Homosexuality and Christian faith

1. The central and fundamental commandment of the Christian faith, from which all other commandments are derived, is the commandment of love/charity with its two parts and directions (love for God and for Your fellow): (Lev 19,18); Matt 22,37-39, Rom 13,9; Gal 5,14.



2. If a gay relationship is existing between 2 partners, who are above the age of consent (depends on the national law of every country), no offense is apparently given against the fundamental commandment of love, mentionned above. If the partners are Christian believers, then sexual activity is only one aspect of the relationship as a whole: Then commutual support, sharing of suffering, sorrow and joy are crucial for them und their relationship.



3. An apparent offense against chapter 1 and the comandement of love is any kind of violence against gays, lesbians, queers by bashing or by words (mobbing). You will find sufficent examples for these crudelities: Just try to walk as a same-sex-couple holding hands through a school-court, through a countryside-village or even in a big city through some of the not so open-minded areas. Therefore statistics and sophisticated enquiries in different countries (f.e. studies from the USA and New Zealand (1)) indicate clearly, that in a significant number the suicide-rate of queer youngsters is higher than the rate of straight youngsters, if they are rejected as queers by their environment."

While there is still discrimination in democratic free states and death penalty according to the official penal law in many totalitarian states as Iran, it is a cynical and nasty act and the opposite of Christian charity and of love for the fellow human beings, if homophobic people critizise the phantasy of a gay agenda, which would be about to take over world politics.

If a Christian, who according to Jesus' words is following charity or at least the protection of life, is intending or has a vocation to be engaged in the moral issues of queers, he should be engaged against anti-queer-violence in the first place - with all consequences, f.e. to risk, that he himself is called "queer" or "fag" because defending queers against violence. Or if he - as a real follower of Jesus' compassion and love - wants to help queers in Iran, then to risk even to be killed by Iranian authorities.



4. And also, if You want to follow a reasonable Christian moral, divorced and queers have to be treated in the same way - both either tolerated or rejected. The Biblical message, even words from Jesus himself, makes it very clear that (with only 2 exceptions) divorce is forbidden and that - without any exception - a divorced person isn't allowed to marry again (Matt 5:31-32; 19,9; Mk 10,:1-12; 1 Cor 7:10-15).

Here, the Catholic church has a consequent agenda: Gays and Lesbians shall abstain from sexual activities. If divorced people married again, after conversion to Catholic faith they shall stay as a couple, but from this moment give up their sexual activities.

But: Although it is a consequent theory, is it a practical way for the vast majority of mankind? As we see in his discussion about the Sabbath, Jesus always emphazised on the real human being in a practical way. And for the vast majority of mankind a general abstinence from sexual activity is impossible and causes only psychologcial problems, because the soul transforms the forbidden sexual energy to other destructive activities.



5. The concept of paradise is to live in a heterosexual marriage (as based in creation: Gen 2:24) or to live in a celibate way ("other have made themselves eunuchs" Mt 19,12c) - as it is also paradise-like not to suffer, not to work with pain, not to be disabled ....



6. The proposition, that homosexuality would be unnatural and not existing in nature between animals, but only between human beeings with an unnatural disposition, is against the truth, reality and so far ideological, i.e. based on a dogmatical axiom or prejudice without a rational reason. Homosexuality, transsexuality and any other type of sexual queerness and variation is perceived and noticed within hundreds of species. In some species the vast majority of sexual activities are queer.(2) If someone proposes, that homosexuality stands against the principles of creation and nature, he definitely doesn't speak about the reality, world and nature, in which we live now.



7. Of course a sincere transformation from human homo- to heterosexuality happens sometimes. But because it happens only sometimes and not always it can't be - also in the view of homophobic people - a satisfying solution. Also homophobic Christian psychologists admitt, that in spite of strong and perseverant prayers and a homophobic Christian environment (under the best possible condition to prove the attempt of transformation) they didn't succeed in transforming the sexual orientation of a vast number of clients. A study from the USA with the title "Study of Religiously mediated Change in Sexual Orientation" serves as an example: Only the minority of 23% reported success in the form of successful “conversion” to heterosexual orientation and functioning, 30% reported stable behavioral chastity with substantive dis-identification with homosexual orientation, which is not really a change or transformation and seems to be the result of some (may be softer) kind of aversion therapy or the result of a (with Freud's terms) anankastic, strictly Superego-personality after getting a homophobic Superego-standard as a result of evangelical conversion. "On the other hand, 20% of the subjects reported giving up on the change process and fully embracing gay identity." Other participants couldn't report properly or reported only small change.(3).

The opposite direction and way is taken statistically much more often: A person, who tried - sometimes very hard - to live as a straight person, discovers and acceptes his queer disposition. And this is logical, because of the vast majority of straight people in nearly every society - the main influence on people's soul is to behave straight. So within all weak personalities it is more probable, that these with a queer disposition act against their nature in a straight way, than those with a straight disposition in a queer way. Anyway it is dishonest to live against Your personality and disposition; and it is a lie and therefore against the commandment of truth, which is identical with Jesus Christ (John 14:6) Especially the "partner" experiences a horrible fraud and deception. Christian should encourage one another to live honestly, sincerely and according to the truth.



8. Yes, there are Bible verses, which critizise homosexuality but not a single one from the mouth of Jesus Christ, who is - of course - center and guideline of the Bible and the Christian faith.

Here, the academic history of cultures can explain the real meaning of these critical Bibel-verses and whether they are fitting to the life-concept of a queer person today. The answer on this question is for nearly all critical Bible verses: "No. They speak of homosexual actes in a totally different life-concept than this of queer people today."

The concept of a clear, lasting queer disposition (including some queer, "minority" bahaviours of straight people) as also the concept of romantic (individual) love was discovered in the period of the enlightenment (which has its roots - according to my opinion - in the Christian concept of appreciating and honouring the individual human being). In the centuries before - the concept of marriage was shaped as a partnership of convenience to be able to manage a farm, a kingdom ..... Then it was a stroke of luck - not very often, that a couple was experiencing also individual, romantic love for one another.
Thererfore: All critizising Bible verses are based on a concept of homosexuality as a - sinful - single decision, from which a person could abstain without problems and which has nothing to do with the personality of the individual or real love for the partner.



9. Old Testament/Hebrew Bible/Tenach

Genesis 1:27b: "male and female he created them.", male: sachar (זכר), female: neqewah (נקבה). "the original image of the human being who is neither male or female, but "male and female" (Gen 1:27)."(4) We don't read in the original Hebrew writing of this verse "God created them as man and woman." - and this with reason. God didn't create only two genders (and sometimes more than 2 sexes: intersexuals), but a distinctive composition of gender-characteristics in every person with gender and sex transgressions (See also Matt 19,21.) "While both creation accounts specify that God created people "male and female" ..., nowhere does the Bible specify that God created people only either male or female."(5)
We find the same words in Jesus' citation of Gen 1:27 in Mk 10:6 and Matt 19:4: "God made them male and female." (ἄρσεν and θῆλυ)(6)

Genesis 2:18: To describe the help for the male Adam the masculine Hebrew word Ezer (עזר) is used and not the feminine version "Ezrah" (עזרה).

Genesis 19:5+9: The story of Sodom describes sexual violence and rape, but isn't critizising homosexuality. It's remarkable, that the Qur'an gives no other reason against homosexuality than this story.

Lev 18:22 ("as one lies with a woman" inidcates, that this person is used to have sex with a woman);
Lev 20,13: "abomination" (hebr. To'eva (תועבה)) isn't a word with a moral, but with a cultural sense. The intention is to define monotheism opposite to pagan polytheism. Especially the nations bordering Israel were involved in prostitution as part of several temple-cults. Their sexual activities and unification with the temple-prostitutes were a symbol for the unification with these Gods with an anthropoid shape.

And: Commandments of the Old Testament aren't valid for Christians, except of those, which are approved by Jesus, f.e. the 10 commandments.

Otherwise Christians wouldn't be allowed to wear blended fabrics (Lev 19:19; here again a symbol for defining monotheism opposite to the "blend" of Gods in polytheism) and had to introduce death penalty for blasphemy, cursing of parents, occultism (Lev 20:9+16; 24:16)


10. The letters of the New Testament

Married men were involved in homosexuality because of these intentions (7):
- to strengthen emotionally a training-relationship: in the military of Sparta; in the education-system of Athens;
- and as a symbol for a relationship of dependence: The master is the active, penetrating one, the inferior the passive, receptive one; f.e. during sexual activities with slaves or prostitutes. It is unclear, whether in 1 Tim 1:10 and 1 Cor 6:9 homosexuality is mentionned and meant at all, but if so, then homosexuality isn't criticised in general, but only this special type: "arsenokoitai"(ἀρσενοκοῖται) is the active, dominating partner, who's sexual activity is based an his money or power; malakoi (μαλακοὶ) is the sissy, softy or men prostitute, the passive inferior (8).
This type of sexuality as oppression (whether straight or queer) is an offense against the central commandment of love in chapter 1. .

The strongest argument is based on Rom 1:26-27. But also here Paul describes homosexual actes as a result of a single decision of a straight person and not as a personal disposition (9): "abandoned natural relations" (μηταλάσσειν) describes an active decision of a person, who is probably married and used to live in a "natural" straight way.



11. Jesus

There are some possible hints on homosexuaity.

Matt 19:12a: "eisin gar eunuchoi hoitines ek koilias metros egenethesan hutos." (εỉσὶν γὰρ εὐνοῦχοι ὅιτινες ἐκ κοιλίας μητρὸς ἐγενήθησαν οὕτος): "For some are eunuchs, because they were born that way."
Concerning this Bible verse "most scholars consider it original to Jesus because of ... the semitic structure of the declaration, and the novelty of the proposal." (10)

According to McNeill, "the term "eunuch" in the New Testament is used … also in a symbolic sense for all those who for various reasons do not marry and bear children."(11).
Because of of the use of the words "born Eunuchs" in the Greek-Roman period there is good reason to understand it as a description of homosexuals. Faris Malik was accurately and nearly completly searching for ancient references and found many references for this interpretation. Therefore he wrote an essay with the title " 'Born Eunuchs': Homosexual Identity in the Ancient World"(12)

In the book "Stromata", written by Clemens of Alexandria, we found the citation of an early interpretation of this verse (probably from Basilides from the midst of the 2nd century). Here the term "Eunuch" is explained as a symbol for a natural-permanent sexual disposition ("natural aversion to a woman") and as a symbol for - very modern acknowledging the existence of queerness - the natural-permanent composition/combination of different gender attributes in one personality, which is here the composition (συνκράσει) of a men's body and the gender attitude of an aversion against women: "Ὲξηγοῦνται δὲ τὸ ῥηὸτν ᾧδέ πως φυσικήν τινες ἔχουσι πρὸς γυναῖκα ἀποστροφὴν ἐκ γενετῆς, οἵτινες τῇ φυσικῇ ταύτῃ συνκράσει χρὠμενοι καλῶς ποιοῦσι μὴ γαμοῦντες."(13) (Translation: They explain the verse in this way: Some have a natural inherent aversion to a woman. These people, provided with this composition (of different gender-attributes) are well advised not to marry (in a straight way). "The ancient stereotype of "natural" or "born" eunuchs sounds hauntingly like the modern stereotype of gay men as effeminate sissy-boys"(14).

So - with good reason - Jesu words in Matt 19:12a can be related to gays: "'the eunuch was persona non grata both socially and religiously"(15) "In Matthew 19:10-12, Jesus acknowledges three different types of sexual minorities. Jesus acknowledges that some people are sexual minorities from birth."(16)
A "study of ancient perspectives on eunuchs reveals a ...'third type of human' embodying ... sexual transgression."(17)"No matter how You view it, the figure of the eunuch as both a physical body and a social identity radically undermines the foundational assumptions used to reinforce the conservative heterosexist reading of the Bible, precisely because this body and this social identity threatens the sacred boundaries betwen male and female. The kingdom of heaven resides in between, ...in the ... figure of sex-gender transgression."(18) "The implications ... are quite radical, because the logion is suggesting that sex-gender transgression is a biblically sanctioned identity practice."(19) (See also Genesis 1:27) "In the saying of Mt 19.12 there is absolutely no suggestion that to be a eunuch is to be someone who is in any way in need of 'fixing', 'healing' or 'reintegrating' into society. Jesus heals the blind, the paralyzed, the possessed, ... even the dead ... Instead, the eunuch is held up as the model to follow."(20)
"The implication of his statement is profound - God created gay people the way they are! Jesus says so. … He speaks no word of condemnation. Rather he lists people born gay alongside another honored class (eunuchs for the kingdom)".(21) -
"The first category - those eunuchs who have been so from birth - is the closest description we have in the Bibel of what we understand today as homosexual."(22).
"this refers to those whom we call homosexual. ... In effect, Jesus in this saying about eunuchs has not only entered queer space, but has 'queered' the discussion of marriage."(23)

This verse shows us, that Jesus Christ speaks in a very neutral way about homosexuals and from the perspective of a natural inherent disposition and orientation.

Matt 5:22: "hos d'an ejpä to adelpho autu: "raca" - enochus estei to sunedrio." (ὃς δ’ ἂν εἴπῃ τῷ ἀδελφῷ αὐτοῦ· ῥακά, ἔνοχος ἔσται τῷ συνεδρίῳ): "Anyone, who says to his brother 'Raca' is answerable to the Sanhedrin."
The non-Greek word, written in Greek letters, ῥακά ("raca"), represents a direct translation of an Aramaic wird, spoken by Jesus. Some derive it from "recah" ("empty" - "airhead"). But then the Greek word "reca" would be the appropriate translitteration. It is much more probable, that it is derived from the Aramaic-Hebrew word "rach" ("soft"). So we find in some of the oldest Bible-papyri instead of ῥακά the word "racha" (ραχα) (Codex Sinaiticus and Codex Bezae (24)).
Then "racha" is the female term: "soft women". "One intriguing possibility ... is actually the Hebrew rakha (soft), and carries connotations of effeminacy and weakness."(25) It comprises also the meaning "'passive-effeminate male homosexual'".(26) Moreover it is used to describe a man and to decry his homosexuality (as the Greek term "malakoi" (μαλακοὶ) (1 Cor 6:9) in chapter 10 or today's "faggot".) "there is a New Testament passage, that may indeed throw light on Jesus' view of same-sex behaviour. ... Textual scholarship has suggested that raca comes from a Semitic root word ... that is also related to the Hebrew rakh, meaning 'soft' (used in modern Hebrew to mean 'gay')."(27) - "it is actually a transliteration of the Aramaic rakkah ..., which means 'to be tender; weak; soft.' ... we now have the only words recorded as spoken by Jesus on the subject od homosexuality - anyone who ridicules them is condemned by Jesus' own words."(28)
Therefore Jesus Christ is defending gays and their sexual intercourse against vilification, on the other hand he threatens the vilifying aggressors with punishment.

(Lk 17:34)



12.If the perfection of paradise is missing in our actual world, abstinence shouldn't automatically be demanded for behaviours or realities, which differ from paradise, but don't harm anyone. Christians should search for the best possible way for those people differing from the ideals of paradise.
F.e. disability isn't paradise-like and not a guideline for health, nevertheless Christians try to integrate disabled people in the best possible way into the society. In the same way queerness or divorce should be treated, if the relationship became a hell for the partners.



13. Finally, if we give a moral statement on homosexuality we can't discuss the issue as an material item, as f.e. the question, whether drinking coffee harms the health or not. Because for many queer Christians - as for many straight Christians - sexual activity isn't the most important part of their relationship (and - especially for older partners - is even sometimes of little importance), but very important is to be unified deeply in their souls and personalities (more than with any other person in the world), to experience the partner as the most important source of joy and happiness on this transitory world, to experience compassion and commutual support, to share suffering, sorrow and joy (compare chapter 2). Because all this is - even exceptionally - identical with the main Christian commandment of loving one another - while harming not a single person - no Christian can neglect, that many good, helpful, caring, encourgaging, supportative, wonderful, beautiful and positive experiences according to the rules of Jesus Christ take place in a queer relationship, although it isn't completely identical with the perfect paradise.

Jesus Christ was (and is) supporting and encouraging all human behaviour, which is based on love. Just this love we find also in a queer relationship, especially if it is planned for life-time.


  1. Study of the University of Columbia: http://www.mailman.columbia.edu/research-service/study-links-social-environment-high-attempted-suicide-rates-among-gay-youth

    and the Study from New Zealand:http://www.nzaf.org.nz/news/view/report-shows-gay-youth-face-serious-health-challanges

  2. For example a variety of homosexuality between anthropoid monkeys (Bonobos (species of Chimpanzee)). "Homosexual activity is common in Giraffes and in many cases is actually more frequent than heterosexual behaviour (which may be quite rare): in one study area, mountings between males accounted for 94 percent of all observed sexual activity. Anywhere from a third to three-quaters of all courtship sessions are homosexual". (Bagemihl, Bruce: Biological Exuberance. Animal Homosexuality and Natural Diversity, New York 2000, page 392)
    (See also: Roughgarden,J.: Evolution's Rainbow: Diversity, Gender and Sexuality in Nature and People, Berkeley 2004; Sommer,V., Vasey,P.L.; Homosexual Behaviour in Animals. An Evolutionary Perspective, Cambridge 2006)

  3. The study: http://www.sexualidentityinstitute.org/archives/1079

  4. Loader, William: The New Testament on Sexuality, Grand Rapids/Michigan, Cambridge/UK 2012, 472

  5. Jung, Patricia B.: Christianity and Human Sexual Polymorphism: Are they compatible?, in: Sytsma, Sharon E.: Ethics and Intersex, Dordrecht 2006, 393 - 309, 307

  6. New International Version, Colorado Springs 1984 and
    The New Testament of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, Authorized (King James) Version, The Gideons International, London 1989

  7. "Again, the only forms of homoerotic activity for which we have clear evidence in Paul's day are pederasty (an active adult man with a passive early adolescent boy), male prostitution, and situations where masters forced their male slaves to play a receptive and passive sexual role." (Siker,Jeffrey S.: Gentile Wheat and Homosexual Christians: New Testament Directions for the Heterosexual Church, in: Brawley,Robert L.: Biblical Ethics and Homosexuality. Listening to Scripture, Louisville 1996, 137- 151 (= Siker/Brawley , p.142 )

  8. "there is only a single reference to homosexual acts in the Pauline writings .... If one is simply to pick a likely context from which to derive the meaning of "μαλακοὶ", prostitution ... is by any reasonable standard a much better candidate". - "Clearly "μαλακὸς" had no necessary or particular relation to homosexuality in the literature of Paul's time." (Boswell,John: Christianttiy, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality. Gay People in Western Europe from the Beginning of the Christian Era to the Fourteenth Century, Chicago/London 1980 (=Boswell), 341) "The claim that this word "obviously" means "homosexual" defies linguistic evidence and common sense." (Boswell, 342)
    "Perhaps the most extensive evidence that "ἀρσενοκοῖται" did not connote "homosexual" or even "sodomite" in the time of Paul is offered by the vast amount of writing extant on the subject of homoerotic sexuality in Greek in which this term does not occur." (Boswell, 345)
    "Saint Thomas Aquinas, in the thirteenth century, was the first really influential theologian to use the passage from 1 Corinthians as scriptural basis for hostility to homosexual behaviour". - "There is no reason to believe that either "ἀρσενοκοῖται" or "μαλακοὶ" connoted homosexuality in the time of Paul or for centuries thereafter, and every reason to suppose that, whatever they came to mean, they were not determinative of Christian opinion on the morality of homosexual acts." (Boswell, 353)
    "Our question is, whether same-sex couples may live in loving, committed relationships with the blessing of God. The term malakoi does not address that."(Miner,Jeff; Connoley,Tyler: The Children are free. Reexamining the Biblical Evidence on Same-sex Relationships, Indianapolis 2001 (=Miner),18) - "There are hundreds of Greek writings from this period that refer to homosexual activity using terms other than arsenokoitai. ... Apparently Paul was trying to refer to some other obscure type of behaviour." (Miner,19) - "It is sufficient to note that Paul's terminology manifestly does not address the type of behaviour we ar asking about - two people of the same sex who love each other dearly and live in committed relationship." (Miner,22)
    "So the conclusion is that malakos simply does not refer to same-sex activity."(Helminiak,Daniel A.: What the Bibel Really Says about Homosexuality, Novatoo/USA 2000 (=Helminiak), 109) - "if arsenokoitai does refer to male-male sex, these texts do not forbid male homogenitality as such." (Helminiak, 115)

    "the malakos points to the effeminate call-boy, then the arsenokoites in this context must be the active partner who keeps the malakos as a "mistress" or who hires him on accasion to satisfy his sexual desires."(Scroggs,Robin: The New Testament and Homosexuality. Contextual Background for Contemporary Debate, Philadelphia 1983, 108) - "Malakos and arsenokoites ... point ot a very specific form of pederasty". (Scroggs, 109)

  9. "... Gentile men who abandoned 'natural intercourse with women' to have sex with other men. There is no notion of sexual orientation in the sense that we think of it today. Rather, the presupposition is that same-sex intercourse is a free and deliberate choice against nature."(Siker/Brawley, p. 142)

  10. Kodell, Jerome: The Celibacy Logion in Matthew 19:12, in: BTB 8 (1/1978), 19-23, 19.

  11. McNeill, John: The Church and the Homosexual, Boston 1988, 3rd ed. (=McNeill), 64f

  12. http://www.well.com/user/aquarius/thesis.htm

  13. Clemente de Alejandria: Stromata II-III, Fuentes Patristicas, Bd.10, hg. v. Marcelo Merino Rodriguez, Madrid 1998, 315

  14. Miner, 41

  15. Rogers,Jack: Jesus, the Bible and Homosexuality. Revised and Expanded Edition. Explode the Myths, Heal the Church, Louisville/Kentucky 2009 (=Rogers), 130

  16. Rogers, 131

  17. Hester, J.David: Eunuchs and the Postgender Jesus: Matthew 19.12 and Transgressive Sexualities, Journal for the Study of the New Testament 28.1 (2005), 13-40 (= Hester), 13

  18. Hester, 37

  19. Hester, 37

  20. Hester, 38

  21. Miner, 46

  22. McNeill, 65

  23. Guest,Deryn/Goss,Robert E./West,Mona/Bohache,Thomas: The Queer Bible Commentary, 2.Aufl. London 2007, 510

  24. Nestle-Aland: Novum Testamentum Graece, 26th ed., Stuttgart 1979, 10

  25. Greeberg, David F.: The Construction of Homosexuality, Chicago 1988, 211

  26. Johansson, Warren: Whosoever Shall Say to His Brother, Racha (Matthew 5:22), in: Dynes, Wayne R., Donaldson, Stephen: Homosexuality and Religion and Philosophy, New York/London 1992, 212-214 (first published in: Cabirion and Gay Books Bulletin 10 (1984), 2-4), 213

  27. Fone, Byrne: Homophobia. A History, New York 2000, 94f

  28. Arthur, Robert: The Sex Texts: Sexuality, Gender, and Relationships in the Bible, Pittsburgh 2013, 72


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