By J. Swaggart
THE ANSWER TO THIS QUESTION IS NO!
Paul said, “Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonor their own bodies between themselves”(Rom. 1:24). The phrase, “Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts,” presents mankind not merely drifting toward,but actually, in a sense, being shoved by God in that direction. Since men chose to give up God and worship the creature, God could do nothing but givemen into the control of the sinful things they preferred. In other words, God would not violate man’s will and force him to do something he did not want to do. When men persisted infollowing their totally depraved natures, God allowed them free rein. The natural result was immorality of the vilest kind. Biblical scholar Henry Alford says of God’sact of delivering mankind over into the control of utter human depravity, “Not merely permissive, but judicially, God delivered them over.
As sin begets sin, and darkness of mind, deeper darkness, grace gives place to judgment, and the divine wrath hardens men, and hurries them on to more fearful degrees of depravity.” God, in other words, delivered man to uncleanness. The word lusts is epithumia in the Greek text, and means, “a passionate craving, longing, desire,” and in this sense, an inordinately sinful one. Alford again says, “Not by or through the lusts; the lusts of their heart were the field of action, the department of their being in which the dishonor took place.” In other words, this was what their hearts wanted. The phrase, “To dishonor their own bodies between themselves,” carries with it more thanmere profligacy in the satisfaction of natural lusts, but rather bestiality, which refers to impurity in the physical, and not only in the social and religious sense. In other words, man is grossly immoral. It speaks of adultery, fornication, pedophilia (sex with children), bestiality (sex with animals), lesbianism, and homosexuality. In other words, this “dishonor” includes all of these things mentioned.
CHANGING THE TRUTH OF GOD INTO A LIE
However, this condition of men’s hearts in purposely refusing the truth of God, led to the Lord using no restraining force over man whatsoever, allowing him without restraint to push headlong into this lie of darkness, which, in effect, is the same as God giving man a push. Considering man’s already depraved condition, the slide even further downward was terrible, to say the least!As we see here, the words, “God also gave them up,” as given in Verse 24, is a restraining force exercised by God even on unregenerate mankind, unless refused, which it was and continues to be.As well, there is far greater restraining force on believers as should be obvious (Job 1:10; Ps. 91; Rom. 8:28). However, this restraining force even on believers can be removed, as well, through disobedience and rebellion. The phrase, “And worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator,” (Rom. 1:25) presents that of which Paul spoke in his message to the Athenians (Acts 17:29-30). For man to worship and serve the creature, means he is doing such to something he has made with his hands and is, therefore, less than him.Regarding the “creature,” even if man worships himself or other men and women, which most of the world does, still, what good does that do him? The phrase, “Who is blessed forever,”should have been translated, “bless-ed,” because it refers to God. The word blessed refers to one receiving a blessing, in which, as should be obvious, God needs nothing. The two syllable wordbless-ed, in effect, refers to the One doing the blessing, in this case, the Lord. The idea is all true blessings come exclusively from the Lord, with idols or anything else for that matter, able to produce none at all. The word “Amen” means that this is anchored in the Word of God, and, as such, will not change.
WOMEN AND HOMOSEXUALITY
The word vile in the Greek text is atimia, and means “dishonor, ignominy, and disgrace.”The first word in this meaning is dishonor, and looking at the meaning of its opposite “honor,” means to evaluate the worth of a person and to treat him with the consideration, respect, and love due his character and position. Conversely, to dishonor a person is to either put an incorrect appraisal upon his worth and treat him accordingly, or, having properly evaluated his character, to refuse to treat him with the respect and deference that are his due.
Paul is using this in the sense of the world putting an incorrect estimate upon the sacredness, dignity, and purity of the physical body which was made by God and, in effect, in God’simage, and thus, using it in a way which dishonors it. In that this is what the world wanted, they were given over to a “condition,” and not merely to an evil desire. It is one thing for an individual to do something which is very evil, but something else altogether for that person to “become” what they do, which is always where sin leads one
The phrase, “For even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature,” in short, speaks of lesbianism unnatural sexual relations between women (homosexuality).
Several things are said here: »The word women as used here is not the word used as in John 4:9, which simply speaks of designation, but rather the Greek word thelus which means “a female.” In other words, the Holy Spirit through Paul is pointing to the gender, meaning that it is to stay that way. That women tried to “change” the purpose of their gender, is the reason that Paul used the Greek word for female. They were not trying so much to change the gender, but rather its purpose respecting the sexual sense. Consequently, they were changing what God had designed, and doing so in a rebellious, base, and ignominious way. They went from a far higher use down to a far lower use. Even though this is one of the worst, or possibly the very worst example, still, this is the great sin of man, changing God’s ways for man’s ways, and in every capacity. The “natural use” presents that intended by God, in this sense, the way sexually that women were
originally created. The word natural in the Greek is phusis, and means “the nature of things, the force, laws, order of nature, as opposed to that which is monstrous, abnormal, perverse.”
That which is “against nature” respects that which is against nature’s laws, or God’s laws, which are one and the same.