Leviticus 18:22—Have the laws against homosexuality been abolished along with laws against eating pork?

Problem: The law against homosexuality is found in the levitical law (Lev. 18:22) along with laws against eating pork and shrimp (Lev. 11:2–3, 10). But these ceremonial laws have been done away with (Acts 10:15). This being the case, some insist that the laws prohibiting homosexual activity are no longer binding either.

Solution: The laws against homosexual practices are not merely ceremonial. Simply because the Mosaic prohibition against homosexuality is mentioned in Leviticus does not mean that it was part of the ceremonial law that has passed away.

First of all, if laws against homosexuality were merely ceremonial (and therefore abolished), then rape, incest, and beastiality would not be morally wrong either, since they are condemned in the same chapter with homosexual sins (Lev. 18:6–14, 22–23).

Second, homosexual sins among Gentiles were also condemned by God (Rom. 1:26), and they did not have the ceremonial law (Rom. 2:12–15). It was for this very reason that God brought judgment on the Canaanites (Gen. 18:1–3, 25).

Third, even in the Jewish levitical law there was a difference in punishment for violating the ceremonial law of eating pork or shrimp (which was a few days isolation) and that for homosexuality which was capital punishment (Lev. 18:29).

Fourth, Jesus changed the dietary laws of the OT (Mark 7:18; Acts 10:15), but the moral prohibitions against homosexuality are still enjoined on believers in the NT (Rom. 1:26–27; 1 Cor. 6:9; 1 Tim. 1:10; Jude 7).

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This excerpt is from When Critics Ask: A Popular Handbook on Bible Difficulties (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1992). © 2014 Norman Geisler and Thomas Howe. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Click here to purchase this book.