Most Common Same-sex Confusion in the Bible

The Bible actually contains no word for homosexuality or homosexual

Some English – and Spanish, and Chinese, and Russian etc. – translations of the Bible include the word homosexual. That’s incorrect because the word homosexual is nowhere in the original Hebrew or the original Greek.

  • The word homosexual didn’t exist when the Bible was written.  (New Testament about 2000 years ago, and parts of the Old Testament from 1,400 to 400 BCE.)
  • It wasn’t until 1869 that Dr. Karoly Benkert, a Hungarian physician created the term by combining the homo, the Greek word for same, with the Latin sexual.
  • The word homosexual did not come into use in the United States until the 1880’s.
  • The concept homosexual didn’t exist when the Bible was written
  • If you see the word homosexual or homosexuality in the Bible, it is because translators chose those words to reflect their own homophobic feelings and ideas.

Where in the Bible you might find the word homosexual used incorrectly:

  • The Hebrew word kedah means temple prostitute and is sometimes inaccurately translated at sodomite or homosexual.
  • In 1 Corinthians, sodomite or homosexual are sometimes used, but they are incorrect translations of the Greek malakos which means something closer to effeminate or the Greek practice of pederasty, which is older men having sex with boys and is not consensual gay sex between peers.
  • 1 Corinthians also refers in Greek to arsenokaitai, which appears nowhere else in the Bible or in Greek writings about homoerotic sexuality, but probably means male prostitute.
  • Jude 7 sometimes refers to homosexual flesh that the Sodomites pursued.  This is an inaccurate translation of hetera sarx which means, literally, strange flesh to describe the flesh of the angels who were sent by God to evaluate Sodom and Gomorrah.
  • In Timothy 1:9-10, translators sometimes use homosexual for the original Greek words, pornoi, arsenokoitai, and andrapodistai, meaning male prostitutes, males who hire male prostitutes or the slave dealers who procure them.

Including the word homosexual in the Bible is the choice of translators and is not a reflection of the Bible.