like everywhere else, the battle to legalize same – sex marriage is raging in every state in the nation – the only question being which state will be the first to buckle. You’ve probably heard about the situation in Hawaii. This November, citizens of that state will put the question to a vote. It is expected to be a very close contest, and the outcome is still very much in doubt. In addition, Vermont’s very liberal Supreme Court18 will hear arguments this summer in favor of same sex marriage.19 A strong possibility exists that these judges – many of them hostile to the traditional family – may end up legalizing it, thereby creating an explosion of moral and legal chaos that will reverberate from coast to coast.
Now the battle has moved to California, where homosexual activists are vigorously seeking to implement their agenda. Once again, their ultimate goal is “gay marriage.” If it becomes legal in California, gay activists will have achieved most of their objectives in one fell swoop. And as our most populous state goes, so goes the nation.
California is especially vulnerable, because a 126-year-old law mandates that it recognize and validate all out-of-state marriages.20 This means that as soon as another state validates homosexual “marriage” those relationships automatically will be legal in the Golden State.
That’s why California’s homosexual community is working feverishly to change public opinion regarding their issues. In February, right before Valentine’s Day, gay activists across the state celebrated “Freedom to Marry Day.” In Sacramento, lesbian activist Carole Migden (D – San Francisco), chair of the powerful Assembly Appropriations Committee, aggressively asserted that proponents of gay marriage will “press onward despite any obstacle,”21 and fellow lesbian Sheila James Kuehl (D – Santa Monica), the Assembly Speaker Pro Tempore, characterized anyone who opposes same – sex marriage as being “hysterical.”22 At the same time, a billboard advocating homosexual “marriage” hung above a busy intersection in West Hollywood (the display brashly showcased two lesbians on a motorcycle with a “Just Married” sign).23
These are sobering developments, but is the situation hopeless? No. The tide can be turned if Christians will commit to taking a stand on these issues which are so critical to the preservation of the traditional family. I understand that each of you is extremely busy with commitments to your church, your job and your own family. Still, I implore you to consider the importance of making your voice heard. It is not enough to be a regular churchgoer. It is not enough to read the Bible or to nod in agreement with this letter and this ministry. While we need and appreciate your support, that alone will not turn the advancing tide of the homosexual movement, especially with regard to the issue of same sex marriage. Your concern and convictions must be translated into action.
Here are a few suggestions for accomplishing that objective. First, become informed about the status of same – sex marriage in your state. It is important that your state do two things: legally define marriage as being between one man and one woman; and specifically clarify that it will not recognize same – sex marriages from other states and jurisdictions. Here is a list of the states that have various “defense of marriage acts” which meet both of these necessary criteria:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina. North Dakota, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, Utah and Washington.
If your state is not listed above, then it is among the most vulnerable to pro homosexual forces. But you can do something about it. You can contact your state representatives and senators, and urge them to protect the well – being of the family by passing a law that will property define marriage and block the recognition of same – sex marriages. Many attempts are being made to pass appropriate legislation in some states, but most have yet to succeed. Listed on the next page are the states in which such legislation is either pending, under court challenge or has been defeated.
California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, Texas, Vermont, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
If there is legislation pending in your state, do all that you can to support its passage: contact your representatives; talk to your friends; ask your pastor to speak out on the issue; get the word out. If such legislation has already failed, contact the sponsoring representatives and senators to find out why it was defeated, and what can be done to reintroduce it again – this time successfully. It may be that you cannot find legislators who care enough about this issue to do something about it. In that case, you may want to consider starting a ballot initiative to bring the matter before the voters of your state. This will involve time, money and a deep commitment. But it is worth the effort.
Before closing, I want to re-emphasize a point I touched on earlier. We must always remember that regardless of the gravity of the issues at hand, we are commanded to demonstrate Christ like love to those with whom we disagree. I began this letter by introducing you to a man who had been delivered from homosexuality through an Exodus International conference. His decision to commit his life to Christ was motivated not by political action, but by the love that was shown him by concerned and compassionate Christians on an interactive, personal level.
At the same time, the issues at stake are of the utmost importance to our children and to the future of our country. Any nation that mocks the laws of God will ultimately fail. It is inevitable. And each of us is either part of the problem or a part of the solution. Edmund Burke, the English parliamentarian, summed it up this way: “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.” 24
May the Lord bless you as you seek to both share His love with those around you and take a stand for those principles of righteousness He has established from the beginning of time. My prayers are with you! We would also appreciate your prayers for Focus on the Family. These are challenging days for all of us here at the ministry. God’s blessings to you and yours.
Sincerely, James C. Dobson, Ph.D.
1. President Clinton remarks at Human Rights Campaign Dinner, Grand Hyatt Hotel, Washington, D.C., November 8, 1997
2. Paul Bedard, “Clinton Urges School Diversity Training,” The Washington Times, November 11, 1997, p. A1
3. William Bennett, “Clinton, Gays and the Truth,” The Weekly Standard, November 24, 1997, p. 13
4. Jon Frandsen and Fredreka Schouten, “Senate Votes Against Same – Sex Marriage, Rejects Anti-Gay Discrimination Bill,” Gannett News Service, September 10, 1996
5. Clinton, op. cit.
6. Research Funding Dollars Spent per Death, Department of Health and Human Services, FY1994
7. Norm Ovenden, “Supreme Court Blasts Alberta Over Gay Rights; Sexual Orientation Not Protected Under Provincial Law,” Ottawa Citizen, November 5, 1997, p. A5
8. Religion Roundup, Ottawa Citizen, November 5, 1997, p. I7
9. Sandra Thomas, “Christian University Sues B.C. Teachers’ College,” The Vancouver Sun, May 8, 1997
10. Norm Ovenden, “Provinces Must Protect Gays Against Bias,” Ottawa Citizen, April 3, 1998, p. A3
11. Dr. Ted Morton, “Decision Opens the Door for More Challenges,” Calgary Herald, April 4, 1998, p. I5
12. “Ontario Court Advances Recognition of Same – Sex Couples,” Associated Press, April 24, 1998
13. “Age of Consent Comparatively Low,” Ottawa Citizen, December 10, 1997, p. A 19
14. Deb Price, “Roads to Equality; Gay Rights in Europe; Danes . . ..”, Detroit News, October 29, 1997, p. E 1
15. “Dutch Homosexual Couples Given Adoption Rights”, Agence France Presse, February 6, 1998
16. Interview with Robert Hondsmerk, Director of Sterling Chris, a ministry to youth based in the Netherlands, April 27, 1998
17. Personal correspondence between Lyndon Bowring and James C. Dobson, Ph.D. Used with permission.
18. E.J. Graff, “In and Out in Vermont: The Traditionally Liberal Atmosphere in Vermont Almost Assures That a Same – Sex Marriage Bill Will Pass . . “. The Nation, October 20, 1997, p. 19
19. Cheryl Wetzstein, “11 States Back Vermont’s ‘Same – Sex’ Ban,” The Washington Times, May 1, 1998, p. A 11
20. California Family Code, Section 308: “A marriage contracted outside of this state that would be valid by the laws of the jurisdiction in which the marriage was contracted is valid in this state.”
21. “National Freedom to Marry Day” News Conference, hosted by LIFE: California’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and HIV/AIDS Lobby, Sacramento, CA, February 12, 1998
23. Press release, “Freedom to Marry Gay Billboard Unveiled,” December 1, 1997
24. Letter from Edmund Burke to William Smith, January 9, 1775
David Buffaloe”@ bibleteacher.org
reprinted with permission