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Does God approve of homosexuality?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/24/2013 Category: Religion
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,326 times Debate No: 39407
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I am a gay Christian and would like to understand more about homosexuality as it influences religion. I personally am of the strong opinion that being homosexual does not make you a sinner or condemn you to hell but am open to hearing arguments and evidence for the contrary. First I will debunk the common biblical quotes used to condemn homosexuality.
1.) Leviticus 18:22, 24
"Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind, it is abomination. Defile not ye yourselves in any of these things"
The key in understanding this lies in understanding the reason it was law. In the bible it states that if a man sleeps with another mans wife or daughter he owes that man a goat to repay him for devaluing or 'defiling' that mans property. Women were property and men the holders and traders of such property and as such it was illegal to devalue another man because he, as the owner of women, was equal to that man. I believe this quotes refers to not being able to devalue a man rather than condemning homosexuality as a sin.
2.) Genesis 19
The Sodom and Gomorrah
Since this is such a long story, allow me to summarize it.
God tells Abraham He plans to destroy Sodom because of its wickedness. Abraham gets God to promise to spare it if 10 good men can be found. Lot, Abraham's relative, lives in Sodom. He is visited by three men who are angels. The men of Sodom ask to 'know' these angels, the word used almost ALWAYS held sexual connotations, so in short the townspeople ask lot if they can rape the angels. Lot refuses to allow this. He offers the Sodomites his two virgin daughters instead. The men decline the offer. They storm Lot's door. The angels rescue Lot and his daughters. They tell Lot that God has sent them to destroy Sodom for its wickedness. They order Lot to gather his family, and leave the city. They forbid Lot or any of his family to look upon the city during its destruction. Lot and his family flee. Lot's wife looks back at the city. She is turned into a pillar of salt. His daughters in panic upon realizing that their husbands to be were destroyed with the city developed a plan. They decided each sister would take one night, get their father drunk and have sex with him so that they could have children.
Personally I believe that Rape, incest and disobedience to God are the major themes here and having read it more than a hundred times, I am still to find ONE sentence in which homosexuality is mentioned. Especially considering the term 'Sodomites' was the term to describe those from the town of Sodom and not homosexuals, however that does not stop people from using it in the bastardized form to attack homosexuals.
3.)Genesis 1:26-28
KJV(i) 26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
Often I am told that homosexuality is a sin because gays cannot produce children and replenish the earth. Well given the population, and in some areas overpopulation of the earth it's safe to say that this 'law' is outdated. I believe God would smile upon two men or two women who adopted children from orphanages or foster care around the world and prevented or stopped the suffering of one of his children. With as often as charity and love and acceptance are mentioned in the bible I see no reason God would oppose the practice of all three even by a gay couple.
Beyond the charity of it the fact is this 'law' is in fact far out of date and no longer relevant as many laws within biblical texts are now. For example
Lev. 4:2, atonement for unintentional sins
Lev. 7:23, don't eat fat from ox, sheep, or goat
Lev. 7:29, procedures for peace offering to the Lord
Lev. 11:2, list of animals the Israelites may eat
Lev. 12:2, uncleanness after giving birth
Lev. 23:24, rest on 1st day of 7th month
Lev. 23:34, Feast of Booths on 15th day of 7th month
Lev. 24:15, the one cursing God will bear his sin
(And as we can see a host of things that dealt only with Israel.)
Lev. 18:6-18, don't uncover the nakedness of various relatives.
Lev. 18:19, don't have sexual relations with woman on her period
Lev. 18:20, don't have intercourse with your neighbor's wife
Lev. 18:21, don't offer children to Molech
Lev. 18:23 don't have intercourse with animals.
Civil - Expired with the demise of the Jewish civil government
Justice practices (Lev. 24:17-23)
Ceremonial - Expired with the fulfillment of priestly work of Christ (Matt. 3:15)
Various sacrificial offerings for sin (Lev. 1,2,3,4,5,6)
Priestly duties (Lev. 7:1-37)
Laws on animals for food (Lev. 11:1-47)
Cleaning house of leper (Lev. 14:33-57)
Law of Atonement (Lev. 16:1-28;17:1-16)
Regulations for Priests (Lev. 21,22)
Festivals (Lev. 23:1-25)
And the list continues...
If we were to attempt to abide by all 200+ Of these laws we would end up leading very primitive undeveloped lives, I have a hart time believing that Gods will is for us to live that way.
The examples of these misconstrued quotes go on and on but I believe that's a good start and look forward to hearing your rebuttals.



Hope your day is going well!

After reading some of your arguments in the opening I will have to say I disagree on the interpretations of those passages, but what is most important is to touch on if there are passages especially in the New Testament that are more clear. Which there are, and I will address briefly the most clear passage on the matter.

For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27 and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. Romans 1:26-27

Paul says, "For this reason," so we must ask, what is the reason? Which is provided by the previous verse.

"because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen." Romans 1:25

This we could call the "Dark Exchange" which indicates in Paul's mind the exchange of worshiping creation rather than creator. He then goes on in these two verses to speak about homosexuality? Now, why would Paul do that in this particular context? The key word in v.26 is the word "exchanged" which connects the two together. That because of man's exchange of creation and creator he has given men and women over to the exchange of natural desires. Even mentioning men committing shameless acts with men, and thus receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. Thus illustrating to us that not only is this spoken off negatively in the context but blatantly called "error."

And it is highlighted to be a punishment in the giving over is a sign of that "Dark Exchange" in the homosexual exchanging natural desires for unnatural desires.

I will also speak on another text that is quite clear on the matter.

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11

Here the Greek word O36;`1;`3;^9;_7;_9;_4;_9;Q50;`4;^5;_3; which literally means in the Greek, man in bed with another man (denoting sexual activity) is explicitly condemned. Naming them among the "unrighteous" who will not inherit the kingdom of God. But... "such were some of you." Being a homosexual does not make you "not a Christian" the continued practice does however contradict the writings of the New and Old Testament.

Therefore, the Bible if believed to be the word of God does not approve of homosexuality.

Thank you for your time, and please know that none of my remarks were meant to be of an offensive nature. I was just merely expounding what others have written.

Kindest Regards,
Debate Round No. 1


Hello, I am having a wonderful day thank you and wish you all the same.
I understand you disagree with my interpretations of these verses, I am curious as to why. What part of my interpretation do you find inaccurate or otherwise flawed? What do you believe a more accurate interpretation of them would be? I"m writing about both Leviticus verses in one post today. Each verse on it"s own would be terribly short and both have some similar issues.
""Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable." - Leviticus 18:22
""If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads." - Leviticus 20:13

Before we get to bogged down in analysis of this verse, I would like to mention that Leviticus 18 (in fact all of Leviticus) is a lot more complicated than a simple book of the Bible that tells a story like the Gospels, or Esther or Ruth. It is ritual and theological moral and legal code that was devised to govern the priest class (Levites) and the other tribes of Israel. The code was established by people interpreting theological ritual into rules for a society. I know of no serious Biblical scholar that refers to Leviticus as a book that was "inspired" by god. ALSO let me mention that these quotes as well as 14 of the 27 books of the new testament were written by a man and were NOT the direct preachings of Jesus Paul.

Now that we have that out of the way.
Let"s talk about the actual meaning of these verses.
First let me cite Reverend Gregory Dell and Dr. Amy Jill Levine on the context and intent of these passages.

"The purity codes, the holiness codes from which Leviticus 18 is taken had a very specific design. And that design was to help distinguish themselves from the other cultures and faiths around them."
- Reverend Gregory Dell

"The text is interested in categories and everyone and everything fits into an appropriate category. The categories do not mix."
- Dr. Amy Jill Levine

"Then of course there is the constant issue that we find with Leviticus.
All we ever hear about from religious fundamentalists is "homosexuality is an abomination " Leviticus 18:22R43;. What they seem to forget, is that Leviticus was a code of conduct for a people group over 2,000 years ago and they had a lot of funky ideas about proper behavior and what was an "abomination". [I]f one in the church must insist on using Leviticus then it seems only appropriate for those members of the Christian church to look at other laws in Leviticus. To pick and choose which laws to follow and which laws not to follow, at the very least we need to determine why are we choosing this law and not that law.
- Dr. Amy Jill Levine

In chapter 18 of Leviticus alone there are at least 19 prohibitions against different types of sexual relations. That"s not to mention the incredible amount of truly odd things that are mentioned in the book (as well as the rest of the Old Testament) as being "abominations" and "detestable" outside of sex.* One of the prohibitions mentioned specifically in the documentary is Leviticus 18:19.

""Do not approach a woman to have sexual relations during the uncleanness of her monthly period."
When this is mentioned, Pastor David Ickes had this to say.

"This verse isn"t, just like the rest of these verses, talking about homosexuality at all.
What Leviticus actually says is "A man shall not lie with a man, as a woman". In other words "a man shall not treat another man, sexually, as if that other man were female."
- Dr. Amy Jill Levine

Greek homosexuality had the same concept. Men were not women, you could have sex with them, but you couldn"t treat them like a women. You could even have a relationship with another man (as women could with women) but that man would not be another women. He was intrinsically going to be more than a women, based on that culture, and he would be more your equal. Every woman in that time was the property of some man. A part of the way you claimed and made this property your own was the consummation of the marriage through intercourse. If you have sex with a virgin who isn"t properly betrothed to you, you have damaged another mane"s property. So all of this is really just property law and according to the understanding of this law code a man cannot own another man like that."
- Reverend Dr. Fred Neidner

Second and for good measure I will add that in Mathew 8 and Luke 7 Jesus saved the life of a gay man, which strongly contradicts ALL arguments that Jesus 'hates gays' or wants us to 'burn in hell. Discussion: Matthew 19:10-12

From our days in Sunday school, many of us are familiar with the Gospel story where Jesus healed the servant of a Roman centurion. This story is recorded in Matthew 8:5-13 and Luke 7:1-10. In Matthew, we are told that the centurion came to Jesus to plead for the healing of his servant. Jesus said he was willing to come to the centurion"s house, but the centurion said there was no need for Jesus to do so " he believed that if Jesus simply spoke the word, his servant would be healed. Marveling at the man"s faith, Jesus pronounced the servant healed. Luke tells a similar

[Note 18. K.J. Dover, Greek Homosexuality (Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 1978), page 16; Bernard Sergent, Homosexuality in Greek Myth (Beacon Press, Boston, 1986), page 10.]

In the original language, the importance of this story for gay, lesbian, and bisexual Christians is much clearer. The Greek word used in Matthew"s account to refer to the servant of the centurion is pais. In the language of the time, pais had three possible meanings depending upon the context in which it was used. It could mean "son or boy;" it could mean "servant," or it could mean a particular type of servant " one who was "his master"s male lover." (See note 18.) Often these lovers were younger than their masters, even teenagers.

[Note 19. Mercer Dictionary of the Bible (Mercer University Press, Macon, 1994), page 554.]

To our modern minds, the idea of buying a teen lover seems repugnant. But we have to place this in the context of ancient cultural norms. In ancient times, commercial transactions were the predominant means of forming relationships. Under the law, the wife was viewed as the property of the husband, with a status just above that of slave. Moreover, in Jesus" day, a boy or girl was considered of marriageable age upon reaching his or her early teens. It was not uncommon for boys and girls to marry at age 14 or 15. (See note 19.) Nor was it uncommon for an older man to marry a young girl. Fortunately civilization has advanced, but these were the norms in the culture of Jesus" day.
In that culture, if you were a gay man who wanted a male "spouse," you achieved this, like your heterosexual counterparts, through a commercial transaction " purchasing someone to serve that purpose. A servant purchased to serve this purpose was often called a pais.
The word boy in English offers a rough comparison. Like pais, the word boy can be used to refer to a male child. But in the slave South in the nineteenth century, boy was also often used to refer to male slaves. The term boy can also be used as a term of endearment. For example, Jeff"s father often refers to his mother as "his girl." He doesn"t mean that she is a child, but rather that she is his "special one." The term boy can be used in the same way, as in "my boy" or "my beau." In ancient Greek, pais had a similar range of meanings.
Thus, when this term was used, the listener had to consider the context of the statement to determine which meaning was intended. Some modern Christians may be tempted to simply declare by fiat that the Gospels could not possibly have used the term pais in the sense of male lover, end of discussion. But that would be yielding prejudice.


Hello again,

Glad to hear you are having a great day!

I believe what you have committed here is the Fallacy of Exclusion, or to be more specific is that you have left out the most important and powerful evidence contrary to your case to rather attack a straw man argument.

If I were to figure out what the Bible really says about Homosexuality, I would go to the New Testament, specifically Paul's writings as I did, not rather appeal to Leviticus which as you mentioned is hardly recognized in the Biblical scholarship community.

I think to speak in depth about our differences of interpretations on the passages you brought up in your original argument would ultimately be nothing but a Red Herring and totally miss the most vital and strongest of texts as I brought up.

My argument you see is not dependent on a particular interpretation of those OT passages, and I often see that people who argue to advocate that the Bible supports Homosexuality tend to focus on those passages and totally skip out on Paul's clear statements.

So if you would like to address the passage in Romans 1 and in 1 Corinthians 6 that I brought up, then I would love to engage in depth with you. If not, then I will resubmit my accusation of you committing the Fallacy of Exclusion.

Kindest Regards,
Debate Round No. 2


KatherineJordan365 forfeited this round.


Hello again,

Sad to hear your internet shut off, but glad you were able to still get your response in the comments and I hope voters recognize that and do not view this as misconduct on your part as I see no reason to infer that myself.

It appears in your argument in hopes of being a rebuttal against my assertion is to contend that O36;ρσενοκο^3;της is only referring to those who practice homosexuality as idol worship.

The two known uses from this period come exclusively from Paul, in 1 Timothy 1:9-10 and 1 Corinthians 6:9

knowing this, that the law is not given for a righteous person but for the lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and totally worldly, for the one who kills his father and the one who kills his mother, for murderers, 10 sexually immoral people, homosexuals, kidnappers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is opposed to sound teaching,[1]

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived! Neither sexually immoral people, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor passive homosexual partners, nor dominant homosexual partners,[2]

Many Gay Christians allude to the difference in translation of these words leading up to the time of the reformation. And it seems they infer that perhaps the people of this time retranslated it based upon their own cultural leanings and hatred of homosexuality by translating the term contrary to Jerome's understanding of the term.

However, what they fail to take into account is that Desiderius Erasmus in 1516 prepared what later became known as the Textus Receptus.[3] This was extremely important to the development of Luther's German Bible and subsequent translations as it was a departure from the church being dominated solely by Jerome's clear misunderstanding of the Greek manuscripts.

You are correct that O40;ρσην means male, and that κο^3;τη means bed, thus the two words combine to make "male-bed." This of course is an illustration of the common idiom of lying together in a bed denoting sexual intercourse, and in this case it being between two males. The assertion on your part that some scholars believe it only to applicable to the practice of homosexuality as idol worship is 1) inconsistent with the etymology of the word, 2) unsubstantiated as no notable scholars have been cited, and 3) unwarranted in the two known contexts of the word's usage.

Therefore, it does not lead one to conclude in any way except through means of eisogesis that they would believe these two texts condemn anything other than homosexual activity in general.

Kind Regards,

[1]Harris, W. H., III, Ritzema, E., Brannan, R., Mangum, D., Dunham, J., Reimer, J. A., & Wierenga, M. (Eds.). (2012). The Lexham English Bible (1 Co 6:9).
[2]Harris, W. H., III, Ritzema, E., Brannan, R., Mangum, D., Dunham, J., Reimer, J. A., & Wierenga, M. (Eds.). (2012). The Lexham English Bible (1 Ti 1:9–10).
[3] Cross, F. L., & Livingstone, E. A. (2005).The Oxford dictionary of the Christian Church. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by KatherineJordan365 2 years ago
Unfortunately my Internet shut off so I was unable to post my round three argument which I'll post below:
1 Corinthians 6:9-11
Aresenokoites and Malakos
In this passage, Paul uses the Greek word arsenokoites to refer to same-sex couples. However many scholars believe arsenokoites only refers to those who practice homosexuality as idol worship. Even though Paul may have coined arsenokoites, he did so based on two Greek root words, which means "male" and "bed". Paul"s use of "male-bed" refers to men sexually arousing one another, as a man would a woman, which I have already addressed earlier as the degradation of man being the objection not homosexuality as a consensual act. The practice of men and boys (generally slaves) being used for gay sex was a common thing in that day. Paul is the most quoted source in the battle to condemn homosexuality ( 1 Corinthians 6: 9-11 and Romans 1: 26-27). But homosexual activity was regarded by Paul as a punishment visited upon idolaters by God because of their unfaithfulness. In 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, Paul gave a list of those who would not inherit the Kingdom of God. That list included the immoral, idolaters, adulterers, sexual perverts, thieves, the greedy, drunkards, revilers, and robbers. Sexual perverts is a translation of two words; it is possible that the juxtaposition of malakos, the soft word which Literally means "soft" or "males who are soft". This word has been translated as "effeminate" (KJV), "homosexuals" (NKJV), "corrupt" (Lamsa), "perverts" (CEV), "catamites" which means call boys (JB), "those who are male prostitutes" (NCV), and "male prostitutes." (NIV, NRSV). Until the Reformation in the 16th century and in Roman Catholicism until the 20th century, malakoi was thought to mean "masturbators." Only in the 20th century has it been understood as a reference to homosexuality. In 1522, Martin Luther translated this term "weichlinge" or "weaklings." Philo, a first century contemporary of Paul, applied the term to a ma
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Reasons for voting decision: Good debate, very interesting subject matter to say the least. My initial views were with Con just to be clear, though I was really interested in seeing what Pro had to say. Unfortunately, Con was able to refute Pro's points and counter-points effectively, and I never felt as though her argument stood up to the facts Con laid out. However, Pro's Round 3 argument was cut off it seems, so we may have missed out on something. Arguments to Con.