Don’t Blame It On The Bible: Dr. Obery Hendricks on Homosexuality and the Bible
Dr. Obery Hendricks, NYTS Professor of Biblical Interpretation, has written an article on the Bible, Homosexuality, and the Supreme Court’s decision on the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 8 at the end of March. Here is an excerpt:
Most Americans who oppose gay rights and same-sex marriage justify their opposition by turning to the Bible. But does the Bible really oppose homosexuality? You’d be surprised.
At the end of March, the Supreme Court is expected to rule on the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 8, which denies gay Americans the right to legally marry. Major polls show most Americans in support of marriage equality. Still a vocal and well-heeled right-wing evangelical opposition presents a formidable obstacle. Why? Because of a long-held belief that homosexuality is among the greatest of biblical sins.
But does the Bible really condemn homosexuality? Ironically it never answers that question conclusively. In fact, the biblical basis for the demonization of homosexuality is very thin and, ultimately, not at all decisive. Oddly enough, the notions of homosexuality that are so deeply rooted in American culture and law are based upon a surprisingly small number of biblical passages. If progressives are to successfully address the supposed divinely sanctioned circumscription of gay Americans’ constitutional rights, it is crucial that they understand the biblical arguments that gay rights opponents use to justify their resistance. What follows is a brief primer on what progressives need to know about what the Bible says — and does not say — about homosexuality.