Photo credits

The Embalse de Riano in northern Spain. The picture was taken by .... me!

Monday, March 26


[See Edit 26 August 2008 below]

Well, i have found out more about this subject. (see previous post.) Firstly, that I was misspelling it, hence no luck on google. Clealy I am not the first person to ask this question, see here, and following the threads I concluded as follows:

Etymologically it links "arsenos" = male and "koitai" = bed/marital relations.

This seems like a fairly clear definition and seems to include homosexual acts within 'loving' relationships sanctioned by law. It also seems to follow on from the Septuagint wording of Leviticus.

Some of the threads seem to talk about it as male aggresive sexuality in bed regardless of who the partner is, in contrast to "malakai" which would be the receptive partner. I need to look this up again at home tonight.

Other threads warn that the meaning of a word cannot always be detremined by its etymology, and say thta the word in day-to-day use meant using children for your sexual satisfaction. OK - I'm sure that aspect is included!!! but even if that meaning is there for me it doesn't exclude the 'male bed/marital' meaning.

So, i'm still learning, but so far this has had the effect of consolidating my views rather than changing them.

I'd like to be changed becasue it might be more socially convenient. But we have to find out what God intends, and not be like Eve who made moral judgements based on the limits of her knowledge rather than trusting God's word.

[Edit 26 August 2008 - since writing the above, my biews have substantially changed - see later posts with the 'homosexuality' tag, in particular this one . Arsenokoitai is a word coined by Paul, quoting from the septuagint version of Leviticus. I'm no Greek expert, but taking off the glasses of preconceived ideas and looking at it afresh; from the order of the words in that context it looks to me more as though 'arsenokoitai' means 'men who sleep with gunaikos ie female temple prostitutes'. I am not writing this as a woolly liberal, but as a conservative evangelical who cares about the letter of the law. We have to ensure that our application of the law is correct, not a serious misunderstanding. I can no longer condemn homosexuals on the basis (which I initially mistyped as 'bias') of 'arsenokoitai'. However, the doctrine of 'one flesh' still seems to be heterosexual].

[Edit 07 June 2012 - 'One flesh' requires 'complementarity'.  All people, both male and female, exhibit some traits that would normally be associated with the opposite gender, and in fact I think nobody is 100% male or female.  God created us in his image, male and female.  I suggest we are in his image both collectively and individually.  So if in the collective it requires both genders to be the image of God, then individually we must also have aspects of both genders to be in his image.   A same-sex relationship will therefore still reflect both genders and satisfy complementarity, although both the male and female characteristics would be distributed more or less evenly across the two individuals rather than being collected primarly in one or the other.  It's not the most reliable line of argument, but it's something!]


  1. Look for stuff by Robert Gagnon. He'll have 'net articles, but especially his big book, The Bible and Homosexual Practice. Or something like that.

  2. Thanks Kyle - following your advice I've had a quick look Robert Gagnon's website and it does look as if it deals with the issues at a level that I can handle. I promise to look into thsi some more.


  3. I appreciate that you are genuinely searching the true meaning of Scripture as it relates to conemporary issues.

    Keep up the good work.