This is taken from a Facebook post, so isn’t as eloquent as my other posts. However, I thought it was relevant to the particular political climate we are in today.
The only verse in the New Testament that seems to explicitly condemn homosexuality is Romans 1:21-27. Nowhere in the Gospels does Jesus explicitly talk about homosexuality, nor do any of the other books. The Old Testament is generally not accepted as law for Christians. However, if you wish to use the references in Leviticus to condone hating homosexuals I ask you to prove that you are following every other single law put down in Leviticus before you cherry pick the ones you like. Now, let’s take a literary approach to Romans. . .
21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.
24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.
26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
Let’s do some literary analysis here.
The original sin that caused this entire debacle was actually that they knew God but didn’t glorify him or give thanks to them. I won’t analyze the morals here, but the passage obviously states that giving them over to “unnatural desires” was a punishment for what they did. (For it first states the fact that they did not glorify him, which is followed by a “therefore.” The therefore implicitly states that what comes after it was a direct result of these actions. The action here? “God gave them over in the sinful desires of their heart.” This analysis is reinforced by verse 25 and 26: “They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things. . . Because of this God gave them over to shameful lusts. . .”) These acts were “shameful” for those people, and they received “/in themselves/ due penalty for their error.”
The penalty came not from without, but rather from within. When one does what one considers to be a shameful act, he becomes shamed and burdened with guilt. By committing these acts, they were saddled with guilt and suffering. God “gave them over to shameful lusts” as punishment for not glorifying him. The end result of this punishment was the guilt, shame, and disgust they received. The penalty was NOT from God for the act but rather “in themselves.” They punished THEMSELVES for what God made them do psychologically and emotionally.
So wait. Let’s think about this a little more. “God gave them over to shameful lusts. . . and [they] received in themselves due penalty for their error.” This is silly. God made you do something, and you were punished for it. Let’s be real here. If I physically forced you to, say, rob a liquor store somehow, do you really deserve to be punished for it, or do I? Sounds like God is not acting justly.
Also. Let’s make a distinction: Even if you disagree with my analysis, Paul is talking about UNNATURAL lusts. The people he is speaking to are obviously naturally heterosexual. They were inflamed by lust BY the Lord himself, and gave into it. The fault is they were acting AGAINST their nature, not that they had homosexual relations. Recent studies and scholarship have revealed that homosexuality is found in nature, thus is entirely natural. Look up Bonobo Monkeys (although, do so at your own risk. the videos are kinda nasty as I accidentally discovered). Also, many other animals have homosexual encounters. Arguing that homosexuality is unnatural in light of recent discoveries is frankly stupid. Behavioral scientists have also discovered that homosexuality is a result of genetics and environment, and thus is natural for the homosexual. They are not giving over to unnatural lusts, because these lusts are entirely natural for them.
Finally, find me ONE verse where Jesus speaks about homosexuals. Paul’s letters were dealing with specific issues in specific churches that he was writing to. They were never intended to be global dictates for the Christian religion. You have to look into context before you make rash generalizations and universalizations of something that was never meant to be universalized.