Too many of us have heard too often that the Bible condemns homosexuality. We know that it doesn’t but we may not know how to talk about the verses that others believe prove that it does. Here are a few resources for those of us who are not historians or theologians.
Mel White, What the Bible Says – and Doesn’t Say – about Homosexuality
In plain English, Mel White, a former ghost writer for Jerry Falwell and co-founder of Soulforce, offers a way to understand Biblical texts in perspective. The Bible is a book about God and love and justice, not a textbook on human sexuality or science, and when Christians spend so much time debating what it says about sex, they are prone to miss what it says about God. You can get a free PDF download from Soulforce, read an html version or order print copies.
Walter Wink, Homosexuality and the Bible
An excellent exegesis of the texts in the Bible that mention/condemn same-sex sexual activity and their relevance to modern Christian sexual ethics. In 16 pages, this is perhaps the most cogent tour of these passages placed in historical context and in the context of the question of Biblical authority. It is not an article that is accessible to all audiences, and is perhaps best suited for a clergy (or lay) person working on their own presentation explaining how these ancient texts should be read and reconciled with an inclusive welcome of people of all sexual orientation. Copies can be ordered from the Fellowship of Reconciliation. Also available through RMN’s online store.
Does the Bible Really Call Homosexuality an “Abomination”?
This essay from Jay Michaelson from Religion Dispatches gives the low-down on Biblical “abominations,” what the Hebrew original really says and how the translation has been used to persecute LGBT people. Must reading for those fighting back against the (ab)use of scripture as an anti-gay weapon.
At least as important as what the Bible doesn’t say about homosexuality is what it does say about love and justice, welcoming the stranger and defending the poor, the marginalized and the oppressed. For more on that topic, check out our section on sermons. One of many books on the subject is Obery Hendricks, Jr.’s The Politics of Jesus.