Skip to comments.Is it true Jesus never addressed same-sex marriage?
Posted on 08/10/2012 6:48:52 AM PDT by Graybeard58
WAKE FOREST, N.C. (BP) -- Today it is popular among those promoting same-sex marriage to say that Jesus never addressed the issue, that He was silent on the subject.
Those who affirm the historical and traditional understanding of marriage between a man and woman often are admonished to go and read the Bible more carefully. If we do so, we are told, we will see that Jesus never addressed the issue. So, the question that I want to raise is, "Is this assertion correct?" Is it indeed the fact that Jesus never addresses the issue of same-sex marriage?
When one goes to the Gospels to see exactly what Jesus did say, one will discover that He addressed very clearly both the issues of sex and marriage. He addresses both their use and misuse. And, as He speaks to both subjects, He makes it plain that issues of the heart are of critical importance.
First, what did Jesus say about sex? Jesus believed that sex is a good gift from a great God. He also believed that sex was a good gift to be enjoyed within a monogamous, heterosexual covenant of marriage. On this He is crystal clear. In Mark 7 Jesus addresses the fact that all sin is ultimately an issue of the heart. Jesus was never after behavioral modification. Jesus was always after heart transformation. Change the heart and you truly change the person.
Thus, when He lists a catalog of sins in Mark 7:21-22, He makes it clear that all of these sins are ultimately matters of the heart. It is the idols of the heart that Jesus is out to eradicate. Among those sins of the heart that often give way to sinful actions He would include both sexual immorality and adultery (Mark 7:21). The phrase "sexual immorality," in a biblical context, would speak of any sexual behavior outside the covenant of marriage between a man and woman. Therefore, Jesus viewed pre-marital sex, adultery and homosexual behavior as sinful. And, He knew that the cure for each is a transformation of the heart made possible by the good news of the Gospel. The Gospel changes us so that now we are enabled to do not what we want, but what God wants. Here we find real freedom and joy.
Second, what about the issue of marriage? Is it truly the case that Jesus never spoke to the issue in terms of gender? The answer is a simple no. He gives His perspective on this when He addresses the issue in Matthew 19:4-6. There, speaking to the institution of marriage, Jesus is clear when He says, "Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, 'Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'? So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate." That Jesus was committed to heterosexual marriage could not be more evident. A man is to leave his parents and be joined to a woman who becomes his wife. This is heterosexual marriage. That He also was committed to the permanence and fidelity of marriage is clear as well.
So, how might we sum up the issue? First, Jesus came to deliver all people from all sin. Such sin, He was convinced, originated in and was ultimately a matter of the heart. Second, Jesus made it clear that sex is a good gift from a great God, and this good gift is to be enjoyed within heterosexual covenantal marriage. It is simply undeniable that Jesus assumed heterosexual marriage as God's design and plan. Third, Jesus sees all sexual activity outside this covenant as sinful. Fourth, it is a very dangerous and illegitimate interpretive strategy to bracket the words of Jesus and read into them the meaning you would like to find. We must not isolate Jesus from His affirmation of the Old Testament as the Word of God nor divorce Him from His first century Jewish context. Fifth, and this is really good news, Jesus loves both the heterosexual sinner and the homosexual sinner and promises free forgiveness and complete deliverance to each and everyone who comes to Him.
John 7 tells the story of a woman caught in adultery. The religious legalists want to stone her, but Jesus intervenes and prevents her murder. He then looks upon the woman and, with grace and tenderness, tells her that He does not condemn her. Then He says to her, "go and sin no more." In Matthew 11:28 Jesus speaks to every one of us weighed down under the terrible weight and burden of sin. Listen to these tender words of the Savior, "Come to me all who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest." This is the hope that is found in Jesus. This is the hope found in the Gospel. Whether one is guilty of heterosexual or homosexual sin, one will find grace, forgiveness and freedom at the foot of the cross where the ground is always level.
When I came to fully trust Jesus as my Lord and Savior at the age of 20, I determined that I wanted to think like Jesus and live like Jesus for the rest of my life. When it comes to sex I want to think like Jesus. When it comes to marriage I want to think like Jesus. That means I will affirm covenantal heterosexual marriage. It also means loving each and every person regardless of their lifestyle choices. It means, as His representative, proclaiming His Gospel and extending the transforming grace of the Gospel to others that takes us where we are, but wonderfully and amazingly, does not leave us there. That is a hope and a promise that followers of Jesus gladly extend to everyone, because we have been recipients of that same amazing grace.
Daniel Akin is president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, N.C.
The question of whether something was specifically addressed rahter than being able to be reasonably inferred from the context, and from the whole text of the Bible, is a separate question.
Now, maybe you are addressing a separate question, but to me the question is: Does the Bible disapprove of lesbianism, and my considered opinion is that it does.
“The only people who suggest otherwise are those who are desperately trying to justify their perverted, evil and godless lifestyle. “
Exactly. They are trying to force government to redefine religion and specifically Christianity into what THEY (Gays) want it to be instead of what it is. To do so would be to violate that religion’s first amendment rights.
Religion and Christianity is what it is. They just can’t accept it for what it is. Sucks to be them (so to speak).
1) Any Israelite or any foreigner residing in Israel who sacrifices any of his children to Molek is to be put to death
2) I will set my face against anyone who turns to mediums and spiritists to prostitute themselves by following them, and I will cut them off from their people.
3) Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death. Because they have cursed their father or mother, their blood will be on their own head.
4) If a man commits adultery with another mans wife with the wife of his neighborboth the adulterer and the adulteress are to be put to death.
5) If a man has sexual relations with his fathers wife, he has dishonored his father. Both the man and the woman are to be put to death;
6) If a man has sexual relations with his daughter-in-law, both of them are to be put to death. What they have done is a perversion; their blood will be on their own heads;
7) If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads;
8) If a man marries both a woman and her mother, it is wicked. Both he and they must be burned in the fire, so that no wickedness will be among you;
9) If a man has sexual relations with an animal, he is to be put to death, and you must kill the animal;
10) If a woman approaches an animal to have sexual relations with it, kill both the woman and the animal. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads; (not sure why it’s the animal’s fault)
I think what we are talking about is covered under #7, and remember, Jesus came not to change the law, not one jot, not one tittle. He might forgive you, but you’d have to admit what you had done was wrong first.
This leaves the question of whether The Law explicitly and specifically condemns women having sexual relations with other women, and I find no example of such.
Thus we are left with "Does the Bible disapprove of lesbianism" ... and we must present a totality of evidence and general point of view argument. THAT argument, IMO, suggests that God disapproves sexual relations outside of marriage, and that marriage involves one man and one woman, and that the relationship of husband & wife is dissolved only by the death of one or the other.
It is what God gave us, therefore it is sufficient.
Throughout the Holy WORD of G-d, marriage is a metaphorshalom b'SHEM Yah'shua HaMashiach
for the relationship of YHvH and his "called" people.
In the Tanach YHvH is the Bridegroom and Israel is the Wife.
Later "called" gentiles are referred to a Bride.
A clear reading of Romans 1 in context beginning at
verse 16 shows that those who should know YHvH and his creation
but reject Him are given over to a perverse relationship in direct
opposition to the metaphor of marriage.
Well, then, I guess that we are more or less in agreement. You have a nice day.
I think the problem isn't "gays". The problem is that most churches have already abandoned most of the constitutive elements of Biblical marriage.
According to Scripture, marriage is defined as man-woman (Genesis 2, referenced also by Jesus); lifelong (prophet Malachi says God "hates" divorce, Jesus says that a person who marries a divorced person is committing adultery); and procreative ("be fruitful and multiply"-- but implied by the very fact that they are malke and female: this is part of the natural "design".)
There is not a single instance of sexual partnering that is man-woman, lifelong, and procreative, that is condemned in he Bible. There is not a single instance of sexual partnering that is same-sex, non-lifelong, or anti-procreative, that is blessed in the Bible.
If I am in error here, please correct me.
But most "Christian" churches have already given up on 2 of 3, namely, lifelong and procreative. They OK divorce/remarriage and they OK anti-procreative acts, e.g. contracepted sex.
So most "Christian" churches have already re-defined marriage into a form contrary to what God has designed and defined.
Gays are just making it 3-out-of-3.
Agree on all three points. They provide a basis for a defense of marriage as one man + one woman, procreative, and life-long ... and as the only Divinely approved setting for sexual relations. The argument against female homosexual relations is then one of inference. Such relations are necessarily outside of marriage, and therefore a violation of and a perversion of God’s intent for our sexuality.
“It is what God gave us, therefore it is sufficient.”
Couldn’t agree with you more.
Again, and I am sure you are well aware of this but many people forget, the 6th Commandment (I’m Lutheran, if you are wondering why I use this way of numbering), “You shall not commit adultery,” (Exodus 12:14) is informed by what God said on this subject before that, the first of which is the definition of marriage: “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” (Genesis 2:24) Despite the post-modern, deconstructionist fashion of today the definition of marriage is not in doubt, scripturally speaking. All sexual activity that falls outside of it is, by definition, adultery. That, for the believer, is sufficient, as you say.
“I tend to give the ancient world a lot more credit than that.”
And I also couldn’t agree with you more. Glad to see someone else say so.
Read Matthew 19:3-9 again. (Same event in Mark 10: 3-12)did Jesus of Nazareth not direct His audience to Genesis 1:27— and 2:24? Read those and compare them to Mark 10: and Matthew 19:? Then read Genesis 13:13— and 18:1—19:29 -read carefully Genesis 19:1-13 what did the men of Sodom do? What did they
demand of Lot? what did they threaten to do? Now I am told the sin of Sodom,as given given in the prophets— was something other than homosexual sex.(Ezekiel 16:48 ) My question is was Ezekiel speaking of a condition of their heart(wickedness?) that included or led to immoral sexual behavior especially with strangers?(Genesis 19:) did not Peter-and Jude say that the Judgement of Sodom was given to us as example of How a righteous God deals with unrighteousness? How He provides a way out for the righteous? Just asking. And I don’t think any can show how same sex marriage would have been acceptable given the strict definition of “marriage” /betrothal then.
The author refutes the stand, made by homosexuals and other liberals, that "Jesus never addressed same sex marriage". He's not pro homo marriage at all. Did you read it?
I really wanted a reference to these vague references. His style is a bit dry and I could not get through it.
Romans 1 makes it clear that God doesn't like female-female sex, BUT I think that when read with Leviticus it's clear that he really, really HATES male-male sex.
The fact that the Bible doesn't condemn female-female sex as forcefully as it does male-male sex, leads me to read Romans 1 a little more narrowly in the case of female-female sex. That is, in order to clearly violate the Bible a woman would have to "leave" all sexual relations with men and live an exclusively lesbian lifestyle.
In other words, it seems to me that, taken together, the most logical reading of the texts is that the Bible absolutely condemns all male-male sexual acts, but condemns as "abomination" the lesbian lifestyle.
And it seems to me that makes a good deal of sense in a "natural law" context (I was raised a Catholic, I know that doesn't carry much weight with my Protestant friends). But consider the disease, death and destruction attendant upon male-male sodomy. It is a profoundly septic act. It involves by its nature the mingling of semen, blood and feces. It's objectively speaking a horribly disgusting act. It violates our natural revulsion of feces. It's tailor-made to spread ever-new diseases. And male homosexuals engage in many more nauseating activities that I won't go into here but which include that actual eating of medically significant amounts of feces.
Active sodomites tend to be sick, and they spread their disease-enhancing behavior by recruiting vulnerable boys at ever turn. And all of that is simply inherent in the "act" of inserting a penis into an anus. Add to that disgusting mixture the "all gas, no brakes" nature of male sexuality, and you get a phenomenon that could destroy the entire nation.
Of course, none of that pertains to female-female sex. That's just not the way the equipment works, without going into lurid detail. Female-female sexual acts simply do not present the same dire health risks that male-male sodomy does. And add to the that the "more brakes than gas" nature of female sexuality (let's face it folks, men are the gas, women are the brakes) then even with the lesbian lifestyle you don't get anything like the out-of-control orgiastic phenomena like gay bathhouses and leather bars, and a lifestyle where men typically have sex with 800 different men per year. With lesbians, you get a sort of extreme nesting phenomenon. In fact, lesbians have a name for it: "lesbian bed death." Google it sometime, if you're interested.
So, men and women are just different and it's a shame we're so overcome with this silly "all are equal in every way" meme that we can't recognize the difference between the mortal threat to society presented by the gay lifestyle with its male-male sodomy and the far less destructive phenomenon of female-female sex.
I'm a criminal defense lawyer and I've read a few things about the anthropology of women's prisons. It's weird, but it turns more into a sort of catty junior high school girl drama thing of who's with who and who we like now and don't like, etc. There's far less violence, rape, beatings, etc. than is the case in male prisons. And most women, according to the studies I've read, enter into some sort of pairing while in prison. It's more of a comfort "grooming" thing for them. And I respectfully suggest that this is intuitively obvious.
Leaving aside the "natural law" argument, I'd add one more thing from the Scriptural perspective. The fact that God didn't condemn polygyny and even positively prescribed it in the case of leverite marriage (and indeed seemed just fine with the Patriarchs having multiple wives, etc.) seems to me to add credence to this view. David had lots of wives, Solomon had a hundred, if memory serves. One can only assume that all sorts of shenanigans were taking place in their harems. Where is the condemnation of the acts that no doubt were taking place there? It's completely absent.
In sum, as a fact of nature, there is no more immediate threat to any society than homosexual sodomy. Sapphic dalliances aren't nearly as dangerous to society.
And the Bible seems to agree with that view.
That would have put significant constraints on polygamous marriage beds, however I feel they were in error from Genesis 2:24.
Perhaps if it was addressed and considered an issue in biblical days, and we still have strong traditional marriage views, it’s not really a concern. I would think that if was going to ruin marriages as we know it, then after 200 yrs, it would have happened.
"The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause? "And [Jesus Christ] answered and said unto them, 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 his
father and mother,
and shall cleave to his wife: and
shall be one flesh?"
In an environment where homosexual activity was punishable by death, it was completely unnecessary for Jesus to mention it explicitly. Indeed, it would be necessary for Jesus to explicitly PROMOTE homosexuality in order to conclude that He approved. And he did not.
Respectfully, that needs a bit more context. In 30 AD Israel was part of the Pagan Roman Empire. It had been part of the Pagan Greek Empire prior to that. The Greeks were heavily into, well, you know. And Paul was writing very much in the context of that larger pro-homosexual world.
It's interesting that Paul in Romans 1 essentially equates homosexuality with idolatry. Soloman had countless wives and in the end he apostatized due to the influence of his pagan wives. So, I ask, surely there was lesbian sex running rampant in Soloman's harem, inasmuch as these women were part of the pagan world, were idolaters by definition. Was this even addressed in the Bible?
Wouldn't the absence of an explicit condemnation in the OT lend creedence to Arrogant Bustard's position?
It makes sense to me, at least.
Now, an entire generation has agreed that it is a liberty to kill ones children. After professing themselves to be wise, they become fools and 'evolve' to kill the helpless and by euthanasia and infanticide. Whereas it was once thought the helpless had the greatest claim on our protection, right has become inverted and now they have the least protection. The Germans, who learned their trade largely from Sanger and her ilk, developed another tool of their trade that beinglebensunwerten Leben - "life unworthy of life". It is a eupemism to adjust their guilt so they will, but they know it is wrong. Natural Law, that which the cannot not know causes this response. And so it is with the issue at hand. We all know marriage is between a man and a woman. But those who chose to violate that law put up barriers to evade guilt. They change the name to 'same-sex' marriage, but it is not marriage. In fact it is homosexuality attempting to go mainstream. Jesus did say this was wrong and unseamly. Being wrong is a result of a moral obligation. To whom is that obligation owed. It is owed to the author of that Moral Law. And so it will be. The assumption that we make up our moral foundations as we go along has become a malalligned assumption. If we do not like them,....we can change them. To these people who have turned away they think the moral code can be abandoned or re-created. This is what we are watching happen with this cultural question put before us. But they know it is wrong...it is the law. Disbelief in Moral Law is becoming a pillar of middle-class prejudice. They are essentially claiming tolerence by claiming "My morality says you shall not impose your morality on anyone else." They go further and declare that there never was Moral Law - that it is an illusion, and an illusion from which we can escape. They say that the emblem of Moral Law has become immorality itself. They say being "judgemental" and "tolerent" is their way of judging interance has been judged and will not be tolerated.
While that is part of the wider context, Jesus was primarily talking to Jews. He didn't spend that much time admonishing His listeners against making sacrifices to pagan gods, either. He did, though, make the comment (Luke 17:2):
It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.
It’s all very confusing. There are lots of freepers much more familiar with the bible than me, and some say yes, some say no, with a number of views in between..
All because Henry XIII wanted a divorce and the Pope wouldn't grant it, so he started his own church. It's slid downhill from there.
Even among FReepers, there is a wide swath of opinion from traditional conservative to self-indulgent libertarian. As with any moral question, it comes down to your own relationship with God. First, do as He taught and read the scriptures. Second, pray for guidance and watch and listen carefully for Him to reveal himself.
Since moral questions come down to one’s own relationship with God, why does someone’s religion count so much? How can anyone claim to have the right moral answer? Wouldn’t they all be equal, just dependent upon the individual and his relationship with God?
That is a good question. If you read the New Testament start to finish, you find that Christians are to live in relationship with one another so that they can help each other and develop the community to support the broad agreements in the Old and New Testaments, which would be the Ten Commandments. Jesus was God made Man; he came to earth through a mortal woman to live as a person whom mere mortals could relate to. He taught his apostles and disciples a finer interpretation of the divine law, and brought the concept of individual responsibility and conscience into sharp focus.
The New Testament makes clear that we are all created as unique beings with unique gifts and talents, with God's purpose to make each of us part of His greater plan. Because he made none of us perfect, we are to live in relationship to others so we can combine our gifts to accomplish bringing about His kingdom. This is another reason to be a member of a church group, large or small, bearing in mind that no human is perfect -- all of us fall short of the glory of God.
However, church members can help one another, provide a way to remain accountable for our actions, and importantly, provide an environment in which to raise children or support seekers who are not yet ready to make a full commitment to Christ. No one can be born a Christian -- each must accept the great gift of salvation in his or her heart by asking Christ to accept oneself, sins and all, into His "body" of believers. If sincere, this "conversion", even among those born into a nominally Christian family, is the beginning of living for Christ's will instead of one's own will.
As for moral questions coming down to the individual, this takes place when the great Commandments and the Bible-based teachings of the church community still leave you with questions, or some specific dilemma based on your God-given individual life, such as having a child in trouble with the law, or being tempted to adultery when one's spouse is terminally ill. In these and all situations that cause us concern, we pray for guidance and the course of action that will not disappoint Our Maker. Or, on realizing that we have made a moral error, we pray for forgiveness.
I pray to Our Father to help you find your path and a suitable community of believers to help your journey to the "peace that passes understanding" -- the peace of Christ. Write to me any time, stuartcr.
I believe I have found my path, thanks.