Another Sodom?

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Joined in 2005
December 24, 2007, 01:24

I would call it illogical when people alleged that God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because they were Homosexuals forgetting that God could not find more than a few good men other than Lot. Were they all Homosexuals, notwithstanding that Gays form no more than 5% of the population then and today. The Sodomites did practiced homosexual rape but also heterosexual rape. But the homosexual sex was highlighted because gang rape of women to subjugate the surrounding cities were cruel but understandable but to go beyond to anally rape or “to sodomise” the men as well, was considered unforgivable because it destroyed the dignity of the man being raped to be treated like woman. It was a very cruel means to show who was in control hence their attempt to rape the angels visiting Lot.

Anthony Venn-Brown
Joined in 2005
December 24, 2007, 11:58

thanks lamb

Here is something I prepared for a Sydney F2B chapter meeting in 2006

Sodom and Gomorrah

Genesis 19 is one of the most commonly cited anti-homosexual passage in the Bible. It is so frequently used that the term “Sodomite” that once referred to an inhabitant of Sodom, became a legal term for criminal sexual acts. It is now commonly used, by religious conservatives as a synonym for a homosexual.

If people are going to say that the bible is the inspired world of God then they really need to understand not just what it says but what it means. Those two things can be different. Very different. Eg. Jesus said. Its easier for a rich man to go through the eye of a needle than to enter the kingdom of God. We know what it says but what does it mean.

To understand the meaning people must look not just at what is says in English in 21st century but also at:

1. The historical context. What was the cities place in history and also Lot and his family.

Did You Know?

• This story is generally thought of in terms of the fate of a single town: Sodom. But according to Deuteronomy 29:22-29, God’s anger caused four Canaanite cities to be destroyed. It involved: “…the overthrow of Sodom, and Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboim, which the LORD overthrew in his anger, and in his wrath.” So were all the cities homosexual?

• They may have been concerned that the strangers were spies who were sent to the city to determine its defensive fortifications. “Sodom was a tiny fortress in the barren wasteland south of the Dead Sea. The only strangers that the people of Sodom ever saw were enemy tribes who wanted to destroy and take over their valuable fortress and the trade routes that it protected.” As noted above, the city had just recently survived just such an attack, and may have been on high alert.

• Classical Jewish texts do not specifically indicate that God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because inhabitants were homosexual. Rather, they were destroyed because the inhabitants were generally depraved and uncompromisingly greedy. Rabbinic writings affirm that the primary crimes of the Sodomites were terrible and repeated economic crimes, both against each other and outsiders.

• For 2,000 years, until the last century before Christ, Israel understood the lesson of Sodom to be one of pride and hospitality. It wasn’t till 50 AD, we find the first time that the sin of Sodom is associated with homosexual “acts” in general. in 50 AD we find the first time the sin of Sodom is associated with homosexual acts in general. In the Quaest. et Salut. in Genesis IV.31-37, Philo interpreted the Genesis word yãdhà as “servile, lawless and unseemly pederasty.” Around 96 AD, Josephus first used the term sodomy to mean homosexual acts. From Antiquities: “They hated strangers, and abused themselves with Sodomitical practices.” Why the change?

2. The cultural context. Hebrew and Canaanite.

Did You Know?

• If the men of Sodom were all gay, then Lot would hardly have made a gift of his daughters to be raped; the mob would have had no sexual interest in women. Instead, he would have given the mob a gift of his two future sons-in-law. His daughters were both engaged to men from Sodom. In their culture, engagement was a binding arrangement, with many of the properties of marriage. It gave Lot authority over his future sons-in-law, much as he had control of his daughters. So he would have been able to sacrifice his daughters fiancées. But he didn’t.

• Lot offered his virgin daughters (probably less than 14 years old) and that the Sodomites were pagans who worshipped fertility gods. Virgin sacrifices to idols were a common practice in Sodom. Therefore, it can be concluded in another way that Lot was offering his daughters as virgin sacrifices to appease the mob in an effort to protect the visitors.

3. The original language and biblical context.

Did You Know?

• The mob that gathered outside lots house were all the townspeople and not just men. The traditional interpretation of this story largely stems from the gender biased translation of the word enoshe in Genesis 19:4. Most versions say “men”, which is incorrect. The Hebrew word enoshe is not gender-specific; it indicates mortals or people. The word esh would have been used to mean “man” or eshal to mean “woman” if gender specific terminology was meant. This translation gives the impression that just the men of the city had surrounded Lot’s house and the further impression that they were all homosexuals out to have sex with the angels.

• The crowd didn’t want to have sex with the angels. Ya,da´ is a Hebrew verb which is commonly translated as “know.” Its meaning is ambiguous. It appears 943 times elsewhere in the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament). Usually it means “to know a fact.” In only about a dozen of these cases does it refers to sexual activity; in these instances, the sexual meaning is always obvious. The text generally talks about a man “knowing” a woman and of her conceiving a child as a result of the “knowing.” All such references involve heterosexual relationships.

• Throughout the Old Testament, Sodom is held up as a lesson in wickedness that deserves utter destruction for reasons other than homosexual acts. Examples: Ezekiel 16:49 – 50, “Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fullness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.” Isaiah tells of lack of justice. Jeremiah emphasizes moral and ethical laxity. The Deuterocanonical books identify the sin as pride and inhospitality; in Wisdom 19:13-14, we read “…whereas the men of Sodom received not the strangers when they came among them.” In Ecclesiasticus 16:8 the sin is recognized as pride: “He did not spare the people among whom Lot was living, whom he detested for their pride.”

• The story of Sodom and Gomorrah actually condemns inhospitality and idolatry, not homosexuality. Read the Scriptural cross-references: Deuteronomy 29:23, Isaiah 1:9, Jeremiah 23:14, Lamentations 4:6, Ezekiel 16:49-50, Amos 4:11, Zephaniah 2:9, Matthew 10:15 / Luke 10:12, Luke 17:29, Romans 9:29, Jude v.7, Revelation 11:8. NO WHERE in the Scriptures does it say that the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah was homosexual sex. In the New Testament, too, there is reference to Sodom and inhospitality: In Luke 10:10-13, Christ talks about cities that are inhospitable to his disciples. He warns: “…it shall be more tolerable in that day for Sodom, than for that city.” Even if the specific point of the story was concerning a sexual matter, rather than hospitality, the issue is rape not homosexuality.

Joined in 2007
January 12, 2008, 03:18

I’m so glad that no one bailed out of this site. Robert, you will find this group really interesting and by the way welcome. Continue with us, add your thoughts and always remember that we are all in the same boat… we all have moments and Im glad that we can demonstrate that F2B is a group that holds to it’s purpose and that is to create a safe environment where we can talk about anything and be accepted.

I think we all have connections with situations such as rape I am always moved when someon shares their experience such as you Sandy and Robert. Our paths were altered indirectly as s result of traumatic experiences and its good to know that God is always there for us when we need.

My sister was sexually interferred when I was about 10… by my mum’s boyfriend. Short time after this he left us I sense the change when I noticed my sister got lots of gift and I misinterpret that I was not worth the gift and basically sat inside this huge wardrobe my grandfather bought me… and sat in the dark… mum was looking for me and she for some strange reason opened the wardrobe to find me sitting there in the dark. I said something like I deserve to belong in the dark… and brought up about the lack of gift… well… mum spoke to him about it …. I got a colouring pencil with stetch book… hmmmm perhaps he thought I got the wind of what he was doing to my sister… and not long after moved on. When I found out at 19… I was just so devastated and when I started working for DADHC I had to attend to Sexual Assault training… it just opens my eyes to the deprave things that human can do sexually to another person/child. So it takes guts to say what happened and I never doubt anyone.

One of my youth was raped and told me about it at the Fair Day and expressed what happened to him when he went to the police station and how he was told that he deserved it… it shocked me so I asked what did you say back… he said that he didn’t, he just accepted it and went home and stopped eating because he felt like gagging everytime he put something into his mouth… I approached the police information desk and helped relayed the information across to them… the officer went to the Starge… with it and they took actions to rectify this… as well as joining up with Gay Youth Support for counselling to come to term with what happened. It didn’t shock me but made me so sad inside for a while to think that this beautiful kid endured the horror and couldn’t tell anyone – sigh.

I think its clear about the inhospitality and lack of kindness for strangers…in Sodom… what also must be said is that Jewish people are known for looking after and have high regards to hospitality for strangers as they were once strangers. The Jewish community have midrash and torah that emphasise the care and support of strangers. So what was happening was anti-Jewish in that they were a depraved community given to carnal behaviour. I was abit upset about the father pushing his daughter out to the crowd – I can never really know what was going on in the father’s mind as he put his daughter outside. Hmmmm the end result shows that God wiped that community out with supernatural cause.

What I have learnt is that it’s not acceptable for anyone to think its ok to rape or hurt someone sexually and I would have no hesitation to report them to the authority to protect future potentials on the depraved person’s list and spare unwanted experience of trauma. When a child tells me…. I know they can’t make up a story like that and its not my job to judge but to accept and make sure they are safe. Its better to err on the side of safety than to put a person into the direct line of danger.

May God continue to show love and healing power for those who have been badly affected by senseless sexual assault and possibly death of close friends/family members. May God contine to affirm the undying love for each and everyone one of us and how precious we are.

Joined in 2007
January 16, 2008, 18:26

The truth about Sodom and Gomorrah has nothing to do with homosexuality. It has everything to do with inhospitality and cruelty to foreigners and strangers.

Look at the following verse:

Jos 10:13 And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed, until the people had avenged themselves upon their enemies. [Is] not this written in the book of Jasher? So the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and hasted not to go down about a whole day.

Notice the reference to the Book of Jasher. I found this book on a website. Jasher 18 and 19 gives a full account of what happened in Sodom and Gomorrah. Here is a few verses:

1. And when a poor man came to their land they would give him silver and gold, and cause a proclamation in the whole city not to give him a morsel of bread to eat, and if the stranger should remain there some days, and die from hunger, not having been able to obtain a morsel of bread, then at his death all the people of the city would come and take their silver and gold which they had given to him.

2. And those that could recognize the silver or gold which they had given him took it back, and at his death they also stripped him of his garments, and they would fight about them, and he that prevailed over his neighbor took them.

3. They would after that carry him and bury him under some of the shrubs in the deserts; so they did all the days to any one that came to them and died in their land.

4. And in the course of time Sarah sent Eliezer to Sodom, to see Lot and inquire after his welfare.

5. And Eliezer went to Sodom, and he met a man of Sodom fighting with a stranger, and the man of Sodom stripped the poor man of all his clothes and went away.

6. And this poor man cried to Eliezer and supplicated his favor on account of what the man of Sodom had done to him.

7. And he said to him, Why dost thou act thus to the poor man who came to thy land?

8. And the man of Sodom answered Eliezer, saying, Is this man thy brother, or have the people of Sodom made thee a judge this day, that thou speakest about this man?

9. And Eliezer strove with the man of Sodom on account of the poor man, and when Eliezer approached to recover the poor man’s clothes from the man of Sodom, he hastened and with a stone smote Eliezer in the forehead.

10. And the blood flowed copiously from Eliezer’s forehead, and when the man saw the blood he caught hold of Eliezer, saying, Give me my hire for having rid thee of this bad blood that was in thy forehead, for such is the custom and the law in our land.

11. And Eliezer said to him, Thou hast wounded me and requirest me to pay thee thy hire; and Eliezer would not hearken to the words of the man of Sodom.

12. And the man laid hold of Eliezer and brought him to Shakra the judge of Sodom for judgment.

13. And the man spoke to the judge, saying, I beseech thee my lord, thus has this man done, for I smote him with a stone that the blood flowed from his forehead, and he is unwilling to give me my hire.

14. And the judge said to Eliezer, This man speaketh truth to thee, give him his hire, for this is the custom in our land; and Eliezer heard the words of the judge, and he lifted up a stone and smote the judge, and the stone struck on his forehead, and the blood flowed copiously from the forehead of the judge, and Eliezer said, If this then is the custom in your land give thou unto this man what I should have given him, for this has been thy decision, thou didst decree it.

15. And Eliezer left the man of Sodom with the judge, and he went away.

16. And when the kings of Elam had made war with the kings of Sodom, the kings of Elam captured all the property of Sodom, and they took Lot captive, with his property, and when it was told to Abraham he went and made war with the kings of Elam, and he recovered from their hands all the property of Lot as well as the property of Sodom.

17. At that time the wife of Lot bare him a daughter, and he called her name Paltith, saying, Because God had delivered him and his whole household from the kings of Elam; and Paltith daughter of Lot grew up, and one of the men of Sodom took her for a wife.

18. And a poor man came into the city to seek a maintenance, and he remained in the city some days, and all the people of Sodom caused a proclamation of their custom not to give this man a morsel of bread to eat, until he dropped dead upon the earth, and they did so.

19. And Paltith the daughter of Lot saw this man lying in the streets starved with hunger, and no one would give him any thing to keep him alive, and he was just upon the point of death.

20. And her soul was filled with pity on account of the man, and she fed him secretly with bread for many days, and the soul of this man was revived.

21. For when she went forth to fetch water she would put the bread in the water pitcher, and when she came to the place where the poor man was, she took the bread from the pitcher and gave it him to eat; so she did many days.

22. And all the people of Sodom and Gomorrah wondered how this man could bear starvation for so many days.

23. And they said to each other, This can only be that he eats and drinks, for no man can bear starvation for so many days or live as this man has, without even his countenance changing; and three men concealed themselves in a place where the poor man was stationed, to know who it was that brought him bread to eat.

24. And Paltith daughter of Lot went forth that day to fetch water, and she put bread into her pitcher of water, and she went to draw water by the poor man’s place, and she took out the bread from the pitcher and gave it to the poor man and he ate it.

25. And the three men saw what Paltith did to the poor man, and they said to her, It is thou then who hast supported him, and therefore has he not starved, nor changed in appearance nor died like the rest.

26. And the three men went out of the place in which they were concealed, and they seized Paltith and the bread which was in the poor man’s hand.

27. And they took Paltith and brought her before their judges, and they said to them, Thus did she do, and it is she who supplied the poor man with bread, therefore did he not die all this time; now therefore declare to us the punishment due to this woman for having transgressed our law.

28. And the people of Sodom and Gomorrah assembled and kindled a fire in the street of the city, and they took the woman and cast her into the fire and she was burned to ashes.

29. And in the city of Admah there was a woman to whom they did the like.

30. For a traveler came into the city of Admah to abide there all night, with the intention of going home in the morning, and he sat opposite the door of the house of the young woman’s father, to remain there, as the sun had set when be had reached that place; and the young woman saw him sitting by the door of the house.

31. And he asked her for a drink of water and she said to him, Who art thou? and he said to her, I was this day going on the road, and reached here when the sun set, so I will abide here all night, and in the morning I will arise early and continue my journey.

32. And the young woman went into the house and fetched the man bread and water to eat and drink.

33. And this affair became known to the people of Admah, and they assembled and brought the young woman before the judges, that they should judge her for this act.

34. And the judge said, The judgment of death must pass upon this woman because she transgressed our law, and this therefore is the decision concerning her.

35. And the people of those cities assembled and brought out the young woman, and anointed her with honey from head to foot, as the judge had decreed, and they placed her before a swarm of bees which were then in their hives, and the bees flew upon her and stung her that her whole body was swelled.

36. And the young woman cried out on account of the bees, but no one took notice of her or pitied her, and her cries ascended to heaven.

37. And the Lord was provoked at this and at all the works of the cities of Sodom, for they had abundance of food, and had tranquility amongst them, and still would not sustain the poor and the needy, and in those days their evil doings and sins became great before the Lord.

38. And the Lord sent for two of the angels that had come to Abraham’s house, to destroy Sodom and its cities.

This connects with a verse I found elsewhere in the Bible:

Eze 16:48 [As] I live, saith the Lord GOD, Sodom thy sister hath not done, she nor her daughters, as thou hast done, thou and thy daughters.

Eze 16:49 Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.

Eze 16:50 And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw [good].



Joined in 2007
January 26, 2008, 12:18

Thanks everyone for all of your comments. Perhaps there is a bit more understanding on your side of the world about the true depth and meaning of some of these scriptures. I appreciate all of your input.

Because of the political climate and elections here even now, Gays have been used as a ball to be bounced back and forth for votes. It seems there never was real study of the Scriptures here by many of the Christian groups who yell the loudest. These verses were taught so starkly in our strict church environment that many of our gay community simply believed what we were told. Being taught from childhood that we are not to question God or the pastor, we did what we were told to do.

The revelation of the true depth and meaning of all of these scriptures may be old news to some of you but it is new and precious to many of us. These old tapes are SO hard to erase and the fact that the old message is being constantly thrown in our face by the media and the Christian leaders of today makes it hard to shake off. Many of us, even after we came out did not have the heart or courage to search the scriptures again because we were so convinced it was hopeless.

I just recently saw a video on youtube about “dads coming out” from your country. It was one of the most precious pieces I have ever seen. It moved me to my very core and the expressions of acceptance on the faces of the man’s children was incredible to me. We don’t have that sort of fair reporting here. I’m sure it has not always been positive where you are but what you have allowed us to see has given many of us hope to hang on another day.

I ask that you be patient with us over here. Especially those of us who are from Pentecostal backgrounds. It seems we have a lot of catching up to do.

Your brother,


Joined in 2006
January 26, 2008, 14:30

Im so glad its all been of great help to you Robert, many of us do know whaty you mean about questioning nothing, myself included. To even think of leaving the catholic way of church was said to one was as good as burning in hell so even becoming a pentecostal was a massive step for me. Catholics I knew never spoke about being homosexual so as far as I knew it must be ok but then becoming a pente changed that and not questioning the authority of the Pastor thing.

It all takes time but is well worth the hanging in there to finally realise that one is loved for who they are.

Joined in 2007
January 26, 2008, 19:44

Thanks magsdee for your comments. Pentecostals often think they are the only ones facing such guilt and anxiety about leaving their religion and moving on to something else.

I have learned through others sharing their journey that the pain and adjustment is the same for all religious backgrounds, even those other than christian. Most of us feel we are betraying our churches and our families and even the God we were taught to believe in.

Even I was at first offended when I heard the expression “recovering christian.” Now I understand what that really means because it’s like you have to start all over rebuilding your ideas and concepts of God and what faith is really all about. “God is Love” and the fact that He loves me no matter what was lost somehow. It’s times in our lives when things are not going well that I am likely to slip back into that old way of thinking and it’s only when I can hear others sharing their journey about the positive and joyful things happening to them that I can readjust my thoughts and feel reassured once again.


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