Romans 1: 26-27 26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27

Romans 1: 26-27

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

Paul’s key point here is that homosexuality is a departure from God’s intended order for human sexual relations.

The background to his thinking is right at the beginning of the Bible in the opening chapters of Genesis.

Genesis 1:27

“God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.”

Genesis 2:21-24

“So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and then closed up the place with flesh.Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.

The man said, ‘This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called “woman,” for she was taken out of man.’

That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.”

That’s a lengthy extract from the first two chapters of the Bible, but it’s in the background of Paul’s thinking when he writes about men and women in Romans 1.

Part of the Genesis passage was also quoted by Jesus. Here are his words to questioning Pharisees: “‘Haven’t you read,’ he replied, ‘that at the beginning the Creator “made them male and female,” and said, “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh”? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate’” (Matt. 19:4-6).

The Genesis pattern was foundational for both Paul and Jesus. So here, in Romans 1, Paul’s words are straight down the line: God’s intended order is for male and female sexual relationships, united in a one flesh relationship in marriage. That is what he saw as natural, and therefore same sex relationships were unnatural.

Paul, then, uses words like “natural” or “unnatural,” meaning whether the behavior is or is not in line with God’s intention. He’s not passing comment on anyone’s DNA or whether someone feels their homosexual behavior is normal. Issues like those were not in his mind. ‘This is not how God intended sexual relations to be,’ is his point.

The sin, therefore, is rejecting God’s way, God’s order. He speaks about people following shameful lusts. The word “lusts” carries a meaning of overwhelming desire. Those desires could be right or wrong. For Paul, pursuing any lust that took someone away from God’s planned will for humankind was “shameful.” It could never be right. And especially never right when it came to the deepest of human relationships.

Paul teaches in a similar vein when he writes to the Corinthians. In chapter six of 1 Corinthians he lists the behavior of the Corinthians before they were Christians. If you feel like comparing your church members with the church members at Corinth, here is their background: “sexually immoral,” “idolaters,” “adulterers,” “men who have sex with men,” “thieves,” “greedy,” “drunkards,” “slanderers,” “swindlers” (1 Cor. 6:9-10). That is quite a list. It is how they were, not how they are for, Paul says, they have been cleansed from their sin by Jesus.

But Paul imagines they could have argued they never needed Christ. Their personal freedom would have allowed them to behave any way they pleased. Here is Paul’s response to that argument:

“‘I have the right to do anything,’ you say—but not everything is beneficial” (1 Cor. 6:12). Paul’s point is that the way they used to live was not good for them. Nor, he continues, was it acceptable to God. “The body… is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body” (1 Cor. 6:13).

So, Paul recognizes people can live differently. They can make that choice. But the availability of an alternative choice does not, of itself, make that choice good. Nor, he argues, does it make that choice right.

Amen 🙏🙏🙏📖


  1. Brittany M Craig

    Amen thank you Jesus

  2. Lois Stellman

    Now I unfollow this page!!!

  3. Drachenfutter Rämond

    You get justification for this hate from a book that endorses slavery and genocide.
    It doesn’t even say that a woman loving a woman is a sin.


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