Same-Sex Relationships: 1 Corinthians and 1 Timothy
This is the text of the talk I gave to the Accepting Sexuality group.
There are two passages from the New Testament that are often quoted as proof that you cannot be gay and Christian: 1 Corinthians 6.9–10 and 1 Timothy 1.9–10. The New International Version of the former says “men who have sex with men … will [not] inherit the kingdom of God.” If the understanding of these passages was as simple as a superficial reading suggests, then the gay Christian movement would never have started. However, their message is more equivocal, and there are many conflicting translations.
It can be shown that the key words in these passages, malakos and arsenokoites, are not about sex between men, and the latter can even be connected to sex between a husband and wife.
By considering the wider Christian context of these passages, in particular what Christ said about inheriting the Kingdom of God, and allowing this context to guide our lives we can be confident that we have not broken the prohibitions in these passages, whatever they mean.