The Bible and Homosexuality or Does the Bible condemn loving, committed same-sex relationships?



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The Bible and Homosexuality

or

Does the Bible condemn loving, committed same-sex relationships?


compiled and written by Steve Parelli, MDiv., Executive Director, Other Sheep

www.othersheep.org, email: sparelli2002@yahoo.com

This "handout" was prepared for the Other Sheep 2008 ministry in East Africa, July 4-August 5, 2008

(Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda)
A PowerPoint presentation of this material can be found on the Internet at

http://www.othersheepexecsite.com/Power_Point_Presentation_on_the_Bible_and_Homosexuality.html

Table of Contents



Introduction: The English word Sodomite(s) in the Old Testament (KJV) – An

erroneous rendering of the Hebrew by the 1611 King James translators


1








Chapter 1: Sodom and Gomorrah . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

3

Part One: Not a story about homosexuality, but about rape

3

Part Two: What were the sins of Sodom and Gomorrah?

3

Part Three: Conclusion – The real rape today

5







Chapter 2: Two New Testament Greek Words . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

6

Part One: Introduction – The two texts in question: The two

Greek words in question


6


Part Two: malakos – Why 'soft' does not mean 'homosexual'

6

Part Three: arsenokoites – What Zues and Naas teach us about homosexuality

7

2. Five Attempts at Unlocking the Meaning of arsenokoites

8







Chapter 3: "Against Nature" Romans 1:26-27 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

11

Part One: Robert E. Goss – Paul has been wrong before

11

Part Two: Jeff Miner and John Tyler Connoley – It doesn't apply to me

12

Part Three: Thomas Hanks – The seven myths of Romans 1 exposed

13







Chapter 4: Male-Male Sex in Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

15

Part One: Robert E. Goss – Gender role confusion

15

Part Two: Jeff Miner and John Tyler Connoley – Homosexual temple prostitution

16

Part Three: L. William Countryman – Prohibition of mixing kinds

17







Chapter 5: The Last "Clobber Passage" – Jude 7, "Going after strange flesh" . . . . . . . . . . .

19







Bibliography on the Bible and Homosexuality

21



The Bible and Homosexuality

or

Does the Bible condemn loving, committed same-sex relationships?


-------------------------------------

In Uganda, in 1999, news stories reported "an alledged gay wedding in Kampala. [President Yoweri] Museveni again spoke out strongly, calling for the police to find, arrest and jail homosexuals. The Anglican archbishop of Uganda proclaimed his full support for Museveni's antigay position.

--Miranda K. Hassett, Anglican Communion in Crisis, p.85
And the remnant of the sodomites, which remained in the days of his father Asa, he took out of the land.

-- I Kings 22:46 (KJV)

-------------------------------------
Introduction: The English word Sodomite(s) in the Old Testament (KJV)

an erroneous rendering of the Hebrew by the 1611 King James translators




  1. The English word "Sodomite(s)" is used 5 times in the King James version of the Old Testament, but NOT ONCE in the 1973 New International Version of the Old Testament.



Deuteronomy 23:17

THE KJV :

There shall be no whore of the daughters


of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel.


THE NIV :

No Israelite man or woman is to become a shrine prostitute.






I Kings 14:24

THE KJV :

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 ofIsrael.


THE NIV :

There were even male shrine prostitutes in


the land; the people engaged in all the detestable practices of the nations the LORD had driven out before the
Israelites.




I Kings 15:12

THE KJV :

And he took away the sodomites out of the


land, and removed all the idols that his fathers had made.


THE NIV :

No Israelite man or woman is to become a shrine prostitute.






I Kings 22:46

THE KJV :

And the remnant of the sodomites, which


remained in the days of his father Asa, he took out of the land.


THE NIV :

He rid the land of the rest of the male


shrine prostitutes
who remained there even after the reign of his father Asa.





II Kings 23:7

THE KJV :

And he brake down the houses of the


sodomites, that were by the house of the LORD, where the women wove hangings for the grove.


THE NIV :

He 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





  1. Why the discrepancy between the two translation? The answer, of course, is to be found in a closer look at the Hebrew text. The Hebrew word kadesh in Deut. 23:17 is the same Hebrew word used in the other four verses. Kadesh does not mean Sodomite, it refers to the "priest-prostitutes of the Canaanite fertility cults" (Ralph Blair).




Deuteronomy 23:17

THE KJV :

There shall be no whore of the daughters


of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel.


KJV HEBREW

whore קדשה kedeshah (fem.) Female Cult Prostitute


sodmite קדש kadesh (masc.) Male Cult Prostitute



What is the Hebrew word for Sodom?


סדםSodom; (contrast kedesh – Cult Prostitute)

there is no relationship between this word (Sodom) and the above word for Cult Prostitute -- קדש.







  • "The Hebrew words here (kedeshah and kadesh) are references to the "holy" female and eunuch priest-prostitutes of the Canaanite fertility cults, of which Israel was to have no part." -Ralph Blair.

  • Most English Bible Versions Today translate kadesh in Deuteronomy 23:7 as “shrine prostitute” or “cult prostitute” or “temple prostitute”

The Bible and Homosexuality

or

Does the Bible condemn loving, committed same-sex relationships?


----------------------------------------------
James Solheim, in his account of Lambeth 1998, reports Bishop Chukwuma's words to Kirker: "God did not create you as a homosexual. That is our stand. That is why your church is dying in Europe – because it is condoning immorality. Your are killing the church. This is the voice of God talking." Anglican Communion in Crisis, M. K. Hassett, p72

.

-----------------------------------------------


Chapter 1: Sodom and Gomorrah: In Three Parts

  • Not a Story about Homosexuality, but about Rape

  • What were The Sins of Sodom and Gomorrah?

  • Conclustion: The Real Rape Today



Part One: Not a Story about Homosexuality, but about Rape
The Text: Genesis:19:4-5

"…the men of the city, even the men of Sodom compassed . . .

"…Where are the men . . . bring them out unto us, that we may know them."



  1. Ex-gay authors Bob Davies and Lori Rentzel comment on Gen. 19:4-5 in their 1993 Coming Out of Homosexuality: New Freedom for Men & Women, p184:




    • "Pro-gay theologians are correct in saying that this passage does not provide a strong argument against prohibiting all homosexual acts."




  1. Loren L. Johns on Genesis 19




    • "To use Genesis 19 to condemn homosexuality makes as much sense as using II Samuel 13 (David and Bethsheba) to condemn heterosexuality.

    • "Genesis 19 – gang rape, possessive lust, and sexual abuse – cannot be construed as condemning loving, committed homosexual relatioships.

    • "That Sodom has become synonymous with certain homosexual acts does not pertain to the ethical issue of the propriety of loving, committed homosexual relationships.


Part Two: What were the Sins of Sodom and Gomorrah (Robert E. Goss)
The Text: Genesis 19:24

"Then the Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire . . . "




  1. Violence: Male Rape

    • "Genesis 19 has nothing to do with same-sex sexuality; it has to do, rather, with male rape." Robert E. Goss, Queering Christ

    • "The messengers are foreigners within the city, and the men of Sodom surround the house and insist that 'we might know them' . . . a euphemism for sexual intercourse [which] needs to be translated and contextualized in the sexual codes of the penetrator and the penetrated in the ancient world. A more abpt colloquial translation would be to 'womanize, make into a woman.' In the context, it suggests 'penetrating a male like a woman,' or anal intercourse." Robert E. Goss, Queering Christ

    • "Ancient Near Eastern societies subjected those they had conquered, enemies, stangers, and trespassers to phallic anal penetration to indicate their subordinate status." Robert E. Goss, Queering Christ



  1. Inhospitality: Abraham's hospitality (Gen 18) is contrasted with the hostility of Sodom (Gen. 19)




  • Hospitality is part of the cultural code and the editor's theological motif operative in Genesis 18-19. … Robert E. Goss, Queering Christ

  • The editor contrasts the rural, pastoral welcoming of strangers [by Abraham, Gen. 18] with the urban hostility [shown] them [by the residents of Sodom at Lot's door, Gen. 19] . . . Robert E. Goss, Queering Christ


How the movie The Four Feathers illustrates the moral essence of hospitality in the Near East:
Harry Faversham (a lost Englishman, stranded in a desert, to an African at time of war in the African's own country):

"Why are you protecting me?"


Abou Fatma: (The African to the lost Englishman, his enemy in time of war):

"God put you in my way. I have no choice"


OBSERVATION: This is the desert law of hospitality: "God put you in my way. I have no choice but to protect you."
How Jesus' words indicate "inhospitality" as the sin of Sodom:
"When Jesus says that it will be more tolerable for Sodom than for those not hearing God's messengers, he has in mind not the Sodomites' sexual practices but their inhospitality." Roebert E. Goss, Queering Christ
Luke 10:10-12: "But into whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you not . . . I say unto you, that it shall be more tolerable in that day for Sodom, than for that city."
Support from the Wisdom of Solomon

"And punishments came upon the sinners . . . Insomuch as they used a more hard and hateful behavior toward strangers. For the Sodomites did not receive those, whom they knew not when they came . . ." Wisdom of Solomon 19:13-14


  1. Social Oppression: "The patriarchal violence to male strangers and to the daughters, 'the other' inscribed within the biblical text." Robert E. Goss, Queering Christ




  • [T]he patriarchal gender code … privileges males over females. That code requires that Lot protect male honor over female honor. In other words, it is better to shame a woman than a man."

  • "So Lot offers the sexual capital of his household, his virgin daughters, in exchange for preserving the honor of the strangers. The mob rape would dishonor not only the messengers but also Lot, his household, all his clan, and all those people associated with him." He must provide protection to the strangers -- the law of the desert, and will do so at the expense of his own daughters. Robert E. Goss, Queering Christ



Part Three: The Conclusion – The Real Rape Today
The Text: Ezekiel 16:49

"Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom: pride, fullness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy."




  1. Injustice: to treat one another without a sense of justice, without a sense of what is right; this is the sin of Sodom: Violence, Inhospitality, and Social oppression. These are all ways in which we "rape" one another.




  1. Ironically, ". . . The real act of sodomy [today] is the particular application of the [Sodomy] story to [LGBT people] . . . [What we today is] the translation of textual violence [(to so wrongly interpret Gen. 19)] into social violence [(and then to use Gen. 19 against a people group, a sexual minority, to violate their spirit and their beings)]." This is the real rape, today. Robert Goss, Queering Christ

The Bible and Homosexuality

or

Does the Bible condemn loving, committed same-sex relationships?


-------------------------------------

Lambeth 1998 had accomplished what it would be known for around the world and through the years: for "rejecting homosexual practice as incompatible with Scripture" by a landslide vote, to the delight of many and the horror and grief of many others." Anglican Communion in Crisis, M. K. Hassett, p79.

-------------------------------------



Chapter 2: Two New Testament Greek Words: In Three Parts

  • Introduction – The Two Texts in Question: The Two Greek Words in Question

  • malakos – Why 'soft does not mean 'homosexual'

  • arsenokoites – What Zues and Naas teach us about homosexuality


Part One: Introduction – The Two Texts in Question: The Two Greek Words in Question


  1. I Corinthians 6:9-10 KJV

Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate [malakoi], nor abusers of themselves with mankind [arsenokoitai], (10) Nor thieves, nor covetous nor, drunkards, nor revilers, nor extorioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.


  1. I Timothy 1:10 KJV

"them that defile themselves with mankind" [arsenokoitai]


  1. The Two Greek Words in Question:

      1. malakoi (plural form), makakos (singular form) I Cor. 6:9

      2. arsenokoitai (plural form), arsenokoites (singular form) I Cor 6:9 & I Tim. 1:10


Part Two: malakos – Why 'soft' does not mean 'homosexual'

(Malakos appears only in I Cor. 6:9 in the New Testament)
1. How malakos is rendered in I Cor. 6:9 by various translations of the Bible


Date

Bible

translation of malakos

1611

King James Version

effeminate

1901

American Standard Version

effeminate

1971

The Living Bible (Paraphrase)

homosexuals (both Greek words in I Cor. 6:9)

1982

New King James Version

homosexuals (Footnote: "That is, catamites")

1984

New International Version (NIV)

male prostitutes

1984

New International Version UK

male prostitutes

1987

Amplified Bible

those who participate in homosexuality (both Greek words in I Cor. 6:9)

1989

New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

male prostitutes

1995

Contemporary English Version

pervert

2001

English Standard Version

men who practice homosexuality (both Greek words in I Cor. 6:9; with this footnote: "The two Greek terms translated by this phrase refer to the passive and active partners in consensual homosexual acts."

2001

Today's New International Version

male prostitutes

2002

The Message

those who use and abuse each other/sex

2. Malakos, in this context of a list of sins, signifies a moral weakness or male prostitution.




    • malakos means soft as seen in Matt. 11:8

      1. Matt. 11:8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in SOFT (malakos) raiment? Behold, they that wear SOFT (malakos) clothing are in king's houses.




    • malakos, in reference to individual men (who are SOFT) can refer to moral weakness

The Children Are Free by Jeff Miner and John Tyler Connoley, pages 16-18


      1. Fearful – a lack of courage; more interested in pleasure than in duty

      2. Vain – preoccupied with making themselves more attractive, "whether they were trying to attract men or women"

      3. Self-indulgent – "Laziness, degeneracy, decadence; expensive things, dressing well, over eating" – Hence the use of the word "effeminate" (which is intolerable misogynistic thinking)




  • malakos, in this context of "sexual sins," most likely refers to male prostitutes

The Children Are Free by Jeff Miner and John Tyler Connoley, pages 16-18


  1. Recent studies suggest this rendering

  2. Rendered "male prostitutes" in the NIV and NRSV (widely used modern English translations; see shaded rows in above table)

  3. "Soft" = the receptive partner in intercourse ("women like")

  4. Context: Paul is listing "sexual sins," hence perhaps "male prostitutes"



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