Everyone agrees: love does not include the approval of everything. In fact, sometimes the loving thing to do is to disapprove. For example, a teenager might love to go to a party with drinking and drugs. However, it is because of the parents love for their child that they forbid him/her from going the party.
God is love. Just as a loving parent sets guidelines for their children, so does God. Sometimes children wrongly believe their parents hate them for limiting their behavior. But in reality if a parent believes a certain behavior is harmful, then it would be hate for them to encourage the behavior. God is the creator and designer of life. He knows how best it should be lived. His commands are given, not to hurt us, but to help us.
God created sex to be practiced between opposite sexes within marriage. When any person of any sexuality rejects God's design for sexual relationships, it is a sin. It is rebellion which says “My will is more important than God's.” It is the opposite view of Jesus, who when faced with death said, “...not my will, but yours, be done (Luke 22:42).” It is also the breaking of the greatest commandment: “...You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind (Matthew 22:37).” A heart that loves God shows it by obeying His commandments. Many claim to love God but their actions show their true fruit. Jesus said in Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”
The Old Testament
The Old Testament prohibits homosexuality (and therefore bisexuality).
“You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination (Leviticus 18:22).”
“If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination…” (Leviticus 20:13).
A common objection to these verses is that they are from the Old Covenant that God made with Moses and the Jewish people. Since Christians live under the New Covenant such Old Covenant passages are not binding.
It is true that much of the Old Covenant is not binding on Christians. But it a mistake to say that none of it is binding on Christians. What primarily carries forward are moral commandments. Nine out of the Ten Commandments are repeated in the New Testament. The ban against homosexuality is not just repeated in the New Testament but made even more clear. In addition, both chapters 18 and 20 in Leviticus are clear that God not only finds homosexuality sinful for Jews but for Gentiles as well.
“Do not make yourselves unclean by any of these things, for by all these the nations I am driving out before you have become unclean, and the land became unclean, so that I punished its iniquity, and the land vomited out its inhabitants. But you shall keep my statutes and my rules and do none of these abominations, either the native or the stranger who sojourns among you (for the people of the land, who were before you, did all of these abominations, so that the land became unclean), lest the land vomit you out when you make it unclean, as it vomited out the nation that was before you. For everyone who does any of these abominations, the persons who do them shall be cut off from among their people. So keep my charge never to practice any of these abominable customs that were practiced before you, and never to make yourselves unclean by them: I am the Lord your God (Leviticus 18:24-30).”
“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 (Leviticus 20:22-23).”
God judged the Canaanites sexual sins to be so serious He had them driven out of their land. Leviticus 18:26 also states that both native (Jews) and strangers (Gentiles) were not to engage in the sexual sins listed in the chapter.
Another common objection argues that these passages are referencing abusive homosexuality, such as between men and boys. This view holds that this activity was common then and must be what Moses had in mind. The problem is that both passages speak of adults. To say otherwise is to read into the text and not what it actually states. There is simply no basis for such a reading.
There are also those that would argue that these passages only speak of male homosexuality. Therefore, lesbianism is acceptable. However, there are no biblical or extra-biblical records of religious Jews approving of lesbian relationships. Further, the New Testament does directly address lesbianism in Romans 1.
The New Testament
“For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error (Romans 1:26-27).”
Again, there are those that object to the plain meaning of this passage by claiming that Romans 1 is addressing homosexuality between adults and youths. This type of homosexuality was common in Paul’s day and must be what he had in mind.
Yet there are three major flaws with this objection. First, the passage only refers to adults. Second, it was not common for women to abuse girls. Third, notice both homosexual partners are “consumed with passion for one another.” Children are not consumed with passion for their sexual abusers.
There are also those that would claim that Romans 1:22-25 only applies to homosexuality outside of those considered “in the church.” This point argues that the passage is referring to idolaters, those worshiping created things instead of God. These verses state that God gave them over to their lusts and they delved into their sins, including homosexuality. The conclusion then is that this passage doesn't even apply to homosexuals worshiping God in churches.
However, the teaching of Romans 1 continues into chapter 2:
“We know that the judgment of God rightly falls on those who practice such things. Do you suppose, O man—you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself—that you will escape the judgment of God? Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God's kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? But because of your hard and impenitent heart you are storing up wrath for yourself on the day of wrath when God's righteous judgment will be revealed” (Romans 2:2-6).
So some of the Christians in the Roman church were engaging in the sins listed in chapter 1, including homosexuality. Such people “deserve to die” (Romans 1:32), are under God's judgment (Romans 2:2-3) and wrath (Romans 2:5). The passage applies to people both inside and outside the church.
Romans 2:4 states that God is kind and patience towards people in order to lead them toward repentance. People of all sexualities have to struggle with putting God's will above their own. But when we do this the Bible states, “And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God (1 Corinthians 6:11).”
Those who would like to read more on this topic are encouraged to check out:
--- ONLINE RESOURCES ---
Joe Dallas: Youtube
Amy K. Hall – STR.org
--- PRINT RESOURCES ---
Michael Brown – Can You Be Gay And A Christian?