- Virginia Brown
On Jesus’ Silence
A common objection to a biblical sexual ethic goes something like, “If Jesus disapproved of homosexuality, he would have said so. Because Jesus didn’t preach against it, he thus endorsed homosexual behavior.” Is such an objection cogent? No. In fact, the objection mirrors a toothpick—flimsy and brittle. Here’s why.
Jesus did talk about homosexuality. In Matt 15:19–20, Jesus says that “sexual immorality . . . defiles a person.” The Greek term for “sexual immorality” encompasses various kinds of sexual sins, including but not exclusive to homosexuality. Further, in Matt 19:5–6, Jesus teaches that marriage between one man and one woman provides the suitable context for sexual expression. By consequence, all sexual intimacy outside of this one-man-one-woman covenant is forbidden, including but not exclusive to homosexuality.
Also, if we take this principle of “Jesus supports every position he does not explicitly reject” and apply it broadly, we run into troubling conclusions. Take, for example, the concept of torture. To my knowledge, Jesus never says that torture is wrong. Using the principle that critics of traditional sexual norms use, we would have to conclude that Jesus condones torture. That’s ludicrous, though, and everyone knows that.
Homosexuality is wrong. Jesus says so, along with Moses (Gen 19:24; Lev 20:13), Paul (Rom 1:27; 1 Cor 6:9; 1 Tim 1:10), Jude (Jude 7), and John (Rev 22:15). Don’t fall for the schemes of the devil. Instead, “destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God” (2 Cor 10:5). May God richly bless you!