Does The Bible Condemn Homosexuality?

What does the Bible say about homosexuality? Is it sin?  Can a person be a Christian and be a practicing homosexual?

What is Sin?

Sin is the transgression of the law and whoever sins actually transgresses God’s law and “everyone who practices sin practices lawlessness” for they are one and the same (1 John 3:4).  What law is John writing about?  The law of God must certainly include the Ten Commandments but is also is enhanced by Jesus who said the two greatest commandments are these;

“the first of all the commandments is: Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength. This is the first commandment. And the second is like it, is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no greater commandment than these” (Mark 12:29-31).

Sin is anything that falls short of these two and also the Ten Commandments but isn’t thou shall not be homosexual missing here?  What does the Bible say about homosexuality?  Is it sin?  Let’s go to the source of all truth and take my own personal opinions out of the way for human opinions are worthless compared to what God says in His Word.  I will focus on Scriptures in the New Testament although I believe that those in the Old Testament are still valid, I will focus on the New Testament to refute the fallacious argument that we are not under the law of the Old Testament anymore.  Here is what God says in His Word, not what I say, about whether homosexuality is sin or not.

If you have been or were a practicing homosexual and have repented and confessed this sin and trusted in Christ, there is no reason that you won’t be in the Kingdom of Heaven.

The New Testament on Homosexuality

Romans 1:26-28 “For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error. 28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper.”

First Corinthians 1:6-10 “Or do you not know that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, shall inherit the kingdom of God.”

First Timothy 1:9-11 “Understanding this that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, in accordance with the gospel of the glory of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted.homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, in accordance with the gospel of the glory of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted.”

Will There Be Homosexuals in Heaven?

In heaven there is actually neither male nor female (Mark 12:25; Matt 22:30) and some who still live with the strong and passionate desires of being attracted to the same sex today will be in heaven but they will be there because they stopped being a practicing homosexual.  Just like there will be murderers, thieves, liars, drug addicts, and alcoholics in heaven who have stopped their sinning. It is those homosexuals who refuse to repent and continue to act on their homosexuality that will not be in the Kingdom of Heaven.  Some who have been formerly homosexual and those who still feel this urge but are not practicing homosexuals will be in heaven just as those who used to practice other sins will be there…but they will be those who no longer practice these things. Revelation 22:15 says that those who are “Outside [of the walls of the New Jerusalem…or heaven] are the dogs and sorcerers and the sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.”

Conclusion

Those who are living in sexual immorality such as homosexuality (1 Cor 6:10; Rom 1:26-28; Col 3:5-7; Gal 5:21) will not be going to the Kingdom of Heaven (1 Cor 5:9-10).  If you have this urge to live this lifestyle, you are no different than any other sinner who needed to repent and confess their sins and then put their trust in Christ as Lord and Savior. Even Christians sin but the difference is we repent of them and confess them when we do sin for we all stumble (Rom 7) but the main difference is that we don’t continue in sin.  John warns that “Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8).  Christians are not sinless but we will sin less as we grow in Christ.  Believers stumble into sin but unbelievers dive into it and swim in it.  Christians fall into sin but get back up but the unsaved wallow in it.  That is the difference.  Yes, Christian’s sin but they hate it when they do…unbeliever’s sin and see no problem with it and love the pleasures of sin. If you have been or were a practicing homosexual and have repented and confessed this sin and trusted in Christ, there is no reason that you won’t be in the Kingdom of Heaven. That’s what grace is all about…unmerited, unearned, and undeserved favor from God…of which I don’t deserve nor does anyone else for that matter (Rom 3:23; 6:23).

Jack Wellman is Senior Writer at What Christians Want to Know whose mission is to equip, encourage, and energize Christians and to address questions about the believer’s daily walk with God and the Bible. You can follow Jack on Google Plus or check out his book Blind Chance or Intelligent Design

photo credit: Daniel Y. Go via photopin cc

  • Steve_Winnipeg_Canada

    “In heaven there is actually neither male nor female (Mark 12:25; Matt 22:30)…”

    Brother, I think you reached a bit too far with that, don’t you think? Those texts only say there will be no marriage.

    I commend the general thrust of your piece though.

  • Fallulah

    Bigot.

  • Guest

    Don’t delete my posts you bigot.

  • http://www.fordswords.net/ Ford1968

    Hmmm….First to put my cards on the table: I’m a Christian who is gay.

    There is a spectrum of Christian belief about the sinfulness of covenant gay relationships that runs from totally exclusive (like yours) to totally inclusive. There are volumes upon volumes written on the subject by theologians, historians, and scholars – all backing a vast array of positions. To pretend that the clobber texts (and not even all of them) “clearly” proscribe erotic homosexual behavior is either willfully ignorant or just plain deceitful.

    Second, luckily for me God is my judge and not you. I am assured in my relationship with Christ. Your morally certain proclamations cannot change that.

  • Oswald Carnes

    So happy to know I won’t have to spend eternity surrounded by filth like you.

  • Gregory Peterson

    This reminds me of Finis Dake’s “30 Reasons for Segregation of Races Acts 17:26.” Apparently, “homosexuality” is the new “miscegenation” for religious conservatives such as Pastor Wellman. Need to oppress a minority group? Scavenge the Bible for some “proof texts” and carefully ignore historical and intratextual contexts.

  • Mary

    I am a remarried Christian. I divorced and remarried after my conversion. Thus according to Scripture I am living as an adulteress and I also will not inherit the Kingdom of Heaven. Why do so many pastors focus on homosexuality when the New Testament talks about so many more sins that are never discussed in the pulpit? Thankfully, my Lord is loving and merciful unlike like so many of my fellow brethren. I despair that the world sees Christians as bigoted, angry people. I wish they could clearly see we are Christians by our love.

    • Gigi

      Thank you for your thoughtful and timely comment. I couldn’t agree more.

  • Jack Wellman

    Wow, the truth hurts and this is not an op-ed but the Word of God and remember they already killed the Messenger but He rose again. Tis true, the Scriptures comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.

    • Gigi

      You interpretation of the Truth based on your use of New Testament translations is what hurts. It hurts homosexuals and society at large.

  • lanes58 .

    Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the word Christian, as one who believes in the teachings of Christ. By that definition, even satan is a Christian. Calling yourself a Christian, isn’t a free ticket into Heaven. In fact, there are many who call themselves Christians, in Hell. God does not hate someone who is gay but, He hates homosexual behavior. He also does not hate an adulterer, a thief, a murderer etc., but hates the behavior. He loves the sinner, but hates the sin. The Bible says, those who do these things, without repentance (don’t do that no more) will not inherit the kingdom of Heaven. We can twist the scripture as much as we want, but it is very clear. The choice is up to us.

    • Gigi

      “There are six things which the LORD hates; yes, seven which are an ABOMINATION to Him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that run rapidly to evil, a false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers. (Pro. 6:16-19). Let’s discuss the destructiveness of wickedness, lying, pride, bearing false witness and hands that shed innocent blood can be on society. Nowhere in the Bible are we told that homosexuality is the WORST SIN EVER. Why is it presented as such? We should focus on all sin, not just the sins of others while ignoring our own sins.

      • lanes58 .

        The reason homosexuality is being focused on so much, is that it is trying to be perceived as normal, okay behavior. The gay marriage thing, etc. It is the homosexual community who is doing this. “Christians” are just tired of having this pushed down their throats, and being called bigots just because they disagree. They go after the Christians, because they know they will probably turn the other cheek. Muslims on the other hand, will just end you. Any sin without repentance is not good. Yes sin is sin, but I believe the penalty, is not the same. Let God be the judge.

        • Gigi

          That’s the meme-du-jour. That gay people and their supporters “attack” Christians for our beliefs but don’t go after Muslims. One reason for that (perceived reality) might be that this is a Christian, not Muslim, nation. Most of our leaders, lawmakers and politicians identify as Christians. Christians in America — some, not all — are working tirelessly to shove THEIR agenda and beliefs down the throats of others yet when anyone objects, they cry DISCRIMINATION!! What they’re really saying is, “Don’t be intolerant of my intolerance.” We want the right to do and say as we please but if anyone challenges us, THEY’RE haters. Words have consequences. It’s not enough to say “but it’s not me saying it…it’s God.” Condemnation is condemnation. You’re never going to bring anyone to God by beating them over the head with clobber passages that condemn homosexuality. I agree with your final point, let God be the Judge. In the interim, I’ll follow the Golden Rule and let Jesus, not anti-gay Christians, be my guide.

          • lanes58 .

            Gigi. Thank you. I will pray for you, you pray for me. I’m a far cry from perfect.

          • Gigi

            Deal. I’m not even close to perfect, unless you ask my mom! :)

  • MC

    I see some angry people here, but none of them could refute the argument. Great article Mr. Wellman.

    • Gigi

      See my refutation above. Not angry, just tired of hypocrisy.

      • MC

        Like I said, there is no refutation by anyone.

  • Eric

    Interesting conversation here. I have to say I agree with Steve_Winnipeg_Canada, that is a bit of over-interpretation. However, the substance of Mr. Wellman’s post is relevant. As he stated that he took the words out of the New Testament scriptures. Although, Mr Wellman pointed out that there is room for repentance on the practicing of all sins. To answer Mary, my experience with many pastors or priest did not target the act of homosexuality singularly, but all sins. The people that target Christians as “bigot”, are in fact the religious bigots. Just as they target Christianity with their hate, they do not dare attack other Abrahamic religions, or others outside, that forbid such sexual practices.

    Even outside of our religion, let us look at the primary purpose of sex. It is to procreate, not for our sexual pleasures. Nature intended males to combine their sperm with the female’s ovaries. Anyway, good discussion.

    • Gigi

      I would suggest that one can question the evangelical obsession with homosexuality without being “hateful” or a “religious bigot,” and that many do confront other Abrahamic religions, or others outside, that forbid such sexual practices. As you mentioned, Mr. Wellman took the words out of the New Testament Scriptures to make his point. What he should have done is looked at the original Text, not relied on a translation. As most should be aware by now, the word “homosexual” didn’t appear in English writing until 1892, and did not appear in any translation of the Christian Bible until 1946. There are words in Greek for same-sex sexual activities, yet they never appear in the original text of the New Testament. While it’s true that the Old Testament tells us that some same-sex acts are punishable by death (Lev. 18:22, Lev. 20:13) cursing one’s parent (Lev. 20:9), a stubborn, rebellious or alcoholic child (Deut. 21:18), adultery (Lev. 29:10), lying about your virginity (Deut. 22:20 — women only) and working on the Sabbath (Ex. 35:2), among other things, are as well. We no longer think it permissible to kill, or even shun, mouthy children, adulterers or people who work on the Sabbath. So why is it that homosexuals are the only ones being railed against by many evangelical pastors? Pro. 6:16-19 says, “There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.” Pride, lying and bearing false witness are an ABOMINATION. Then there’s gluttony. We’re told in the Bible gluttony is shameful (Phil. 3:19), your body is God’s temple (1 Cor. 6:19-20), and that a glutton should take a knife to his throat (Pro. 23:2). Gluttony is harmful not only to one’s own body, but to society as well. And most importantly, it dishonors God. I would suggest that pride, lying, bearing false witness and gluttony are far more destructive to society than homosexuality.

  • Shal

    I’m a Christian who – after many years of struggle, prayer, and study – thinks I was wrong about my old beliefs regarding homosexuality. While I am still learning and am open to the possibility that I am wrong, I think many of the verses supposedly talking about homosexuality are actually talking about homosexual acts (often forceful or just plain sex outside of relationships) and not homosexuality itself (because the cultures in which the Bible was written had no concept of gay or lesbian people).
    Furthermore, I think we all need to be careful about accepting what people write without checking the source. As another commenter mentioned, the verses used to support ‘there will be no male or female in Heaven’ do not, in fact say that. Also, the whole thing about Christians ‘not continuing in sin’ and that getting us into Heaven is not a good explanation of what the Gospels say about salvation.
    And, Ford1968, thank you for your honesty and your assurance in Jesus’ love for you : )


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