A CAREFUL VIEW OF SCRIPTURE with Regard to LGBT Questions
Frequently when homosexuality is brought up the word "abomination" is soon to follow. But what does this word mean? How is it used in scripture? Does it apply to same sex sex only? Does it apply to other things in scripture? Is it possible to commit an abomination that has nothing to do with sex? We will explore these questions below....
Abomination ... what does the word mean??
There are two words for abomination in scripture. The first is....
So,along with the Leviticus 18 and Leviticus 20 text (which refers to a man lying with a man as with a woman) the list of abominations includes: .. Egyptians eating with Isrealites .. Egyptions’ view of shepherds .. Not committing any of these abominations .. ( ‘these’ include: from Lev 18:1-25 . the customs of the Caananites .. different forms of incest .. note: father daughter incest is omitted … sex during a woman’s period .. certain forms of idolatry, and beastiality ) … eating detestable things .. offering a bull or sheep that has a defect .. worshiping sun or moon or any host of heaven .. a man wearing a woman’s clothing .. a women wearing a man’s clothing .. taking back a former spouse who has remarried and divorced .. using unjust weights .. making/having an idol .. male shrine prostitutes (‘quadesh’ .. may not be correct translation) .. sacrificing children to idols .. marrying pagans (implied) .. wickedness .. perverse hearts .. lying lips .. the sacrifice of the wicked .. thoughts of the wicked .. the proud of heart.
It occurs in the following passages .. Lev 7:18; Lev 19:7; Isa 65:4; Eze 4:14 These passages mostly refer to eating the bread of fellowship after the time allotted and eating of non-kosher pig meat.
My page on Leviticus explores the context of how this word is used in Leviticus chapters 18 and 20. For now we will answer the questions I posed in the beginning. We have already looked at how it is used in scripture (see above) The other questions with answers follow...
Does it apply to same sex sex only? ... and ... Does it apply to other things in scripture? We have seems that it does not just apply to sexual immorality ... It applies to dietary restrictions. It applies to how the Egyptians felt about eating with shepherds ... It applies to certain ritual customs. It applies to ceremonial cleanliness (sex with a women during her period for example). It applies to marrying pagans and/or those outside of the people of Israel. And it applies to many other things as well.
Is it possible to commit an abomination that has nothing to do with sex?
We have already seen that the answer to this question is: "Yes" It is on this note that I am going to break with the typical focus on homosexuality .. Please see my Leviticus page for more on that ... At this point I am going to focus on abomination(s) that have nothing to do with sex. ... specifically noting the text of Proverbs 6:16-19 . See below...
According to Proverbs 6:16-19 there are 7 things that the Lord hates and considers an abomination....
A proud look
A lying tongue
Hands that shed innocent blood
An heart that with wicked imaginations,
Feet that are swift to do evil
A false witness that speaks lies
Sowing discord among brethren.
Keeping in mind the Proverbs passage referenced above, I would now like to follow the instruction of Jesus namely: Before we are critical of sin in the life of our brother or sister (the speck in their eye) it is necessary to deal with the log(s) in our own eyes.
Logs and Specks ... my own personal journey.....
Many years ago ... when God laid this on my heart it did not take long for me to discover several logs ... both in my eyes and the eyes of those Christians I had been following and trusting. So at this point I would like to take you down the journey I took in discovering how what I thought was pure and right ended up being more than a little bit tarnished. Again ... this is appropriate as it is what Jesus asks us to do before we address what we believe to be sin in a brother's or sister's life. The discussion that follows is not about the morality of same sex sex ... it is about the morality of the opposition to it by some/many in the church and whether that opposition has been done (and is being done) in a Christlike manner.
My introduction to this inconvenient truth started with the comments of someone in a bible study I was leading back at the beginning of my journey in this. It was basically a warning that a pastor or leader's non-affirming view could (supposedly) put them in jail. I found this a bit disturbing and spoke to God about it when I got in my car. It was a one sided conversation that went something like this:
Me: 'Just what did you get me into?" God: "------------".
Having received no answer from God I went home and did some research. The first thing I looked up was the possibility of a leader or pastor being arrested for preaching against homosexuality. It only took me five or ten minutes to research this ... I came up with this link ... After tracking the references snopes had used to independently verify their conclusions I was more than a bit angry as I realized that what I had been warned about was a lie ... and furthermore a lie that was coming from a Christian source that I had respected up until this point.. So I decided to broaden my search to see what else I had been lied to about. The following links represent some of what I found...
Ake Green Case of a pastor sentenced to prison for preaching against homosexuality (Don't let the headline fool you .. its not what you think)
In addition to the above there have been bogus gay parenting studies used in court. I cover one such study below ...(check back for more as I continue to research this)..
Regnerus NFS study: claimed that adult children from same sex parenting families were less emotionally than adult children from opposite sex families. But the data was hopelessly skewed.
This was just the tip of the iceberg. The more I investigated the worse it got ... in fact ... I made the unfortunate discovery that it was endless. In my research I discovered..
A war like attitude toward gay people.
Accusations of gay folks being Nazis
A pastor taking the “Gay people are Nazis” message to other countries to influence their anti-gay laws
Accusations of gay folks being pedophiles
Belief that homosexual behavior should be outlawed.
Boycotting of businesses like McDonald’s for not staying neutral on this issue (apparently its fine for wedding shops not to stay neutral)
Pamphlets that claim that light folks do not have civil rights
False unscientific information about gay parenting
Here is a link to help you validate some of what I shared above… I don't have the time or space to detail all the offenses. To verify some of these you might check out this entry Dr Warren Throckmorton’s blog …He is a conservative Christian college psychology professor with a traditional sex ethic. As with all things, on these and other links I share, use discernment.
A few more items...
Here is an example of a Christian group boycotting a business for practicing their beliefs…Apparently the conscience of McDonalds (linked article) should not be protected from the AFA. Note also this article. Per the articles, they boycotted Mc Donald’s for … get this … “refusing to stay neutral on homosexuality issues”. I guess neutral is righteous if you are McDonalds but not righteous if you make wedding cakes (in case you missed this there are various Christian groups out there that think it is heroic to refuse service to a gay couple who is getting married.)
And ... an example from an exgay organization....
PFOX is an orientation change ministry. There are several problems with this billboard. First of all ... those aren't twins ... They are two pictures of the exact same person. Second of all ... the man on the billboard is an out and proud gay man. He was a model for a photo agency and sold the rights for his picture to be used and sold by them. He was rather surprised to see his picture used this way. See here for the full story. Thirdly ... their reference to twin studies is hardly conclusive. If it was this simple you would have heard about it already. if you want to research this for yourself simply type in "twin study" into a google search window. Here are some references to consider.... APA Link ...other link. Twin studies are complex ...their findings are questioned on multiple issues ...not just homosexuality studies. To imply a fifty fifty split as this billboard and organization does is wreck-less and just plain incorrect. The reality is ... no one knows why some folks are gay ... and twin studies are inconclusive on this. Finally ... to use such false questionable information as a foundation for an orientation change ministry's approach is deceptive and misleading. What is missing here is what professionals call 'informed consent'. This is where the patient (or parents) are made fully aware of what the facts and expectation are so that they can make an informed choice. Unfortunately ...along with the false gospel I mentioned on my main page making an informed choice is not what typically happens with orientation change ministries.
There is more I could share but what I have shared is enough IMHO to show that Christian resources are not being honest in these areas. Deliberately misleading people ... teaching fatalism and fear ... slandering people groups ... distorting parenting outcomes for gay parents ... putting out innuendos and half truths.... this is all being done in the name of Christ. There is nothing noble or righteous about this.
What does scripture say about it? A simple look at Proverbs 6:16-19 reveals that lying lips, a false witness, and feet that are quick to make mischief are things the Lord hates and are ... in fact ... an abomination to him. Additionally, I Corinthians 5:11 condemns sexual immorality and slander all in the same verses as does I Corinthians 6:9-10.
As a church (universal), I have to conclude that we are not the righteous people that we thought we were. We have been duped/betrayed by our own brothers and sisters in Christ who have exchanged the truth of God for a lie ... for an idol of an anti-gay politics and anti-gay ideologies that goes way beyond stating a moral viewpoint. Whenever we set up something to be more important than Christ we have created an idol ... something that we give preferential treatment to. When that happens the principles of Christlikeness and holiness (such as telling the truth and not slandering others) fall by the way side. This is an abomination to God. While you or I may not individually or collectively be doing this, it is important to remember what I stated on my main page regarding the definition of church. There is only one church ... one body ... regardless of separation by denomination and/or by time. We are not isolated from the rest of the body. We cannot say we are not part of Christ's body, the church (I Corinthians 12:12-25). When one member of that church suffers we all suffer ... when one member of that church rejoices we all rejoice (I Corinthians 12:26). In this case some members of Christ's church (lgbt folks) are suffering due to the actions of other members of Christ's church. As members of that one church we have some work cut out for us to reverse this. We have a ways to go before we become the church that Jesus prayed for us to be in John 17:20-23. Along with being one as the church ... as the body of believers, Jesus says that our oneness as the church is a witness for Him to the world. So our following of the great commission of Christ is also being compromised. Its not the only thing that compromises it .. but its what we are discussing here.
May the Lord grant us wisdom and grace to become the people He has called us to be and to undo the damage that has been done in His name.
Denominational Disclaimer The thoughts, ideologies, interpretations, and beliefs expressed on this website are my own.
I believe that what I have written on this website is within the boundaries of the theology and beliefs of my denomination. However, homosexuality is a very complex topic with varied viewpoints. Since this is the case, it should be understood that the views expressed by myself and other Christians on this website and in our blog and / or forums (if we have them) may not necessarily reflect the official position of my / their respective denominations. Additionally, when / if I reference various web resources it should not be assumed to be an endorsement of the entirety of that resource.