The Abomination of Sodom?


I saw this on Facebook:

This verse is a valid verse, but it really needs to go with verse 50, so the full message of what is being said is not less.

Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy. They were haughty and did an abomination before me. So I removed them, when I saw it. (Eze 16:49-50)

There is that abomination word that people always hate. In the Old Testament, there are 55 verses that have the word abomination in it. Outside of Proverbs, most of the verses deal with worshipping of false gods or cheating God out of worship. After that, the abominations are the “sexual sins” that we all know. There is on mention of abomination dealing with “one who acts dishonestly”, but nothing about the mistreating the poor and needy.

This is not to say that that behavior is appropriate or even acceptable, but it did not make it to the abomination category.

“If he fathers a son who is violent, a shedder of blood, who does any of these things (though he himself did none of these things), who even eats upon the mountains, defiles his neighbor’s wife, oppresses the poor and needy, commits robbery, does not restore the pledge, lifts up his eyes to the idols, commits abomination, lends at interest, and takes profit; shall he then live? He shall not live. He has done all these abominations; he shall surely die; his blood shall be upon himself. (Eze 18:10-13)

Further on, Ezekiel separates the abomination from oppressing the poor and needy, but we still see how oppression of them leads to death. This is a better verse to comment on to support the need to take care of those who are suffering than trying to flip the sodomite title upon them.

There are few places where the abomination area mentioned caused God to remove people from the land.

Consecrate yourselves, therefore, and be holy, for I am the LORD your God. Keep my statutes and do them; I am the LORD who sanctifies you. For anyone who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death; he has cursed his father or his mother; his blood is upon him. “If a man commits adultery with the wife of his neighbor, both the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death. If a man lies with his father’s wife, he has uncovered his father’s nakedness; both of them shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them. If a man lies with his daughter-in-law, both of them shall surely be put to death; they have committed perversion; their blood is upon them. If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them. If a man takes a woman and her mother also, it is depravity; he and they shall be burned with fire, that there may be no depravity among you. If a man lies with an animal, he shall surely be put to death, and you shall kill the animal. If a woman approaches any animal and lies with it, you shall kill the woman and the animal; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them. “If a man takes his sister, a daughter of his father or a daughter of his mother, and sees her nakedness, and she sees his nakedness, it is a disgrace, and they shall be cut off in the sight of the children of their people. He has uncovered his sister’s nakedness, and he shall bear his iniquity. If a man lies with a woman during her menstrual period and uncovers her nakedness, he has made naked her fountain, and she has uncovered the fountain of her blood. Both of them shall be cut off from among their people. You shall not uncover the nakedness of your mother’s sister or of your father’s sister, for that is to make naked one’s relative; they shall bear their iniquity. If a man lies with his uncle’s wife, he has uncovered his uncle’s nakedness; they shall bear their sin; they shall die childless. If a man takes his brother’s wife, it is impurity. He has uncovered his brother’s nakedness; they shall be childless. “You shall therefore keep all my statutes and all my rules and do them, that the land where I am bringing you to live may not vomit you out. And you shall not walk in the customs of the nation that I am driving out before you, for they did all these things, and therefore I detested them. (Lev 20:7-23)

“When you come into the land that the LORD your God is giving you, you shall not learn to follow the abominable practices of those nations. There shall not be found among you anyone who burns his son or his daughter as an offering, anyone who practices divination or tells fortunes or interprets omens, or a sorcerer or a charmer or a medium or a necromancer or one who inquires of the dead, for whoever does these things is an abomination to the LORD. And because of these abominations the LORD your God is driving them out before you. (Deu 18:9-12)

We need to move pass using Sodom as proof that homosexuality is bad and focus instead on the fact that they were not worshipping the one true God. Our acts will express our hearts and the lack of God there is the problem. Not the things we do.

So we as Christians, need to stop modifying scripture to make it less offensive to people but at the same time we need to quit making the scripture more offensive to people to prove we are right. Focus on salvation and the rest will take care of itself.

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25 Comments

Filed under Bible, Christianity, Politics, Relationships, Religion, Soteriology

25 responses to “The Abomination of Sodom?

  1. In light of your post above, I thought some of you might especially appreciate this first new post for 2012 titled: “Genesis 19: What the Bible REALLY Says Were the Sins of Sodom” (link below).

    Blessings on your New Year!

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  2. You wrote to me and said: “You do not address the fact that Egypt practiced same sex marriages before the time of the exodus.” Where is your evidence to support this??!! We do not get to rip passages from their context and replace them in another age for the sake of convenience nor do we get to make things up as we go along. Fact is if we could stand Moses and Paul before us — the only two biblical authors who have been attributed as having said anything pertaining to or about homosexuality — and applaud or ridicule them for their condemnation of homosexuality, they would almost certainly stare at us in blank incomprehension. Why? Because homosexuality per se simply isn’t anything they’d ever been aware of. I would suggest you read my post on “Why No One in the Biblical World Had a Word for Homosexuality.” You can find a link for this on my “Archives” page.

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

    • I read that post and you point to the fact that heterosexual also was not a word. It was not that the concept was unheard of, as Paul coined the term based upon a combination of words from the Septuagint.

      The tomb of Khnumhotep and Niankhkhnum is considered the first identifiable homosexual couple and this dates from 25th Century BCE. 2200 BCE, we have a text that describes a homosexual relationship between King Neferkare and an unwed man.

      • Yes, and during biblical times men (and the kings) of conquered tribes were often raped by the invading army as the ultimate symbol of defeat and humiliation. Male-to-male rape was a way for victors to accentuate the subjection of captive enemies and foes and a way of humiliating visitors and strangers. If we miss this, we not only miss what was going on in the Sodom and Gomorrah text, we also miss the meaning behind other passages such as 1 Sam 31:4 and 1 Chron 10:4 where Saul, gravely wounded by the Philistines, instructs his armor-bearer to: “Draw your sword and thrust me through with it lest these uncircumcised come and abuse me” (1 Chron 10:4). I suppose you’ll also want to try and convince me that these were “homosexual armies??!!” Sorry, as I said, we do not get to rip passages from their context and replace them in another age for the sake of convenience nor do we get to make things up as we go along.

        -Alex Haiken
        http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

      • The issue is not whether male on male rape occurred. I am not saying that it did not, for I know that id did. You are the one making the bold claim that men were unable to be in a loving relationship with another man. You are the one that is dismissing evidence to the contrary that gay relationships were practiced in order to make your point that the Bible does not speak against homosexuality.

  3. You also wrote to me saying: “I am curious as to how you respond to Jude 1:7, which clearly links homosexuality with Sodom and Gomorrah. While I agree with most of what you have said on the sins of Sodom, the New Testament still points to this issue as a sin.”

    Not so fast, my friend. It does not “clearly link homosexuality with Sodom and Gomorrah.” In Jude 1:7, the Greek word that the English translates as “sexual immorality” is “ekporneuō” from the Greek “porneuō”. Porneuo can have varying meanings in various contexts and may be used in varying ways.

    It comes from the Greek roots “ek” meaning “exceedingly” and “porneuō” meaning indulge in unlawful lust or practice idolatry. Where do you justifiably get off saying, “Um, its homosexual; that settles it; let’s move on.”

    Let’s remember that “exegesis” (from the Greek verb which means “to draw out”) is about drawing out from the text the true meaning of a Bible passage. It means getting out of the text what it originally meant to the author and to the original intended audience, without reading into the text the many traditional interpretations that may have grown up around it. What you do instead is what theologians refer to as “frontloading,” that is to say, you read your own personal, political, ideological and/or prejudicial beliefs back into the Bible, instead of reading out from the Bible what the original writers were saying. The process of reading one’s own ideas into interpretation of the Bible is called “eisegesis”. Exegesis is reading out from the Bible what the original writers were saying. Eisegesis is reading one’s own ideas or prejudices back into the Bible. Exegesis is about getting out of the text what is truly there in the first place. Eisegesis is about putting into the text something never intended by the author.

    You need to be much more respectful with the text.

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

    • Jude 1:7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire

      You missed the “strange flesh” aspect of the verse in your defense.

      I am not reading more into it than what is there. But you appear to be discounting the tradition and ways of the Jews. Why do Orthodox Jews still consider it a sin after all of this time? I know that the more liberal Jews have changed their stance on the issue, but it was not as a result of better exegesis. It was as a result of the change in the current society’s view on homosexuality.

    • You say that I am the one that is dismissing evidence to the contrary that gay relationships were practiced ??!! You still don’t get it. The single most important concept that defines sexuality in the ancient world, whether we are talking about the kingdoms of Egypt or of Assyria or whether we are talking about the later kingdoms of Greece and Rome, is that approved sexual acts NEVER occurred between social equals. Sexuality, by definition, in ancient Mediterranean societies required the combination of dominance and submission. This crucial social and political root metaphor of dominance and submission as the definition of sexuality rested upon a physical basis that assumed every sex act required a penetrator and someone who was penetrated. Needless to say, this definition of sexuality was entirely male — not surprising in the heavily patriarchal societies of the ancient Mediterranean.

      Nevertheless, this assumption that the difference in status between the dominant penetrator and the submissive penetrated was essential to all sexual behavior is prevalent in sources from at least the Egyptian empires of the Second Millennium BCE all the way through the late Roman Empire and beyond.

      There is a famous picture from Greece that celebrates the victory of the Athenians over the Persians in 460 BCE. In the picture a Greek soldier with erect penis in hand approaches from the rear a distressed, defeated Persian soldier who is bent over waiting to be raped by the Greek. The picture was intended to show, through the imagery of male-male sexual intercourse, that the Greeks now dominate the submissive Persians. This picture was not pornography; it was politics. In myth, law, treaties, monuments, and pottery decorations, political and military domination was often conventionally symbolized by sexual domination between men.
      The reason that the passive role in homoeroticism was disgraceful or shameful was because it was the role assumed to be natural for women.

      The biblical writers knew nothing of sexual orientations, mutual erotic relationships, or sexuality as the expression of a passion for equality. Our world is not their world; and theirs is not ours.

      Greeks seem routinely to have assumed that most adult Greek men, whatever their particular tastes, were capable of being sexual aroused both by beautiful women and by beautiful boys. Once they began to develop hair and other masculine features, however, they were no longer desirable. It would be a monumental task to enumerate all the ancient documents in which the alternative ‘boy or woman’ occurs with perfect nonchalance in an erotic context, as if the two were functionally interchangeable.

      This reality, typical of males of that time, is illustrated in the attitude of Antony, the Roman general under Julius Caesar (83-30 B.C.). In a letter to Augustus who, like Antony himself, was married at the time, he asked: “Can it matter where or in whom you put it?” Such relationships were common in Roman and Greek society and not considered “queer” so long as the two men were not of the same class.

      The Greeks understood sex itself to be defined entirely of phallic penetration, regardless of whether the sexual partners were both males or male and female. There was not necessarily anything sexually or psychologically abnormal in itself about the male sexual penetration of a subordinate male.

      It may well take time to get used to seeing this in ancient writings. Nobody assimilates those notions on the first pass. But like it or not, this understanding operates in biblical interpretation and increasing numbers of evangelical biblical scholars working in good faith and out in the open find these assumptions necessary for grasping what the biblical writers were talking about when they were treating something sexual.

      Stop ripping passages from their context and replacing them in another age for the sake of your convenience. Exegeses requires that the reader today must somehow try to enter the world of the biblical writer and seek to understand what the writer was saying. If we fail to pay attention to the world in which the Bible was written, your understanding will continue to be misunderstanding

      -Alex Haiken
      http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  4. You ask: “Why do Orthodox Jews still consider it a sin after all of this time?” Why did it take 18 centuries for the church to challenge the notion that light skinned-people were not superior to dark-skinned people, or that slavery is not God-ordained, or that that women and blacks should actually be allowed to vote, or that interracial marriage is not wrong, or that that women should be allowed to preach, teach or wear lipstick, or that anti-Semitism is biblically supported, and on and on. A number of biblical texts were cited to give support to each of these and, of course, the Bible verses that once footnoted these notions are all still in the Bible. Since when has truth ever been determined by a majority vote?

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

    • You’re still ignoring Jude.

      I admit that the Bible has been grossly misused for centuries for different reasons. The problem here though, is that you can see from 1st century thought, the brother of Jesus, that the Jewish understanding at the time is the same as what Orthodox Jews believe.

  5. I responded to your poor exegesis on Jude above. Go back and read it. Once again you are frontloading, i.e., reading things into the text that simply are not there (eisegesis) instead of drawing out from the text what it meant to the author and original intended audience (exegesis) — exactly what we’re supposed to be avoiding. We would have gotten our hands slapped big time for such shoddy work in seminary!

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  6. “I responded to your poor exegesis on Jude above. Go back and read it. Once again you are frontloading, i.e., reading things into the text that simply are not there (eisegesis) instead of drawing out from the text what it meant to the author and original intended audience (exegesis) — exactly what we’re supposed to be avoiding. We would have gotten our hands slapped big time for such shoddy work in seminary!”

    As you are trying to school me in exegesis, let’s follow your statement”

    “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.”

    “In Jude 1:7, the Greek word that the English translates as “sexual immorality” is “ekporneuō” from the Greek “porneuō”. Porneuo can have varying meanings in various contexts and may be used in varying ways.
    It comes from the Greek roots “ek” meaning “exceedingly” and “porneuō” meaning indulge in unlawful lust or practice idolatry. Where do you justifiably get off saying, “Um, its homosexual; that settles it; let’s move on.”

    You have addressed the sexual immorality, but you have failed to address the unnatural desire or homosexuality. I should think you would get your hand slapped for being shoddy.

    Now, let’s looks at your “approved sexual acts”. A wife would not be considered of a social equal, so thus it is ok for the man to have sex with her. A prostitute was of a lower social class, so it was ok to have sex with her. A male who was of a lower social class, could be a sexual object, but not a man of a higher social class unless he was the giver. I think I have summed up correctly what you were stating. Now it would not be unheard of then for a man of a higher social class to take a man of a lower social class as a lover, since it follows your rules correct or are you contending that it was not possible for a man to love another man as he would a woman?

  7. Firstly, as for Jude 1, let me know the original Greek words you’re struggling with from this particular passage and then we can discuss it.

    Secondly, what I stated above is indeed correct and I stand by it. As for your presupposition that a man of a higher social class to take a “man” of a lower social class as a “lover,” let us remember it would have been a boy he took, not a man. Unlike male homosexual attraction today in which perceived masculinity is prized, the desired features in these boys were their resemblance to females. They were either prepubescent or at least without beards so that they seemed like females. At the same time, they were not actually “inferior” females within the society of “superior” males in a male-dominated culture. The men were not running after men for sex but were using these boys as substitutes for women. As I stated above, once they began to develop hair and other masculine features, they were no longer desirable.

    I think you need to do a little less arguing and lot more research before you try and sell this snake oil.

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

    • “Firstly, as for Jude 1, let me know the original Greek words you’re struggling with from this particular passage and then we can discuss it. ”

      I am not struggling with the words. The verse clearly states that Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire. Now as you rushed to explain comes from the Greek porneuō. There is still the issue of pursuing unnatural desires which are the words heteros sarx which translates into pursuing flesh contrary to normal or natural.

      “Unlike male homosexual attraction today in which perceived masculinity is prized”

      How, this is a broad and untrue statement. Men today who are gay usually drift toward either a masculine or feminine nature. I know many men who are drawn towards and seek out items that are associated with women. This is normal for them, but they do seek out more dominate and masculine partners. I know very masculine gay men who are attracted to more feminine men.

      What gets me, is you are basically saying that people are not born gay. They instead act out these natural urges for sex either out of a sign of dominance or lack of a female partner, but not because there is an honest sexual attraction to a man over a woman. You are destroying your argument while trying to justify your position that homosexuality as we know it never existed until recently. From your stance, homosexuality is not a normal feeling or desire that people are born with. It instead has recently developed out of social changes instead of biological needs.

  8. Not so fast, my friend. You said re Jude 1: “The verse clearly states that Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire.”

    Now I ask you, by what exegetical miracle do you then conclude: “Um, its homosexual; that settles it, let’s move on.” That is not Exegesis, i.e. drawing out from the text what is truly there in the first place. It is Eisegesis, i.e., putting into the text things that are not there. Eisegesis is precisely what we’re supposed to avoid!

    You quoted me: “Unlike male homosexual attraction today in which perceived masculinity is prized…”

    First of all, I never said people are born gay nor did I say they weren’t. The point I was making is that in the Ancient world, a man of a higher social class might take a lower social class boy. But the desired features in these boys were their resemblance to females. They were either prepubescent or at least without beards so that they seemed like females. And once they began to develop hair and other masculine features, they were no longer desirable. At the same time, they were not actually “inferior” females within the society of “superior” males in a male-dominated culture. The men were not running after men for sex but were using these boys as substitutes for women.

    Contrarily, with homosexual attraction today, gay people are looking for men, not women! Homosexual orientation is about the naturally occurring ability to fall in love with a person of the same gender rather than with anyone of the other gender. It’s the same un-asked-for experience for heterosexuals and homosexuals; only in the former case the person of affection is of the other gender and in the latter case the person of affection is of the same gender.

    I would suggest you include in your studying/research list: homosexuality as a social construct. The Ancient world knew nothing of “orientation” — homosexual or heterosexual — which is precisely why if we could stand Moses and Paul before us (the only two biblical authors who have been attributed as having said anything pertaining to or about homosexuality) and applaud or criticize them for their condemnation of homosexuality, they would almost certainly stare at us in blank incomprehension.

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

    • Anonymous

      Hey guys coming into this discussion very belatedly, but I hope what I write still can Lord willing add something.
      To start off, it seems from reading through both your guys posts, there is a bit of a gulf that seems to have come between you both. Alex, you seem to argue, if I have humbly understood what you are trying to say well enough, that these verses that are being discussed, do not explicitly condemn homosexuality as we know it today, if one applies the standards of exegesis. Please permit me to throw a bit of a curveball into this.
      What if I concede with you firstly, yes, Jude does not necessarily refer to homosexuality as we know it today. It could be argued that it does, but maybe, just maybe it didn’t. I’m okay with that argument. We cannot forget Jude if you like, you know what, we can even forget the Old Testament too if you like. Heck, why not forget all of the Bible save for Jesus’ own words?
      The verse I’m trying to get at here is Matthew 19:4-6 “Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, and said, for this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder”.
      Now I’m going to admit here that I am in no wise any kind of theologian. Far from it! So I am not an expert on exegesis, but please permit me still to give it a go.
      When I look at this passage I see it is spoken just before Jesus denounces the Jewish practice of divorce, and then right after this Jesus’ words on eunuchs “For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mothers wombs: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it”.
      What I take from all this therefore is that Jesus was basically narrowing the path so to speak of what was considered acceptable in terms of marriage. My understanding from all this is that Jesus is basically saying marriage is acceptable for men and women, divorce where previously it was is now not allowed, and practicing life long celibacy and abstinence is actually encouraged. Considering Jesus corrected if you will so many Jewish customs and understandings as regards the proper reading of Scripture, his silence on homosexual relations (which Jews of the time saw as Orthodox Jews do today according to my feeble understanding), coupled with his corrections here, seem to suggest he never felt the need to correct this understanding, because like a lot of things the Jews of his time believed, he agreed with it.
      Of course let me anticipate maybe a retort to this, that Homosexuality as we know it today was different to that the Jews understood then. Maybe this is true. But please, let me also read Matthew 16:24 “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me”. These are the words that for me really changed the game. Because when I look at this verse, even just alone, but especially when coupled with the ones I pointed to above, I just can’t accept that Jesus would want Christians to indulge in same sex relations. My poor grasp of exegesis (it is let me admit) tells me Jesus wanted us ideally to suffer and deny our fleshly pleasures and lusts if you will, and devote ourselves completely to Him. Marriage is there for procreation and because some can’t resist this particular urge and so marriage between a man and a woman Jesus permits in these cases. But the ideal I keep feeling like Jesus’ points back to, is that the ideal life for a follower of Him is to deny himself and suffer and that this suffering will be a blessing in the long run, and may earn one the kingdom of heaven.
      I don’t know you, so I don’t know if you are a homosexual, but just let me say to you dear brother, if you are, I know your pain, truly i do, and I want you to know that if it be the case, your pain in this regards, need not for Jesus’ sake, be in vain.
      God bless you, and I pray your zeal for the things of God is only but increased 🙂

      • I want to thank you for your comment and I think you make a great point.

        So many times I see Christians looking for ways to make their activities “pro-God” or acceptable to God when we forget that He is supposed to be our Lord and King and that we are called to forgo our own desires, whether they be physical, emotional or spiritual.

      • I’m not quite sure what you mean by “forgo our own desires”. Does becoming born again in Christ also mean that straight people give up being heterosexual? Just as heterosexually-oriented people become born again in Christ and continue being heterosexually-oriented people, so too do homosexually-oriented people become born again in Christ and continue being homosexually-oriented people. The real issue here is whether the passages that generally get appealed to in this debate exegetically support your “antigay” doctrine. Increasing numbers of Bible scholars, theologians and other evangelicals who have done their biblical homework conclude that it does not. But no one forgoes their orientations when they become Christian. They do however (hopefully) learn to express them in healthy and responsible ways.

        Why would you think it would different for one group than it is for the other?

        -Alex Haiken
        http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

      • This is more than being heterosexual vs. homosexual Alex. What the comment said and I was agreeing with is that when we are born again we are called to give up our personal desires. It is more than just trying to stop being attracted to the same sex. Regardless of a person’s sexual orientation, we are called to give up our desires of the flesh. That is sex in general.

        Yes we still have desires, but we do not have to act upon them. That is our choice.

  9. YOU SAID: “Regardless of a person’s sexual orientation, we are called to give up our desires of the flesh. That is sex in general.”

    Are you suggesting that married people who are born again are called to give up their desire to express their mutual love for each other through an intimate sexual relationship?

    -Alex Haiken
    http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

    • No, but the two married people are already bound together and are instructed to stay together. If they separate, then they are not to remarry.

      • You’re avoiding the question. I didn’t ask you whether married people were bound together nor did I ask you whether they are instructed to stay together. I think we all know that. What I asked you was specifically with regard to your comment: “Regardless of a person’s sexual orientation, we are called to give up our desires of the flesh. That is sex in general.”

        What does this statement of yours mean? Are you implying that all sex — even a married couple’s expression of their mutual love for each other through an active and intimate sexual relationship — is nothing more than “the desires of the flesh” and that all couples are “called to give this up?”

        I might remind you that the Book of Ecclesiastes, to cite only one example, celebrates sexual intimacy and does so in particularly graphic terms that would make the prudish among us blush. And in the NT, Paul categorically admonishes coupes to “not deprive each other [of sexual gratification] except by mutual consent and [only] for a time … then [they are to] come together [sexually] again…” (1 Cor 7:5)

        If you’re trying to sell the notion that all sex is nothing more than “the desires of the flesh” and that we are all, even married couples, called to give this up, then what you’re pushing here is the teaching of man, not the teaching of the Bible. It would appear that you have quite the distorted view of sexual intimacy, one of God’s many wonderful and precious gifts to us.

        -Alex Haiken
        http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

  10. I am not avoiding, but was merely trying to answer your question.
    Let me clarify.

    Before someone marries, they are called to give up their fleshly desires. Sex, while condoned in marriage, is a physical expression of attraction
    Yes, a married couple is called to not deprive each other of that physical desire / pleasure.

    I hope that makes sense.

    When you stated that homosexual people retain homosexual desires even when born again, I was trying to limit this discussion to people prior to marriage, as Paul said that even if you are married to someone who is not saved you should stay in the marriage. I did not think I need to include that perspective in what I was stating, but not a problem.
    So if a couple is married, then they should stay married and enjoy sex to the fullest.

    Do two people need to be married to love each other? No

    Do two people need to have sex to express their feelings towards each other? No

    Should we obtain from physical pleasures, such as sex if not married? Yes

    To readdress the real issue as you brought up earlier, my anti-gay doctrine, I still hold that you are wrong. I know that several theologians have a hard time not confusing tolerance with love and will try to reinterpret what was said to allow same sex relationships that loving because outside of the difference in genders they are just like heterosexual couples.

    Marriage did not start out as being a way that two people in love expressed their commitment to each other. Women had little to no rights in the marriage so it was not a marriage of equals. This was true when Jesus was preaching as well. Marriage fulfilled the desire to have sex and offspring. It perpetuated the family name and offered women some degree of security, but not a lot considering how easily it was to divorce them.

    I understand your stance on prostitution as a way to twist the intention, but in the day of Paul and Romans 1, prostitution was legal in Roman areas because it was enjoyable. Some cultures would use it for worship rituals but mainly it came down to men enjoyed having sex. They enjoyed it with women and other men and it was not disapproved of unless it was abused. We know this from secular sources.
    This takes us back to the argument that sex between two men back in that day were not about a loving relationship or a way to express that love, but that was not what heterosexual marriage was about either. So the fact that marriage has evolved into one of mutual respect is a great thing, but two people do not have to have sex to love each other. I have seen many same gender friends have a greater bond between them than many married couples. Sex is a physical expression and not a justification to try and show your love to another person.

    • OK, so you readily and freely admit that “if a couple is married, then they should stay married and enjoy sex to the fullest.” This now clears up your former ambiguous and misleading statement that “Regardless of a person’s sexual orientation, we are called to give up our desires of the flesh. That is sex in general.” I will presume that your latter statement that married people should “enjoy sex to the fullest” trumps your former statement that: “Regardless of a person’s sexual orientation, we are called to give up our desires of the flesh. That is sex in general.” That means that sex (at least within the confines of marriage) is a good thing, not a bad thing, not a wicked thing, not a sinful thing, but indeed the fact that we are created sexual beings is a good and laudable gift from our heavenly Father to celebrated responsibly, not cast off as “a desire of the flesh” that “we are called to give up.”

      That now brings us back to my original statement after the comment by “Anonymous” that becoming born again in Christ does not mean that straight people give up being heterosexual. Just as heterosexually-oriented people become born again in Christ and continue being heterosexually-oriented people, so too do homosexually-oriented people become born again in Christ and continue being homosexually-oriented people. The real issue here, as already stated, is whether the passages that generally get appealed to in this debate truly exegetically support your “antigay” doctrine. Increasing numbers of Bible scholars, theologians and other evangelicals who have done their biblical homework conclude that they do not.

      One would have to be living under a rock to not be aware that throughout 2,000 years of church history, Christians of all traditions have repeatedly used the Bible to support scores of doctrinal positions they believed to be as clear as mineral water but that they later had to confess to be mistaken. We’ve listed many of them right here in earlier comments. The doctrine of those like yourself who read their antigay presuppositions into the biblical texts is increasingly believed to be only the most recent doctrinal position well on the way to being generally acknowledged as a mistake of this kind.

      Whether you care to acknowledge it or not, people with a high regard for Scripture and who are prayerfully committed to ordering their lives in accordance with it are honestly divided over this issue. And those on your side of the fence are steadily and increasingly coming to see that the “antigay” position that you espouse is simply not in the final analysis exegetically supportable. You are part of a dying breed. The toothpaste is out of the tube and it’s not going back inside. And when a doctrine or belief we hold and espouse is determined to be in the final analysis exegetically unsupportable, then we need to be willing to let it go, no matter long treasured or long-held it might be.

      -Alex Haiken
      http://JewishChristianGay.wordpress.com

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