Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Thoughts on Leviticus 18:22, Part 2: Leviticus 18:22

“If God is not sovereign over the land and its people, then the land and its people become cut off from the Creator.  A God-centred worldview is replaced by a man-centred and self-centred worldview.  So the people of Israel drove God out of their lives to become their own gods, masters of the land, their world, and their destiny.  They could now rewrite the law and redefine what was right and wrong, moral and immoral.” From the Mystery of the Shemitah by Jonathan Cahn.
Following the many conversations that have arisen since the US Supreme Court’s decision concerning same-sex marriage in June 2015, I notice a consistency in the way individuals, including what seems a very large number of professing Christians, twist the words of God, of Christ, to somehow place God’s love above God’s justice.  This is heresy!  In Psalm 89:13 we read, Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; mercy and truth go before Your face.”  As soon as we start messing around with the nature and attributes of God He ceases to be God."
It is this light that Leviticus 18:22 becomes an immovable object in any discussion concerning same-sex relationships.  Leviticus 18:22 is as unambiguous as it is possible to be. Unlike some other Scriptures Leviticus 18:22 is not susceptible to misinterpretation; you don’t need to compare it to other Scriptures, you don’t have to interpret it the context of other Scriptures or historic times, it’s meaning is not diluted in differing translations.  It is not contradictory to any other Law or Scripture.  There is no subtlety of ambiguity in what God says.  God simply says that sex between two men is an abomination [dictionary definition: detestation, loathing, hatred, aversion, antipathy, revulsion, repugnance, abhorrence, odium, execration, disgust, horror, hostility]. 
Perhaps things are different in this regard now that we live in an ‘age of grace’?  No, not so.  In Numbers 23:19 God speaks through Balek, “God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?” Jesus went on to say, Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished” Matthew 5:18. In Luke 16:17 He says, “… that doesn’t mean that the law has lost its force. It is easier for heaven and earth to disappear than for the smallest point of God’s law to be overturned.” and Jesus went on to say, If you love me, keep my commands.” John 14:15.  Humans distort God’s Word at their peril and offend God when they do so.
Some have asked why do those who stand in opposition to same-sex marriage place such a strong emphasis on Leviticus 18:22?  I believe the answer is simple – because it is so clear and explicit.  This is the opposite tack those who support same-sex marriage take – quoting verses and passages of Scripture out of context in efforts to make their case, appealing exclusively to the love attribute of God. No, no, no!
Culture in and of itself is not necessarily bad, it is when we give culture pre-eminence over Scripture that we have a problem.  We are very good at manipulating Scripture to fit our culture. This culture can pull us away from the truth. According to 1 Corinthians 2:14 those that manipulate Scripture live in cultural delusion, "The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit."

© David Harrison 2015