Dictionary.com defines homosexuality as sexual desire or behavior directed toward a person or persons of one’s own sex. Homosexuality as a sexual orientation is a social issue that’s impacting the world in significant ways in recent times. We find increasing segments of society endorsing the act and encouraging homosexuals to come out of the closet and express their feelings openly. Also, many countries have legalised marriages between people of the same sex. Furthermore, some Christian denominations have also embraced homosexual unions and have even gone ahead to ordain homosexual ministers. What is the position of the Bible on this issue? How does God view homosexuality? In this study, we shall examine the practice of homosexuality in the light of Scripture to find God’s perspective on the matter.
In the book of Genesis, we find the origin of all things, including man, as part of God’s creation. God created mankind male and female, for the purpose of companionship, sexual union and procreation. We find these purposes in God’s command to mankind upon his creation.
Genesis 1:26 Then God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.
Genesis 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
Genesis 1:28 And God blessed them. And God said to them, Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth (ESV).
It is instructive to note that God made mankind male and female, and gave this heterosexual couple the mandate to multiply and fill or populate the earth through reproduction. Biologically, we know human reproduction can only take place in the context of heterosexual relationships. A woman cannot get pregnant for a fellow woman to bring forth children, neither can a man get pregnant for a fellow man to perpetuate the human species. So, from the very beginning, we see that homosexual relationships do not have a divine mandate, and they are also not supported by human biology.
In the creation order for mankind, we discover from Scripture that the man Adam was created first. How long he stayed alone before he had a companion created for him, like all other animals, we do not know, for it is not recorded in Scripture. However, it soon became apparent that Adam couldn’t stay alone for long. He needed a companion and a mate to fulfil himself and God’s purpose for his species.
Genesis 2:18 Then the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.
Genesis 2:19 So out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name.
Genesis 2:20 The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper fit for him.
Genesis 2:21 So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh.
Genesis 2:22 And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man.
Genesis 2:23 Then the man said, This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.
Genesis 2:24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
Genesis 2:25 And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed (ESV).
We find that none of the animals was good enough for Adam as a mate. No inanimate object was found to be good for Adam as a companion. A man like himself was not considered appropriate for Adam as a sexual partner. The only person God considered fit for Adam in the context of intimate companionship and sex partnership, for the fulfilment of God’s purpose for mankind, was a woman! God designed that a man would leave his father and mother and be joined to a woman, for the purpose of intimate companionship, sexual intimacy and perpetuation of the species. From the very beginning, the only sexual relationship God designed and approved was a heterosexual one, not homosexuality!
The first recorded description of homosexuality in the Bible was in relation to Sodom and Gomorrah, as revealed in the 19th chapter of the book of Genesis. Not only do we find the practice of homosexuality clearly described here, we also find God’s view of it expressed unambiguously. Let us examine this portion of Scripture closely, from the New International Version of the Bible.
Genesis 19:1 The two angels arrived at Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city. When he saw them, he got up to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground.
Genesis 19:2 “My lords,” he said, “please turn aside to your servant’s house. You can wash your feet and spend the night and then go on your way early in the morning.” “No,” they answered, “we will spend the night in the square.”
Genesis 19:3 But he insisted so strongly that they did go with him and entered his house. He prepared a meal for them, baking bread without yeast, and they ate.
Genesis 19:4 Before they had gone to bed, all the men from every part of the city of Sodom —both young and old —surrounded the house.
Genesis 19:5 They called to Lot, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.”
Genesis 19:6 Lot went outside to meet them and shut the door behind him
Genesis 19:7 and said, “No, my friends. Don’t do this wicked thing.
Genesis 19:8 Look, I have two daughters who have never slept with a man. Let me bring them out to you, and you can do what you like with them. But don’t do anything to these men, for they have come under the protection of my roof.”
Genesis 19:9 “Get out of our way,” they replied. “This fellow came here as a foreigner, and now he wants to play the judge! We’ll treat you worse than them.” They kept bringing pressure on Lot and moved forward to break down the door (NIV).
The men of Sodom, from the youngest to the oldest, were all homosexuals and wanted to have sexual relations with the angels that appeared in the form of men. The Sodomites had no interest in heterosexual relationships, as shown by their refusal of Lot’s offer of his daughters in place of the male angels. We thus see that homosexuality is not a novel phenomenon of our times. It’s not a new social discovery. It’s been with mankind almost from the very beginning of human existence. However, we see Lot, a righteous man, describing the act as wicked (verse 7), and pleading with the men of Sodom not to indulge in it! But, what was the attitude of God and of those angels who came down from heaven to investigate the wickedness of the people of Sodom and Gomorrah? What was the divine response to the widespread issue of homosexuality in Sodom and Gomorrah?
Genesis 19:10 But the men inside reached out and pulled Lot back into the house and shut the door.
Genesis 19:11 Then they struck the men who were at the door of the house, young and old, with blindness so that they could not find the door.
Genesis 19:12 The two men said to Lot, “Do you have anyone else here —sons-in-law, sons or daughters, or anyone else in the city who belongs to you? Get them out of here,
Genesis 19:13 because we are going to destroy this place. The outcry to the LORD against its people is so great that he has sent us to destroy it.”
Genesis 19:14 So Lot went out and spoke to his sons-in-law, who were pledged to marry his daughters. He said, “Hurry and get out of this place, because the LORD is about to destroy the city!” But his sons-in-law thought he was joking.
Genesis 19:15 With the coming of dawn, the angels urged Lot, saying, “Hurry! Take your wife and your two daughters who are here, or you will be swept away when the city is punished.”
Genesis 19:24 Then the LORD rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah —from the LORD out of the heavens.
Genesis 19:25 Thus he overthrew those cities and the entire plain, destroying all those living in the cities —and also the vegetation in the land (NIV).
The divine response to the widespread homosexuality in Sodom and Gomorrah was the complete destruction of the cities! God levelled the cities down by raining fire upon them from heaven! Only Lot and his two daughters were saved from a region populated probably by hundreds of thousands of people! The people of Sodom and Gomorrah were completely destroyed because of their sexual immorality and their perversion of the natural order of sexual relations, which ought to be between a man and a woman only. The people perverted God’s natural order of sexual relations and had God’s wrath poured out upon them without mercy.
Jude 1:7 just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire (ESV).
2 Peter 2:6 Later, he turned the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into heaps of ashes and swept them off the face of the earth. He made them an example of what will happen to ungodly people.
2 Peter 2:7 But at the same time, God rescued Lot out of Sodom because he was a good man who was sick of all the immorality and wickedness around him.
2 Peter 2:8 Yes, he was a righteous man who was distressed by the wickedness he saw and heard day after day.
2 Peter 2:9 So you see, the Lord knows how to rescue godly people from their trials, even while punishing the wicked right up until the day of judgment.
2 Peter 2:10 He is especially hard on those who follow their own evil, lustful desires and who despise authority. These people are proud and arrogant, daring even to scoff at the glorious ones without so much as trembling (NLT).
In the Torah, we find the practice of homosexuality condemned as an abomination and expressly forbidden by God! Homosexuality was listed as one of the reasons why God overthrew and destroyed those nations occupying Palestine before Israel.
Leviticus 18:22 “’Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.
Leviticus 18:24 “’Do not defile yourselves in any of these ways, because this is how the nations that I am going to drive out before you became defiled.
Leviticus 18:25 Even the land was defiled; so I punished it for its sin, and the land vomited out its inhabitants (NIV).
Deuteronomy 23:17 There shall be no prostitute of the daughters of Israel, neither shall there be a sodomite of the sons of Israel.
Deuteronomy 23:18 You shall not bring the hire of a prostitute, or the wages of a male prostitute, into the house of Yahweh your God for any vow; for both of these are an abomination to Yahweh your God (WEB).
When Israel backslid and went into full-scale idolatory, sodomites and male cult prostitutes sprang up all over the land of Israel. Sodomy was a cornerstone of idolatory, and male prostitutes played key roles in the orgies and debauchery that took place in pagan temples during worship and initiation of new converts. Thus, uprooting sodomites and male prostitutes out of the land became a cardinal feature of any serious religious reform in Israel.
1 Kings 14:22 And Judah did evil in the sight of the LORD, and they provoked him to jealousy with their sins which they had committed, above all that their fathers had done.
1 Kings 14:23 For they also built them high places, and images, and groves, on every high hill, and under every green tree.
1 Kings 14:24 And there were also sodomites in the land: and they did according to all the abominations of the nations which the LORD cast out before the children of Israel.
1 Kings 15:11 And Asa did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD, as did David his father.
1 Kings 15:12 And he took away the sodomites out of the land, and removed all the idols that his fathers had made.
1 Kings 22:45 Now the rest of the acts of Jehoshaphat, and his might that he showed, and how he warred, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah?
1 Kings 22:46 And the remnant of the sodomites, which remained in the days of his father Asa, he took out of the land.
2 Kings 23:1 And the king sent, and they gathered to him all the elders of Judah and of Jerusalem.
2 Kings 23:7 And he broke down the houses of the sodomites, that were by the house of the LORD, where the women wove hangings for the grove (AKJV).
All marriages we see in the Bible were between men and women; no marriage in Scripture ever took place between a man and a man or between a woman and a woman. The Scripture instructs a man to find a woman as wife, not a fellow man.
Genesis 2:24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh (ESV).
Proverbs 18:22 The man who finds a wife finds a treasure and receives favor from the Lord (NLT).
In the passages above, the Hebrew word translated as wife is “ishshah“, which means a woman or a female. Thus, the concept of wife for a man always implies a woman, a female, and never a fellow man. A man is to choose a woman as a sexual partner and mate, not a fellow man as himself! That’s what the Bible teaches! One of the main purposes of marriage is to bring forth godly children to perpetuate the human species. That can only be achieved in the context of heterosexual marriage! That is what the Scripture says!
Malachi 2:15 Didn’t the Lord make you one with your wife? In body and spirit you are his. And what does he want? Godly children from your union. So guard yourself; remain loyal to the wife of your youth (NLT).
If God created mankind to be heterosexual, how did some people become homosexual? Where did the practice of homosexuality come from? People fell into the lust of homosexuality and other sins by rejecting God and his ways. He then gave them up to vile affections and unnatural desires, since they did not want to retain the knowledge of God. By turning away from light, men naturally ended up in darkness, became vain and got enslaved and controlled by unnatural desires and affections. That’s what the Bible says concerning the origin of homosexuality!
Romans 1:18 But God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who push the truth away from themselves.
Romans 1:19 For the truth about God is known to them instinctively. God has put this knowledge in their hearts.
Romans 1:20 From the time the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky and all that God made. They can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse whatsoever for not knowing God.
Romans 1:21 Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. The result was that their minds became dark and confused.
Romans 1:22 Claiming to be wise, they became utter fools instead.
Romans 1:23 And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people, or birds and animals and snakes.
Romans 1:24 So God let them go ahead and do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies.
Romans 1:25 Instead of believing what they knew was the truth about God, they deliberately chose to believe lies. So they worshiped the things God made but not the Creator himself, who is to be praised forever. Amen.
Romans 1:26 That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other.
Romans 1:27 And the men, instead of having normal sexual relationships with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men and, as a result, suffered within themselves the penalty they so richly deserved.
Romans 1:28 When they refused to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their evil minds and let them do things that should never be done.
Romans 1:29 Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, fighting, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip.
Romans 1:30 They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They are forever inventing new ways of sinning and are disobedient to their parents.
Romans 1:31 They refuse to understand, break their promises, and are heartless and unforgiving.
Romans 1:32 They are fully aware of God’s death penalty for those who do these things, yet they go right ahead and do them anyway. And, worse yet, they encourage others to do them, too (NLT).
God created men to be masculine and women to be feminine. A man is to be a husband and head of his family as the stronger and dominant partner in the union, while a woman is to be subject to the man, as the weaker vessel. This is taught everywhere in Scripture, from Genesis to Revelation. To have a man who is effeminate is unnatural and an aberration, the same way a masculine woman is considered unnatural by nature.
1 Peter 3:7 Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers (NIV).
1 Corinthians 6:9 Know you 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 (AKJV).
The Greek word translated as effeminate above is ” malakos“, which means a “soft man”, and figuratively refers to a catamite- a boy or a young man who is in a sexual relationship with an older man. It is instructive that the Bible refers to a man who plays the role of a woman in a relationship as weak and soft. Such a man has rebelled against God and the order of nature. Such a man is unnatural and a misfit.
The Word of God makes it abundantly clear that homosexuals shall not inherit the Kingdom of God! The Bible does not mince words about God’s judgement for homosexuals, because homosexuality is a perversion of God’s order of sexual relations. God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for this heinous and wicked sin of rebellion against his natural order, and he will exclude all homosexuals from his Kingdom. The portion of any unrepentant homosexual shall be in the lake of fire, like those unrepentant homosexuals of Sodom and Gomorrah.
1 Corinthians 6:9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality,
1 Corinthians 6:10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God (ESV).
Homosexuality is considered unrighteous, ungodly, sinful and an act of wicked disobedience and rebellion against God. The Bible classes homosexuals among the lawless, and does not pull punches about the vile nature of homosexuality, which stands in rebellious opposition to the sound doctrines of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
1 Timothy 1:9 We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers,
1 Timothy 1:10 for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers —and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine
1 Timothy 1:11 that conforms to the gospel concerning the glory of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me (NIV).
In conclusion, homosexuality is an aberration against nature and a rebellion against God’s ordained order of sexual relations. It goes contrary to human biology and undermines God’s laws of reproduction which can only be accomplished in the context of heterosexual relationships. God’s word expressly forbids homosexuality and prescribes eternal punishment in the lake of fire for all unrepentant homosexuals. This was demonstrated in God’s fierce judgement in the obliteration of Sodom and Gomorrah, as a warning to all those who manifest such ungodly and unnatural passions. Homosexuality is sin and lawlessness, and all that practise it, except they repent, will be cut off from God’s kingdom. However, God’s rich mercy is available to all homosexuals, as it is to all other sinners, through Christ Jesus. Salvation is available to all sinners who repent of their sins, accept and confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour and live by his word. Jesus Christ loves homosexuals and he doesn’t want them to perish, but he vehemently hates and detests homosexuality and will judge it with the fullness of the wrath of God. May all who are entangled in this sin turn to Jesus now for salvation, that they may be saved, for he is able to save them from its vile grip and bondage, and make them sons and daughters of the living God.
Hebrews 7:25 Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them (ESV).
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