Ok this is the updated version….a few grammer booboos i think but just seeing if its better 🙂
Mat 11:28 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Mat 11:29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
Mat 11:30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
Our Christian walk was never meant to be confusing or complicated, Jesus was always approachable, understandable, understanding and full of grace and truth, yet sadly, so many do not present our faith in such a way. I will be exploring scripture regarding one aspect of a controversial, long standing condemnation of a certain peoples, the LGBTI (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transsexual, Intersex) Christians. I will be going through the main passages of scripture quoted against a Homosexual Orientation, I will re-evaluate these passages and re-visit some mis-translated words, using the Strongs Dictionary and where needed a classic Greek Dictionary (since the ancient text was translated into classic).
I’m doing this first essay on Genesis’ creation, from the perspective that whether or not the world was created in 6 days, along with Man, is not of relevance to this particular piece (that’s a whole major topic on its own), personally I believe God can do anything and whether it was 6 days or 6 million years He is still the one behind it. My main focus is on clobber passages being put to question and hopefully being diffused.
The first account of creation regarding mankind:
Gen 1:27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
Gen 1:28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
I have no issue with the fact that God created Man and Woman, it’s pretty obvious we have two different Genders (in saying that, I know that we do have those Born as Intersex and those who are not comfortable with their birth gender) I also don’t find a problem with the being “fruitful and multiplying” part, in the Beginning and after the Flood we needed both man and woman together to populate, even today whether through IVF or other means, you still need the two opposing genders for life to happen.
The second account of man in creation:
Here we see a little more detail about Creation, many believe that the two accounts were written by 2 different Authors, which is possible or one could be a summary and the other more of an explanation but this in itself is a whole new topic, so we will stick with the subject of Mankind for the moment.
Gen 2:7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.
Gen 2:8 The LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man
whom He had formed.
So man was made from the dust of the ground and the ability to have life came from the breath of God. I’d assume man would have had a certain skin tone and features once he was created which would be closer to the Middle Eastern look given the location, we’ll keep note of this. God then creates nature and such and sets boundaries of what to eat and not eat and then:
Gen 2:18 And the LORD God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.”
This is the same passage in broken English straight from the Hebrew:
“ and•he-is-saying Yahweh Elohim not good to-be-of the•human to•alone-of•him I-shall-make for•him helper as•in-front-of•him”
What an interesting thing to say “ as in front of him” it sounds like it could mean “ someone as him” or “similar” to him, so yes we can see where the word “comparable” came from.
So then God creates animals for Adam as helpers and lets him call them as he pleases:
Gen 2:20 So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him.
“and•to•every-of animal-of the•field for•Adam Not he-found helper as•in-front-of•him”
The animals just didn’t cut it, obviously, I’m sure Adam yearned for someone “like” himself as a helper. (notice its not wife but helper)
Gen 2:21 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place.
Gen 2:22 Then the rib which the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.
Gen 2:23 And Adam said: “This is now bone of my bones And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man.”
Gen 2:24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
Gen 2:25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
So the woman was made as a companion and helper for the man, not for populating alone or as a submissive slave, we also see the word “wife” used for the first time.
Strongs definition of wife is The first form is the feminine of H376 or H582; the second form is an irregular plural; a woman (used in the same wide sense as H582(mortal).: – [adulter]ess, each, every, female, X many, + none, one, + together, wife, woman. Often unexpressed in English.
Strongs also puts the word “help” forward as “ aid” from a root word to “protect, succour” (help, assistance) It sounds more like one who stands shoulder to shoulder with the other, working together.
As LGBTI Christians, we have a tiresome catch cry “ God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve” thrown at us because of this passage. Personally, I have no qualms about the fact that God made man and woman to start with, I’m thankful he did, otherwise there wouldn’t be an Adam, Steve, Eve, Lisa, Peter or a you or me. Then in the first account of Creation in Chapter 1, they are told, not commanded, to be “fruitful” and “multiply” which makes complete sense again, these were God’s first two people from whom mankind would start, it was the beginning of life on planet Earth and they were told to “subdue” the Earth as well, I’m sure you will need people for that, it seems logical to me.
Here’s yet part of a third summary of Creation:
Gen 5:2 He created them male and female, and blessed them and called them Mankind in the day they were created.
This is another scripture that gets mis-used, notice the blessing is of the fact God created mankind, male and female, he was blessing both genders as good not the union of the two specifically. Again, I have no qualms about this, we are blessed as both a male and female gender and I celebrate the fact we have both.
Now what is interesting to note about the creation story is this, that the couple didn’t have children whilst in the best possible state one could be in to bear children, in the Garden of Eden, Eve became pregnant only after they were kicked out of the garden and childbirth then came with the curse of pain, amongst many other things:
Gen 3:23 therefore the LORD God sent him out of the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he was taken.
Gen 3:24 So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life.
Gen 4:1 Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, and said, “I have acquired a man from the LORD.”
A lot changed when mankind was sent from the garden, nothing was the same apart from the fact that what God created still existed, plants, animals etc…
Something to think about is this, I’m sure the colour of our original parents skin was the same, their features as in race was the same, Eve was formed from Adam so it makes sense it would be, so where did all the skin colours we have now come from? and the different race differentiations (as in looks not location) how did that come about?:
Jer 13:23 Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard its spots? Then may you also do good who are accustomed to do evil.
Here we have mention of someone presumably of dark skin in the Old Testament.
Then there is all the people that God protected Cain from with a mark not to be killed, where did they come from? There are many questions that just cant be answered. I guess the question I would have is this, no-one looks the same as anyone else unless you’re a twin and even their the personalities are different, there are so many variations since Eden in every way outside of looks, why wouldn’t sexual orientation fall under that variance too? I feel it’s a valid thought to consider, why? Because biological changes did occur in humankind from here forward, we see the arrival of twins to Isaac and Rebekah not just one baby at a time, men were born unable to Father children and women the same and the list goes on, something had changed in us, we weren’t as we were first created.
Man and woman are exclusive to each other, Adam & Eve prove that……..really?:
We cant forget that once upon a time in the Old Covenant, having a wife and concubines a slave/s or handmaiden/s for “other” services for the man was ok and the concubine was even protected by the Covenant, the Mosaic Institution:
Lev_19:20 ‘Whoever lies carnally with a woman who is betrothed to a man as a concubine, and who has not at all been redeemed nor given her freedom, for this there shall be scourging; but they shall not be put to death, because she was not free.
Many Patriarchs and Kings had at least one wife, this was seen as exclusive to the continuation of the family line but they also had concubines with which they had more children. The only time you were committing adultery was if you slept with a woman not betrothed to you. Now lets get an understanding of what “betrothed” stands for and what “marriage” stands for in the Old Covenant:
Betrothed: to fix upon (by agreement or appointment); to engage (for marriage): – agree
Concubine: Of uncertain derivation; a concubine; also (masculine) a paramour: – concubine, paramour (an illicit lover, especially of a married person.)
So a Concubine was one who was “engaged” or “appointed” to a man as a lover, as we see in the passage above, no wonder it was covered by Covenant law.
Marry: to be master; hence to marry: – Beulah have dominion (over), be husband, marry (-ried, X wife).
Also from this root word: master; hence a husband, or (figuratively) owner
Marriage: dwell together; (sexual) cohabitation
A wife was owned by a Husband, she was his property so to speak and he had authority over her:
Num 5:29 ‘This is the law of jealousy, when a wife, while under her husband’s Authority, goes astray and defiles herself, (theres more scriptures like it in the O.T. very different to the N.T. where Husbands and Wives are to submit to each other)
In the Old Testament “marriage” was seen as a covenant made between a Man and Woman and taken very seriously. Even so its interesting to note that having someone other than your wife was allowed, one man was certainly not exclusive to one woman and on some occasions, even a slave or handmaiden was given to conceive more children for the man. Jacob puts polygamy on the page with him having 2 wives in Leah and Rachel.
Gen_29:28 Then Jacob did so and fulfilled her week. So he gave him his daughter Rachael as wife also.
Gen 29:32 So Leah conceived and bore a son, and she called his name Reuben; for she said, “The LORD has surely looked on my affliction. Now therefore, my husband will love me.”
The maid then comes into the picture later:
Gen 30:9 When Leah saw that she had stopped bearing, she took Zilpah her maid and gave her to Jacob as wife.
Gen 30:10 And Leah’s maid Zilpah bore Jacob a son.
Zilpah wasn’t married as such to Jacob but because they had been together it was viewed as the same, the woman who you slept with or was betrothed to you still bore you legitimate children, the 12 tribes came about from a mix of these wives and slaves but the only child of direct descent to Jesus was Leahs son Judah, Jacobs first wife not Rachels sons. Abrahams son Isaac is a great example of the line of descent born to his wife Sarah:
Gen 17:18 And Abraham said to God, “Oh, that Ishmael might live before You!”
Ishmael was born to Hagar Sarahs Maid.
Gen 17:19 Then God said: “No, Sarah your wife shall bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac; I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his descendants after him.
So we see here that Ishmael, although God did bless him, wasn’t the one whom God would covenant with, it was Isaac.
Something not really widely heard of or spoken of, is that Abraham also had a concubine.
1Ch 1:32 Now the sons born to Keturah, Abraham’s concubine, were Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Midian, Ishbak, and Shuah. The sons of Jokshan were Sheba and Dedan.
David also had many wives and many concubines, I believe about 14 in total. The lineage of Jesus, mentioned in both Matthew and Luke include Solomon and Nathan. Solomon born to Bathsheba after the death of her husband Uriah but Nathans mother is unknown.
Both these Lineages are Josephs not one of them is Marys:
Matthew starts at Abraham then finishes with this:
Mat 1:16 And Jacob begot Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus who is called Christ.
Luke starts with Joseph:
Luk 3:23 Now Jesus Himself began His ministry at about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, the son of Heli,
There are slight variances in the genealogy but if you get to a certain point they both marry up. Mary is not mentioned in either one.
Gen 29:21 Then Jacob said to Laban, “Give me my wife, for my days are fulfilled, that I may go in to her.”
Gen 29:22 And Laban gathered together all the men of the place and made a feast.
Gen 29:23 Now it came to pass in the evening, that he took Leah his daughter and brought her to Jacob; and he went in to her.
A marriage ceremony was very different then wasn’t it? It was a male affair and then you went and “knew” your wife.
Gen 24:47 Then I asked her, and said, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ And she said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bore to him.’ So I put the nose ring on her nose and the bracelets on her wrists.
Gen 24:48 And I bowed my head and worshiped the LORD, and blessed the LORD God of my master Abraham, who had led me in the way of truth to take the daughter of my master’s brother for his son.
Another interesting way in securing a wife, as you can see the woman didn’t have much say in it. This “securing” of a wife usually came with a trade of goods also.
2Sa 3:14 So David sent messengers to Ishbosheth, Saul’s son, saying, “Give me my wife Michal, whom I betrothed to myself for a hundred foreskins of the Philistines.”
Aren’t you glad that these practices don’t exist in our western culture. Marriage ceremonies and Engagements and Marriage itself is not like it was back then.
New Covenant Marriage:
It seems that having one wife was something that came about in the New Covenant, but if you were a Jew, you would still practice the Old Traditions unless you were saved. How did having only one wife come about? I truly don’t know.
The scriptures stipulating in the New Covenant, that if in leadership a man should have only one wife are these:
1Ti_3:2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, hospitable, able to teach;
1Ti_3:12 Let deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.
So could the fact that this point was made, mean that the practice of many betrothed Women was practiced by even Christians, mainly Jewish Christians? I don’t know but from scripture alone one can only deduce that certain people have mention of only one wife so the truth of many wives is a speculation.
We read of one wedding ceremony where Jesus performed his first miracle, it was a feast and Mary was present, a woman, well if you know anything of the old Jewish culture, the man and wife were blessed together under a canopy before consummating the marriage BUT the Brides female family and guests and the Grooms male family and guests were separated by a rope or such, there is still a form of segregation even to this day in some places.
I will make the conclusion in point form.
1. Man was created first, then the woman as a helper for him, the creation of the two genders was called Mankind and it was blessed.
2. Both Adam and Eve were told not commanded to go be fruitful and multiply, it was the begininning of life on Earth BUT as we know not everyone was capable of conceiving after the boot from Eden but there is mention of Eunuchs, either born as such or made as such. These are men (women could also be Eunuchs) who can’t produce children and in O.T. times it was not permitted that these men serve offerings to God. A variation to the original creation.
Eunuch: From an unused root meaning to castrate; a eunuch; by implication valet (especially of the female apartments), and thus a minister of state: – chamberlain, eunuch, officer. (Old Testament description)
From ?????? eune? (a bed) and G2192; a castrated person (such being employed in Oriental bed chambers); by extension an impotent or unmarried man; by implication a chamberlain (state officer): – eunuch. (New Testament description)
Jesus taught in Matthew 19 that some may choose to be a eunuch (someone who chooses not to marry) for the sake of dedicating themselves to serving God and preaching the Gospel:
Matt 19:10-12 “But He said to them, “All cannot accept this saying, but only those to whom it has been given: For there are eunuchs who were born thus from their mother’s womb, and there are eunuchs who were made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He who is able to accept it, let him accept it.”
The idea that even a eunuch could be baptized, draw close to God and eventually be begotten into God’s family shows the impartiality of our Father in all things. It also shows the better covenant made through Jesus and why (in part) the old covenant became obsolete.
3. Adam and Eve were booted from Eden due to disobedience and only then bore children, nothing was the same once they were out of that sanctuary. We see the birth of twins in Jacob and Esau and other biological changes both good and bad, it would be careless to assume that sexual orientation wouldn’t be a part of that variance, your sexuality is not a choice, you didn’t have to think about whether you wanted to be heterosexual or not did you.
4. We don’t know where all the people came from that Cain was protected from same as we don’t know where differences appeared in our whole bodily make-up worldwide.
5. One man and one woman, were not an exclusive union, you were allowed many wives, concubines etc… and the Law even protected such. This raises the point that if you become “one flesh” with whom you have sex with, how does that work with Polygamy. (Jesus kind’ve answered this question in Mat 22:24-Mat 22:30).
6. Marriage was made by an agreement without the womans say and at times it was who you slept with that became your wife all without a ceremony. It was very male oriented.
7. If a marriage ceremony occurred it was very much a male affair.
8. A marriage based on a one man and one woman union is spoken of in the New Testament as qualities to look for in leadership and church service. To me it just means, to be in a stable r’ship regardless of orientation.
9. What this means for us as LGBTI Christians is this, Creation is by no means a satisfactory argument to disapprove of us as LGBTI Christians. I feel the essay and points speak for themselves. Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve kind’ve sounds silly in this light.