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 • Opinion

soundoff (8,832 Responses)
  1. D. Moon

    There are so many versions of bibles out there, so which one is the correct one?

    And all of you that are bible thumpers or pushers, doesn't your bible that you are not to judge others as that is gods job?

    So, what you are telling everyone is that it is ok to pick from your bible bits and pieces that suit your needs and life. Way to be a good Christian

    May 16, 2012 at 9:30 am |
    • Ken78

      You reject Christianity, you know nothing about being a Christian, and yet you deign to judge whether others are "doing it right."

      The arrogance!

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

      Why does the Taliban always assume that atheists know nothing about Christianity? I've actually read the bible Ken, you?
      I was a practicing Baptist until I read the bible for myself. Then I realized that my so called faith was based on what preachers said, not what was actually written in the bible. To read the bible and stay a christian is to turn off your ability to reason.

      May 16, 2012 at 10:11 am |
  2. n8263

    It is immoral to impose your religious superstition on others.

    You do not believe in religion because you honestly think it is true, you believe in it because you fear mortality or are seeking meaning in your life. It does not take a genius to figure out all religion is man made, so for humanity's sake, please stop lying to yourself.

    Deluding yourself in religion does not change reality. Lying to yourself is probably the worst possible way to try to find meaning.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:30 am |
    • Ken78

      On what logical basis do you define your morality? And on what logical basis do you distingusih human morality from the morality of a lion, hyena, or baboon . . . or even a fruitfly? Morality for animals makes no sense. Anyone who would try to impose the idea of morality upon an animal – as you believe a human being to be nothing more than – is totally and completely insane.

      Serious questions you have never asked yourself. You are so lost and confused! May God blass you.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:38 am |
    • Robert

      Morality is a man made code and changes constantly. Murder and genocide are moral if a god does it but immoral if a human does it. Drowning innocent babies and children is moral according to those professing the bible to be true. You worship the greateest mass murderer of all time yet preach morality? Christians are the biggest hypocrites on earth because they use the bible to claim moral superiority yet use it also to justify immorality. Slavery was also justified by the bible, as was the holocaust. The very first Jewish Ghettos were exstablished in Rome by the RCC centuries before Hitler.
      If you want to preach morality you might want to find a better book to base it on.

      May 16, 2012 at 10:05 am |
  3. tigrr

    The Bible was Not "written by god" as some clowns claim. It is a collection of history stories, legends, letters, fables, racey tales, etc compiled by various people over the years, and at times edited, re-written, corrupted, etc to suit kings, popes, committees, etc. Unless you can read the originals bits in arabic, old greek, and assorted languages, chances are what you read is not accurate. Believe anything you like, but don't push your belifs on others. You may as well read Herodotus' Histories and get added insight to the past. But its all History. Not the future. Get real.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:29 am |
    • Ken78

      If man is just an animal as you believe, then it's Law of The Jungle time, dude. As animals we should all do whatever is in our own personal best interest as long as we are powerful enough to pull it off. Deal with it.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:44 am |
  4. Joe

    There is much that I can say on this whole topic, but for this short comment, consider this: I find it interesting that the author completely skipped over two other passages that deal with hom-os-exual behavior.

    1 Corinthians 6:9-10 says: "Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the se-xually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have s-ex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God."

    In this passage, g-ay s-ex is grouped with other immoral acts, and using the phrase "will [not] inherit the kingdom of God," sounds like a condemnation to me.

    Then there is 1 Timothy 1:9-11 which says, "We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for the se-xually immoral, for those practicing ho-mos-exuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine that conforms to the gospel concerning the glory of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me."

    In this passage, hom-os-exuality is said to be "contrary to the sound doctrine that conforms to the gospel." Sure the aposteles preached love, acceptance, and grace available to all (including to hom-os-exuals), but these still preached avoiding immorality, and it sounds to me like they still considered hom-os-exuality immoral.

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

      Now go back and read those in the original language and in their cultural context, instead of the copy of a copy of a translated translation.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:31 am |
    • Ken78

      Did you really have to read this to know what this guy was going to argue? I bet I could tell you almost exactly what he said without even reading it.

      It is sad. The author would rather have s_ex with men than follow God's will. There is no reasonihg with such folks – deep down inside in a place they try not to visit . . . they already know they are condemning themselves. At least the atheist can live in blissful ignorance. Well, until That Day.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:34 am |
    • No need to believe

      So by this nobody gets into the kingdom of god.....btw that is old testament not new testament, so you should mention that as well before you go shouting out random parts of a random old book.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:34 am |
    • Satan

      Quoting bible passages as if the are profound truths only makes you look stupid. Your beloved bible is rife with out right kids and more contradicts than I can list. Then you Christians pick and pull passages that suit your agenda while blatantly ignoring other passages from the same book. The ultimate in hypocrisy. Believe what ever you want but keep that sh•t to yourself, we don't give a fvck what your outdated book of backwards fairytales written by ancient goat herders says.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:37 am |
    • Joe

      Quoting Biblical passages here is relevant because that is what the author was doing. This is a discussion on what the Bible says about hom-os-exuality. Debating the merits and relevancy of the Bible itself is an entirely different topic. The author seemed to leave out those passages that I quoted that seemed a litlte more clear on the topic than what the author was using. Also, the passages I used are from the New Testament, not the old. As to the mention of, "how could anybody get into heaven," that is also another topic, but in short, that is what grace is for. Grace is available to all, including those who commit the acts listed in those verses. Jesus himself in the Bible offered forgiveness to adulterers and murderers.

      May 16, 2012 at 10:04 am |
    • Gman

      @ SATAN, the book of jude speaks to your destination and we all know that in the end MICHAEL THE ARK ANGEL

      kicks the crap out of you and sends you where you belong. no one will care when your in the flames of hell

      either. only those you decieved. and for them it will be to late. your already judged so keep talking.

      May 16, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
  5. Dave

    Thanks for providing us YOUR interpretation of scriputure. Next time don't be so egotistic as to assume that your interpretation is correct based on your own feelings about it. Such a practice is narrow minded, unintelligent, and sharply annoying to me and likely many others.

    When God's word is filtered it should at least be done by a human being worthy of sorting it out.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:26 am |
    • VoxVerum

      Like you?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • birch please

      "Gods word" is what humans wrote down decades to centuries after the events happened then selectively pieced together and translated a bunch of times.... there is no such thing as god's word.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:33 am |
    • Chris R

      Interesting – So you obviously are not a Catholic because if you were then you'd obviously believe that a Catholic Priest (a well respected biblical scholar as well) would be 'worthy' of speaking on the meaning of the scriptures. Just as obviously you aren't a protestant. If you were you'd hew to the core principle of protestant theology which is that any person can read and speak on the bible with as much authority as any other person. So neither a catholic nor protestant but obviously upset by the article. This is a mystery to me – unless you are just a person who simply refuses to consider alternative interpretations that conflict with your deeply held prejudices.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:41 am |
    • Brian

      Hey Dave, why not take the time to learn a little more about what you're claiming to know something about. You are just as guilty of doing what you're claiming this guy is with interpreting scripture. You have already made up you mind about what you think it should say or does say and you do not want to know anything more. Instead of claiming others are close minded why not open yours. The problem is failing to understand basic hermeneutics (the science of interpretation). You use many of these same skills today in reading this response. You're essentially mad because he attacked your position / disagreed with you. I do not agree with most of what has been said by many including the author but I am willing to listen and converse like an intelligent adult who is willing to look at every side.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:45 am |
    • Adam Gruschow

      So to paraphrase?

      "How arrogant of you to provide your personal interpretation of the Bible claim it as truth. Your version is wrong and mine is right!"

      You are just as laughably hypocritical as the Bible, to nobody's surprise...

      May 16, 2012 at 9:52 am |
    • Common sense

      WHO is 'righteous' to translate the word of God, uh Dave?

      May 16, 2012 at 10:42 am |
    • Nat Q

      You mean like by a man who was ordained a priest in Rome an holds advanced degrees in theology?

      May 16, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
  6. serdich

    How come god did not write the bible himself ? Illiterate much ?

    May 16, 2012 at 9:26 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      "How come god did not write the bible himself ?" His fingers are too big.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:34 am |
    • Ezra

      For an all powerful being, God is a terrible writer. S/He really could have used a good editor.

      May 16, 2012 at 10:03 am |
  7. LB

    Lev 20:13 If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood [shall be] upon them. Rom 1:31-32 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, WITHOUT NATURAL AFFECTION, implacable, unmerciful:Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them. 2 Tim 3:1-5 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,WITHOUT NATURAL AFFECTION, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; ing a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. 2 Tim 3:13 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. 2 Tim 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

    May 16, 2012 at 9:25 am |
    • Honey Badger Dont Care

      Which just reaffirms what I said earlier: if the xtian god exists it is a petty, megalomaniacal, evil creature not worth of my respect.

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

      Honey Badger Dont Care,
      You don't have to respect him. That is your choice. But you will answer to him. He is God. You are just a creation. He is the creator.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:35 am |
    • Robert

      It's always helpful to actually read the article before commenting.
      Assuming you're not reading the bible in Greek or Hebrew, you're reading a translation.
      Sorry but you'll just have to have all that bigotry without a god's support..

      May 16, 2012 at 9:51 am |
    • OB

      well said

      May 16, 2012 at 9:51 am |
    • Robert

      The only person I answer to is my wife.
      Your god doesn't' exist. I can't be disrespectful to a figment of your imagination.
      If I'm wrong your silly god knows where to find me. LOL
      PS, give Elvis my best.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:54 am |
    • Nat Q

      Lev 20:9
      "‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death."
      Lev 20:22
      "“‘Keep all my decrees and laws and follow them..."

      You wouldn't be wanting to enforce one and not the other would you? It's either ALL true or it is ALL subject to debate. Which is it?

      May 16, 2012 at 3:10 pm |
  8. Ed

    Adam and eve, not Adam and steve.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:25 am |
    • serdich

      Adam and Eve do no exist just a product of imagination..your reason is obsolete..a product of imagination.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:28 am |
    • birch please

      Someone failed biology class

      May 16, 2012 at 9:34 am |
    • n8263

      Do people still believe in Creationism?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:35 am |
    • Calvin

      Ed,. if you researched the Garden of Eden story at all, you would know it is a plagiarism of an earlier Babylonian creation myth. Assuming for sake of argument that you believe god created man and you further believe that gays are people, then the inescapable conclusion is that god created gays. Who are you to scoff at god?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:36 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      I saw someone get badly beaten up for saying that to a straight guy named Steve. Take some advice, that's one's dangerous.

      May 16, 2012 at 10:22 am |
    • Nat Q

      Woman made from man's rib, not woman born from another woman.

      Game set match!

      May 16, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
  9. lauch

    I have no idea where my comment went

    May 16, 2012 at 9:24 am |
    • Ken78

      If you effectively and intelligently argue against CNN's pro-gay agenda, they delete or block your post. They WILL let in bad arguments – but only to embarrass the folks who oppose CNN's pro-gay agenda.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:26 am |
      • lauch

        Umm – that wouldn't fit into either category and you are obviously a conspiracy theorist.

        I merely commented that if we're arguing about governmental laws in regards to the Bible, then it's obvious that the law was created with religion in mind which goes against Church and State separation. Marriage under law should not be defined by any religion.

        May 16, 2012 at 9:30 am |
    • Chris R

      Lauch, If I could shake your hand right now I would.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:42 am |
    • LinCA


      You said, "I have no idea where my comment went"
      CNN uses automated censoring that looks for words, or fragments of words, that are considered offensive. Your post must have had a forbidden word in it.

      Repeat posts, even those that were previously censored and not displayed, will show a message stating that you posted it before.

      The following words or word fragments will get your post censored (list is incomplete):

      To circumvent the filters you can break up the words by putting an extra character in, like: consti.tution (breaking the oh so naughty "tit").

      May 16, 2012 at 9:46 am |
  10. Isaiah 5

    20 ¶Woe unto them that call aevil bgood, and good evil; that put cdarkness for dlight, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
    21 Woe unto them that are awise in their own beyes, and cprudent in their own sight!
    22 Woe unto them that are mighty to adrink bwine, and men of strength to mingle strong drink:
    23 Which ajustify the bwicked for reward, and ctake away the righteousness of the righteous from him!
    24 Therefore as the fire devoureth the astubble, and the flame consumeth the chaff, so their broot shall be as rottenness, and their blossom shall go up as dust: because they have cast away the law of the Lord of hosts, and despised the word of the Holy One of Israel.
    25 Therefore is the aanger of the Lord kindled against his people, and he hath bstretched forth his hand against them, and hath smitten them: and the hills did tremble, and their carcases were torn in the midst of the streets. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:24 am |
    • serdich

      I say: Boo to them...

      May 16, 2012 at 9:29 am |
  11. Ooh Rah

    Yup, What would Jesus think of Boehner and his repub colleagues? I agree with Locksmith above..

    May 16, 2012 at 9:23 am |
  12. Ezra

    It's amazing to me that religious conservatives make a big deal out of a small fraction of Bible passages and miss the point of the whole thing – it's about love, generosity, tolerance and caring for your neighbor. The rest is just old Hebrew laws, myths and poems.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:22 am |
    • VoxVerum

      It's called "confirmation bias" and people do it every day.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:24 am |
    • serdich

      There are no such things in the bible..its about slavery, stoning, sin, death and destruction as well as torture, hell and end of days...

      May 16, 2012 at 9:24 am |
  13. Twinelms

    Oh, what lengths to which foolish men will strive to justify their sin. I Co 1:19

    May 16, 2012 at 9:21 am |
    • Ken78

      Alright . . . I didn't read this.

      But I have read PLENTY of CNN articles and blogs about Christianity.

      So let me guess. Despite the Old Testament and New Testament being replete with passages condemning h0m0-uality (and indeed all relations outside of a marriage between a man and woman), and not a single passage describing it approvingly, this author tried to find a way to argue that in reality, the Bible is absolutely positively super-gay-friendly after all!

      Am I right?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:30 am |
    • Nat Q

      I agree! I mean going so far as to quote the Bible to justify oppression? It's sad.

      May 16, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
  14. anne

    I love it when Non-Christians think they know what the Bible says.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:19 am |
    • VoxVerum

      You don't have to be Christian to know what the Bible says, and in fact, many many Christians have never read it in its entirety, nor have they investigated the scriptures in their original languages, nor investigated what the Bible MEANS, which is an entirely different matter from what it SAYS.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:23 am |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      anne: Most of the non-christians on here were christian and then we grew up and learned to think for ourselves. It is a well stated fact that Atheists know the buybull better than most theists...we have read it.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:25 am |
    • birch please

      Proven: atheists have greater biblical knowledge then christians.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:25 am |
    • Matt Parks

      Actually, he's an ordained Priest....

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

      You know that studies show that atheists know more about religion than religious people right? Comes from actual research rather than blindly following what some pastor says every Sunday. (and no, i am not an atheist)

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

      Well, a lot of studies have proven that atheists have more bible knowledge than Christians. As they say, the best way to become atheist is to read the bible.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:30 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      It helps that I was very well-versed in the Bible when I was a theist. But now, as an atheist, I definitely have a greater understanding of the context of the Bible and why it's not the book of God.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:31 am |
    • Robert

      How do you think we became non-Christians? lol
      I thinks you'll find that most atheists know more about the bible than you do.
      I arrived at my non-belief after considering all the evidence. You arrived at your beliefs in the absense of any evidence what so ever.
      Do you also still believe in Santa?

      May 16, 2012 at 10:21 am |
    • Nat Q

      I love it when Christians think all non-Christians were never Christian or that upon leaving the faith somehow forgot everything they ever know about it.

      I was a Christian for 30 years. I know full well what the Bible says. beginning to study what it said in some depth is one of the main reasons I'm not a Christian any longer.

      May 16, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
  15. PoudBaptistGirl

    I can't believe I read this filth. I feel sorry for you.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:18 am |
    • Honey Badger Dont Care

      Yes I know right. The I read the bible too, it really is filth.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:22 am |
    • typical

      hilarious. you read the article to find your opinion and it ... just... wasn't ... there.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:24 am |
    • ProudAgnostic

      I actually feel sorry for you believing in fairy tales.

      May 16, 2012 at 10:25 am |
  16. Daveky

    One other thing. There was an earlier post stating that "we have separation of church and state". To whomever, please research the intent of "separation of church and state". It has become so easy to insert that in situations such as these.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:17 am |
    • teshi

      In situations like these Church and State are to be separate. Meaning the Church is not the deciding factor when enforcing or imply laws. Gay Rights being one of those situations you mentioned. Equal Rights to all Citizens is what the question here is, should the Church interfere with the Civil Liberties of others? And if so, which religion will we follow, Christian, Catholic, Muslim? What is a religion other than your own was telling you, you could do what you wanted because it is against "THEIR religion, not your own, in YOUR own country?" This is why separation is important, due to all the cultures, religions, practices, we are mixed, all together, to make this Great Nation, and we should all be given Equal Rights.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:31 am |
    • Matt Parks

      The United States of America was founded on the princible of "separation of church and state" meaning anyone was free to follow whatever religion they want and religion would not affect political decisions, because it was understood that everyone in the new country was not the same religion and it would not be fair to all.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • bernie

      Please enlighten us, what does it mean?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:33 am |
  17. Daveky

    If you are going to use the Bible at all, please quit trying to make it say what you want it to say. I must ask for an explanation as to why God first placed Adam (man) in the garden and after Adam had things in order, Eve (woman) was brought to him. Where is there a mention of another man? Seems odd that God's perfect illustration concerning His plan has been distorted and you are trying encourage others to ignore it. If you choose to believe differently that what the Bible teaches, fine. Those who believe it at least have a standard that does not change. Seems as though the only way you can defend your position is to argue against the Bible since you really have no standard of your own.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:15 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      There's a part right after that that mentions there were other people outside of the garden. Is it possible the Bible lied about Adam and Even being the only two people? It was just a myth of the Jewish people that explained how we got here. Nothing more, nothing less.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:25 am |
    • Calvin

      The "standard" was set by Jesus, not Moses. "love thy neighbor as you love yourself."

      May 16, 2012 at 9:29 am |
    • Matt Parks

      If you're a Christian, and not a Jew, you should follow the teachings of the New Testement.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:34 am |
    • bernie

      Yeah, and it also mentions a talking snake told eve to go eat the forbidden fruit. Bible is full of gems

      May 16, 2012 at 9:37 am |
  18. Mike

    For all of you that are using the bible to justify your stance against gay marriage, I sure hope you are keeping kosher! No more pork, keep you meat and dairy separated (no more cheese burgers) etc etc etc.

    May 16, 2012 at 9:13 am |
    • PoudBaptistGirl

      Maybe you should actually pick up the Bible and read it. Just because we belive it as truth does not mean we are all Jewish. Idiot.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:20 am |
    • true.... not jewish

      but you can sell your daughter into slavery. Or have concubines... you choose your "truth" based on what you believe before you read the bible.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:26 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      PoudBaptistGirl, those laws are all in the same book that calls hom-ose-xuality an abomination. Right after it says that it even calls using two different fabrics int he same cloth an abomination. I hope you don't own anything polyester.

      The point is, why do you get to pick and choose what laws in the Bible to follow? Perhaps you should read it. I have read it several times.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:28 am |
    • birch please

      Jesus said to follow the laws of noah, "idiot". He was very hypocritical. If you are not jewish then please stop using the old testament "idiot".

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

      @BaptistGirl: You missed his point entirely. All of you self-righteous pseudo-Christians love to rant on and on about following the Bible, but you cherry-pick the verses that support your bias, while rejecting and ignoring the hundreds of commandments contained within. Do you eat shellfish? Do you mix your cottons and polyesters? Have any friends who cheated on their spouse? I hope you stoned them to death, along with your disrespectful children. What did you do last Saturday? Hopefully, not any work, since Saturday is the sabbath according to the Bible. I could go on, but why don't you just read it for yourself. The WHOLE thing.

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

      Dear Mike & ProudBaptistGirl: I am Jewish. I keep Kosher. But just as I do not impose my dietary restrictions on anybody else (Should the FDA enforce Kashrut? Of course not!), I do not believe people should impose their religious beliefs on other people, or make those beliefs part of civic law. In other words, live and let live, or as we say in Yiddish, "gay gezunte heis" (go in good health)!

      May 16, 2012 at 9:28 am |
    • Matt Parks

      If you're a Christian, you should follow the New Testement and the Gospels more closely than the Old Testement. Jesus' teachings made a lot of the Old Testement obsolete.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:36 am |
    • BibleBeliever

      I'm a Messianic Bible Believer. That means I believe in "Jesus" as my Savior and I keep Torah which means I don't eat pork, shrimp etc... and I do keep the Sabbath (Saturday) and Feasts of Yahuah (God)!

      Just because many who call themselves believers "Christians" have been falsely taught that obeying these "Jewish" laws have been done away with not all of us are walking this way! First off the Laws of Yahuah (God) are NOT Jewish they are HIS Laws to be kept by HIS people. The fact that lies over this has been taught over the centuries is the very reason such garbage as this article is now being written and believed by so many. It is such a shame.

      When the minds of men become so twisted and distorted, as this article so exemplifies, then Yahuah has no choice but to bring swift judgment......plain and simple!

      May 16, 2012 at 9:38 am |
  19. Locksmith

    ". . . 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)."

    Wow, that sounds like a republican candidate now a days.... interesting!

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

      I agree. I am shocked to see so many "csting stones" assuming they are without sin. Let's assume that being gay is an "affliction" (which it isn't), but let's assume. Then isn't it the Christian way to show empathy, kindness, and compassion rather than judge, scorn, and persecute? Jesus would have never acted this way.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • Chuckles

      You are a true democrate. I am a republican and I can honestly say "Thay sounds like the candidate from both sides". You can smell the corruption on both sides. Know how you can tell? Why would anyone worth millions of dollars want a job that only pays $400,000 plus change? Answer: Corruption.

      May 16, 2012 at 9:42 am |
    • Bible Clown©

      "You are a true democrate. I am a republican" and some bla bla bla hate stuff. Lots of people like to find parts of the Bible that say you can hate or kill people, because "love your fellow man" seems like a waste of time. They don't love mankind, and they never will, but boy, can they dig through a Bible and find "burn the witches" in five minutes. For some reason, a lot of these people are also Republican hatebags.

      May 16, 2012 at 10:27 am |
  20. Brad

    God must be wrong and man right...

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

      Well god is man made so...

      May 16, 2012 at 9:12 am |
    • Honey Badger Dont Care

      If the xtian god exists it is a petty, megalomaniacle, evil creature not worth of my respect.

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

      Brad, nice jump to conclusions. Reading comprehension, especially when it comes to the Bible, not a strong suit of yours, is it?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:15 am |
    • Jen

      How do you know what god thinks? You know god didn't write the bible right?

      May 16, 2012 at 9:16 am |
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About this blog

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 with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.