Every Biblical Argument Against Being Gay, Debunked Biblically

C

Originally from Denver, now living in the Low Countries of Europe. Spent four years in the Navy, got out when I realized I was a big ole flaming mo. Lived in NYC for almost a decade until meeting my husband, who because of the f'ed up immigration laws, can't stay in the US. I'm obsessed with politics and LGBT activism. I cannot stand or abide ANY form of religious stupidity or bigotry....oh, or republicans.

4 Responses

  1. Although in total agreement with Matthew’s position, here is a fuller hermeneutical analysis of Old Testament (OT) texts, especially the Leviticus texts. It is important to handle them head on rather than to argue that they do not apply to us anymore. It is important to remember that the OT was a forshadow of what was to come in the body, divinity and personage of Christ, so the OT cannot be so easily dismissed.

    Unfortunately, Matthew does not make the link between the Romans text in the New Testament (NT) and Leviticus, which is a shame because they are discussing the same sexual cultic practices of “idolatrous” behaviour (OT forshadowing the NT). Please note that Leviticus 18:22 and its corresponding passage in Leviticus 20 is not referring to same sex orientation but to same sex sexual practice linked to state endorsed “sacred”/ritual prostitution – two very different things.That is why it is not applicable to loving same sex relationships today. Please read my analysis:

    In this article, I would like to show that the sexual immorality laws in Leviticus 18 are related to the pagan worship and the religio-sexual practices not general moral laws pertaining to personal relationships or sexual orientations. This has special relevance to Lev 18:22 “If a man lies with a man, as with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable”, as this text and its accompanying text in Leviticus 20:13, is used widely to condemn a sexual orientation which is not automatically linked to pagan acts of worship. This text has been used to uphold wide scale prejudice within the Church for too long. There can be no room for prejudice and stigma within the body of Christ, as in Matthew 22:39 we are all commanded to love one another as we love ourselves.

    I have used both the New International Version and the StudyLight Interlinear Study Bible with Strong’s concordance for my Scriptural quotes and references.

    Lev 18:3 deserves our close attention and analysis in order to gain clues about the religious nature of sexual immorality which prevailed at the time: “You must not do as they do in Egypt, where you used to live and you must not do as they do in the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you. Do not follow their practices”.

    Breakdown of Leviticus 18:3 “You must not do as they do in Egypt…”

    Ezekiel tells us that Egyptian religious practice involved idolatrous images and idols. Ezekiel 20:8: “But they rebelled against me and would not listen to me; they did not get rid of the vile images they had set their eyes on, nor did they forsake the idols of Egypt. So I said I would pour out my wrath on them and spend my anger against them in Egypt” The words “vile images” are translated from the Hebrew word “shiqquwts” meaning detestable thing or idol, via the root “shaqats” meaning to detest or to count as filthy. There seems to be no explicit ritualistic uncleanness implied here, unless we count that as read in the word “idol”, which is synonymous with “shiqquwts”. This is particularly interesting as this particular concept of the “detestable”, acts as a springboard for new explicit ritual meanings of “detestable” through the word “tow’ebah”, which will be looked at in detail when we examine Canaanite customs.

    Isaiah 19:3 “…they will consult the idols and the spirits of the dead, the mediums and the spiritists.” This was outlawed in Lev 19:31.

    We are told in Exodus, that at least one of the religious practices adopted by the Israelites from the Egyptians was probably the veneration of the Egyptian bull calf god or the Golden Calf:

    Exodus 32:6 “…Afterwards they sat down to eat and drink and got up to indulge in pagan revelry” v8 “…have made themselves an idol cast in the shape of a calf. They have bowed down to it and sacrificed to it…” The pagan revelry mentioned in verse 6 only has the sense of playing, laughter and general jesting as encapsulated in the Hebraic word “tsachaq”, although Paul clearly attributes happenings of a sexual nature to this event:

    1 Corinthians 10:7 ‘Do not be idolaters, as some of them were; as it is written “the people sat down to eat and drink and got up to indulge in pagan revelry” we should not commit sexual immorality, as some of them did’. This would make perfect sense of the commandment: Deuteronomy 19:4 “Do not turn to idols or make gods of cast metals….”

    However, Numbers 33:4 hints that there were other forms of Egyptian idols and idolatrous worship, which were represented by the plagues God sent to Egypt in order to have the Israelites freed: “who were burying all their firstborn, whom the Lord had struck down among them: for the Lord had brought judgement on their gods”

    The firstborn mentioned in Numbers 33:4 represents a practice mirrored by the people living in Canaan. This practice was characterised by child sacrifice. This practice was especially maligned in Leviticus 18:21. This practice, described as Molech sacrifice, will not be dealt with in this paper, as it appeared to be characterised only by child sacrifice:
    Deut 12:31 “…They even burn their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods”. However, we know that this Ammonite god, as defined in Jeremiah 49:1 did have a priesthood, Jeremiah 49:3 that speculatively might have participated in religio-sexual rites as will be later discussed.

    “You must not do as they do in the land of Canaan…”

    It is in the land of Canaan that we find compelling evidence of the fact that there were sexual rites in pagan worship rituals. There were many gods in Canaan and they were prefixed by the title Baal, who was their principal god. Different regions in Canaan had different suffixes attached to the name Baal.

    Exodus 34:15 “be careful not to make a treaty with those who live in the land; for when they prostitute themselves to their gods and sacrifice to them, they will invite you and you will eat their sacrifices. v16 And when you choose some of their daughters as wives for your sons and those daughters prostitute themselves to their gods, they will lead your sons to do the same”

    It is here that we get our first glimpse of the sexual practices, which must have led to the institution of the sexual immorality laws of Leviticus. The word “prostitute” in verse 15 is derived from the phrase “to play the harlot” this compound phrase is translated from the Hebrew word “zanah”. The meaning of “zanah” can actually be translated as “to play the harlot” and “to become a cult prostitute”. This idea of prostitution in terms of sexual activity, as it relates to sacred rites is very common in the Old Testament.

    Deuteronomy 7:5 gives us a little more insight into the nature of this form of worship: “…break down their altars, smash their sacred stones, cut down their Asherah poles and burn their idols in the fire” The Asherah poles, which were frequently fashioned from oak trees, Isaiah 44:14 were the symbols of Asherah the fertility goddess:

    Hosea 4:12 “…they consult a wooden idol and are answered by a stick of wood. A spirit of prostitution leads them astray; they are unfaithful to God v14 …the men themselves consort with harlots and sacrifice with shrine prostitutes….”

    Asherah was the consort of the god Baal and her wooden fertility symbol would have been found next to or in front of Baal’s shrine or sacred stones, which in turn would have been situated in close proximity to the Lord’s altar:

    Deuteronomy 16:21 “Do not set up any wooden Asherah pole beside the altar you build to the Lord, your God, v22 and do not erect a sacred stone, for these the Lord your God hates”

    “Sacred” Prostitution as Religious Rites in Canaan

    Isaiah 1:29 “You will be ashamed because of the sacred oaks in which you have delighted…” 57:5 “You burn with lust among the oaks and under every spreading tree…” These key passages from Isaiah tell us sexual activity occurred as part of the fertility ritual of Asherah (we definitely know that the Israelites were familiar with the cult and its practices from Exodus 34:13). The word “delighted” in the Hebrew is translated from the word “chamad” meaning to desire or delight greatly, an intense pleasure which is accentuated in the words “burn with lust” taken from the word “chaman” meaning to become hot with passion or to become aroused. Isaiah 57:6 points towards the Baal shrine of sacred stones, accompanying the Asherah symbols: “The idols among the smooth stones of the ravines are your portion”

    Hosea points to more explicit sexual conduct in the shrines Hosea 4:14 “…the men themselves consort with harlots and sacrifice with shrine-prostitutes….” Qadesh is the Hebrew word for shrine-prostitute in this verse and refers specifically to male shrine-prostitutes. In fact, 1 Kings 14:23, 24 tell us “They also set up for themselves high places, sacred stones and Asherah poles on every high hill and under every spreading tree. There were even male shrine-prostitutes in the land; the people engaged in all the detestable practices of the nations the Lord had driven before the Israelites”

    Here, we are told that people, led by the male shrine-prostitutes, engaged in detestable practices, which actually means ritualistically unclean and idolatrous behaviour. This concept of the ritualistically unclean comes from the Hebrew word “tow’ebah”, the specific word used in this context.

    Interestingly an alternative nuance of “tow’ebah” can be interpreted as meaning wicked. However, this seems not to be the meaning here, as the Hebrew word ra’a, meaning wicked in a purely ethical non-ritualistic sense would have been used. The Hebrew makes this nuanced distinction because we find that both the attempted male rape acts, recounted in Genesis 19:6 and Judges 19:23, are described as being “ra’a”, which has no sexual connotation in itself (due to the breaking of hospitality codes, to which it refers) not tow’ebah. All the other occurrences of “tow’ebah” (69 references across scripture in total) that infer an ethical meaning make plain their non sexual and ritual contexts. This would indicate the non-ritualistic nature of the former and the “sacred” nature of the latter. There is no explicit sexual connotation in the meaning of “tow’ebah” either, although it is used to describe a sexual act.

    To read a direct connotation to sexual sin, we need to read Leviticus 18:23 (or Leviticus 20:12 using the same word) “Do not have sexual relations with an animal and defile yourself with it. A woman must not present herself to an animal to have sexual relations with it; that is a perversion.” Here the word “perversion” comes from the Hebrew “tebel”, which derives its specific meaning from being a violation of nature or divine order; its general meaning, confusion or mixed. It is interesting to note that “tebel” is not used to describe the (ritualistic) act of Leviticus 18:22 (neither instead of or as well as “tow’ebah”).

    To emphasise the religious or official aspect of these detestable practices, the word “practices” has the meaning of statute, decree or word of government from the Hebrew word “chuqqah” from the root “chaqaq” meaning decree. All of this would point towards institutionalised pagan worship, as opposed to mere personal/relational behaviour.

    The widespread nature of such worshipping rituals can be gleaned from 2 Kings 23:7 “He (Josiah) also tore down the quarters of the male shrine-prostitutes, which were in the temple of the Lord and where women did weaving for Asherah” The sexual acts performed by the male shrine-prostitutes or “qadesh” actually took place in the temple of the Lord. This passage tells us that male prostitution was common in the shrines. This also tells us that both male on male and male on female sexual activity in the shrines must have often occurred as part of cultic worship, as can be attested by Hosea 4: 14 (female on female sexual shrine activity can only be inferred from Paul’s Romans contribution).

    Sexual activity in a sacred place is also described by Amos 2:7 “…..Father and son use the same girl and so profane my holy name. v8 They lie down beside every altar on garments taken in pledge. In the house of their god they drink wine taken as fines”. Here, Amos is explicit in his description of sexually immoral acts as codified in Lev 18: 8,15. Joel expands on this and describes their income for such an activity: Joel 3:3 “They cast lots for my people and traded boys for prostitutes and they sold girls for wine that they might drink” Here we are told that boys were actually given up to be trained as prostitutes. The word “traded” in this context comes from the Hebrew word “nathan” and has the meaning of consecration or dedication in this context (the girls however, were merely sold). This was forbidden: Deut 23:17 “No Israeli man or woman is to become a shrine prostitute. v18 You must not bring the earnings of a female prostitute or a male prostitute into the house of the Lord to pay any vow, because the Lord your God detests them both”

    Interestingly Deuteronomy 22:5 “A woman must not wear men’s clothing, nor a man wear women’s clothing, for the Lord detests anyone who does this” implies a ritualistic uncleanness from the word “tow’ebah” in this verse, as it was common practice for male and female temple prostitutes to cross dress as part of their worshipping rituals (especially those following the Mother and Warrior Goddess Ashtoreth, Judges 2: 13 and 1 Kings 11:5). This suggests that male shrine prostitutes would often be dressed as women as part of their temple duties. This cross-gender practice was further emphasised by the practice of castration. In order to qualify for their roles in the temple, male temple prostitutes were often emasculated or castrated, often at birth, as Joel 3:3 implies when he describes the dedication (“nathan”) of boys. Deuteronomy 23: 1 excludes castrated men from the assembly of God because of this idolatrous association, “No one who has been emasculated by crushing or cutting may enter the assembly of the LORD” also suggesting ritual uncleanness.

    I would suggest that the word “woman” in Lev 18:22 is key to our understanding of the verse, “If a man lies with a man, as with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable”. If the verse is read literally it is plain to see that it is biologically impossible for a “man to lie with a man as with a woman”. We also know that non-procreative sex was prohibited (see Genesis 38), so anal sex between a man and woman would not have been routinely practised. So Deuteronomy 22:5 and 23:1 point towards a definition of the word “woman” as describing the emasculated male shrine prostitute who would have been dressed in women’s clothing; the emasculation and women’s dress being seen as an idolatrous emulation of “woman”-hood (gender) in a biblical context.

    This incestuous act in Amos is echoed in Ezekiel 22:9 – 11: “In you are slanderous men bent on shedding blood; in you are those who eat at the mountain shrines and commit lewd acts. v10 In you are those who dishonour their fathers’ bed; in you are those who violate women during their period, when they are ceremonially unclean. v11 In you one man commits a detestable offence with his neighbour’s wife, another shamefully defiles his daughter-in-law, and another violates his sister, his own father’s daughter”.

    This passage very much makes the link between sexually immoral acts in a ritualistic pagan context. The term “lewd acts” in verse 9 is translated from the Hebrew word “zimmah” and means idolatrous in the context of the afore-mentioned shrine. These verses also strongly make the connection between the idolatrous behaviour of verse 9 and the sexually immoral behaviour of verses 10 and 11, which correspond to Leviticus 18:7, 19, 20, 15, 11 respectively.

    Conclusion

    Ezekiel 22:3-4: “….This is what the Sovereign Lord says: O city that brings on herself doom by shedding blood in her midst and defiles herself by making idols, v4 you have become guilty because of the blood you shed and have become defiled by the idols you have made”

    Ezekiel 22:3-4 tells us that the context of sin and in this paper, sexual sin, arises specifically because of idolatry (and bloodshed, this element will be dealt with separately, as it generates parallel issues around oppression, hospitality and sexual misdemeanour cf Gen 19, Judges 19: 19-30, 20:4-5, 1 Sam 31:4, Jeremiah 38:19). This passage would seem to be strongly emphasising the link between the shrine and sexual activity (agreeing with Hosea 4:12, amongst others).

    Ezekiel 22:3-4 also echoes Leviticus 18:30 “…do not follow any of the detestable customs that were practised before you came and do not defile yourselves with them. I am the Lord your God”

    Here, the word defile comes from the Hebrew word “tame’ ” meaning unclean in a ritual, ceremonial and sexual sense and is very close in meaning to “tow’ebah” (detestable).

    I have shown that a literal reading of Leviticus 18 (and its corroborative Scripture in general) demonstrates that the sexual codes outlawed in this chapter are of a ritualistic pagan and not of a general personal/moral nature. Therefore to use Lev 18:22 “If a man lies with a man, as with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable” as a general condemnation of homosexuality when this command and its description as being “tow’ebah” specifically refers to the prevalent and widespread practices of the “qadesh”, and its insipient cross dressing is a gross misappropriation of the text. If male prostitutes were dressed as women in order to perform their rites, Lev 18:22 clearly describes the idolatrous transaction between the prostitute, dressed as a woman and his client. We are warned in 1 Corinthians 4:6 “Do not go beyond what is written” for good reason, as the Word of God will always interpret itself.

    • Bret says:

      I’m happy that you agree, but the problem is that the foundation of your “logic” is a magic story book written thousands of years ago. You write like it’s fact and indisputable, much like the knuckle-dragging Christianists. I prefer to take my directions from Julia Childs’ ‘Mastering the Art of French Cooking’. It has about the same authority to comment on modern society as something written be desert dwellers in the 1st century C.E.

  2. Caleb Jarratt says:

    As Christians and followers of God, we live by the proceeding Word that comes from the mouth of God, the present truth that is illuminated through the scriptures. But scriptures can’t be singled out on their own and be interpreted with human logic and human think, we can’t contaminate the word of God with human wiser on. No, we interpret scripture with scripture, the word of The Lord stands strong. Some of the Old Testament laws, mentioned in Leviticus were the word of The Lord, they had to sacrifice if they were to atone for their sins. But things changed when Jesus came to earth, the veil that separated the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place was torn down. A new way was paved for mankind but this Word on homosexuality remains true as it continues though the New Testament. The word of God is clear to us, who are we to compromise and disobey?

    There was one point that you made at the very beginning, and if that point was correct the rest of your sermon would have been truthful. But your truth was based on a lie.

    3:30 – while having a same sex orientation is not in and of itself a sin.

    Since the fall of man when Eve ate the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, sin has been dwelling in the heart of every baby that is born (Jesus aside). So what we feel and the way we think is not really the way of God, there is no good in us alone. For of us, our sin is highlighted in our same sex orientations, naturally we are born into sin. So it is a sin to have same sex orientation and we need to go to God and say “what shall I do,” where we can find cleansing from our sins and turn and be healed.

    I am not trying to rebut any arguent and continue this debate, I just want to make the truth known to any who wish to find it. But listen to the video and the other comments on this page and then ask yourself, “Where am I hearing the voice of God?”
    Praise The Lord!

    • C says:

      Again, your logic is based on a faulty premise. You’re saying that your magic story book came right from the mouth of a magical sky spook! Well I prefer to follow the words of Harry Potter. How about that? A story book is a story book. Please grow up.

What do you think?