Saturday, April 3, 2010

The New Testament Response To Homosexuals

by Babu G. Ranganathan

There is much to be said concerning certain Christian attitudes towards homosexuals. Some who claim to be Christian have taken a militant approach to homosexuals and used the Bible to justify persecuting them and denying them of all rights. Whether their case is supported by the Bible shall be examined.

First, however, it is important to point out that homosexuals need to respect the right of heterosexuals, particularly Christian heterosexuals, to reject homosexuality as sin, as biologically abnormal, and as biblically and morally wrong. On the other hand, it is also important that homosexuals not be persecuted by Christians or be denied their basic civil rights and liberties.

What is unfortunate is that many Christians believe in applying Old Testament justice to people today who commit particular sins. In the New Testament Christ changed the treatment towards such people. Was Christ then implying that the Old Testament system of justice was wrong? Absolutely not! God's purpose in the Old Testament was to emphasize His justice through the uniquely theocratic relationship that He had with the nation of Israel at the time. Why did God do this? One reason for why God so emphasized His justice in Old Testament times is precisely so that we can appreciate more His undeserving mercy in our present New Testament times. This is why Christ forgave and released the woman caught in committing adultery. According to Old Testament standards this woman should have received the death penalty.

Ultimately, God's justice against sin was finally and fully satisfied in the death and atoning work of His Son Jesus Christ when He died for our sins on the Cross, and through genuine repentance and faith in the resurrected Christ we imperfect humans (who will always have some sin) are freely forgiven and receive the promise of eternal life.

Even if there is a biological basis for some cases of homosexuality it still would not make homosexuality correct or morally acceptable any more than a biological basis or tendency in some individuals towards other deviant behavior would make those acts correct or morally acceptable. Ultimately, both sides must respect the basic civil and constitutional rights of the other, and this includes the right of the majority (heterosexuals) to determine public policy concerning issues such as marriage or civil unions.