The prevalence of the LGBTQ+ movement has ramped up in recent years. It was happening prior to June 26, 2015, but after the decision of the Obergefell v. Hodges case was handed down by SCOTUS it has only intensified. Even more it has morphed into an all-out assault on the gospel of Jesus Christ. This article endeavors to present a brief argument for why homosexuality is incompatible with the gospel.
It goes without saying for most conservative evangelicals, homosexuality is a sin, but is it understood why? Most of us would be correct to note out the law of God in Leviticus 18:22 where it is written:
“‘You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination.’”
This point is cross referenced in the New Testament in Romans 1:27:
“and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.”
Paul even speaks to this in 1 Corinthians 6:9-10:
“Or 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 effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.”
Yet, do we fully understand the gospel implications of these truths? Brash statements such as, ‘God made Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve’ seem to resonate with those on the conservative side of the aisle. Regardless of the seeming truth in such a statement it also represents a glaring ignorance to God’s covenantal promises. Promises that all find their terminus is the Christ of the gospel. Therefore, it is important for us to better understand the gospel as revealed through God’s covenantal relationships in order for us to better understand why homosexuality is incompatible with the message of the gospel.
In order to lay the framework for such a discussion, it is prudent to examine the role and function of Adam in Genesis 1-2. God created Adam in His own image (Gen. 1:27). He did so with the intent purpose of Adam reflecting His glory within created order by being fruitful and multiplying and having dominion over creation and subduing it (Gen. 1:28). Many have referred to this as the Adamic covenant or the covenant of works, however it may be better to understand this as a covenant with creation. Within this paradigm, it is important to recognize Adam’s role as a type of Christ. For this to be understood, it is necessary to consider Paul’s words in Romans 5:12-21.
Adam was created for a purpose and once God formed Eve to join him in the garden, Adam was tasked with cultivating and keeping it. He was given dominion over everything and given access to every fruit in the garden, except one (Gen. 2:17). This proved to be the downfall for humanity, sin entered through one man, and death through sin, and death spread to all men, because all sinned (Rom. 5:12). Yet Adam proved to be a type of Christ, set in contrast with the actual Christ of the gospel, as death entered through one man’s disobedience, through the obedience of the One, righteousness reigns (Rom. 5:18).
It is here that we begin to notice the importance of God’s progressively revealed will through covenants. As Christ is the better Adam and is the head of the Church in the new covenant, so Adam was the figure head of creation in the first covenant. Christ is the groom who will claim His pure and undefiled bride, the church. Adam was the head of creation and was to cultivate it with his bride, Eve. At this point the parallels come into focus, Adam and Eve serve as a covenantal foreshadow of Christ and the Church.
Each covenant after the one made in the garden progressively reveals God’s relationship with His people. From the marriage of Adam and Eve typifying the marriage of Christ to the Church, to Abram being promised a descendant that would bless all the nations of the earth (Gen. 12:1-3); not to mention Moses, David, and the New Covenants prophesied about by Ezekiel and Jeremiah. God has progressively revealed the gospel via His covenantal relationships through redemptive history. Each covenant gives a different aspect of the gospel, which is ultimately made complete in the person and work of Jesus Christ.
So why is homosexuality incompatible with the gospel? Homosexuality at its very root is counter to created order. Adam and Eve were given the task to be fruitful and multiply. This task requires very specific roles for each individual to occupy. Without getting too graphic in this explanation; Adam and Eve were created male and female and each with a biologically specific role to play in the multiplication of the human race. A homosexual relationship does not accomplish this goal.
If gender roles are ignored, multiplication does not happen. If this typological parallel is understood in the same way, then Christ ceases to be the focus of the gospel. Rather, humanity usurps its proper function and begins to set the standard (2 Tim 4:3-4). Where Christ ceases to be the focus, the gospel ceases to exist.
How do biblically minded Christians respond to homosexuality? First, we must properly understand the gospel. Yes, God created Adam and Eve not Adam and Steve, but we must be able to explain why. Second, we must handle the Word of Truth like a surgeon wielding a scalpel; with great care. The truth of the gospel is offensive enough, we do not need to help it out. Third, we must always desire true repentance and restoration for those who have been deceived by the lies of the enemy. Fourth, we need to stay away from the mindset of ‘Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve’. This way of thinking is elementary and demonstrates an immaturity in the Lord. Last, we must desire God’s glory above all else and trust Him to use us to those ends.