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My Take: The Bible condemns a lot, but here's why we focus on homosexuality
The author writes that it's fine for Christians to take certain biblical condemnations seriously while ignoring others.
May 21st, 2012
10:00 AM ET

My Take: The Bible condemns a lot, but here's why we focus on homosexuality

Editor's Note: R. Albert Mohler Jr. is president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention and one of the largest seminaries in the world.

By R. Albert Mohler Jr., Special to CNN

Are conservative Christians hypocritical and selective when it comes to the Bible’s condemnation of homosexuality? With all that the Bible condemns, why the focus on gay sex and same-sex marriage?

Given the heated nature of our current debates, it’s a question conservative Christians have learned to expect. “Look,” we are told, “the Bible condemns eating shellfish, wearing mixed fabrics and any number of other things. Why do you ignore those things and insist that the Bible must be obeyed when it comes to sex?”

On its face, it’s a fair question. But it can be posed in two very different ways.

First, the question can be asked to suggest that the Bible’s clear condemnation of sexual sins can simply be set aside. The other way of posing the question represents a genuine attempt to understand how the Bible is to be rightly applied to life today.

In truth, those asking the question the first way really don’t want an answer.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

An honest consideration of the Bible reveals that most of the biblical laws people point to in asking this question, such as laws against eating shellfish or wearing mixed fabrics, are part of the holiness code assigned to Israel in the Old Testament. That code was to set Israel, God’s covenant people, apart from all other nations on everything from morality to diet.

As the Book of Acts makes clear, Christians are not obligated to follow this holiness code. This is made clear in Peter’s vision in Acts 10:15. Peter is told, “What God has made clean, do not call common.”

In other words, there is no kosher code for Christians. Christians are not concerned with eating kosher foods and avoiding all others. That part of the law is no longer binding, and Christians can enjoy shrimp and pork with no injury to conscience.

The Bible’s commands on sexual behavior, on the other hand, are continued in the New Testament. When it comes to homosexuality, the Bible’s teaching is consistent, pervasive, uniform and set within a larger context of law and Gospel.

My Take: The Christian case for gay marriage

The Old Testament clearly condemns male homosexuality along with adultery, bestiality, incest and any sex outside the covenant of marriage. The New Testament does not lessen this concern but amplifies it.

The New Testament condemns both male and female homosexual behavior. The Apostle Paul, for example, points specifically to homosexuality as evidence of human sinfulness. His point is not merely that homosexuals are sinners but that all humanity has sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.

The New Testament condemns a full range of sexual sins, and homosexuality is specified among these sins. In Romans, Paul refers to homosexuality in terms of “dishonorable passions,” “contrary to nature” and “shameless.” As New Testament scholar Robert Gagnon has stated, the Bible’s indictment “encompasses every and any form of homosexual behavior.”

Your Take: Rethinking the Bible on homosexuality?

Some people then ask, “What about slavery and polygamy?” In the first place, the New Testament never commands slavery, and it prizes freedom and human dignity. For this reason, the abolitionist movement was largely led by Christians, armed with Christian conviction.

The Old Testament did allow for polygamy, though it normalizes heterosexual monogamy. In the New Testament, Jesus made clear that marriage was always meant to be one man and one woman.

“Have you not read that He who created them made them male and female?” Jesus asked in Matthew. "Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” For this reason, Christians have opposed polygamy on biblical grounds.

Why are Christians so concerned with homosexuality? In the first place, that question is answered by the simple fact that it is the most pressing moral question of our times. Christians must be concerned about adultery, pornography, injustice, dishonesty and everything the Bible names as sin. But when my phone rings with a call from a reporter these days, the question I am asked is never adultery or pornography. It is about homosexuality.

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Christians who are seriously committed to the authority of the Bible have no choice but to affirm all that the Bible teaches, including its condemnation of homosexuality. At the same time, our confidence is that God condemns those things that will bring his human creatures harm and commands those things that will lead to true human happiness and flourishing.

In other words, we understand that the Bible condemns all forms of sin because our Creator knows what is best for us. The Bible names sins specifically so that each of us will recognize our own sinfulness and look to Christ for salvation and the forgiveness of our sins.

Christian love requires that we believe and teach what the Bible teaches and that we do so with both strong conviction and humble hearts. The Church must repent of our failures in both of these tasks, but we must not be silent where the Bible speaks.

Are Christians hypocrites in insisting that homosexual behavior is sin? We, too, are sinners, and hypocrisy and inconsistency are perpetual dangers.

The church failed miserably in the face of the challenge of divorce. This requires an honest admission and strong corrective.

At the same time, this painful failure must remind us that we must not fail to answer rightly when asked what the Bible teaches about homosexuality. Love requires us to tell the truth.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of R. Albert Mohler Jr.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bible • Christianity • Gay marriage • Opinion

soundoff (7,995 Responses)
  1. joe schmo

    He who is without sin should cast the first stone.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • SouthernCelt

      Reminds me of one of my Favorite jokes. Same scene, crowd wants to stone an adulteress, and Jesus says "Let he who is without sin throw the first stone". Suddenly a rock comes whizzing past his head, strikes the woman right in the forehead and knocks her out. Jesus, with an exasperated look on His Face, whips around and says, "Mother!"

      May 21, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
    • bspurloc

      The ..Bible condemns plenty of behavior that Christians are comfortable with, like Priests feasting on alter boi juice.....

      May 21, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • :)

      Last time I checked
      -Jesus has not been disproved,
      -Christianity is the STRONGEST religion in history
      -science can not prove miracles

      May 21, 2012 at 5:42 pm |
    • @:)

      because nobody can prove miracles. It a fairy tale

      May 21, 2012 at 6:04 pm |
    • @:)

      By the way :).....Zeus's religion lasted 5000, Christianity only 1700.

      May 21, 2012 at 6:07 pm |
    • Robert Ford

      Jesus is Awesome.

      May 21, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
    • Christian messenger

      YOu have to give the Southern Baptists some leeway here... their message of hate is really an expression of love. 🙂

      May 25, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
  2. LeeCMH

    This article is just a rehash of the same ole, same ole going all way back as the Anita Bryant days. Christians were mean and hateful then and they are mean and hateful now. That's okay. I hate the Christians back as much as they hate me.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • Topher

      I'm a Christian and I don't hate you. Why should I hate you?

      May 21, 2012 at 11:54 am |
    • LeeCMH

      I recall the killing where the murders were screaming here's another one for you Anita, or Jerry Falwell saying that people with AIDS should be shot and buried like cattle with anthrax, or Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell who blamed the 911 attacks, in part, on gay people, or Pat Robertson saying Orlando Florida will be showered in a meteor storm because God would punish them for gays.

      What about Reverend Hagee who said hurricane was God's punishment because of gays.

      For 50 years the vast experience I've had with Christians has been at the end of their bony hateful fingers.

      If you are a Christian, my experience says, you hate me!

      May 21, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
    • Topher

      I don't hate you. I might hate something you've done, but since I don't know you I can't even say that. All I know is that I've broken every one of the 10 Commandments. For instance have you ever told a lie? Used God's name in vain? How about this one? Jesus said if you even look at someone with lust you've already committed adultery in your heart. If you're like the rest of us you've broken all these, too. We're human. But that's no excuse. None of us are good enough to enter God's kingdom. Seeing this, He sent His Son to be the perfect sacrifice so that our transgressions can be atoned for. He loved us so much he provided a way for us to get to Heaven even though we don't deserve it. What is more loving than that? And so it is in love that I am telling you and anyone who reads this that God will forgive anything you've done if you'll only turn to Him. I'm sorry the statements of sinful men have been off-putting. But that doesn't change what God has done out of love.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:22 pm |
    • RFBJR

      Topher – "Thou shall not commit murder." Is this a confession?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
    • Topher

      RFBJR ... Jesus said if you hate someone you've committed murder in the heart. So yeah, I've committed murder.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
    • EndTheHate

      Top Ten Signs You're a Christian in Name Only
      10 – You vigorously deny the existence of thousands of gods claimed by other religions, but feel outraged when someone denies the existence of yours.
      9 – You feel insulted and "dehumanized" when scientists say that people evolved from other life forms, but you have no problem with the Biblical claim that we were created from dirt.
      8 – You laugh at polytheists, but you have no problem believing in a Triune God.
      7 – Your face turns purple when you hear of the "atrocities" attributed to Al lah, but you don't even flinch when hearing about how God/Jehovah slaughtered all the babies of Egypt in "Exodus" and ordered the elimination of entire ethnic groups in "Joshua" including women, children, and trees!
      6 – You laugh at Hindu beliefs that deify humans, and Greek claims about gods sleeping with women, but you have no problem believing that the Holy Spirit impregnated Mary, who then gave birth to a man-god who got killed, came back to life and then ascended into the sky.
      5 – You are willing to spend your life looking for little loopholes in the scientifically established age of Earth (few billion years), but you find nothing wrong with believing dates recorded by Bronze Age tribesmen sitting in their tents and guessing that Earth is a few generations old.
      4 – You believe that the entire population of this planet with the exception of those who share your beliefs – though excluding those in all rival sects – will spend Eternity in an infinite Hell of Suffering. And yet consider your religion the most "tolerant" and "loving."
      3 – While modern science, history, geology, biology, and physics have failed to convince you otherwise, some id iot rolling around on the floor speaking in "tongues" may be all the evidence you need to "prove" Christianity.
      2 – You define 0.01% as a "high success rate" when it comes to answered prayers. You consider that to be evidence that prayer works. And you think that the remaining 99.99% FAILURE was simply the will of God.
      1 – You actually know a lot less than many atheists and agnostics do about the Bible, Christianity, and church history – but still call yourself a Christian.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • EndTheHate

      11 – Your name is R. Albert Mohler Jr.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
    • ScoobyCheese

      EndTheHate:
      Top Ten Signs You're a Christian in Name Only (answered)
      10 – 2+__=4. I vigorously deny the existence of any other answer to this problem than that which has a value of 2. I would be outraged (well, taken aback at least) if you said there was no answer at all.
      9 – No one to my knowledge, when buried, has ever returned to being a tadpole or one celled organism. I have noticed that the grass is greener, though.
      7 – I would be appalled if your neighbor put you in an electric chair and killed you, but I can see the logic behind the state putting you to death for killing your neighbor – even if I don’t necessarily enjoy the thought.
      6 – I do not laugh at Hindu and Greek claims. I just believe they are wrong – just like you believe I am, but apparently have no problem believing that nothing came from nowhere and made everything.
      5 – Your definition of “loopholes,” is the same as my definition of “guessing.” And nobody believes the earth is only a few generations old. The belief that God did it is no sillier than believing that there is no way He played any part in it.
      4 –I believe that the entire population of this planet deserves to be separated from God for eternity (hell) but that God provided a way for the whole world to be saved. You may accept that or reject that. Yes, I believe that is “tolerant” and “loving.”
      3 –I do not believe that modern science, history, geology, biology, and physics disprove Christianity at all. I also don’t believe in idiots rolling around on the floor speaking in tongues, either.
      2 – I think 83% of your statistics are made up on the spot. And I don’t believe prayer changes God. I believe prayer changes you.
      1 – You may know “about” the Bible, but I’ve read it, studied it, and applied it. I am not afraid of verses and stories you have read and taken out of context, or the church history you’ve distorted.

      I’m curious, if all of those beliefs (as distorted as you’ve put them) make someone a “Christian in name only,” then what does a REAL Christian believe?

      May 21, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • SouthernCelt

      I tried to post a more forgiving explanation based on Catholic theology but evidently the CNN censors are anti-Catholic.

      May 21, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • heart40

      What was hateful about this article??

      May 21, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
    • LOL

      I wear mixed fabric, eat shellfish and I had a gay dream. I am so screwed

      May 22, 2012 at 12:10 am |
    • notCINO

      ScoobyCheese
      EndTheHate:
      Top Ten Signs You're a Christian in Name Only (answered)
      10 – 2+__=4. I vigorously deny the existence of any other answer to this problem than that which has a value of 2. I would be outraged (well, taken aback at least) if you said there was no answer at all.

      In base 5, 10-2+1= 4. In base 6, 10-2+0= 4. In base 7, 10-2+(-1)= 4. (All mathematically correct!) Think outside the box!

      9 – No one to my knowledge, when buried, has ever returned to being a tadpole or one celled organism. I have noticed that the grass is greener, though.

      What's the point? What is said does not invalidate the scientific merit of evolution. I would suggest some serious understanding of evolution is needed here.

      7 – I would be appalled if your neighbor put you in an electric chair and killed you, but I can see the logic behind the state putting you to death for killing your neighbor – even if I don't necessarily enjoy the thought.

      Most european christians have long since evolved to a higher state of abandoning the death penalty. Jesus taught that the sinning woman should not be killed. Who else but a CINO would think dealth penalty is logical?

      6 – I do not laugh at Hindu and Greek claims. I just believe they are wrong – just like you believe I am, but apparently have no problem believing that nothing came from nowhere and made everything.

      Do you believe God "came from nowhere and made everything" ? What is the point of your God coming back to life when he is a spirit and does not need a body?

      5 – Your definition of 「loopholes,」 is the same as my definition of 「guessing.」 And nobody believes the earth is only a few generations old. The belief that God did it is no sillier than believing that there is no way He played any part in it.

      All serious bible students know that the earth is no more than 6000 years old. Just ask Mr R. Albert Mohler Jr. There are much scientific data supporting the estimated age of earth, yet all these are ignored because they do not correspond to the estimates by the CINO preachers.

      4 –I believe that the entire population of this planet deserves to be separated from God for eternity (hell) but that God provided a way for the whole world to be saved. You may accept that or reject that. Yes, I believe that is 「tolerant」 and 「loving.」

      So your God is tolerant and loving when he does not give a chance to most people on earth to know of him, let alone believe in him, before they die and thus are condemned to spend Eternity in an infinite Hell of Suffering? Remember most people in asia, africa, america have not heard of christianity until fairly recently.

      3 –I do not believe that modern science, history, geology, biology, and physics disprove Christianity at all. I also don't believe in idiots rolling around on the floor speaking in tongues, either.

      While science may not have disprove christianity, they disproved many dogma of the christian churches. (e.g. the Earth is not at the center of the unvierse.) So where is the proof fore christianity? Is there any proof that the bible is not men's creation?

      2 – I think 83% of your statistics are made up on the spot. And I don't believe prayer changes God. I believe prayer changes you.

      Religious people that are non christians also pray and sometimes get their prayer answered, probably at the same rate of success. Why do you think the christian god is so special?

      1 – You may know 「about」 the Bible, but I've read it, studied it, and applied it. I am not afraid of verses and stories you have read and taken out of context, or the church history you've distorted.

      I have read the phone book and applied it. That does not mean there is anything deep. Do you know there are many versions of the bible and they do not all agree? Do you know there are contradictory statements in the bible? CINO would definitely ignore such inconsistencies.

      I'm curious, if all of those beliefs (as distorted as you've put them) make someone a 「Christian in name only,」 then what does a REAL Christian believe?

      May be you should ask a mormon to find out what a REAL Christian believe.

      May 22, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
    • notCINO

      Just realize I misread ScoobyCheese's answer. So here's the correction.

      10 – 2+__=4. I vigorously deny the existence of any other answer to this problem than that which has a value of 2. I would be outraged (well, taken aback at least) if you said there was no answer at all.

      It all depends on the interpretation, just like the interpretation people given to the bible.

      Two female + one male = family of four

      Two cells + one cell cycle = four cells

      More seriously, in mathematics, 2+2=4 is a useful construction but there is no inherent truth in it (look up Godel's work.) We can have 2+ 10= 4 if the addition operator means x+y= (y-x)/2. It all depends on how you define addition (+) and how you assign meaning to the whole numbers. Have a look at books on group theory.

      May 22, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
    • notCINO

      Just realize I misread ScoobyCheese's answer. So here's the correction.

      10 – 2+__=4.

      It all depends on the interpretation, just like the interpretation people given to the bible.

      Two female + one male = family of four

      Two cells + one cell cycle = four cells

      More seriously, in mathematics, 2+2=4 is a useful construction but there is no inherent truth in it (look up Godel's work.) We can have 2+ 10= 4 if the addition operator means x+y= (y-x)/2. It all depends on how you define addition (+) and how you assign meaning to the whole numbers. Have a look at books on set theory and group theory. Mathematics is mainly about logical consistency, not truth.

      May 22, 2012 at 2:47 pm |
  3. Keith

    It's a poor historical account, written by pre-sicentific people, including such idiocies as someone surviving in the belly of a whale, talking snakes, and the entire biodiversity of the planet fitting on a single boat. The only reason people believe this sort of nonsense is that they're fed it young. If we are ever going to be a "moral" society, how about we start by leaving these fairy tales behind?

    May 21, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • Alex

      Harumph.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:04 pm |
    • whatajoke

      Keith, you're just showing that you have presupposition of materialism. How do you prove the space-time continuum is the only aspect of reality and that therefore God doesn't exist, miracles are impossible, etc.? What caused the big bang? Answer: the creator.

      May 21, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • bspurloc

      u cant ask who caused the big bang because u would believe it existed when the pope never told u it did. 200 years ago u would be hung for such things. try to stay in line as your ancestors did.

      May 21, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • Fred Evil

      "What caused the big bang? Answer: the creator."
      Couldn't have, big band was billions of years ago (if it even happened) xtians say the Earth is only 2000 years old.
      So, is the bible BS, and the Earth is older than 2000 years, or did god create the big bang well before we were even here?
      Your lack of logic and facts do NOT help you.

      May 21, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • Elizabeth Smith

      This is actually to Fred Evil. Though I don't consider myself a Christian at all. I did "grow up" as one or at least knowing the teachings and Christians don't believe the Earth is 2000 years old. They believe Jesus Christ was born, lived, and died 2000 years ago obviously they believe in life and the Earth before that time (see: The Old Testament, which was written about life and goings on of human beings pre-2000 years ago).

      May 21, 2012 at 11:13 pm |
    • Ambient Malice

      Correction: the Bible never called it a "whale". So get a grip.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:11 am |
  4. jose

    There is a GOD, just remember this when doing anything that is not good and the nature of the body should be something we take care of. Being unproductive to the race is a crime against the race, I think, so do what you think, but be sure to be ready for a judgement on your actions. Don't we punish crimes in our society? So then could a Creator of our specie judge us on our actions and not following the rules given to us. What do you think?

    May 21, 2012 at 11:49 am |
    • BRC

      @Jose,
      I think there is no evidence of "God". I think that even if there was a god/gods who kick-started teh universe we know now, there is no evidence to believe that they had a direct hand in forming our species (science is doing just fine finding that path without gods). I think that there is no harm to our species by limited pairs not breeding, nowhere near the harm that is done by unfit hetero pairs breeding and spreading ignorance through the gene pool (it is a simple fact that some people shouldn't be parents). I think that this is an argument born of ignorance and prejudice.

      How's that?

      May 21, 2012 at 11:54 am |
    • RichardSRussell

      I think you have a particularly strange idea of what const¡tutes a crime. If it doesn't hurt or threaten other people, it shouldn't be considered a crime. And "crime against the RACE"? Man, that sound like something straight out of Mein Kampf.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:55 am |
    • YeahRight

      The experts have shown that being gay isn't a choice, it's not a mental illness, and it can't be voluntarily changed. They deserve the same equal civil rights as straight for the sake of their families.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:56 am |
    • ME II

      "There is a GOD"
      Really, why do you think so?

      May 21, 2012 at 11:56 am |
    • bspurloc

      bigotry is bigotry regardless if cloaked by religion.

      May 21, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
    • Fred Evil

      "There is a GOD"
      Evidence? Whose god? Yours, or the Muslims?
      Or do you mean one of ANY of the pantheons from millenia before?
      OH, so you only believe in YOUR ONE god, and not any of the thousands that have been invented before?
      How....creative, of you.

      May 21, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
    • iubj

      which 'god'? cuz I know for a fact mine is better than yours. he gives me candy after touching me in inappropriate ways...

      May 22, 2012 at 12:45 am |
  5. RichardSRussell

    Here's why we're focused on hom0se-xuality: Because we're obsessed with other people's S€X lives, and the Bible is our excuse for sticking our noses in where they don't belong.
     
    Given that the Bible condones slavery, misogyny, genocide, and child råpe, and that its "loving" god either committed, commanded, or condoned countless massacres, why would ANYBODY rely on it as a source of moral guidance?

    May 21, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • Andrew

      ah yes, let's pick out every "violent/horrific" act in the Bible and say that "that's all the Bible talks about"; let's throw reason and context out the window...

      May 21, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
    • Zeke2112

      Well, Andrew, Christians love to say that the bible is full of love and how to live a good life. It is also full of murder, mayhem, vengeance, and atrocities. No one ever mentions those, now do they? They cherry-pick the good parts and say it a book of love. I guess I'll cherry-pick the equal number of bad parts and say that it's a crime against humanity. Deal?

      May 21, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • Judge Dredd

      Hey Andrew, check this out http://www.cracked.com/article_19597_8-gratuitously-violent-horror-movie-scenes-from-bible.html

      May 21, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • bspurloc

      ah yes pick out some invalid topic of gays in the bible and IGNORE all the other instances telling u to lov thy neighbor. good christian taliban... pat pat pat....

      May 21, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • Mike

      @Andrew: please provide a context where slavery, misogyny, genocide, and child råpe would be morally acceptable.

      May 21, 2012 at 7:17 pm |
    • Ambient Malice

      The Bible condones none of those things, and you're evidently not the academic type.

      May 22, 2012 at 12:13 am |
  6. John

    Some argue that since homosexual behavior is "unnatural" it is contrary to the order of creation. Behind this pronouncement are stereotypical definitions of masculinity and femininity that reflect rigid gender categories of patriarchal society. There is nothing unnatural about any shared love, even between two of the same gender, if that experience calls both partners to a fuller state of being. Contemporary research is uncovering new facts that are producing a rising conviction that homosexuality, far from being a sickness, sin, perversion or unnatural act, is a healthy, natural and affirming form of human sexuality for some people. Findings indicate that homosexuality is a given fact in the nature of a significant portion of people, and that it is unchangeable.

    Our prejudice rejects people or things outside our understanding. But the God of creation speaks and declares, "I have looked out on everything I have made and `behold it (is) very good'." . The word (Genesis 1:31) of God in Christ says that we are loved, valued, redeemed, and counted as precious no matter how we might be valued by a prejudiced world.

    There are few biblical references to homosexuality. The first, the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, is often quoted to prove that the Bible condemns homosexuality. But the real sin of Sodom was the unwillingness of the city's men to observe the laws of hospitality. The intention was to insult the stranger by forcing him to take the female role in the sex act. The biblical narrative approves Lot's offer of his virgin daughters to satisfy the sexual demands of the mob. How many would say, "This is the word of the Lord"? When the Bible is quoted literally, it might be well for the one quoting to read the text in its entirety.

    Leviticus, in the Hebrew Scriptures, condemns homosexual behaviour, at least for males. Yet, "abomination", the word Leviticus uses to describe homosexuality, is the same word used to describe a menstruating woman. Paul is the most quoted source in the battle to condemn homosexuality ( 1 Corinthians 6: 9-11 and Romans 1: 26-27). But homosexual activity was regarded by Paul as a punishment visited upon idolaters by God because of their unfaithfulness. Homosexuality was not the sin but the punishment.

    1 Corinthians 6:9-11, Paul gave a list of those who would not inherit the Kingdom of God. That list included the immoral, idolaters, adulterers, sexual perverts, thieves, the greedy, drunkards, revilers, and robbers. Sexual perverts is a translation of two words; it is possible that the juxtaposition of malakos, the soft, effeminate word, with arsenokoitus, or male prostitute, was meant to refer to the passive and active males in a homosexual liaison.

    Thus, it appears that Paul would not approve of homosexual behavior. But was Paul's opinion about homosexuality accurate, or was it limited by the lack of scientific knowledge in his day and infected by prejudice born of ignorance? An examination of some of Paul's other assumptions and conclusions will help answer this question. Who today would share Paul's anti-Semitic attitude, his belief that the authority of the state was not to be challenged, or that all women ought to be veiled? In these attitudes Paul's thinking has been challenged and transcended even by the church! Is Paul's commentary on homosexuality more absolute than some of his other antiquated, culturally conditioned ideas?

    Three other references in the New Testament (in Timothy, Jude and 2 Peter) appear to be limited to condemnation of male sex slaves in the first instance, and to showing examples (Sodom and Gomorrah) of God's destruction of unbelievers and heretics (in Jude and 2 Peter respectively).

    That is all that Scripture has to say about homosexuality. Even if one is a biblical literalist, these references do not build an ironclad case for condemnation. If one is not a biblical literalist there is no case at all, nothing but prejudice born of ignorance, that attacks people whose only crime is to be born with an unchangeable sexual predisposition toward those of their own sex

    May 21, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • Doubtful

      Healthy? Natural? Uh, I don't think so. Look, if you pull it out and it's covered in feces, something just ain't right. 🙂

      May 21, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • kkdford1013

      That has got to be the most intelligent response to this topic that I have ever read. I want to stand up and clap for you, but I'm at work and can't. How can anyone argue with this? Kudos, my friend.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "Healthy? Natural? Uh, I don't think so"

      The experts have proven it is. Heterosexual behavior and homosexual behavior are normal aspects of human sexuality. Both have been documented in many different cultures and historical eras. Despite the persistence of stereotypes that portray lesbian, gay, and bisexual people as disturbed, several decades of research and clinical experience have led all mainstream medical and mental health organizations in this country to conclude that these orientations represent normal forms of human experience.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:09 pm |
    • think logically

      sorry but you are incoorect, i like how you tried to sound smart there, but you just pick and choose what verses to list...

      clearly states in the bible ...
      leviticus 20:13
      If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them.

      go to biblegateway.com and pick any version of the bible and they all say the same thing....nice try though

      May 21, 2012 at 12:36 pm |
    • think logically

      also please provide me the name of the doctor(s) who did a study and concluded that 2 men ramming eachothers pie hole is a healthy and natural thing....
      i am willing to bet they are either gay them selves or too afraid to move away from the status quo of today

      May 21, 2012 at 12:38 pm |
    • think logically

      sorry have to say one more thing...
      if we were meant to be a gay species, how do you suppose we would have evolved
      gay couples can do nothing to further our existence, and before anyone tries to argue with me saying they can adopt babies, well kind of hard to adopt something that isnt there...if we were a gay species there would be no babies to adopt to begin with....

      May 21, 2012 at 12:43 pm |
    • Raven76

      Excellent. For Think Logically...you are picking which version you wish to adhere to and trying to justify condemnation of others within your own heart. If that is the type of person you are, then nobody will convince you otherwise. However, the original writings said nothing of the sort about men loving men, go back and translate the originals yourself. These interpretations were added later, just as so many others have been changed. And when you start changing the original words, you start having a difficult time justifying castigation. Any choice you make to judge others is a failure to pass the tests set before you, which are not easy And as to your procreation argument. Lovely. So no women with reproductive issues, men with low sperm counts, older couples, or anyone that can't have a child should be married? What a fascinatingly oblivious argument.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "also please provide me the name of the doctor(s) who did a study and concluded that 2 men ramming eachothers pie hole is a healthy and natural thing...."

      LMAO obviously you were to lazy to do your homework. That was a direct quote from the APA which is made up of over hundred thousand experts. LOL!

      May 21, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "f we were meant to be a gay species, how do you suppose we would have evolved
      gay couples can do nothing to further our existence, and before anyone tries to argue with me saying they can adopt babies, well kind of hard to adopt something that isnt there...if we were a gay species there would be no babies to adopt to begin with...."

      Yes gays have their own children, duh! You can't use such a lame argument since the planet is being over populated and will not be able to sustain the human race if we keep going at the rate we are. Wow you are so clueless on this subject.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
    • whatajoke

      YeahRight, so you would have us believe that it is as normal, natural for a sperm to swim into feces as it is for a sperm to swim into eggs? I think you're deceiving yourself if you really believe that... sorry.

      May 21, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • bspurloc

      unnatural to all u boring elderly missionary doers.......

      May 21, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  7. Spangler

    Most agree with the general concepts that people should be able to marry the single non-related consenting adult of one's choice and that the Bible is full of rules that are no longer laws. But when it comes to gays, some people forget they agree with these general concepts.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:44 am |
    • iubj

      .
      .-----–
      ......MARRIAGE predates religion... religion should get out of the marriage business....
      .------
      .

      May 22, 2012 at 12:47 am |
  8. RFBJR

    Mr. Mohler, I agree with you whole-heartedly. Thank you for articulating your viewpoint so simply. My convictions are once again reaffirmed.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • YeahRight

      "My convictions are once again reaffirmed."

      That should read your prejudice and bigotry are once again reaffirmed.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • Zeke2112

      You mean your programming and weak will are once again confirmed? Congratulations for continuing to not think for yourself.

      May 21, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
    • Philojazz

      How about this one, by Mr Mohler....In the first place, that question is answered by the simple fact that it is the most pressing moral question of our times. Is that one of your "convictions"? If so, I pity you.

      May 21, 2012 at 6:51 pm |
    • These Pretzels Are Making Me Thirsty

      Check out all this Liberal "love". You guys sure want it, but don't really care to give it.

      June 26, 2013 at 1:55 pm |
  9. dustbunny44

    I don't understand why CNN has allocated space to this spiritual charlatan. If he wants to be truthful about early Christian writing, he'll admit that there were lots more writings and books that were left out of the collection that became the Bible because they were inconvenient to the political climate of the time. If a roomful of my friends voted me the voice of God, I would hardly expect Mr. Mohler to take me seriously. Yet he insists on taking seriously a collection of texts voted as the word of God by a collection of 5th century political elites, and use them to hate his fellow man. Shame on him and his like.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:41 am |
    • Russell

      It is truly amazing that in an era of tolerance, we still have those in our society who refuse to let everyone have their voice and critique anything that may be said against morality based upon ones convictions, but only when it is in the name of Christianity. This world is willing to listen to anyone spout out about their views and theology of anything except when it comes to Jesus, we are labeled hypocrites and insensitive because we hold morality at a high standard and believe that when some continue to live in a manner that is against our beliefs that it is willful sin. Yes, we are all sinners and we will all stand before the Bema-Seat of Christ to be judged, but we have to continue to share the light of the truth. Yes, God did create everything in the beginning and declared that it was "very good" but that all changed and we all now live in a world full of sin. Only when one comes to that realization and they see their need for a Savior will they too recognize that there is sinful behavior in the world and that we have to both speak against it and share with the world the way that sin can be overcome and one can be restored to a right relationship with God.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:06 pm |
    • Zeke2112

      Russell – did you know that there are laws on the books prohibiting atheists from holding office in many states? Or that people would rather vote for any other political viewpoint or religion than vote for an atheist?

      And you still think you're being persecuted? You want some cheese with that whine? The real issue that the facade that religion keeps putting up is slowly crumbling. Young people have more access to information than ever before, and in another 100 years, Christianity will join the Greek and Roman gods as historical folklore. I think THAT is what truly bothers you.

      May 21, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • whatajoke

      Zeke2112,
      "in another 100 years, Christianity will join the Greek and Roman gods as historical folklore"
      keep dreaming, zeke. unbelievers have been saying that for 2000 years, and today there are a billion Christians worldwide, praise God! The gates of Hell will not prevail against the church of Jesus Christ!!

      May 21, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • Primewonk

      Russel wrote, "God did create everything in the beginning and declared that it was "very good" but that all changed and we all now live in a world full of sin"

      So god created everything and it was "very good". Then we humans mucked it up by sinning, right? Did your god know in advance that we would sin? If he knew in advance that we humans would sin, why did he create us this way? Seems like a stupid thing to do. Or did your god not know in advance that we humans would screw it all up? If he didn't, that kind of screws up your god claiming to be omniscient. And if he isn't omniscient, he isn't much of a god is he?

      May 21, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
  10. dad

    we focus on it because it's way more important than working on education, healthcare, or debt right?

    May 21, 2012 at 11:40 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      The right-wing-nuts focus on it for the same reason they use abortion as a political football. It's all bread and circuses to them-keep the mob looking away while they rob them blind.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:43 am |
  11. Dashing

    Am I reading this right? He brushes off slavery due to it not being in the NT. So we can just ignore the OT? Leviticus 18:22 is such an argument opposing same Se.x marriage that it seems weird he just brushes off the OT. My 2 cents.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:37 am |
    • michael

      you totally missed the point man..

      May 21, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • Zeke2112

      This is a common argument from Christians. OT;DC = Old Testament; Doesn't Count. It's convenient when they want to beat you over the head with the bible but also realize that the bible is rather silly in parts.

      May 21, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
  12. BRC

    "The Old Testament did allow for polygamy, though it normalizes heteros-xual monogamy"

    No, it doesn't. It as much directed not many major biblical figures not only to take multiple wives, but to father children with multiple women.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:36 am |
    • BRC

      correction-
      "It as much directed many major biblical..."

      May 21, 2012 at 11:39 am |
  13. Topher

    Mr. Mohler is right. He finished his blog by saying, "Love requires us to tell the truth." Sometimes, the truth hurts. We don't want to hear it because we'd rather continue on in whatever bit of sinfulness makes us happy. But whether we want to believe it or not, one day we will stand before a holy and just God. "It is appointed unto man once to die, and after this the judgment." And if you are found guilty of disobeying God, of breaking His laws, then you'll be in big trouble. We warn people of things like this sin, because we love you. We don't want you to be punished in Hell. Also, we are commanded to spread the Gospel. And that Gospel is that even if you have committed this sin you can still be forgiven. Jesus Christ died on the cross for you, too. He took the punishment that you and I deserve. All you have to do is repent ... that is not just say you are sorry, but to turn away from sin ... and trust Jesus to be whom He claimed to be ... the lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. The Messiah. And if you do that, you'll be "born again" with a new heart and new desires. Who would not want such a wonderful gift?

    May 21, 2012 at 11:32 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "Just wait until your dad gets home; you're gonna be in BIG trouble."

      Yawn.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:34 am |
    • YeahRight

      ""Love requires us to tell the truth.""

      Oh truth like part of reading comprehension 101 is putting the scriptures into historical context. Nowhere in the bible does your god condemn the saved loving respectful relationship of a gay couple as we know and understand it today. Do you really think Paul understood the science and psychology behind being gay? Of course not. Are you going to also adopt some of his anti Semitic prejudices too? LOL! So here so REAL truth for you.

      The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the National Association of SocialWorkers, together representing more than 480,000 mental health professionals, have all taken the position that homosexuality is not a mental disorder and thus is not something that needs to or can be “cured."

      * In 1993, the National Institute of Health’ Dean Hamer illustrated that homosexuality might be inherited from the mother by her sons through a specific region of the X chromosome (Xq28). Hamer demonstrated this by noting that 33 out of 40 pairs of homosexual brothers whom he studied showed the same variation in the tip of the chromosome.

      – Hamer DH, Hu S, Magnuson VL, Hu N. and Pattatucci AML. A linkage between DNA markers on the X chromosome and male sexual orientation. Science 1993; 261:320-326.

      * A June 2006 Canadian study published in the journal, “Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,” said that nature, instead of nurture, explains the origins of homosexuality. The study’ author, Prof. Anthony F. Bogaert, at Brock University in Ontario, explored the causes behind what is known as the fraternal birth order. The research showed a correlation between the number of biological older brothers a man has and his sexual orientation. Dividing his sample of more than 900 heterosexual and homosexual men into four groups, Bogaert examined the impact of all types of older brothers, including step and adopted siblings, and the amount of time brothers spent together while growing up.His research found that only the number of biological brothers had an impact on sexuality, regardless of whether the boys were raised together.

      – Bogaert, A.F. 2006. Biological versus nonbiological older brothers and men’s sexual orientation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 103 July 11 2006.

      * A study released in May 2006 by Swedish scientists demonstrates that biology plays a key role in determining a person’ sexuality. The research shows that the portion of the brain that helps regulate sexuality — the hypothalamus – reacted the exact same way in straight women and gay men when exposed to male pheromones, which are chemicals designed to provoke a behavior, such as sexual arousal. The same area of the brain only became stimulated in heterosexual men when introduced to female pheromones.

      – by Ivanka Savic article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, (PNAS) “Brain Response To Putative Pheromones In Homosexual Men,” (Vol. 102 No. 19) May 10, 2005.

      * In 2005, Dr. Brian Mustanski of the University of Illinois at Chicago published a study in the esteemed biomedical journal Human Genetics, claiming he identified three chromosomal regions linked to sexual orientation in men: 7q36, 8p12 and 10q26.

      – “A Genomewide Scan of Male Sexual Orientation”, Human Genetics, Vol. 116, No. 4, pp. 272-278, 2005.

      * In 2003, University of Texas psychoacoustics specialist Dennis McFadden found that when measuring the way the brain reacts to sound, lesbians fell in between heterosexual men and straight women, suggesting they might be exposed to higher than normal levels of male hormone in utero.

      – Loehlin, John C.; McFadden, David. “Otoacoustic emissions, auditory evoked potentials, and traits related to sex and sexual orientation”. Archives of Sexual Behavior. 1 April 2003.

      * In 2003, University of Liverpool biologist John T. Manning found that the lesbians whom he studied have a hand pattern that resembles a man’ more than a straight female’. Manning concluded from his study that this “strongly tells us that female homosexuals have had higher levels of exposure to testosterone before birth.”

      – Neave, N., Laing, S., Fink, B., Manning, J.T (2003) Second to fourth digit ratio, testosterone, and perceived male dominance. Proceedings of the Royal Society B (Lond), 270, 2167-2172.

      * A 1991 study by Dr. Simon LeVay found that a specific region of the hypothalamus is twice as large in heterosexual men as it is in women or gay men. This strongly points the role of biology in sexual orientation.

      – Levay, Simon “A difference in hypothalamic structure between homosexual and heterosexual men” Science. 1991 Volume 253, Issue 5023, pp. 1034-1037.

      * Another 1991 study by scientists Richard Pillard and John M. Baily studied homosexuality among brothers and found that 53 percent of identical twins were both gay. In adoptive brothers, 11 percent were both homosexual. Of non-twin biological siblings, 9 percent were gay. Again, this points to solid evidence that homosexuality is a matter of nature.

      – Bailey JM, Pillard RC (1991). A genetic study of male sexual orientation. Archives of General Psychiatry, 48, 1089-1096.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:37 am |
    • ME II

      " We warn people of things like this sin, because we love you. We don't want you to be punished in Hell. "
      Strange how this usually appears to others as pride and self-righteousness.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:39 am |
    • BRC

      A truly just god would not care about most of what is in the bible. You can have your ideals, we've heard them, and we're fine without them.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • Topher

      Hi, Me II ... There's nothing about it that is prideful or self-righteous. At least I don't mean for it to come off that way. No one deserves Hell more than me. But I'm forgiven, glory be to God. I just hope everyone else finds the forgiveness offered as well.

      Hi, BRC ... "A truly just god would not care about most of what is in the bible. You can have your ideals, we've heard them, and we're fine without them." Of course God cares about everything that's in the Bible. He wrote it. All 66 books are the Word of God.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • BRC

      @Topher,

      Actually they were written by men, who claim it is the word of "God" but that's not the point. My point is that if "God" is real, and he did/said/enforces what is in teh Christian Bible (ESPECIALLY the OT), he is not a just god, he is a Tyrant, and not worth following.

      But, in reference to your 66 books, did he pass down all of the other books that got left out of the bible we know today? If so why were they left out? If not, how do we know he passed down these speciffic 66 (number varies by which version you read).

      May 21, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • That Student

      Technically, God did not write the Bible, he told his followers, or holy people to write what he had told/showed them.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
    • Topher

      BRC ... "he is not a just god, he is a Tyrant, and not worth following." I'd be happy to address anything you want me to, but you need to be more specific. What in the OT makes Him a tyrant? What part don't you like?

      As for the "other books" ... no God didn't pass those down. Firstly, they don't meet the criteria of being the inspired word of God. They weren't written by disciples and were in fact written MUCH later than the scriptures. The others also have a problem of teachings contrary to other books of the Bible. There are many problems with those and thus are not part of the biblical texts.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:06 pm |
    • ME II

      @Topher,
      "There's nothing about it that is prideful or self-righteous.... No one deserves Hell more than me."
      I should have been more clear. It is pride in knowing what God thinks is sin, knowing what the "Truth" actually is. A humble person, admits that perhaps s/he doesn't understand everything and therefore allows others to determine there own understanding.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:13 pm |
    • Topher

      Me II ... we know what God thinks is sin because we have His word. It's pretty clear, especially on this subject. But at the same time I will readily tell you I don't know everything. I didn't grow up in the church nor as a Christian. In fact, I was a "raging atheist" for a long time. But now that I'm re-born in Him, I read and study my Bible every day because I want to know Him better. There is NOTHING more important.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:28 pm |
    • Rbnlegnd101

      I guess I am not humble enough. My maker gave me a fine mind, and a set of feelings too, with which I can determine right and wrong. I am not willing to put that up to a vote, nor to the demands of the first inspired person to come along and tell me what they thing god said. If I did, my faith would simply be a matter of luck, who got me first, the catholic, the episcopalian, the baptist, the protestant, the hindu, the muslim, the pagan, the taoist, or the flying spagetti monster. Not only that, if I let others determine my path, I am not behaving in an ethical manner, even if they happen to make the right decision for me. I have to make my own decsion, in order for me to do the right thing. For the same reason that God did not make sin impossible, niether can society.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
    • BRC

      @Topher,
      Paul is one of the most prolific contributors to the NT and he never met Jesus (don't even know that he was alive at the same time). A VERY large portion of the material in the bible is second hand (and the entire OT is passed down word of mouth from generation to generation before it was scribed). Sorry, that doesn't track as good proof that the other books weren't "of God". ANd even what did make it in was sometimes contradictory, so that doesn't really cover it either.

      The other half, why "God" isn't just. MInd you I don't believe any of this, but it is the boiled down summation of what the book really says (I will focus on OT, as the NT, really isn't that bad if you ignore revelations). He created a world, put people in it, then made an arbitrary rule, that he knew they would break, and when they did he made them mortal. Much later, he got MAD at teh way the things HE created were behaving, so he spared one family and killed everything else. That family grew and because it was his chosen family, he would push it around the middle east, inflicting decimating plagues, killing children, and ordering genocide on all those who he wanted his family to conquer or defeat (also, the ten plagues, could have been over after 1, the pharoh was ready to let them go, but "God" repeatedly made him change his mind at the last minute, so much for free will, so that he could inflict another plague). When his family either refused to commit a genocide (though they were allowed to keep the virgins), or touched a magical box, he killed them with fire. fast forward a few thousand years, and nowadays he's much more laid back and detached, but if you don't constantly thank him with your whole heart for something that he refuses to prove he did, he will force you to suffer the greatest torment imaginable, because an omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent being apparently can't get enough of a blink of a species of a speck of a planet in the unimaginably vast universe saying thank you. Taht is a tyrant.

      If I tell my son that I will put him in the oven if he doesn't say thank you to me for being his father then I am a horrible father, and I deserve to be beaten with rocks. the christian "God" does that, except he doesn't even have the decency to prove that he's real first. How is that not the behavior of a tyrant?

      May 21, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
    • Rbnlegnd101

      You say it's pretty clear, but I see hundreds of translations of a large number of holy books, some of which agree, and some of which do not. Why is it clear that the one you happen to have picked is the one that has the correct word?

      May 21, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • TLA

      No. One day I will die and then I will be dead. And I will die knowing that in my life-time I contributed to my community, I lived as honest a life as could, I raised caring and loving children, I treated people with respect and dignity, and I didn't waste the investment of love and compassion that others made in me by passing judgement on those that disagree with my beliefs.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
    • Topher

      Rbnlegnd101 ... it's not about which got to you first. The question you have to ask is which one is true? You can be a Buddhist if you want, but if it isn't true it ultimately doesn't do you any good.

      BRC ... Paul did meet Jesus, though it was after His death. Also, Jesus taught that the OT was true and accurate, so even if it was passed by word of mouth for awhile, we know it is correct. Now, I guess the point I have to make to the rest of your statement ... God made laws. You have broken them. You even seem to be shaking your fist at Him. Despite all of this He did something for you that is so kind and loving no one else in the history of the world could even make a claim of doing ... He died so you don't have to. "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."

      Rbnlegnd101
      Again, you have to figure out which one is true. First, because of what each teaches, they can't all be true. So there's either one true or none true. Second, I looked at the evidence. For instance I know there's at least a God because I see the proof every day. Just look around you. Do you really think that the world we live in, with so much perfect order, just happened? If it was an accident, why is everything so ordered? The creation is evidence there's a creator. Now there are many other things you can look at (there's a lot of books on this subject and I can suggest a few if you're interested.) For instance, there is no evidence anything in the Bible is historically inaccurate (all the rulers and kings and cities are correct). The events are witnessed by writers and so on and so-forth ....

      May 21, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
    • TLA

      Oh, and the Brother of the Holy Cross, also a Doctor of Divinity, who was my college professor for Christian study at my Catholic university would rather strongly disagree with your statement regarding the number of "accepted" books of the bible, the relative age and merits of the Apocrypha, your opinion of the various books relative authorship, the historical timeline relating to inclusion or exclusion of the various books, and to what extent the "word of god should be taken literally vs. metaphorically. But then again, what would be know being a man who devoted his life to serving Christ.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
    • BRC

      @Topher,
      Paul claims he spoke to Jesus, no proof. Paul was also a closed minded mysoginist who turned over his own faiths at will. I see no reason to believe him about anything.

      AS for the rest, I will be happy to respond if you think of anymore questions, but I fear your indoctrination is going to stand in the way of you ever answering mine (you never said how the horrible actions taken by "God" in the Old Testament don't make him a tyrant). Making laws doens't make you right. Tyrants make laws, then they enforce them with brutal control. Does that make them good? And your description of Jesus makes him no more special than any soldier who has proudly served and given his life so the people he cared for may live; except with Jesus, he was "protecting" us from punishments THAT HE INVENTED (as "God").

      I would love to continue to discuss the theory with you, but you're going to have to think outside the book to do it.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
    • Topher

      God killed a lot of people in the Bible. Don't forget in the book of Acts he killed a man and wife for telling one lie. In the OT God kills large numbers of people because they continued in worshipping false gods for centuries. They all broke God's laws and deserved what they got. And as a sinner, you should ask yourself why hasn't He killed you yet. But He's shown you plenty of mercy and given you time to change your mind and seek His forgiveness. God is holy (meaning perfect) and created a perfect reward (Heaven). If you are not perfect (and none of us are) then He couldn't let you into Heaven because your being there would render it unperfect. He has thus provided a way for your sins to be paid for so you can enter Heaven. But none of us are promised another day. PLEASE think about these things before you go to sleep tonight. He loves you and will forgive you if you seek Him.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • BRC

      @Topher,
      That was the opposite of progress. That you can admit and recognize he is a mass killer and still say he loves us shows that you have accomplished a remarkable disasociation in your mind. But I have not, and will not. "He" hasn't killed me because in all likelyhood "He" isn't real. There is no evidence supporting the existance of "God", so I don't believe in him. Even if he was real, and killed me tomorrow for my herecy, but offered me a place in heaven if I just said "thank you". I would, in the least polite manner I can think of, tell him a long and elaborate form of no and fck off.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
    • Topher

      BRC ... Let me ask you this ... IF Christianity were true, would you be a Christian?

      May 21, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • BRC

      @Topher,
      No.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
  14. Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

    Why don't these thumpers force laws on everyone that ARE consistent with EVERY Biblical teaching? Why don't they stop pretending that one sin is less egregious than another?

    Go ahead, fundiots, pass laws against eating shellfish.

    May 21, 2012 at 11:00 am |
    • ME II

      Is there a law that would be consistent with all of the Bible?

      May 21, 2012 at 11:36 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      The point, you have found it.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:38 am |
    • ME II

      Yeah, me! ; )

      May 21, 2012 at 11:41 am |
  15. ME II

    Well it seems like an honest and sincere argument for his position, with little rhetoric or histrionics. I'll give him that.

    I would argue, as a non-believer though, that the Bible is not as clear as he makes it out to be.
    The context of the Romans passage about "man and woman" is obviously about divorce, not hom.os.exuality. And, the statement about not commanding slavery seems to be a dodge. Or, are we to avoid all things not 'commanded' in the Bible, e.g. refrigeration like the Amish? But this is about hom.os.exuality.

    I would think an astute Christian would take all OT proscriptions with a grain of salt, including se.xual morals, and base things on the second of the Great Commandments, love thy neighbor.

    Mr. Mohler, claims to follow the Bible, in part, because he believes God wants the best for his human creatures, and yet is willing to condemn millions of gay men and lesbians to the anguish and self-torture of denying their own desire to love and share their lives with those they love, just like straight Christians would claim as their own God-given right.

    May 21, 2012 at 10:58 am |
  16. myweightinwords

    So if all of the things prohibited in Leviticus, like shellfish and mixed fiber clothing are part of the "holiness code"...why is the verse regarding two men lying together NOT a part of the same code, when it is written in the same language, in the same section of the book?

    Either it's all applicable or none of it is.

    May 21, 2012 at 10:52 am |
  17. johnfrichardson

    The hypocrisy continues apace. When Christians treat everyone who has had any form of extramarital se-x, including masturbation, the way they treat gays, I'll concede their consistency.

    Meanwhile, people of adult mentality who don't point to verses in a questionably cobbled together old book should do what any rational being would do: Ignore the Christian argument as morally irrelevant.

    May 21, 2012 at 10:51 am |
  18. Kevin

    The argument that "real biblical scholars" know that some things in the Bible can be ignored and some should be followed to the letter is a really weak argument. The Bible is interpretive and should never be taken literally without prayer and asking God for understanding on how to interpret it. And once again Paul is used as an authoritative example of how we should condemn gays. Why should his words be treated as the gospel truth when so many others who followed Jesus preached a more compassionate, more Christ-like message. Paul hated a lot of people, and personally I don't think his words are very important or should be trusted when it comes to what God and Jesus wanted to leave us with.

    May 21, 2012 at 10:42 am |
    • Alex

      "The Bible is interpretive and should never be taken literally"
      I.E. The bible does not tell you ish, and you still have to figure out your whole life on your own.

      JUST GET RID OF THE DAMN BOOK

      May 21, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
  19. a guest today

    Yes Mr, Mohler, the Bible does condemn the practice of certain things that today’s Christian ignores, but condemns some other things that the Bible also condemns. So my question is: Why? Do you think that they are no longer important? Do you think that these things that the Bible condemns were”nailed” to the cross? I think not. The only thing that was nailed to the cross was the rituals that pointed to the sacrifice of Jesus the Christ. I believe that the Decalogue and the health laws as well as some other stipulations are still in effect. Jesus said: ”... if you believe you love me keep my commandments. Jn 14:15, as well as many other verse to the same effect. It is plain and simple, there is no excuse.

    May 21, 2012 at 10:28 am |
  20. Ting

    Blah blah blah blah blah. Who cares? I don't care if you believe in a unicorn god that lives on Saturn. Your religion has no place in our government. If your religion frowns upon gays, fine, don't let them join your church. Don't expect the rest of society to follow your ancient beliefs.

    May 21, 2012 at 10:22 am |
    • mp

      unicorn god? If you hate it so much then why waste your useless life (according to a non-believer) in this page? huh? tell me ting, is you ting not tinging? your soo sad, i bet all you do is stay in your bed scratching your pimples off you face and wishing you would get attention.. Probably a republican I assume

      May 21, 2012 at 11:39 am |
    • :O

      The point he's making is that religion doesn't belong in government. No matter how ridiculous it may seem, it doesn't matter what a person believes in spiritually. What does matter is when a portion of our populations religious affiliations is affecting the decisions our government makes.

      May 21, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • Uh

      @Tom Tom, even if he is a loser in a basement, that does not change the argument, what you did is called a straw-man argument, not usually a fair or arguable stance. Separation of Church and State is a law that many fail to follow. Politics and government should be completely void of religion, this does not mean the politicians/ schools/ etc... should not believe (first amendment), but would not base their decisions off of a religion that not everyone would agree on. Do whats best for the state, not the belief.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:06 pm |
    • Uh

      Also a Unicorn god is just as likely and just as provable as whatever god you believe in. Try disproving a unicorn god, or the flying spaghetti monster without disproving your own god.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:09 pm |
    • Ting

      MP,

      Today I'm in the middle east, tomorrow Europe. How's your week going?

      May 22, 2012 at 1:40 am |
    • Ting

      BTW ting = there is no god.

      May 22, 2012 at 1:43 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.