News Commentary
from a Biblical Perspective

"Come, Your kingdom; be done, Your will -- as in heaven, so on earth." Matthew 6:10 (Author's literal translation)

Poster for "Francesco" by Evgeny Afineevsky

The Pope Advocates Homosexual Civil Unions

James T. Bartsch, WordExplain
October 28, 2020

On Wednesday, October 21, 2020 the documentary "Francesco," which details the life and teaching of Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Pope Francis, premiered at the Rome Film Festival. The U.S. premiere was scheduled for October 25 at the Savannah Film Festival.

In this documentary Pope Francis significantly departs from the teaching of Rome on the Church and homosexuality. Here are some quotes from an article which appeared in the National Catholic Register on October 21, 2020, entitled, "Pope Francis Calls for Civil Union Law for Same-Sex Couples, in Shift From Vatican Stance."

Pope Francis called for the passage of civil union laws for same-sex couples, departing from the position of the Vatican’s doctrinal office and the pope’s predecessors on the issue.

The remarks came amid a portion of the documentary that reflected on pastoral care for those who identify as LGBT. 

“Homosexuals have a right to be a part of the family. They’re children of God and have a right to a family. Nobody should be thrown out, or be made miserable because of it,” Pope Francis said in the film, of his approach to pastoral care.

After those remarks, and in comments likely to spark controversy among Catholics, Pope Francis weighed in directly on the issue of civil unions for same-sex couples.

“What we have to create is a civil union law. That way they are legally covered,” the pope said. “I stood up for that.”

Pope Francis' position will present enormous challenges for conservative Catholics around the world. Indeed, his position challenges every Christian who believes that the Bible takes precedence over the teachings of the world around us, or any church or pastoral figure. Let us briefly survey what the Bible says about gender and marriage.

In the first place, God created man as male and female in His own image and likeness (Gen. 1:26-27). To deny the uniqueness of maleness and femaleness is to deny the image of God in man. Furthermore, God blessed the first couple. He told them, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth ..." (Gen. 1:28). It is biologically impossible for either homosexuals or lesbians to obey that command as God gave it.

God clearly has forbidden the practice of homosexuality. Through Moses, God instructed Israel, "You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination" (Lev. 18:22). The penalty for doing so was severe. God's decree was "If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death. Their bloodguiltiness is upon them" (Lev. 20:13) (emphases mine). In both passages the words in italics are the same Hebrew word
(tô‛êbah, 8441). The word means, in this context, that which is repugnant, detestable, and wicked. This same word is used of idolatry (Deut. 27:15; 32:16). It is also used of evil King Ahaz' offering of his own son as a human sacrifice (2 Kings 16:2, 3).

In addition, in the OT God clearly forbade transgenderism. The Law instructed, in Deut. 22:5,

A woman shall not wear man’s clothing, nor shall a man put on a woman’s clothing; for whoever does these things is an abomination to the LORD your God.

To participate in transgenderism is to be an abomination (tô‛êbah, 8441) to Yahweh, the God of Israel (Deut. 22:5).

The Old Testament city of Sodom was filled with homosexuals who attempted to force their perversion upon two angels who appeared as men when they visited Lot (Gen. 19:4-5). God rendered His opinion of homosexuality when He rained down fire and brimstone from heaven upon Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities (Gen. 19:24-25). The judgment against Sodom and Gomorrah is a jolting example of the punishment of eternal fire awaiting those who defy God (Jude 1:7). The Apostle Paul is clear:

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swinders will inherit the kingdom of God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).

On what basis then, does the Pope declare that homosexuals are "children of God"? Clearly they are not. Here is what the Apostle Paul continued to say about former homosexuals and the like who had placed their trust in Jesus, repented of their evil, and were now a viable portion of the church at Corinth:

Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:11).

So the Pope is completely in error as to his theology about homosexuals, and he is completely in error in his advocating civil unions, which provide legal legitimacy to that which is an abomination to God.

This Pope certainly speaks for himself. He may speak on behalf of some in the Roman Catholic Church. But He does not speak for me. He does not speak for anyone who places the Holy Scripture above the flawed beliefs of mere men. And He does not speak for God.

May God have mercy upon Pope Francis and upon all who follow his false teaching in this regard.

(Scripture quotation taken from the NASB.)

Background and Button Image Credit

Search here.

Posted October 28, 2020
Updated October 29, 2020