Table of Contents & Chapter Summaries

CHAPTER 1 Loaded Pistols: Words of Hatred from the Church
CHAPTER 2 Sins of Sodom
CHAPTER 3 Archaic "Abominations"
CHAPTER 4 Paul's Views on Passion
CHAPTER 5 Creation Myths
CHAPTER 6 David and Jonathan, Ruth and Naomi
CHAPTER 7 The Modern Myth of Biblical "Family Values"
CHAPTER 8 Slavery's Scourge

In chapter 1, I set forth various homophobic statements made by Christian leaders in order to illustrate the breadth and pervasiveness of homophobic attitudes within the church.

In chapters 2 through 4, I examine each of the six Bible verses that are used to condemn homosexuality, and conclude that the verses either do not condemn homosexuality at all––as in the case of the destruction of the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah––, or are far too contextually and culturally removed to warrant a modern-day condemnation of homosexuality.

In chapter 5, I address and rebut the view of some Christians that the creation stories and the complementarity of male-female reproductive organs provide God’s implicit condemnation of homosexuality. I also discuss how nature specifically equips our bodies and minds for both heterosexuality and homosexuality.

In chapter 6, I present the biblical stories of David and Jonathan and Ruth and Naomi––stories of extraordinary and abiding love between people of the same sex.

In chapter 7, I challenge the modern myth of biblical “family values,” and discuss the fact that biblical authors accepted and approved many practices that most modern-day Christians find unacceptable––practices such as polygamy, intra-family marriage, and abducting virgins from neighboring villages. I also discuss how the Bible portrays Jesus as having little interest in “family values.” Instead, Jesus is portrayed as calling people away from their families to live an itinerant and celibate lifestyle, and to preach about the coming kingdom of God.

In chapter 8, I discuss how biblical authors accepted and approved the practice of slavery, and how these views were used to support the scourge of slavery in America. Although the struggles of slaves and homosexual people are distinct in many ways, slavery has much to teach us about the present debate regarding the Bible and homosexuality.