Sunday, April 20, 2008

Homosexuality, Part 2

Romans 1:26-27 is generally considered to be the text that settles the matter of whether homosexual people can be accepted as Christians or not. In my own journey of seeking to grasp God's view towards homosexual people and their place in the Body of Christ, I have come to see this verse as the only true and unambiguous scriptural condemnation of modern-day homosexuality. I wrote in an earlier blog entry that "What holds me in check [of affirming homosexual Christians]is Romans 1:18-32." The other 4 or 5 scriptures that refer in some form or other to homosexuality can be pretty easily seen, with a modicum of honest exegesis, to not be relevant to the current debate.

The more I dig into Romans 1:26-27, however, the more I have my doubts that it can justifiably be used to exclude people of homosexual orientation from Christian fellowship (or leadership).

I've read some pretty lame and disingenuous interpretations of Romans 1:26-27, both from those who oppose and those who support homosexual Christians, but one of the most balanced, honest and (I believe) accurate treatments I've come across is by Beverly Roberts Gaventa, a professor of New Testament Literature and Exegesis at Princeton Theological Seminary. You can read her short essay entitled "What does Romans 1 teach about homosexuality, and how should we live in response?" by clicking here.

Michael Westmoreland-White has also done some excellent blogging on this topic. Here is a link to his post regarding Romans 1:26-27.


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