Refuting Common Arguments in Support of Homosexuality

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Challenge 1

  • Homosexuality is natural and acceptable because it is found within the animal kingdom.

True homosexuality within the animal kingdom is very rare. It is certainly not a strong argument for proving that homosexuality is normal. If anything, it affirms that homosexuality is not typical, being an aberration of the norm. Consider, for example, penguins. Because of their habit of mating for life, and because of some high profile “gay penguins” at zoos, penguins have often been cited in support of true homosexuality within the animal kingdom. However, this claim has been proven false. According to the Daily Mail:

Penguins do not form long-term homosexual relationships despite same-sex flirting, a new study has found. … Experts believe that the penguins might indulge in some same-sex flirting because they are ‘lonely’ due to a lack of female penguins in the colony. Gay ‘flirting’ could also be due to high levels of testosterone within the colony among males.[1]

 

More importantly, we are not animals. We are created in the image of God. Unlike us, animals are controlled by their passions and instincts. One need only observe a dog clinging to its owner’s leg to realize that animals may relieve their sexual passion on anything and everything. Were we to determine moral behavior based upon practices within the animal kingdom, then we could murder and maim others to acquire their position because they are weak; we could eat fellow humans; and we could abandon, or even murder, our spouses after procreation. Certainly, behavior within the animal kingdom is not sufficient to condone human behavior.

 

Challenge 2

  • What about a person with a same–sex orientation who never finds members of the opposite sex attractive?

Sex has a context. It cannot be separated from that context, which is marriage between a man and a woman. What about the man who can’t have sex because his wife won’t have sex with him? Is he then free to have sex with other women? Of course not, and yet this is essentially the same argument. This argument maintains that if a person cannot experience sex within the acceptable parameters of God, then he must be free to seek sex outside of those parameters.

Sometimes we mistakenly assume that sexual relations are a right to which everyone is entitled. However, as Jesus noted in Matthew 19:12, some people are born eunuchs, and some are made so by other men. Is it fair that the man who was born a eunuch or made so by other men does not get to experience sex? No … but life is not entirely fair because of the curse of sin.

God is fully capable of granting a person a new sexual orientation. Certainly, there are many testimonies to this effect. However, it is possible that some may never experience this. Instead, God may be calling them to demonstrate God’s grace and provision through life-long celibacy. After all, Jesus also noted in Matthew 19:12 that some have made themselves eunuchs—meaning that some have chosen celibacy—for the sake of the kingdom of heaven.

 

Challenge 3

  • Jesus overturned the Law. It is hypocritical for anyone who does not continue to offer sacrifices to say that homosexuality is still a sin.

Jesus declared in Matthew 5:17, “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.” Jesus did not nullify the Law. If Jesus did away with everything in the Law, then it must be permissible to murder, steal, lie, covet, et cetera; however, these are reaffirmed as sins throughout the New Testament. The redemption laws—dietary matters, rituals, cleansings, sacrifices, and priestly duties—were fulfilled when Jesus died on the cross, but Jesus never removed the moral law. (This is expounded upon in the answer to the next challenges.)

 

Challenges 4 & 5:

  • God called eating shell fish and other things that we do today an abomination. If these are no longer abominations, then why is homosexuality still considered an abomination?
  • In the Old Testament, God commanded the Jews to kill those who practiced homosexuality. Are we supposed to kill homosexuals today?

The Old Testament Law consisted of three categories:

  • Ceremonial law: This included such things as dietary matters, rituals, cleansings, sacrifices, and priestly duties.
  • Civil law: Israel was a Theocracy, so God established laws for social order. These laws were for Israel’s government, not the governments of all nations.
  • Moral law: These laws were based upon God’s eternal character.

The ceremonial and civil laws were rescinded in the New Testament, but not the moral law (Acts 10:9–15; Rom. 13:1–9). Instead, the moral law was taken to a higher level (Matt. 5:20–48). Jesus never contradicted or negated the moral law. When Jesus spoke of such things as sexual immorality, murder, theft, etc., He was affirming the common understanding and practice of the moral law found in the Old Testament (Matt. 5:19–20). However, Jesus fulfilled the ceremonial law in His ministry on the cross (Matt. 5:17). Thus, what was considered abominable based upon ceremonial law—such as eating shellfish, wearing clothes of mixed fibers, and touching pig skin—was only abominable to the Jewish people, and that only for a set period of time. These are not considered by God to be abominable practices for us today.

Laws such as killing those who participated in homosexual practices, or the stoning of rebellious children were limited to the Jewish nation when they were governed by a Theocracy. This is not how God expects His people to handle these civil matters today. Instead, we are commanded to follow the civil laws of our nation’s particular government regarding these matters (Rom. 13).

In contrast to ceremonial and civil laws which were given for a time, God’s moral law preceded the giving of the Old Testament Law, and it has remained in effect subsequent to the fulfilling of the Old Testament Law (Lev. 18; 20:13, 23; 1 Cor. 6:9–10). For more information on this, read “How Theology Determines Sexuality?

 

Challenge 6

  • Society has evolved its understanding of what is socially acceptable. The taboo against same-sex marriage is the modern equivalent of America’s former taboo against inter-racial marriages.

Same–sex marriage and inter-racial marriages cannot be equated. This is a clear case of comparing apples to oranges. Although homosexuals have been—and in too many cases are still being—mistreated and abused, their experiences cannot be compared to the history of enslavement, segregation, and abuse of other races. There are no gay–only drinking fountains, bathrooms, or seating. In many ways, the homosexual community has attempted to hijack the black civil rights efforts, but behavior cannot be compared to skin color and ethnicity. Behavior can be voluntarily controlled and altered—even if it were true that some people are born gay—but a person has no ability to voluntarily control or alter his skin color and ethnicity. Furthermore, these are morally neutral characteristics; whereas, behavior is not morally neutral.

The only things which prevented inter–racial marriages were bigotry and bias. The nature and definition of marriage did not have to change in order to facilitate a heterosexual union between members of two races. However, same-sex marriages would require a fundamental change in the nature and definition of marriage as well as a whole series of other civil laws. Moreover, there is nothing irregular about the sexual union and reproductive nature of an inter–racial, heterosexual union. This is not true of homosexual unions. Similarly, there is nothing in Scripture which would preclude inter–racial marriages, but Scripture does forbid the practice of homosexuality.

Be sure to read Timothy Zebell’s book Laid Bare: Uncovering the Relationship Between Homosexuality & the Gospel.

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Timothy Zebell

As a former missionary to Asia for twelve years and the author of several books, Timothy is passionate about helping people understand the relevancy of God's Word in today's world. His goals are to help Christians discern truth from error, empower Christians to speak into cultural matters with relevancy, and to help Christians capitalize on the opportunities that these matters provide for sharing the truth about God and His gospel message.
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1. Daily Mail Reporter. “Penguins Have ‘Gay Flings’ Because They Are Lonely – but End up in a Heterosexual Couple.” Science & Technology. Daily Mail, October 21, 2010, 9:08 a.m., EST. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1322492/Penguins-gay-flings-mate-life-heterosexual-couple.html.

 

Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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