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My Take: What the Bible really says about homosexuality
The author argues that the meaning of the Bible's passages on homosexuality have been lost in translation.
May 15th, 2012
05:39 PM ET

My Take: What the Bible really says about homosexuality

Editor's note: Daniel A. Helminiak, who was ordained a priest in Rome, is a theologian, psychotherapist and author of “What the Bible Really Says about homosexuality" and books on contemporary spirituality. He is a professor of psychology at the University of West Georgia.

By Daniel A. Helminiak, Special to CNN

President Barack Obama’s support of same-sex marriage, like blood in the water, has conservative sharks circling for a kill. In a nation that touts separation of religion and government, religious-based arguments command this battle. Lurking beneath anti-gay forays, you inevitably find religion and, above all, the Bible.

We now face religious jingoism, the imposition of personal beliefs on the whole pluralistic society. Worse still, these beliefs are irrational, just a fiction of blind conviction. Nowhere does the Bible actually oppose homosexuality.

In the past 60 years, we have learned more about sex, by far, than in preceding millennia. Is it likely that an ancient people, who thought the male was the basic biological model and the world flat, understood homosexuality as we do today? Could they have even addressed the questions about homosexuality that we grapple with today? Of course not.

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Hard evidence supports this commonsensical expectation. Taken on its own terms, read in the original languages, placed back into its historical context, the Bible is ho-hum on homosexuality, unless – as with heterosexuality – injustice and abuse are involved.

That, in fact, was the case among the Sodomites (Genesis 19), whose experience is frequently cited by modern anti-gay critics. The Sodomites wanted to rape the visitors whom Lot, the one just man in the city, welcomed in hospitality for the night.

The Bible itself is lucid on the sin of Sodom: pride, lack of concern for the poor and needy (Ezekiel 16:48-49); hatred of strangers and cruelty to guests (Wisdom 19:13); arrogance (Sirach/Ecclesiaticus 16:8); evildoing, injustice, oppression of the widow and orphan (Isaiah 1:17); adultery (in those days, the use of another man’s property), and lying (Jeremiah 23:12).

But nowhere are same-sex acts named as the sin of Sodom. That intended gang rape only expressed the greater sin, condemned in the Bible from cover to cover: hatred, injustice, cruelty, lack of concern for others. Hence, Jesus says “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 19:19; Mark 12:31); and “By this will they know you are my disciples” (John 13:35).

How inverted these values have become! In the name of Jesus, evangelicals and Catholic bishops make sex the Christian litmus test and are willing to sacrifice the social safety net in return.

The longest biblical passage on male-male sex is Romans 1:26-27: "Their women exchanged natural intercourse for unnatural, and in the same way also the men, giving up natural intercourse with women, were consumed with passion for one another."

The Greek term para physin has been translated unnatural; it should read atypical or unusual. In the technical sense, yes, the Stoic philosophers did use para physin to mean unnatural, but this term also had a widespread popular meaning. It is this latter meaning that informs Paul's writing. It carries no ethical condemnation.

Compare the passage on male-male sex to Romans 11:24. There, Paul applies the term para physin to God. God grafted the Gentiles into the Jewish people, a wild branch into a cultivated vine. Not your standard practice! An unusual thing to do — atypical, nothing more. The anti-gay "unnatural" hullabaloo rests on a mistranslation.

Besides, Paul used two other words to describe male-male sex: dishonorable (1:24, 26) and unseemly (1:27). But for Paul, neither carried ethical weight. In 2 Corinthians 6:8 and 11:21, Paul says that even he was held in dishonor — for preaching Christ. Clearly, these words merely indicate social disrepute, not truly unethical behavior.

In this passage Paul is referring to the ancient Jewish Law: Leviticus 18:22, the “abomination” of a man’s lying with another man. Paul sees male-male sex as an impurity, a taboo, uncleanness — in other words, “abomination.” Introducing this discussion in 1:24, he says so outright: "God gave them up … to impurity."

But Jesus taught lucidly that Jewish requirements for purity — varied cultural traditions — do not matter before God. What matters is purity of heart.

“It is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but it is what comes out of the mouth that defiles,” reads Matthew 15. “What comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this is what defiles. For out of the heart come evil intentions, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile.”

Or again, Jesus taught, “Everyone who looks at a women with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matthew 5:28). Jesus rejected the purity requirements of the Jewish Law.

In calling it unclean, Paul was not condemning male-male sex. He had terms to express condemnation. Before and after his section on sex, he used truly condemnatory terms: godless, evil, wicked or unjust, not to be done. But he never used ethical terms around that issue of sex.

As for marriage, again, the Bible is more liberal than we hear today. The Jewish patriarchs had many wives and concubines. David and Jonathan, Ruth and Naomi, and Daniel and the palace master were probably lovers.

The Bible’s Song of Songs is a paean to romantic love with no mention of children or a married couple. Jesus never mentioned same-sex behaviors, although he did heal the “servant” — pais, a Greek term for male lover — of the Roman Centurion.

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Paul discouraged marriage because he believed the world would soon end. Still, he encouraged people with sexual needs to marry, and he never linked sex and procreation.

Were God-given reason to prevail, rather than knee-jerk religion, we would not be having a heated debate over gay marriage. “Liberty and justice for all,” marvel at the diversity of creation, welcome for one another: these, alas, are true biblical values.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Daniel A. Helminiak.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bible • Christianity • Gay marriage • My Take • Opinion

soundoff (8,829 Responses)
  1. Dan

    The bible is a work of fiction used by mentally ill megalomaniacs as a tool to control weak, scared people. Why is it even taken seriously in the context of the modern world? You'll find just about as many valuable life lessons in the twilight series as you would in the bible.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:08 am |
    • ethos

      :), there is no like or +1 button!

      May 16, 2012 at 9:09 am |
    • Dan

      The terrifying thing is that given the fact that modern society in many parts of the world is based on a 2000 year old compilation of short stories, in 2000 years will there be religious wars between groups of people who worship wolves and groups of people who worship sparkly vampires? I'd hate to say that's ludicrous, but this discussion and the need to have it is proof positive that it's happened before.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:12 am |
    • Chris

      So true. It was a book written to control the uneducated masses. Funny enough, those uneducated masses still exist today and don't realize it.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:18 am |
  2. guest

    Darkon711. Well said

    May 16, 2012 at 9:07 am |
  3. Honey Badger Dont Care

    The ti tle of the article is: “My Take: What the Bible really says about ho mose xuality”

    First of all, it doesn’t matter what YOUR opinion is on what the bible says. It speaks very plainly all by itself.

    In the article he writes, “the Bible is ho-hum on ho mose xuality.” Really? Lets see.
    Leviticus 20:13
    New International Version (NIV)
    13 “‘If a man has se xual 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.

    While this may sound “ho-hum” to the author of this article it sounds more like a death threat to me. There is no way around the fact that the bible is full of hate and ignorance.

    Wake up, don’t believe in fairy tales, live in the real world, and have a good life.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:05 am |
    • Don

      Be sure to quote the scripture where you aren't supposed to wear clothing made from more than one material, where adultry is punishable by death, and where women on their period can't enter the temple.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:10 am |
    • Honey Badger Dont Care

      Just becuase the author leaves out Leviticus 20:13 doesn't mean that it isnt there.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:10 am |
    • Chris

      If we take the bible at its word (every single passage) the world would be a crazy place. It is a book of made up stories and fables that are meant to teach lessons. The stuff in the bible simply didn't happen...period.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:16 am |
    • Ezra

      Wake up, don’t believe in fairy tales, live in the real world, and have a good life.
      --
      If you believe in the Bible then you DO beleive in fairy tales.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:18 am |
  4. JD

    How do people believe in a book that was written by man thousands of years ago???? I believe in God. I myself am gay, but it doesn't change the fact that I love that Lord. Who are any of you to judge who I choose to love and marry? If you are a Christian, then you know the bible also talks about NOT judging. 2 Chronicles 19:6 And said to the judges, Take heed what ye do: for ye judge not for man, but for the LORD, who is with you in the judgment.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:04 am |
    • MCR

      How do people believe in a book that was written by man thousands of years ago???? I believe in God. I myself steal money from my customers every day, but it doesn't change the fact that I love that Lord. Who are any of you to judge how I choose to make a living? If you are a Christian, then you know the bible also talks about NOT judging. 2 Chronicles 19:6 And said to the judges, Take heed what ye do: for ye judge not for man, but for the LORD, who is with you in the judgment.

      Get it?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:08 am |
    • Chris

      The problem is that you are arguing against a group of "christians" that thinks everyone should/must believe what they do. Even if what they believe is complete and total lie. Instead of following what their religion preaches (do unto others, love thy neighbor, etc) they spew hate and untruths due to their own insecurities. I am not gay but I cannot for the life of me find a reason why gays/lesbians do not deserve the same rights as everyone else. It is as if these "christians" think that if they condemn something that it'll just go away. It amazes me how many uneducated people there are in this country.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:10 am |
    • Wow

      I guess you didn't know that this same book, the Bible, that was written so long ago actually had 500 prophecies fullfilled at 100% accuracy and many more to come. It is the only source of prophecy that has this kind of track record. Do you really think that it should be ignored?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:20 am |
  5. clarke

    It doesn't matter what you say or do, people are going to believe what they think to be true. It is just a fact of life.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:04 am |
  6. mikel

    The choice is as clear as glass. Are you going to change your life to justify the Bible or are you going to change the Bible to justify your life? You have the absolute freedom to choose whichever you want.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:02 am |
  7. Ron

    Really ??? A gay Catholic Priest lecturing on what the Bible says about being gay ?? Really ??? When is an abomination not an abomination ?? When a gay Catholic Priest says it's not..............

    May 16, 2012 at 9:02 am |
    • Greg

      Had dinner at a seafood restaurant recently? That's an abomination too according to the Bible. Same with wearing with a multi-blend fiber, which would take an extreme amount of effort to avoid with modern fashion. Cherrypicking a couple verses when it suits your prejudice and ignoring 90% of the Old Testament when it would be inconvenient to follow isn't a valid justification, it's just bigotry under a sheep's clothing of religion. Do you just ignore all the New Testament verses where Jesus says to treat your fellow man good? The Bible is a book written for living in a more primitive time 1000's of years ago. While it has some profound parts, much of it just doesn't jive with the modern world and would even be immoral to follow. Clinging to it like it's all still relevent is a bad and dangerous thing, and many lIves have been and continue to be destroyed because of it.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:20 am |
  8. TenoRx

    Daniel H. is a 'gay advocate' - meaning he has an agenda on this issue; also, while he 'was ordained in Rome', he submitted a letter of resignation from the priesthood in 1995. Sorry CNN, but you and this writer (Daniel H.) are misleading readers with omissions and distortions of the facts.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:00 am |
    • rizzo

      Actually, he's pretty much right about all of this stuff. I think you need to do a bit of soul searching and figure out why you are so quick to condemn your fellow man.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:02 am |
    • jesseNOTW

      True!

      May 16, 2012 at 9:06 am |
    • Wow

      TenoRx, You are right on with your statements. Keep up the good work.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:07 am |
    • jesseNOTW

      Very well stated TenoRx

      May 16, 2012 at 9:08 am |
  9. Wow

    The time is nearing and all who look to this article and believe in it will not find what they are truly looking for. These are dark days and I can only pray that those who agree with this article will wake up and see the light before it is too late. You do not know your time of death so why gamble with your salvation. God will not make you believe, it is your free will that is the only thing stopping you. Look to the Lord before it is too late.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:00 am |
    • No religion thank you

      Oh please....get a life.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:10 am |
    • Hank Danger

      Ha ha, you're serious aren't you?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:10 am |
    • ronjon

      The author of this article even said that Paul believed he was living in the last days. But that was almost 2000 years ago. Glad we still have the Gloom & Doomers.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:27 am |
    • Wow

      "Get a life"... thanks for letting me know I need to get one for I thought my life with God was not enough, oh wait it is enough... let my cup overflow.

      Yes, I am serious. Your salvation means a lot to me and though you may not agree with me or believe in God does not mean that he is not there and willing to accept you if you only turn to him.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:28 am |
    • Wow

      Doom and gloom? Understanding is the first step. This is not doom and gloom for me but a path to things better. For I may feel sadness for leaving the earthly world, I too feel great joy to some day see my Lord Savior; hence, there is no doom and gloom in my words for those whom have already turned to the Lord.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:35 am |
  10. freqflyr

    The gay marriage issue is not about equal benefits. It always comes back around to society accepting them as normal which it is not. That is a fact and not hate.

    May 16, 2012 at 8:57 am |
    • Mike

      What is "normal"? Majority? So, only what the majority does is acceptable? Mob rule was a fear of the Founding Fathers, so I am certain you are not implying that, just because the majority does something one way, it is the only acceptable way.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:08 am |
    • Don

      Being left handed isn't normal either, but society tends to get along with them. Fact, not hate.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:08 am |
    • jr689

      Women at one time where not equal or accepted as normal. At one time, Black where not accepted as equal and accepted as normal. It is only a matter of time till the irrational hate and bigotry will die. Why not be on the right side of history. LBGT are people just like you and you are ok with denying them rights and govenment benifits because of who they choose (or don't choose) to love.
      Just because you dont like it doesn't give you the right to deny rights to other people.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:12 am |
  11. Dustin C

    Wow, that's some impressive scriptural gymnastics. Here again we see that you can make the Bible say anything you want it to.

    May 16, 2012 at 8:53 am |
    • Pinewalker

      ditto

      May 16, 2012 at 8:59 am |
    • cc3

      Any argument is gymnastics, requiring deftness (except just straight-up hate of "God hates ___."

      Do not confuse trying to understand historical context with some sort of manipulation. They are not the same. You can say they are, but then you are just being utterly simplistic.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:02 am |
    • jman

      I believe they should create an Olympic sport on biblical gymnastics! I would give this one a 10 as that is the best twist I have ever seen with bible passages! Lets face it, this is what all Christians do with the bible. They make it say what they want it to say and call it truth. 17 years as a Christian and this is all I saw; they all make god who they want him to be.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:07 am |
    • Andrea

      So I guess you have several wives since that was the "norm" in the bible. That you dont eat pork, since that is also in the bible. The list goes on....

      May 16, 2012 at 9:20 am |
  12. Gecks

    Only your heart can testify what you know for sure. You cannot convince anyone. They just have to experience it in their own heart.
    I was amazed at the time spent on name calling and insults in all the comments. I don't know why I kept reading it but it made me question why one person was condemning the other. We all are sinners and fall short of the Glory if God. When you are awaken in the night for three consecutive nights, at the same time, by someone calling your name, you know in your heart where it was coming from The third night was a voice so different from any other voice I've ever heard. Only your heart can testify what you know for sure. You cannot convince anyone. They have to experience it in their heart. If you're unsure or doubt your belief, just ask the Creator of you and He will answer. May not be in that moment but He will. Bless You all and have a better day. I won't read anything else you write because I wouldn't care to hear the bathroom story again. I was having a snack at the time.

    May 16, 2012 at 8:53 am |
  13. beebalm

    The fact still remains that if everyone was gay we would eventually become extinct. Does this not play into the issue at all? It doesn't have anything to do with religion, it is a fact. So, it is actually putting the human race in danger when society begins to accept it as being a "norm".

    May 16, 2012 at 8:51 am |
    • ToldUso

      No, it doesn't play into the conversation at all. South Park proved you can't gay away a population.

      May 16, 2012 at 8:58 am |
    • John Jacobson

      Your underlying assumption is that being gay is a choice and we would be in trouble if all chose to be gay. If you know any gay people at all, you know it is not a choice and your statement borders on the ridiculous

      May 16, 2012 at 9:00 am |
    • Jen

      That's the weakest and most unintelligent argument in existence. The world has 7 BILLION people!!! It will be 10 billion very very soon. To argue that allowing gay marriage is going to make everyone gay and the population is going to go extinct is stupid and absurd (are you planning on becoming gay if gay marriage becomes legal?). It would actually be nice if more people were gay because we need to stop the ridiculous population growth on this planet. Canada has had gay marriage for years and yet the percentage of gay people remains constant. The percentage of gay people does not grow with acceptance. Get an education.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:02 am |
    • JayBird

      Might be a solution to China's population explosion!

      May 16, 2012 at 9:03 am |
    • ethos

      Its nature's way to reduce population. 7 billion is more than this planet can support, it has already strained a lot and showing up in everything from environment to the economic and political status of the countries worldwide.
      If breeding like pigs is natural, i see someone being gay is also natural.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:07 am |
    • Entel

      The fact still remains that if everyone was INFERTILE we would eventually become extinct. Does this not play into the issue at all? It doesn't have anything to do with religion, it is a fact. So, it is actually putting the human race in danger when society begins to accept it as being a "norm".

      The fact still remains that if everyone was A MAN we would eventually become extinct. Does this not play into the issue at all? It doesn't have anything to do with religion, it is a fact. So, it is actually putting the human race in danger when society begins to accept it as being a "norm".

      Are you beginning to see how baseless and stupid your argument is? Or will you follow the logic of your argument and deny rights to infertile people and/or to men?

      Frankly, I kind of wish your magical proposed connection between gay rights and population depletion were true, as, if anything, there are TOO MANY people on the planet. But, again, as mentioned, your argument is complete and utter hogwash.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:08 am |
    • Guest

      Even if every single person on the planet was gay, that would still not be the end of the human race. Gay people are just as fertile as straight people, so in oreder for the human race to end every single person in this fictional gay world would have to consciously make the choice to end the human race by not procreating.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:14 am |
    • Shannon

      Do you really genuinely believe that, should gay marriage be legal in this country, everyone will just "go gay"? Seriously? I've been around lots of gays and lesbians in open happy partnerships and never once did I feel an urge to be a lesbian because I'm just not attracted to women. I'm always amused by this argument–that if it's accepted, we'll all be gay. Well, only if that's an inclination we have, and if you're afraid of that "eventuality" then maybe what you fear is your own repressed inclination.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:38 am |
  14. Shannon

    Wow, such a lot of intolerant people in this world............ And most of you seem to be forgetting that our basic human rights in this country are not based on The Bible. We have separation of church and state, and therefore to argue that this or that should be illegal based on some moral precepts of one particular church is a ridiculous premise to begin with and carries no weight.

    Why should anyone care who is allowed to get married? If two guys marry each other, anyone who seriously thinks this weakens their own marital bond really should look into some professional help. What goes on in someone else's house is no concern of yours unless they come over and force you to do the same. More people should really just mind their own business. The founding fathers read their Rousseau-maybe we should be looking there for guidance, not in the Christian Bible. And maybe we shouldn't be shaping modern thought on a book written by some guys a few thousand years ago. Or would you like to just go back to that time? Let's ditch our medicine and modern conveniences and all the other things we've learned and changed and developed over time. That makes about as much logical sense.

    May 16, 2012 at 8:50 am |
    • mudfoot

      ..well you still follow the laws of gravity and how long have they been around?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:03 am |
    • Satan

      You a retard if your comparing the laws of physics to the bullsh•t "laws" of the bible.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:11 am |
    • Ma Dukes

      Well said Shannon. The best response yet!

      May 16, 2012 at 9:12 am |
  15. William Pelegrini

    you are right.
    this article MUST be a joke.
    I understand CNN and its gay anchors, the LGBT money and all but they are just going too far....loosing all credibility putting up such a ridiculous article with this "theologian".
    If they continue down that road, all that will be left here is atheists and their delusion and hatred and gays talking to each other....
    Have you seem CNN against black church for example? and they make sure to find a black pastor that support throwing out the Scriptures and saying "is ok" to be gay. Guess who is this pastor? the same one that says hell doens' exist! LOL

    basically CNN, LGBT, atheists and this world system, the evil one is this:
    look, the Bible says ANYTHING about ANYTHING...therefore lets do WHATEVER we want...
    by the way, "I don't like this commandment! is too out of fashion! let's get rid of it!
    amazing...

    May 16, 2012 at 8:49 am |
    • miscreantsall

      The babbling of true ignorance!

      How is that working for you William P.?

      May 16, 2012 at 8:52 am |
    • Pinewalker

      Your words work just fine for me William P

      May 16, 2012 at 9:08 am |
    • Greg

      Atheists aren't the ones being hateful here. Atheists are predominately supportive of equality. It's mostly Christians and other Abrahamic religions who are attacking gay people and denying their rights.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:40 am |
    • attheapollo

      ....what commandments are you looking at?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:44 am |
  16. Conrad

    "The anti-gay "unnatural" hullabaloo rests on a mistranslation." Unfortunately, this is the crux of the matter–it is almost impossible to fight received wisdom. The few truly rational people among us could spend their lives demonstrating this mistake, and barely make a dent in what people "know" to be true. A very well-written and well-argued article.

    May 16, 2012 at 8:49 am |
  17. Bill the Cat

    All of these fallacies in this article have been refuted over the centuries.

    May 16, 2012 at 8:46 am |
    • ToldUso

      And by "fallacies", you mean the bible itself, correct?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:00 am |
    • grim_

      The entire Bible has been refuted over the centuries

      May 16, 2012 at 9:12 am |
    • Greg

      The real Bill the Cat had a gay affair in Bloom County. Seriously. Look it up. Got some unresolved feelings?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:47 am |
  18. William Pelegrini

    atheists are mostly mentally ill. Seriously. The rest of them are just emotionally disturbed. Usually their deep resentment come to the fact they "tried" church couple times, trying to "rix" stuff on their lives (you know..bargaining with God...you know?0

    trying to get a job, a disease in the family, even getting the lottery. And as The Lord is not tempted or give in to bargains, the answer did not come.

    I guess they think God is like on of these idols of all the other religions (including the moon idol called alah) that you bribe them with stuff to get something back..

    NO wonder the Bible call an atheist a FOOL. I just laugh at their "talking points". is just retarded. No logic, no reason, no sanity.
    ..can you believe these guys state the Bible says the world is flat????? LOL
    so much for three thousand years before Galileo, Isaiah already use the word "sphere" and "globe" to referred to the earth. The jewish people already knew since from Isaiah the world is a globe.
    ..OR...they use the passage when Satan show Jesus a vision of the world....you know what these one cell brains say? it is "proof" that the Bible considered the world flat!!!! a vision? ahahahahahah

    I mean, really....for me it is amazing how a human being be reduced to such limited, patheitc and poor existence...

    "THE DELUSION of the INEXISTENCE OF GOD"

    May 16, 2012 at 8:43 am |
    • Dan

      We atheists actually have an education on science and don't need to believe in ancient Jewish war gods, pillars of fire, the sun stopping in the middle of the day so the tribes of Israel can slaughter their enemies, stoppings of rivers, partings of seas and raising of the dead. Mentally ill? Yeah. Believing that a thousands of years old book is to be trusted over Quantum Mechanics and Physics is a sign of mental illness. It's no wonder that small minds turn to religion. Science is just too hard. Easier to tak the lazy route and let someone else do the thinking for you.

      May 16, 2012 at 8:50 am |
    • Miguel Caron

      I'm pretty getting down on your kneels and talking to invisible people is a sign of mental illness.

      May 16, 2012 at 8:50 am |
    • lolol

      I enjoyed reading your comment.
      good call on the Allah being the moon god. Few people ever mention this one haha!!

      May 16, 2012 at 8:55 am |
    • Atheist

      I'm not mentally ill, I have a regular 9-5 job, wife, kid, my own home, I reject religon for the same reasons you embrace it, I have questions of my existance, and I feel that by not limiting my possible answers I am able to be a better person, I use all the world's religons to determine my morals, you choose to limit your morals and I respect your choices, but do not call atheists mentally ill because you are assuming from a few personal experiences that all atheists are mentally ill, and when you assume a fact you tend to look like an ass, which is why assume has ass in the word.

      May 16, 2012 at 8:56 am |
    • Rob

      You are a hateful anbd vile person. You are gearing up for eternal damnation.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:00 am |
    • ronjon

      The author did not say the bible said the earth was flat. He said the people of the time thought the world was flat. The bible as we know it, is a compliation of many authors, written at many different times. The people of the bible did not read the bible, because it had not been assembled yet.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:05 am |
    • Nii

      Pelegrini I agree with you on many counts. As to the hatheists as Atheists u wiped them out in a single swoop! lol
      They should just tell us how if we were all gay we would reproduce if we didn't have scientists! Secondly they should ask themselves why subjects like Geography and History which the Bible doesn't actually treat disqualify the Bible when Psychiatry, Psychoanalysis and Psychology do not refute the Bible.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:11 am |
    • Mike

      Wow. I'm a devout Christian, but I do not see anything wrong with one being an atheist. We all are trying to figure our way through a very big universe, so it is understandable we all have differing view points on the vastness of existence.

      This is a diverse Nation, so let's find common ground to unify, and then celebrate our differences.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:11 am |
    • ethos

      William Pelegrini needs special medical attention. What has existence of God got to do with believing whatever is in Bible? Its a dead text – mostly irrelevant. Not just Bible but any old religious books from 10-20 centuries before from the dark ages!

      May 16, 2012 at 9:14 am |
    • ethos

      @Nii there are thousands and thousands of people who don't marry and neither have kids. But how did the world then reach to 7 Billion then? Why is your stupid brain thinking one needs scientists to breed, you should rather not breed, so that you will give birth no more further idiots. you are stupid to the core.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:18 am |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      Sorry William that you have been misguided as to who we are. My husband and I are both Atheists, we own our home; are extremely happy; have great jobs that we love and respect for all others who earn that respect. My 18 year old is about to graduate high school, does not use drugs; does not drink; does not smoke; has no belief in god and is going to college in the fall. We do not respect inequality based on the teachings of something written by man 2000 years ago. We were both raised in christian families. We do not require a god or any deity to tell us how to live a moral life. We simply do not believe in any god because no god can be proven to exist. We are not hateful of people due to their choice of who they love, we respect their right to be happy. We understand that science is not perfect but that it is updated and provides more answers than the buybull does. We do not threaten people with eternal damnation for not believing as we do. When we dismiss your god, we also dismiss heaven; hell; satan; angels...any of the things that have no evidence to back them. We do believe that a belief is dangerous to society when it impedes on the basic rights of equality for all.
      Absurd claims deserve ridicule. We will believe in your god the minute there is substantial evidence for its existence, until then we see no reason to believe.

      "When you understand why you dismiss all other gods, you'll understand why we dismiss yours."

      May 16, 2012 at 9:21 am |
    • Duggerdog

      You are a true idiot. Do fools like you live in our society? What a nutjob.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:23 am |
    • The Central Scrutinizer

      How sad that your thinking is limited to what others tell you.

      May 17, 2012 at 10:00 am |
  19. jj44

    This is all irrelevant because one can do anything one wishes to anyone, according to christianity, and be forgiven by accepting Christ as the son of God, Maybe the catholic priests sodomizing young boys go to confession and clear their slates after the act. The author deliberately distorts the words of the bibe to suit his own perverse ideology.

    May 16, 2012 at 8:42 am |
    • William Pelegrini

      you are right.
      this article MUST be a joke.
      I understand CNN and its gay anchors, the LGBT money and all but they are just going too far....loosing all credibility putting up such a ridiculous article with this "theologian".
      If they continue down that road, all that will be left here is atheists and their delusion and hatred and gays talking to each other....
      Have you seem CNN against black church for example? and they make sure to find a black pastor that support throwing out the Scriptures and saying "is ok" to be gay. Guess who is this pastor? the same one that says hell doens' exist! LOL

      basically CNN, LGBT, atheists and this world system, the evil one is this:
      look, the Bible says ANYTHING about ANYTHING...therefore lets do WHATEVER we want...
      by the way, "I don't like this commandment! is too out of fashion! let's get rid of it!
      amazing...

      May 16, 2012 at 8:48 am |
    • Chris

      Not precisely. You are right that sin can be forgiven. But forgiveness does not give a person carte blanche to sin at will. Romans 6 is a great passage that deals with precisely this point. In fact, true faith leads to ever-increasing obedience. And repentance literally means to turn around (head the opposite direction!) or change one's mind (think differently!) about sin. According to the New Testament, if a person used Christ's blood as an excuse to practice sin, that person would only prove that he does not know Christ nor have faith in him. True faith results in repentance and obedience. Not perfect obedience, but ever-increasing obedience in holiness. In short, you cannot live your life ignoring God's standards and appealing to his forgiveness. I suspect Jesus will say to such a person, "Get away from me you evildoer; I never knew you."

      May 16, 2012 at 8:53 am |
  20. Reality

    Ho-mose-xuality in the 21st century:

    ONLY FOR THE NEWCOMERS–

    "Abrahamics" believe that their god created all of us and of course that includes the g-ay members of the human race. Also, those who have studied ho-mo-se-xuality have determined that there is no choice involved therefore ga-ys are ga-y because god made them that way.

    To wit:

    o The Royal College of Psy-chiatrists stated in 2007:

    “ Despite almost a century of psy-choanalytic and psy-chological speculation, there is no substantive evidence to support the suggestion that the nature of parenting or early childhood experiences play any role in the formation of a person’s fundamental heteros-exual or hom-ose-xual orientation. It would appear that s-exual orientation is biological in nature, determined by a complex interplay of ge-netic factors and the early ut-erine environment. Se-xual orientation is therefore not a choice.[60] "

    "Garcia-Falgueras and Swaab state in the abstract of their 2010 study, "The fe-tal brain develops during the intraut-erine period in the male direction through a direct action of tes-tosterone on the developing nerve cells, or in the female direction through the absence of this hor-mone surge. In this way, our gender identi-ty (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender) and s-exual orientation are programmed or organized into our brain structures when we are still in the womb. There is no indication that social environment after birth has an effect on gender ident–ity or s-exual orientation."[8

    See also the Philadelphia Inquirer review “Gay Gene, Deconstructed”, 12/12/2011. Said review addresses the following “How do genes associated with ho-mose-xuality avoid being weeded out by Darwinian evolution?”

    Of course, those gays who belong to Abrahamic religions supposedly abide by the rules of no adu-ltery or for-nication allowed.

    And because of basic biology differences said monogamous ventures should always be called same-se-x unions not same-se-x marriages.

    From below, on top, backwards, forwards, from this side of the Moon and from the other side too, ga-y s-exual activity is still mutual mas-turbation caused by one or more complex s-exual differences. Some differences are visually obvious in for example the complex maleness of DeGeneres, Billy Jean King and Rosie O'Donnell.

    May 16, 2012 at 8:41 am |
    • BamaDaniel

      Why keep posting that I thought those there were men damn they ugly

      May 16, 2012 at 8:47 am |
    • Bill the Cat

      The Royal College of Psychiatrists have no training to declare anything a biological malady.

      May 16, 2012 at 8:48 am |
    • BamaDaniel

      I meant those three

      May 16, 2012 at 8:49 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.