Biology, Homosexuality, and the Biblical Doctrine of Sin -- By: Sherwood O. Cole

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 157:627 (Jul 2000)
Article: Biology, Homosexuality, and the Biblical Doctrine of Sin
Author: Sherwood O. Cole


Biology, Homosexuality, and the Biblical Doctrine of Sin

Sherwood O. Colea

Biological arguments are offered by advocates of homosexuality as grounds for legislative and judicial initiatives that they desire.1 The point is that if someone is born with a homosexual orientation resulting from genetic or intrauterine-hormonal influences over which he or she has no control, why should a homosexual lifestyle be condemned on moral grounds? Such biologically determined individuals, it is argued, should be accepted for who they are with the behavior that follows from it. The corollary of this argument among those who call themselves “gay Christians” simply becomes, “God made me this way, and He does not make mistakes. Therefore you must accept and affirm me and my behavior.”2

Advocates of this view have convinced many Christians that their argument is both morally reasonable and factually accurate. As will be pointed out subsequently, such an argument is neither reasonable nor factual, and as a result, it fails to be convincing. Moreover, the argument is problematic because it is suspiciously self-serving.

Using the biological argument to achieve legislative goals is untenable and potentially impacts the lives of everyone. The biological argument equates the situation of homosexuals with that of African Americans (as well as people possessing other minority-

specific physical characteristics). They often have not had equal access to education, job opportunities, and medical services. It is only right morally to protect legally the civil rights of such individuals and to stop discriminatory practices that close the doors of social and economic opportunity to them. The civil rights legislation of the 1960s was a long-overdue step in the right direction and an attempt to correct serious social injustice.3

However, it is important to recognize that the biological features of disadvantaged groups (skin color, facial features, and so forth), in and of themselves, were not argued as the direct cause of social disadvantage. Rather, biological features were used to identify those individuals who were then targeted as objects of racism, which in turn led them into conditions of poverty and deprivation. It was racist attitudes that led to social and economic disadvantage. Indeed, on numerous occasions individuals with minority-specific biological features have been able to overcome impoverished conditions and become influential contributors to society.

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