In the next four chapter sessions, same-sex conduct was defended. Almost every well-known section of the Bible that dealt with it was analyzed to divert attention from its homosexual aspects toward something else. Only after attempting to strip down inferred homosexual aspects of each Bible passage was the most obvious disapproving Bible passage of same-sex conduct introduced from Leviticus.
"You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; such a thing is an abomination." (Leviticus 18:22)
The first verses used were from Romans.
"For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. Their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural, and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in their own persons the due penalty for their error." (Romans 1:26-27)
The creation stories (Genesis 1:26-28, 2:18-25) were introduced (not shown).
"[We] reflect that Genesis does not lay out God’s entire plan for sexuality. It was not written to tell people how to act sexually. Rather, it is a story of how the earth was first populated."
Yes, that is true. But it is much more than that. It talks of love, relationships, sin, consequences and so much more.
Relating the Genesis story to the Romans passage:
"The connection of Romans 1:26 with creation is ‘an invention arising in the present church dispute.’… Paul was drawing on the Wisdom of Solomon [Wisdom 13:1-9, 14:12-14, 24-27], not Genesis. Others interpreters imply that if Paul was drawing from Genesis, he misinterpreted it. … Theologian Theodore Jennings suggests that Genesis describes the cohumanity –not the complementarity- of the sexes."
Next we discussed what Saint Paul meant by “unnatural”.
"…Paul was objecting to pederasty, the love of, and sexual use of, boys or youth by adult men. … Paul especially had no understanding of same-sex relationships that are non-exploitative, committed, and monogamous. … Gentile men and women were doing the atypical, the socially unacceptable [like men wearing long hair]. … [Same-sex acts] was not in itself sinful, but had been visited upon the Gentiles as recompense for sins, chiefly the sin of idolatry but also those of social disruption."
Basically, the argument was based on the apparent misinterpretation of Genesis on the one side and the lack of insight by Saint Paul due to the limited knowledge of his day on the other.
Later on, I made another argument using this Romans 1 passage that related to the story of Sodom and Gomorra.
Further in this chapter, Psalm 139:1-18 (especially 14) was used.
"I will praise you, so wonderfully you made me; Wonderful are your works!"
Yes, we were wonderfully made by God. But, with the advent of sin, we have to deal with its consequences. The question is if same-sex acts are sinful. He did make us sexual creatures, but for what end and by what means?
The second argument for accepting (particular) same-sex acts was found in 1 Corinthians.
"Do you not know that the unjust will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators
nor idolaters nor adulterers nor boy prostitutes nor sodomites nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God."
"That is what some of you used to be; but now you have had yourselves washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God." (1 Corinthians 6:9, 16:14)
The first verses from 1 Corinthians 6 used the words “boy prostitutes” and “sodomites”. These almost definitely refer to pederasty. The homosexual attributes are obvious, but I conceded that this was more of an exploitative matter. This admission should not negate anyone’s view that any homosexual act is sinful. This passage affirms one aspect of the whole picture: homosexual acts between men and boys are sinful.
The verse from 1 Corinthians 16 carries the same arguments as those from the passages in Galatians. It further continues, in the concluding paragraphs of the chapter, with an explanation of the study guide’s title “Claiming the Promise”.
"Paul named certain kinds of same-sex conduct as illustrations of wrongdoing. For Paul, however, we are baptized, sanctified, and justified by God’s action in Christ. By God’s grace we have become heirs of the kingdom. For Paul, the basic Christian ethic was not a set of rules. It was a way of being and living. We are to claim the promise. We are to be a new creation in Christ. [Ethicist Marie] Fortune would call this starting from the ‘vision’ side of ethics-which Paul did superbly!"
"Living by Paul’s vision on the one hand, and with Fortune’s ethic of discernment on the other, we might someday be able to affirm together:"
"Regardless of sexual orientation, the fruit of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control) will be visible in any right relationship and lacking in any wrong or corrupted relationship (See Galatians 5:19-23)."
Yet again, this conclusion is correct only to the extent that one does not sin to this end. We still hadn’t proved that same-sex conduct was an acceptable act.