Are People Born Gay?
James A. Gunn

© Copyright James A. Gunn
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All Writings and Expositions by James A. Gunn are used by permission.
Someone recently asked me this question.

The idea behind this question is that if a person is born with a homosexual preference then God could not condemn the homosexual or his lifestyle. God does not condemn a person because they are born with red hair, for example.

But to turn this question around, in what condition before God are all people born?

Nothing is clearer in the Bible than the truth that everyone is born in sin. A person is not born and then becomes a sinner, they are born in sin. Therefore, a person does not become condemned after they sin, but they are condemned already, and they sin because that is what sinners do.

God does condemn the homosexual lifestyle but homosexuality is simply a sin on the list of sins. A homosexual sinner is no more a sinner than a gossip or a liar.

Homosexuality is a choice of lifestyle and is condemned the same as drunkenness.

But God saves sinners.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11

9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites,
10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.
11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God. NKJV

Notice that Paul says that “such were some of you” but they were saved and their lives were changed.

Of course, Romans One shows that homosexuality is the final rebellion against God. A man or woman rebels against their own nature by choosing to be a homosexual.

A person is not born gay.


********************************************************************* The following inquiry came to me from a college student.

Hey there Mr. Gunn,

I've got a question for you. I was talking to a friend and the subject ended up being about homosexuality. I told her that I disagree with the life style and it is a sin against God. She told me that there is nowhere in the Bible that says homosexuality is wrong! I was shocked because she is one of the youth pastors at her church. The only example I could think of in the Bible at that moment was Sodom and Gomorra, but she said that was just in the Old Testament. I really don't want her to go around saying that being a homosexual is OK because it is not at all right, especially being a youth pastor!! I was wondering if you would help me out with the subject by giving me some Bible verses on the subject. I want to be able to give her the hard evidence on homosexuality.... that it is a sin and it displeases God. Thank you so much for your help. I hope that I'll be able to get her on the right track. Love you, Katie


Dear Katie,

Your friend is a product of Postmodernism [summary at end of paper], which among other unbiblical errors, says that we must make no moral judgments. She is also typical of many “pastors” today who make grand pronouncements about what the Bible does and does not say, apparently not ever having read it. The idea that we can discard the Old Testament is simply ignorant. You cannot understand the New Testament apart from the OT, and you certainly cannot understand the OT apart from the NT.

If the above sounds a bit harsh it is because I am dismayed that someone like your friend has any influence over young people.

Old Testament references to homosexuality:
Genesis 19:4-5

4 Now before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom, both old and young, all the people from every quarter, surrounded the house.
5 And they called to Lot and said to him, "Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us that we may know them carnally." NKJV

Leviticus 18:22-23

22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.
23 Nor shall you mate with any animal, to defile yourself with it. Nor shall any woman stand before an animal to mate with it. It is perversion. NKJV

Leviticus 20:13-14

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. NKJV


New Testament references to homosexuality:

Romans 1:24-32
24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves,
25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature.
27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.
28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting;
29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful;
32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them. NKJV

Your friend is described in the last sentence above because she approves of something that the Bible clearly condemns. Read all of Romans Chapter One for the context. It is about those who hold down the truth that they have received.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11
9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites,
10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.
11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.  NKJV

See that homosexuality and sodomy are in a list of sins that if followed, as a lifestyle will keep a person out of the kingdom of heaven.

Jude 7
as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. NKJV

Jude is one of the most contemporary books in the Bible because it warns about the danger of those who have worked their way into the church and teach error and lead others into gross immorality. “sexual immorality” is ek pornea, Greek, and means outside of {worse than} pornography and refers to sodomy.

Homosexuality is a sin and is condemned in the NT. But homosexuality is a sin like all sin. Drunkenness, gossip, lying, etc. are sin. So do not put homosexuality in some special category. Homosexuals can be saved, but like drunkards, they will repent and change their lifestyle when the Lord Jesus Christ saves them.

However nice your friend may be she is ignorant and very dangerous and all too typical of what passes for “pastors” today.

Think long about who Jesus is talking about in Matthew 7:13-23.

Can you think of any who are on the “broad way that leads to destruction”?

Katie, I hope this helps. I did not spend too much time on it. Get back to me on how your friend reacts to the truth of the Bible once she is confronted with it. It will say a lot about her. A Christian is defined as one who is led by the Spirit of God {Romans 8:16}.


Love,
Jim
    

To summarize Postmodernism:

[Postmodernism, Attack on the Heart of Biblical Christianity, Erroll Hulse]

Deconstruction of language. “It depends on what the meaning of “is” is.”

Moral relativism that asserts there are no absolutes and hence no moral standards that can apply to all people of all time.

Pluralism, which says all religions, are valid. Tolerance is the main thing and no one religion can be said to be “right.”

Existentialism where feelings rule. It is not doctrine or even empirical facts that count. It is what I feel that is right.   

Jim Gunn
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