“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…” (Rom. 1:26–27).- Romans 1:18–32
Our look at God’s intent for sexuality concludes this month with a quick study of a pressing issue in our day. Using Dr. R.C. Sproul’s lecture Homosexuality, we will look at the Lord’s view of homosexual behavior and how we should treat those enslaved to it.
To call homosexual behavior a sin is to stand against powerful forces in our society. Acts that used to be a source of shame are now openly celebrated throughout the world. The so-called “Gay Rights Movement,” with the help of many mainline churches, multi-national corporations, politicians, educators, and judges, has been very successful in promoting homosexuality as an acceptable, if not laudable, part of society.
When Scripture and culture disagree, we must stand with God’s Word. Homosexual behavior is clearly condemned in the Bible. Leviticus 18:22 and 1 Corinthians 6:9–10 are just two of the many biblical passages that call homosexual acts “sins.” To say homosexuality is a viable lifestyle is to deny the Lord’s authority over what is right and wrong, and therefore, to worship a false god in His place.
Romans 1:18–32 addresses the sin of homosexuality most fully. As with all sins, the root problem is idolatry — the substitution of man-made deities in place of the one, true God of glory. Homosexual behavior is only possible for those who deny the Lord who reveals Himself in nature. When men ignore creation’s witness to our Father, they can suppress the clear evidence from nature that males are to bond sexually only with females and vice versa (vv. 18–23).
Homosexual acts rob mankind of its dignity as well. Our worth is derivative; we have value because we are made in God’s image (Gen. 1:26–27). When our idolatry denies the One whose image we bear, we will in due time deny our own dignity as well and may choose to vandalize our bodies through homosexual activity (vv. 24–27).
Scripture views homosexual behavior as an especially blatant form of idolatry, but it does not view it as unforgiveable. Tomorrow we will focus on proclaiming the Gospel of grace to those who commit homosexual acts.
Many people say we only love those who practice homosexuality if we approve of their lifestyle. Yet, true love delights in the truth (1 Cor. 13:6); thus, Christians cannot approve of homosexual acts. We are also not to think Jesus cannot transform the hearts of friends and family who are involved in homosexuality. Pray today for the salvation of those in bondage and for the integrity and success of those who have special ministries for those engaged in sexual sin.
Passages for Further Study
1 Tim. 1:8–11