Matthew Vines on Genesis 19 and Sodom and Gomorrah

by Matt Slick

Mr. Vines says, "Genesis 19. The actions of the men of Sodom are intended to underscore their cruel treatment of outsiders--not to somehow tell us that they were gay . . . It’s now widely conceded by scholars on both sides of this debate that Sodom and Gomorrah do not offer biblical evidence to support the belief that homosexuality is a sin."

Matthew Vines cites no reference to demonstrate that it is "widely conceded by scholars on both sides of this debate that Sodom and Gomorrah do not offer biblical evidence to support the belief that homosexuality is a sin.”  Just saying it doesn't make it so.  In contradiction to his assertion, a quick look into commentaries on Genesis 19 provides the following:

  • The term "sodomy” is derived from this passage. It is widely held that the severity of God’s judgment of Sodom had to do with the prevalence of homosexuality there.1
  • Sodom and Gomorrah were filled with evilness and sexual perversion: "Then the LORD said [to Abraham], ‘The outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is so great and their sin so grievous that I will go down and see if what they have done is as bad as the outcry that has reached me. If not, I will know’” (Genesis 18:20–21).2
  • They wanted homosexual relations with these two who they thought were men. As angels, they apparently were handsome. The men’s vileness was matched, surprisingly, by Lot’s hypocrisy, for he was willing to give them his virgin daughters (19:8). 3
  • Homosexuality. Every biblical reference to homosexuality indicates it is not an “alternate lifestyle” but gross sin. Lev. 18:22–23 forbids homosexual acts and calls them “detestable.” Rom. 1:24–27 speaks of homosexual desire as “shameful lusts” and calls homosexual acts “indecent,” a “perversion,” and “the degrading of their bodies.” The Christian must take a stand with God’s Word to reject homosexuality as a personal option and boldly identify it as wickedness and sin.4

If, as Mr. Vines states, his position is widely accepted among scholars then let's see them.  Also, why is it that the first four commentaries I checked don't support his position?  Of course, he might object that there are commentaries and scholars who disagree with the quote above, and that I just don't have them.  If that is so, then again, it is all the more reason for Mr. Vines to provide the documentation to back up his assertion.  Without it, Mr. Vines' claim is an empty one.  It is only an opinion without basis.



See Also

  • 1. Cabal, T., Brand, C. O., Clendenen, E. R., Copan, P., Moreland, J., & Powell, D. (2007). The Apologetics Study Bible: Real Questions, Straight Answers, Stronger Faith. Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers, Page 8. (Contributing scholars are Craig Blomberg, Darrel Bock, William Lane Craig, William Dembski, John Frame, Norman L. Geisler, Gary Habermas, Philip E. Johnson, John Warwick Montgomery, J.P. Morland, etc.)
  • 2. James M. Freeman and Harold J. Chadwick, Manners & Customs of the Bible ("Rewritten and updated by Harold J. Chadwick"--Cover.; Includes index.;, Rev. ed.].; North Brunswick, NJ: Bridge-Logos Publishers, 1998), 30.
  • 3. John F. Walvoord et al., The Bible Knowledge Commentary : An Exposition of the Scriptures (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1983-c1985), 1:60.
  • 4. Lawrence O. Richards, The Bible Readers Companion (electronic ed.; Wheaton: Victor Books, 1991; Published in electronic form by Logos Research Systems, 1996), 37.

About The Author

Matt Slick is the President and Founder of the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry.