I need help please

Hey, I’m being pressured by someone trying to trip me up with Romans 1:22-32 about Paul’s statement that gays deserve the death penalty. He is saying if I don’t believe that we should kill homosexuals then Romans should be removed from the Bible. I will link his statements below in another thread. Thanks so much for any advice

Paul only claims that they are wicked, evil, greedy, malicious… full of envy, murder, rivalry, treachery, and spite. They gossip, are scandalmongers, and hate God. They are insolent, haughty, boastful, ingenious, and rebellious toward their parents. They are senseless, faithless, heartless, and ruthless.

I don’t see anything there that meets the definition of a capital crime.

(Paul mentions that they are ‘full of murder’, but he doesn’t say that they’ve all committed murders.)

So, since there’s nothing there that suggests that (1) they’re irredeemable or (2) they’ve committed capital crimes, then there’s nothing that argues for the assertion that they should be killed. And, if that’s the case, then his assertion that Romans should be removed from the Bible is… just plain senseless. :wink:

Here are some of his comments…

How do you choose, Jesse, when to describe an event depicted in the bible as “allegorical” and when to describe it as “historical”? And, perhaps more to the point, how do you arrive at a conclusion that some particular texts were inspired by a divine being and others are not? How do you tell a sacred text from a profane one? A true one from a false one? As it is, you seem to be comfortable picking and choosing the parts of the bible you like and describing those parts as divinely inspired whereas you ascribe the parts you don’t like to human error. You’re surely not the only one doing this. Thomas Jefferson wrote a version of the New Testament called “The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth” in which he quite literally cut and pasted the four biblical gospels so that they told a chronological story of Jesus life and teachings, eliminating all references to miracles or supernatural beings. He also completely ignored Paul’s epistles and the other apostolic works that append those gospels. Jefferson’s New Testament ends at the death of Jesus. It avoids a lot of the troublesome parts and keeps the gist the teachings without all that supernatural folderol. See if you find it to your liking. beliefnet.com/…/The_Jefferson_Bible_The_Life.

Like it or not, the narratives in the bible have already been cut and pasted together long before they got to you but that’s another topic. I’ll repeat my questions. How do you determine which parts of the bible are “allegorical” and which are “historical”? How do you determine if any particular verse in the bible is true or untrue? Let’s be very specific. Which category does Paul’s pronouncement in his Epistle to the Romans, that homosexual acts are deserving of death, allegorical or historical? Is Paul accurately stating God’s intent here or is he wrong? Do you agree with Paul that the ordinance of God is that people who engage in homosexual acts (along with a whole litany of other moral “depravities” such as disobeying one’s parents) deserve death? If you do not, upon what reasoning are you excluding this verse from your belief in the divine inspiration and truth which you attribute to other verses?

I explained that the Bible is written in several styles, one being historical (like the Roman census before Christ’s birth) and allegorical (like Christ saying that you must hate your parents for his sake).

Here is his main point against Romans… Romans 1:32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

The fact that Jefferson had his own personal ideas about Scripture do not prove anything about where truth is found in Scripture.

Let’s be very specific. Which category does Paul’s pronouncement in his Epistle to the Romans, that homosexual acts are deserving of death, allegorical or historical? Is Paul accurately stating God’s intent here or is he wrong? Do you agree with Paul that the ordinance of God is that people who engage in homosexual acts (along with a whole litany of other moral “depravities” such as disobeying one’s parents) deserve death?

I think I would ask him to turn the page: that is, what follows Romans 1:32 is Romans 2:1-2. (After all, chapter and verse notations weren’t added to the Scriptures for quite a long time, so Paul just wrote 1:32 and then 2:1 right next to it.) This appeal to context is enlightening: Paul lambasts people for ‘passing judgment’, while reaffirming that ‘the judgment of God on those who do such things is true.’ So, I think I would assert that, since we’re in the realm of God’s judgment, we’re talking about ‘death’ in the context of eternal destiny, not in terms of capital punishment. Paul’s not saying “homosexual conduct should lead to the electric chair,” but rather, that homosexual activity leads to God’s “wrath and fury to those who selfishly disobey the truth and obey wickedness.” (Rom 2:8)

I explained that the Bible is written in several styles, one being historical (like the Roman census before Christ’s birth) and allegorical (like Christ saying that you must hate your parents for his sake).

“hate your parents” isn’t allegory; it’s an archaic way of saying “love me more than your parents” – point him at Matthew 10:37, which is the verse in Matthew (“Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me”) which is parallel to the one he’s pointing to (in Luke 14:26).

Here is his main point against Romans… Romans 1:32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

Right: from God’s perspective, failing to worship God (and worshiping creation instead) leads to all sort of physical sin; this is worthy of eternal punishment. No allegory here.

Forgive me for mis using the word

God love gay people and they are called to a life in chastity, and because God love them so do His Church. Celibacy may be a hard thing to live with but utterly important. God bless you and don’t lose hope.

Romans 1:22-32
22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

Where in these verses does Paul condemn homosexuals to death? He says they “deserve death” but is this physical death? Or does he mean condemnation to hell (the “second death”)? If the former, then it was the command of God to the Jewish people that homosexuals be stoned to death, but I don’t see a commandment from Paul that we should kill homosexuals…only that such death is deserved because of homosexual acts (“they do what ought not to be done”). However, homosexuals may choose NOT to commit homosexual acts and remain chaste; thereby, they would not have committed homosexuals sins deserving of death.

Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The Bible is divinely inspired.

I’ll repeat my questions. How do you determine which parts of the bible are “allegorical” and which are “historical”?

“You”, Jessie, may decide not to make those decisions, but that’s okay - you have an infallible Church to sort these things out for you.

How do you determine if any particular verse in the bible is true or untrue?

Easy. All of scripture is true.

Let’s be very specific. Which category does Paul’s pronouncement in his Epistle to the Romans, that homosexual acts are deserving of death, allegorical or historical? Is Paul accurately stating God’s intent here or is he wrong? Do you agree with Paul that the ordinance of God is that people who engage in homosexual acts (along with a whole litany of other moral “depravities” such as disobeying one’s parents) deserve death? If you do not, upon what reasoning are you excluding this verse from your belief in the divine inspiration and truth which you attribute to other verses?

In the passage you quoted, is Paul referring to literal physical death or does he mean spiritual death (judgment and hell)?

Jesse,

This link might help
youtube.com/watch?v=htxOjJHB5-8

Father Barron is brilliant at explaining this stuff. The youtube video is him speaking on your very question. This next link may also help, it is from his ministries website.

wordonfire.org/WoF-Blog/WoF-Blog/February-2012/Scripture-Beware-of-Bald-Prophets.aspx

Pray for me and Ill pray for you.

God bless.

I think your friend is misusing words here, but I think he means a literal or figurative teaching. At any rate, in the context of sinfulness, Paul says in that same letter:*For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Rom. 6:23)*Thus, that’s what a sinner deserves. That’s why God came incarnate, etc… that we might be saved from such consequence. If your friend wants to know how we interpret something in Scripture, tell him we study the context, literary genre, etc… If he wants a more complete treatment, refer him to the 1994 CDF document The Interpretation of the Bible in the Church. His words sound like he feels like he’s “got you” and if he remains obtuse, he might not be worthy of the discussion at this juncture. But he operates with demands and pretenses we don’t have for ourselves.

CCC 602 Consequently, St. Peter can formulate the apostolic faith in the divine plan of salvation in this way: "You were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your fathers. . . with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. He was destined before the foundation of the world but was made manifest at the end of the times for your sake."402 **Man’s sins, following on original sin, are punishable by death.**403 By sending his own Son in the form of a slave, in the form of a fallen humanity, on account of sin, God "made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."404

402 1 Pt 1:18-20.
403 Cf. Rom 5:12; 1 Cor 15:56.
404 2 Cor 5:21; cf. Phil 2:7; Rom 8:3.

Bold my own.

Don’t forget Romans 2:1.

Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things. (Romans 2:1)

The passage is about the sinful condition of mankind in general. Homosexuality is only a part of that.

It appears that no one has actually read the passage from Rabbi Saul’s letter to the Christians at Rome. The passage is clearly about idolatry. The rabbi characterizes homosexual behavior as the result of the worship of creatures rather than God the creator.
Try reading the text instead of listening to people who have an ax to grind.

Reb Levi

[quote=Gorgias]From God’s perspective, failing to worship God (and worshiping creation instead) leads to all sort of physical sin; this is worthy of eternal punishment.
[/quote]

Erm… ahh… yeah. Clearly, you’ve found what we’ve all missed in the letter to the Romans… :wink:

[quote=drafdog]Try reading the text instead of listening to people who have an ax to grind.
[/quote]

Try reading what we actually say instead of listening to the axe that you have to grind… :wink:

Blessings,

G.

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