Saturday, 3 December 2016
Was St. Paul a Closet Case?
Was St. Paul a closet homosexual?
We know that he never married.
We know that he had strong, loving relationships with men:
Barbabas, Timothy, Silas and others.
He speaks of having a thorn in the flesh which God would not remove.
Paul was originally a member of a strict sect of Pharisees who did not marry.
We know that they were homophobic:
"Was not your sister Sodom a byword in your mouth in the day of your pride, before your wickedness was uncovered." Ezekiel 16:56 (NRSV)
So it is quite possible that Paul had internalized the strong homophobic attitudes of the Pharisees.
It is also significant that God would not remove this thorn.
Many modern homosexual men have prayed to God to be made straight but have not been.
Could it be that God understands homosexuality better than us?
Could God know that homosexuality is genetic and cannot be changed?
Could it be that God created homosexuals as part of the diversity of His good creation?
In any case Paul's rants about sexual matters and his misogynistic attitude towards women betray his underlying anxiety about sex.
So it is quite possible that St. Paul was a closet homosexual.
[Scripture quotations (marked NRSV) are taken from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A., and are used by permission. All rights reserved.]
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