Does the Bible talk about lesbianism? What does the Bible say about being a lesbian?
Lesbianism refers to sexual relationships between two women. While sexual relationships between men are clearly condemned in the Bible in both the Old and New Testaments, some have argued that the Bible does not mention sexual relationships between women, therefore making it acceptable. Is this true?
It is accurate to say that many of the Old Testament passages that speak against same sex activity specifically address men. For example, the same sex gang rape attempt in the account of Sodom and Gomorrah in Genesis 19 only mentions men. Leviticus 20:13 specifically condemned same sex male relationships but not female.
Other passages, however, are clearer regarding this matter. The most specific passage that addresses lesbian relationships is found in Romans 1:26-27a: "For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another." It is clear in this context that lesbian relationships are mentioned. The note that "the men likewise gave up natural relations" also shows the parallel with the actions of the women mentioned in the passage.
Romans 1 also makes clear that these activities are considered sinful. Same sex relations, including lesbian relationships, were called "dishonorable passions" that were "contrary to nature." The following verse adds, "And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done" (Romans 1:28).
It is also clear in the above passages that the focus is on lesbian practices rather than lesbian same sex attraction. Some women have sexual attractions to other women and wonder if this is wrong. While lust of any kind is sinful, people face temptations of many kinds. The emphasis of Scripture is to avoid sexual immorality, as well as to avoid thinking sexual thoughts about others (Matthew 5:27-28). Doing so requires Christian growth and maturity, something that takes place through prayer, Scripture, and Christian community (Acts 2:42).
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