Where is homosexuality expressly forbidden?
I have a question. Where in the New Testament is homosexuality expressly forbidden? I believe it is not. I also believe that there are some things which God gives warnings without forbidding. Alcohol is one such item; there are risks to avoid.
I have been taught two schools of thought on homosexuality in the Bible: follow Leviticus and follow Jesus. I have read for myself and have concluded that the latter choice is more accurate. There are 2 books commonly used to support hatred for homosexuals: I Corinthians and Romans.
I Corinthians is a letter from Paul to the church in Corinth, Greece, to answer some questions and correct some problems. Chapter 6 deals with legal and sexual arguments in the church. Verses 9-11 lists homosexuals with thieves, greedy people, and revilers as not entering the kingdom of God then declares who enters even though some of them were on the list. In English, the homosexual terms are amusing. In Greek, the words are all various male prostitute terms related to "worshiping" (having gay prostitute sex) at the temple. This is why multiple terms are listed instead of just saying "homosexual". Clearly, paying to have sex to worship a false idol may conflict with Christianity.
In verse 12, Paul declares all things lawful to him, but not all things expedient. I believe this means homosexuality is allowable, but it should conform to some guidelines. Just because you can does not mean you should. He continues through verse 19 explaining his meaning so we will not be confused. Verses 15 and 16 are specifically talking about joining together with a harlot (prostitute). Verse 18 says flee it because it is a sin against the body. I would agree; an international temple of prostitutes would be a universal collection of sexually transmitted diseases. Merely entering would risk some nasty diseases which would harm the person's own body.
Ok, that was a long tirade on prostitutes and commands not to do. What are we commanded to do? Verse 20 tells us what we are to do: "...Glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's." Could Paul have been any more vague or non-specific? If someone is born gay, transsexual, or asexual, how are they supposed to follow this? Perhaps stay away from STD's and praise God for making them special. If in doubt, pray to God for more personalized directions.
The book of Romans is easier. Paul wrote to the Church in Rome. This is a huge theological writing or basically a mini-summary of the entire Bible by his hand because he could not go in person yet. He starts by describing the evil mind that was the Romans of the time. Part of their evil was doing unnatural things: women would be with women to avoid pregnancy and men would leave their wife alone and be with men to avoid fathering children. Very simple birth control plan and very evil in God's eye. Why? Greed, vanity, and evil desires. This is why the wording is strange to us. There was no love involved between two consenting adults. Far from it. The rich person would select a body that they lusted and use it as a piece of property. The homosexuality was not the evil part; the Romans were the evil part.
Now then, if these things are happening in Rome, what commands did Paul give the Romans to forbid these evil homosexuals? None. An unmarried woman could pleasure herself with her maiden and not violate Paul's commands given in chapter 13. Today, homosexuals can marry and not violate the commands given by Paul in Romans chapter 13. The relevant verse is 9 "Thou shalt not commit adultery."
Speaking of the book of Romans, how should Christians treat gays and lesbians in that book? Chapter 13, verse 10, "Love worketh no ill to his neighbor: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law." Wow, that really makes me want to grab my pitchfork and torches and head right over to my gay neighbors house and help him with his hay before the rain comes. Right?
I believe too many churches and pastors are clinging to Victorian society standards and expecting the Bible to support their view. That was a brief and unique period of history. It is time to leave it to history books. We need to now consider the following quote from Jesus Christ, "As it is written", and check to make sure we are not adding anything else like traditions, wise tails, or our own desires. The Bible is concerned about our relationship to God, His son Jesus Christ, and our neighbors. Sex is not an important topic. Let us Christians now follow that example.