We read about homosexual activity in Romans 1,26,27: “(26) For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. (27) Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.”
Please observe the following truths about homosexual conduct that are found in this text:
(1) It is a demonstration of “vile passions” (26).
(2) Males being with females is “natural,” but females united with females in sexual union is “against nature” (26,27).
(3) Homosexual conduct is “shameful” (27).
(4) Homosexuality is “error” (27).
(5) Homosexuality has a “penalty” – it deserves to be punished (27): “. . . those who practice such things are deserving of death” (1:32).
1 Corinthians 6:9,10 is another strong message about homosexuality. There it is written, “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.” In God’s sight, homosexuality is sinful.
Some people of our day apparently believe that homosexuality is something new. The example of the homosexuals in ancient Sodom proves that this notion is false (Genesis 19:4-7).
Others seem to think that only those of the younger generation ever have a homosexual lifestyle. Not so. Those Sodomites that had unnatural sexual desires for other men were “both old and young” (Genesis 19:4).
Many today suggest that homosexuality is “an alternative lifestyle – all have the right to choose.” It is true that God grants humans the freedom to make choices in this and other matters, but that does not mean that the Lord is pleased with every choice we make. If homosexuality is not acceptable to God, then it is wrong, regardless of how many advocates it may have. We have already seen plain scriptural proof that homosexuality is sinful. God calls it “an abomination.”
“But people cannot help it. They were born that way (with a built-in attraction for those of the same sex).” What have we seen? Homosexuality is a violation of God’s law. God says that homosexual and lesbian relationships are “against nature” (Romans 1:26,27). God holds homosexuals accountable for their conduct. We know that this is the case because the Bible says that fornicators and homosexuals cannot enter the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9,10). If this were something that was out of a person’s control, then God, our fair and righteous Creator and Judge, would never hold such people responsible. “Being gay” is a choice.
“But many religious leaders are endorsing homosexuality and gay marriages. If such people stand behind those who are gay, then there must not be anything wrong with it.” It is true that some in religious circles are advocating acceptance of homosexual relations. Some denominations now have “ordained” homosexuals serving in some leadership capacity. Human beings, including those that are well respected in religious communities, do not have the authority to decide what is acceptable in the moral realm. That authority belongs only to Jesus, because He has all authority in heaven and on earth (Matthew 28:18). If every religious leader on earth would begin to proclaim that God accepts homosexuality, their spread of such a falsehood could never change what the Bible says, nor could it turn an abomination into an acceptable form of behavior!
What can Christians do about the plague of homosexuality? First of all, this is a serious matter, so we must not be apathetic about it. The situation will not get better by God’s people sitting by and remaining silent. We must speak out! Those homosexuals that do not repent and obey the gospel will be lost forever (1 Corinthians 6:9,10). The same is true for any member of the church that has fallen into this sinful lifestyle.
Second, we must maintain a proper attitude toward those who are homosexuals. Like Jesus did, we must hate the sin, but love the person that sins (Luke 15:1,2). This is not always easy to do. We must not be silent over gay relationships, but at the same time, we must be courteous and never belligerent (1 Peter 3:8). Remember, homosexuality does not condemn a person any more than other sins do. Homosexuals need the gospel just like all other sinners do. By God’s grace, homosexuals can be saved, if they will repent and obey God’s truth. In the first century, there were some saints in the church at Corinth who had been homosexuals before their conversion (1 Corinthians 6:9,10).
The Bible’s message about same-sex relationships is clear. We must kindly, yet forcefully and without apology, sound forth the Bible’s message so that all may know the plain truth about homosexuality.
— Roger D. Campbell
TRUTH is published monthly by the Klang church of Christ in order to help educate, edify, encourage, and equip the saints of God.