Does the Bible Affirm Same-Sex Relationships?

Examining 10 Claims about Scripture and Sexuality

from 2 reviews

Examines the arguments used to claim that the Bible affirms same-sex relationships. 

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You may have heard the claim that the Bible, when read correctly, is not against believers entering monogamous, faithful same-sex relationships. The arguments sound quite compelling. "Jesus never talked about same-sex relationships.” “Paul was only condemning exploitative relationships, not consensual ones.” “We don’t keep the Old Testament food laws, so why would we keep the ones on same-sex sex?” “If God is love, he can’t be against relationships of love.” And more. Have Christians through the ages just been getting this one wrong?

In this concise book, Rebecca McLaughlin looks at ten of the most common arguments used to claim that the Bible affirms same-sex sexual relationships. She analyses the arguments and associated Bible passages one by one to uncover what the Bible really says.

For Rebecca, as someone with a lifelong history of same-sex attraction, this is not just an academic question. But rather than concluding that the Bible does affirm same-sex marriage, she points readers to the gospel purpose of male-female marriage, a different kind of gospel-centred love between believers of the same sex, and God's life-and-love-filled vision for singleness.

Rebecca McLaughlin gained a PhD from Cambridge University and a theology degree from Oak Hill Seminary in London before working at The Veritas Forum. She is the author of the award-winning Confronting Christianity: 12 Hard Questions for the World’s Largest Religion and a regular contributor for The Gospel Coalition.

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  • Introduction: A Tale of Two Testimonies

    Claim 1: Christians Should Just Focus on the Gospel Message of Jesus’ Love

    Claim 2: Jesus Was Silent on Same-Sex Relationships

    Claim 3: God’s Judgment on Sodom Isn’t a Judgment on Same-Sex Relationships

    Claim 4: It’s Inconsistent to Keep the Old Testament Laws on Same-Sex Sex but Not Shellfish

    Claim 5: Paul Condemns Exploitative Same-Sex Relationships, Not Consensual Ones

    Claim 6: The Word Homosexual Wasn’t Used in Bibles until 1946. It’s a Misinterpretation

    Claim 7: Paul Was Condemning Excessive Lust, Not Same-Sex Sexual Orientation

    Claim 8: The Trajectory of the Bible Is Toward Abolishing Slavery and Affirming Same-Sex Marriage

    Claim 9: Unchosen Celibacy Yields Bad Fruit

    Claim 10: A God of Love Can’t Be Against Relationships of Love


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Contributors Rebecca McLaughlin
ISBN 9781784989712
Format Paperback
First published May 2024
Dimensions 110mm x 178mm x 10mm
Weight 0.11 kg
Language English
Pages 128
Publisher The Good Book Company

Peter J Williams

Principal, Tyndale House, Cambridge; author, Can We Trust the Gospels?

This is a timely and sensitive book that offers a positive vision for human relationships. It shows that responsible handling of the Bible can lead to more love, not less.

James Robson

Principal, Oak Hill Theological College, London

With sensitivity, faithfulness, and clarity, Rebecca McLaughlin addresses ten questions often raised about the Bible and same-sex relationships. For each, she deftly engages with different interpretations of the Bible’s teaching and, in dialogue with personal stories, provides a more compelling interpretation. A most helpful book for anyone wanting concise, accessible, sensitive, and biblically faithful approaches to these questions.

Kathy Keller

co-author of The Meaning of Marriage and Assistant Director of Communications at Redeemer Presbyterian Church, New York

Rebecca McLaughlin is not afraid to tackle the toughest questions our culture has for Christianity, and in this short book she has again shown her willingness to teach biblical truth clearly, straightforwardly, and compassionately. I hope this book is widely read by both those who agree and those who disagree.

Customer reviews

21 May 2024

“Gospel Hope & Instruction”

Compassionately written, this short book tackles a timely topic. McLaughlin summarizes some of the most common misunderstandings of what the Bible says about same-sex relationships. She also gets to the very crux of the matter--Jesus is better than anything else. Looking for satisfaction in anything other than him will only leave us empty & wanting more. She also highlights the call to healthy, loving, Gospel-centered relationships with those around us. This book is a valuable resource, giving Christians a basic understanding of how to reach out to those they know & love who are wrestling with these questions.

13 May 2024

“Another Excellent Primer from McLaughlin”

Rebecca McLaughlin writes some excellent books on key cultural topics, blending a sense of warmth and gentleness with some excellent biblical truth. I have enjoyed her book The Secular Creed, as well as her work for teenagers answering some big questions. This short primer is just as good, taking 10 reasons why people might try and claim that the Bible affirms same-sex relationships and then reviewing why these won't stand up to scrutiny. It's not only good for your minister to read but also good for any church member who wants to understand how to answer objections to the orthodox position on marriage.

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Does the Bible Affirm Same-Sex Relationships? | Rebecca McLaughlin |