Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 23 November 2014

Biblical basis for the banning of gay sex

Brian McClinton makes some interesting points (Write Back, February 11), but his familiarity with Near Eastern archaeology is obviously much more extensive than his knowledge of Biblical interpretation – let alone his ability to read the text.

He quotes Genesis 19:4 (quite correctly) as stating that 'the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter'.

He then paraphrases Genesis 19:5, that they 'demanded that his guests be brought out to them' and deems the first verse as conclusive evidence that the men of Sodom could not "have been motivated by homosexual desire".

He omitted the last words of the second verse – 'that we may know them'. The term 'know' is a Biblical euphemism for sexual relations, so it is obvious the men of Sodom were intent on rape.

As Mr McClinton correctly points out, "rape was a way of humiliating their enemies", but to conclude that it "was not driven by sexual desire, but [solely] by brutality and hatred toward the enemy" is unwarranted. All rape, whether homosexual or heterosexual, has both components.

The Biblical basis for banning 'gay sex' is in Leviticus 18:22.

So long as they manage not to act on their urges, homosexual men should not be treated any differently from anyone else.

MARTIN D STERN

Salford, Greater Manchester

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