Just for Catholics

Homosexuality is Sinful

Question: I am a Christian and I have discovered that I am a homosexual. I feel very sad and lonely. Can you tell me what the Bible says about homosexuality? Is it sin or a disease?

Answer: It seems clear that you are uncomfortable in this situation. Hopefully, Iíll be able to help you find a solution that you may live freely in Christ, without the burdens youíre now carrying.

To answer your questions:

  1. Homosexuality is sin.

  2. Homosexuality is not a disease.

First, letís consider what the Bible teaches about homosexuality.

Homosexuality is the negation of the creation order in human sexuality. God created us male and female, and the two, God said, shall become one flesh. Following the Fall, all sorts of corruptions crept in, including homosexuality. We read about the men of Sodom who 'were exceedingly wicked and sinful against the LORD' (Genesis 13:13). When two angels (appearing as two men) visited Lot, the men of the city came to his house and demanded: "Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us that we may know them carnally." The angels struck them blind, yet so great was their homosexual passion that even in the face of this terrible judgment, they wearied themselves to find the door of the house in an attempt to have sexual relations with the two men (Genesis 19).

God destroyed Sodom and the surrounding cities with fire. This historical fact is a terrible reminder of God's disapproval of this unnatural sin. 'Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire' (Jude 1:7). We dare not approve or justify that which is abhorrent in the eyes of the Lord:

  • 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 he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them (Leviticus 20:13.

Furthermore, the apostle Paul teaches that homosexuality is the sign of spiritual and moral decadence. When humanity abandoned the true knowledge of God, and invented other religious systems, God judged their idolatry by letting men and woman fall into homosexuality. 'For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 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' (Romans 1:26,27).

Homosexuality, like every other sinful tendency - greed, lust, hatred and so on - is part of the fabric of our polluted and sinful nature. Homosexual acts are the manifestation of a sinful heart. The Bible warns us plainly: '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' (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). Among the other forms that human depravity manifests itself, homosexuals are included in the list of people who would not inherit the kingdom of God.

Clearly then, the Bible teaches that homosexuality is sin. God would certainly not judge us and exclude us from heaven because of a disease. Like every other sin, it could be forgiven through repentance (admitting that it is sin and forsaking it) and faith in Christ Jesus.

Some excuse homosexuality claiming that it is either a psychiatric or genetic disorder. It is neither. The American Psychiatric Association does not recognize homosexuality as a psychiatric disorder any longer. Moreover, there is no sound scientific evidence that homosexuality is a genetic disease. Again, the APA admits that: "to date there are no replicated scientific studies supporting any specific biological etiology for homosexuality." [1]

I do not deny, of course, that there could be genetic and environmental factors (such as experiences in childhood) that incline and induce a person to homosexuality. Yet, whatever these influences may be, the Bible still holds the individual morally responsible for his behaviour. To give you an obvious analogy, a man is inclined to lust after women (or as Jesus puts it, to commit adultery in his heart). This tendency arises (at least partly) from the genetic and hormonal makeup. Can the immoral man therefore excuse himself saying, ďLust is not sin because it comes from my Y chromosome and testosteroneĒ? Of course not! He fools himself if he calls sin by any other name.

Whatever you do, do not accept your homosexual tendencies as 'normal' or as an 'alternative lifestyle' as they say today. Your feelings and desires are real and strong. Yet they are sinful. And sin is not 'normal' to Godís children, nor a permissible alternative.

Once you admit that homosexuality is sin, you can find forgiveness and cleansing through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. You can live with a clean conscience, free from the burden of guilt.

Moreover, homosexuality is not something that you have to carry all your life. Immediately after warning that homosexuals would not inherit the kingdom of God, the apostle Paul continues: 'And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God' (1 Corinthians 6:11). That implies that some Christians in the church of Corinth were previously homosexual. God saved them and freed them from their enslaving sin. He can do the same for you!

When you recognize homosexuality as sin, you would not automatically solve all your problems. But at least you have a sound beginning, for Jesus came to this world to save us from sin. He saves from sinís guilt; He also saves from sinís dominion. By Godís grace, you can learn to develop and enjoy sound and healthy relationships with both men and woman. On occasions, you will probably find yourself having sexual desires towards another man. Immediately confess to God and ask him to free you from such sinful desires. It is entirely possible that you will have such struggles all your life. Never give up. Never call sin by any other name. There is a price to pay; the reward is infinitely greater.

Reference

[1] American Psychiatric Association, Sexual Orientation. [back]

Copyright Dr Joseph Mizzi. Oct 2011, updated April 2012.
Permission is given to copy and distribute this article without textual changes.

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