Homosexuality in the Old and New Testament
by Robert Randle 7/19/2012 / Devotionals
Leviticus 18: 20a
You shall not lie (Heb. sh'k'bey) with a male as one lies with a female.
Leviticus 20: 13a
As for a man who lies (Heb. yishkbay) with a male as those who lie
(Heb. mishkbey) with a woman. Both of them have committed a detestable act (abomination).
NOTE: The words for lie/lay carnally are from the primitive root words, shakab (#7901) and shekobeth (#7903) in Strong's Hebrew and Chaldee Dictionary. The primary meaning in both instances relate to having sexual relations. And the Hebrew word "ish" translates as man.
Genesis 19: 5
And they called to Lot and said to him, "Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us that we may lay/lie (Heb. ned' 'ah) with them."
Judges 19: 22b
And they spoke to the old man, the owner of the house, saying, "Bring out the man who came into your house that we may know (Heb. ned'a) him.
Genesis 19: 8a
"Now behold, I have two daughters who [are virgins] have not had sexual/carnal relations (Heb. yad' 'u) with a man.
Judges 19: 25
But the men were not willing to listen to him. So the man took hold of his concubine and brought her out to them; and they knew (Heb. yed' 'u) her, and abused her all night until morning, then they sent her away when the dawn rose.
Leviticus 20: 7
Holy (Heb. Qdoshim)
Deuteronomy 23: 17
Sodomite (Heb. Qadesh)
1 Kings 14: 24
Sodomites (Heb. Qadesh)
1 Kings 15: 12
The Sodomites (Heb. ha Q'deshim)
1 Kings 22: 46
The Sodomites (Heb. ha Qadesh)
*2 Kings 23: 7a*
He tore down the houses of the male temple prostitutes (Heb. ha Q'deshim) who were in the LORD'S temple.
The Hebrew word "Qadesh" (pl. Q'deshim) translated as sodomite, also means male temple prostitute. Interestingly, this word is similar to "Qodesh/Qadash" (pl. 'Qdoshim') which means holy. It would seem from these references that the use of different Hebrew root words such as ishkbay, yad' 'u/yeh' 'u, ned'a, qadesh, shak'biym-shek'biym-shok'biym, or some derivative has the main connotation of a sexual encounter between males, mostly, and usually associated with pagan religious customs that is explicitly revealed in the respective narratives. However, it is interesting to note the words in 1 Timothy 1: 9 and their roots, as in the following: "unholy" (t'me'iym); "profane" (n'bad'iym); "lawless" (hapsh'iym); and "rebellious" (hamor'diym).
In Genesis 4 and Judges 19, these accounts are about brutality, rape, degradation, sexual abuse, humiliation, and violence. To be sure, nowhere in the entire Bible is equivalent Hebrew roots for modern terms such as homosexual, faggot or the acronym GLBTQ (Gay-Lesbian-Bisexual-Transgender-Queer). The Scriptures are not so much concerned about labels as it is regarding conduct and personal responsibility.
There are two main considerations in this matter that cannot be understated, namely, the theological and physiological. Either the standard translation is in error, the interpretation, or both; hence, any hermeneutical techniques will be of little value. On the other side of this issue is the assumption that people engaged in same-sex relations have a "choice" and it is something that can be 'cured' if one accepts some form of radically invasive psychotherapy, including exorcism, or merely just come to Jesus and He will deliver you from this way of life.
The Christian Church has to take a firm and definitive stand on this matter and send a clear message of its position which allows it to be inclusive, compassionate, loving, supportive and welcoming to any and all who come among us instead of being hostile, judgmental, uncomfortable and condemning. At the same time we should not be apologizing for God nor compromising His word for the sake of political correctness. A closing thought has to do with the friendship between David and Jonathan, son of King Saul, as in the following:
1 Samuel 1: 26
I am heartbroken over you, my brother Jonathan. You were my great delight. Your love was more wonderful to me than the love of women.
No one in their right mind would even think for a moment that David and Jonathan had some kind of same-sex encounter, although they shared a very strong bond of affection that was probably quite remarkable.
Leviticus 18: 1-3, 24; 20: 23
Then the LORD (YHVH) spoke to Moses, saying, "Speak to the sons of Israel and say to them, 'I am YHVH your God (El). You shall not do according to the doings of the land of Egypt in which you lived; and you shall not do according to the doings of the land of Canaan where I am bringing you there; and you shall not walk in their statutes.' " "Do not defile yourself with any of these things; for by all these the nations which I am casting out before you have become defiled." "Moreover, you shall not follow the customs of the nation which I shall drive out before you, for they did all these things, and therefore I have abhorred them."
No one really knows for sure why someone is attracted to someone of the same sex or chooses to be a drag queen, bisexual, etc. Despite all the theology, psychology, sociology, anthropology, sexology, anatomy and biology, people are what they are. Perhaps more of us should listen to the words in Lady Gaga's hit song, "Born This Way" because quite frankly, none of us have a clue to what the real deal is, anyway.
Besides all this, according to Sex and Gender Sociology, roughly 1-2% of all births in the United States are sexually indeterminate. What this means in layman's terms is that three to six million people are born with gender misidentification-they are in the wrong body. All we do is look at them and frown up our faces; we say or think something offensive, or avoid any sort of physical contact or go out of our way not to be in too close proximity as though contagious, without ever trying to imagine what it must be like to be hated or shunned in that way. In far too many instances believers preach one thing but practice the opposite and forget that our LORD Jesus was routinely criticized by the traditional established church of His time of being in the company of and a friend to those marginalized persons whom society has rejected and called 'sinners.'
Sometimes we forget the spirit of the Law, which is all about love and forgiveness and since there really isn't one Scripture in the entire Bible that directly forbids or condemns as inherently sinful a loving, monogamous relationship between two same-sex life partners as far as translation is concerned, although some words may be interpreted this way. Now, as a final thought, consider the following:
Romans 4: 15a
For where there is no law there is no transgression.
1 John 3: 4
Whoever commits sin transgresses the law. For sin is a transgression of the law.