I’m not an academic person, but I read a lot of books written by academics. Here, I’m referring to books written by Jewish scholars.
It’s fairly clear that the covenant on Sinai was made through Moses with the people of Israel. It is a covenant with them and them alone. The covenant says that God promises the hold of the promised land and its bounty, on the condition of adherence to that covenant.
If you take the covenant to include all of the Torah (first five books of the Bible), then that is what applies to the Jews, even today. The Torah is very legalistic, what people should do and not do.
Jewish scholars today and in the past observe that not only does the covenant not apply to gentiles, but that gentiles should not even attempt to observe the laws of the covenant in the Torah.
What they say does apply to gentiles is what they infer (it’s not IN the Bible) as the Noahide covenant. Gentiles (the rest of us) need only obey these seven laws to maintain a healthy relationship with God and enter the Divine Presence after death. See here for example: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seven_Laws_of_Noah (they are listed here)
On this basis, the prohibitions against homosexuality are really only applicable to the descendants of Israel.
I think this insight applies not only to anybody reading the Old Testament, but it explains the attitude of Paul in the new testament – why he does not compel converting gentiles to be circumcised, for example. Christianity was not just Judaism 2.0, it was altogether a different relationship with God.
Before my lifetime, the Church dropped its objections to gambling, after the Council of Trent. In my lifetime, the Church has explained away Limbo, It has come up with the idea of annulments, to get around the prohibition against divorce in scripture.
If the idea of “de-criminalizing” homosexuality and homosexual unions was ever to gain traction within the Church, I think it would have to start here, with reading the Old Testament as it is written, as a covenant with Israel which has been superceded by a new covenant.
I have run across articles in print and online from advocacy groups taking the Bible to task on individual points of scripture (rightly or wrongly) to “show” that it does not actually prohibit or condemn homosexuality.
Modern (and ancient) Judaism has and is divided into “camps” - with different interpretations.
As Pilate said, “what is truth?” The truth in U.S. Catholicism seems to be that a majority approve of abortion, artificial contraception, and even lately, same sex unions. but, the Church’s teaching is often stated without much depth of explanation.
I read some time ago, that the Torah has 613 commands (Jewish opinion since about the ninth or tenth century AD onward). It seems that somewhere, in more than a millenium of opportunity, some Catholic scholar would have stripped these down, one after another. As many know, there are FEW official pronouncements on interpretation of scripture (see the New Jerome Biblical Commentary essay on this subject).
doctrine is “teaching” which may change – homosexuality is in this category. It has not been discussed, as much as homosexual unions, female priests, etc. with dogmatic finality. One way or the other, it seems that the Church should speak as it ought, whichever way that would be.