Letter to the Editor: ‘Bible must be understood as a work of its time’ in regards to sexual orientation

In the past few days I have seen the Christian religion attacked by those who support same-sex marriage, and used by others to make the claim that such marriage is immoral, or in the case of those “Christians” citing Leviticus, an abomination. I think it’s time we get a couple of facts right.

A. If one is going to use the Bible to condemn, one should know the history of their weapon. The Bible must be understood as a work of its time, and there are undeniably parts that were added for less than divine reasons. Take for example the Leviticus Code, perhaps the most often cited Biblical verse against homosexuality. The Leviticus Code was written during the Babylonian Captivity, when the Jewish people were struggling to maintain an identity separate from their captors. Homosexuality was practiced openly in Babylon, as it was in many ancient cultures, and the Jewish leaders included a condemnation of homosexuality to further separate the Jewish people from the Babylonians. This doesn’t sound like the divinely inspired Word of God to me, and this instance is just one example of where the Bible must be understood in the context of its time.

B. The essence, the core, of the Christian Faith is unconditional love. Last time I checked Jesus said “Love your neighbor” and didn’t dictate any qualifications that your neighbor must have (such as the same faith or sexual orientation as yourself) to be worthy of your unconditional love.

Do me, and the rest of the world a favor. If you’re going to use your religion to condemn, or if you plan on attacking a religion you don’t understand, know the facts.


Ross Agir
GVSU Junior
History/Religious Studies Major