By Carl Gallups
It would appear to be indisputable that same-sex marriage and the open celebration of homosexuality is quickly becoming a part of the global cultural agenda – and corresponding to the rise of the activist homosexual agenda is a teaching that is permeating the Christian world: “Since Jesus never mentions homosexuality nor does He specifically condemn it, homosexuality must be legitimate in Jesus’ eyes.”
Let me address these issues from the biblical worldview. As a matter of fact, I include an entire chapter in my new book, “The Magic Man in the Sky: Effectively Defending The Christian Faith,” on the importance and relevance of various worldviews upon cultures and civilizations.
This is a foundationally important issue. For if there is no God or accountability to God, our Creator, as the secular worldview would have us to believe, then homosexual marriage is a completely legitimate issue. Pedophilia and bestiality would not be out of the question either, should the prevailing secular worldview “deem” the lifestyles to be acceptable and the “new norm.” The biblical worldview, however, is grounded in the unchanging tenets of the Word of God. This is where the loudest cultural clash occurs … when two worlds collide.
So, did Jesus condemn, speak of, or even mention homosexuality? The one who espouses this false teaching usually begins by saying that he discounts both the Old Testament and the writings of Paul and adheres only to the four Gospels. In so doing, they think they have found a convenient way to justify the homosexual lifestyle. First, the gyrations one must use to reach this illogical conclusion are astounding and ought to be the first dead giveaway of the falsehood of the proposition. But, secondly, let’s simply examine the question on its face – did Jesus ever say anything in the four Gospels that would condemn the homosexual lifestyle or homosexual marriage?
As it turns out, yes, He did. As a matter of fact, He spoke very clearly and directly about the issue. Let me begin with Matthew 19:4. Here Jesus is answering a question from the Pharisees regarding divorce. However, his answer is very telling concerning the entire issue of sexuality, the purpose of sexuality, marriage and the proper form of marriage. Here are the words of Jesus:
“And He answered and said to them, ‘Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning “made them male and female,” and said, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh”?'” (Matthew 19:4)
Here Jesus upholds creation, male and female sexual relationships (in marriage), male and female marriage, procreation as a part of male and female marriage, and the sanctity of male and female marriage and sexual relationships. His answer is a blanket ignoring (thus condemnation as perversion) of anything outside God’s standard for sexuality and marriage. This truth cannot be legitimately explained away.
But, Jesus gets even more direct concerning the issue of homosexuality. In John 5:46-47, Jesus tells his detractors that unless one holds to the writings of Moses (the first five books of the Bible), one cannot fully know or understand truth or Jesus Himself. “For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote about Me. But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe My words?” (John 5:46-47) Of course, in the first five books of the Bible we read of the days of Noah and Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis) and the blanket condemnation of homosexuality as perversion (Leviticus). Oh well, so much for throwing out the Old Testament to legitimize homosexuality. But wait – Jesus gets even more direct with the matter.
Jesus also spoke of the destruction of the Sodomite (openly celebrating homosexuality) cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. (Luke 17:28-32; Matthew 10:15; 11:24; Mark 6:11.) The presenting sin that brought about the destruction of those cultures was homosexuality. Consider these words found in the book of Jude:
“Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.” (Jude 1:7-8)
Three of the four gospels contain quotes from Jesus about the sinful condition of Sodom and Gomorrah and the destruction that the celebration of the presenting sin of homosexuality wrought upon them. One of those quotes equates the sins of Sodom (homosexuality) to the same type of pervasive perversion of Noah’s day (Luke 17:26-30). So, as it turns out … YES, Jesus did speak rather forthrightly, and often, about the sin of homosexuality and the judgment that it brings upon societies that celebrate it.
But, most important to the issue is the matter of the person of Jesus. Who is He? Well, He claimed to be God with us. The Scriptures claim that He is God with us (Matthew 1:24). Even his enemies knew that Jesus was making this claim (John 10:33). So, if Jesus is “God with us,” then we have to ask, “Does God condemn homosexuality?” The answer is obvious. From Genesis to Revelation, God’s Word, homosexuality is condemned as perversion and a certain sign that God’s judgment is on the way to the culture that openly celebrates it as “normal.”
Now for the good news. Once we understand the correct and contextual biblical position in this matter, we also discover that homosexuality is not the unforgivable sin. There is hope, healing, forgiveness and salvation for anyone caught in the grips of any sinful lifestyle. Jesus extends his love and forgiveness to anyone, the Bible says, if one would repent (turn from) their sin and call upon Jesus Christ as Lord. Just like the woman caught in the act of adultery, you can hear Jesus say, “Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more.”
Carl Gallups is a pastor, talk-radio host and author of “The Magic Man in the Sky: Effectively Defending The Christian Faith.”