Is there homosexuality in the Bible? The Bible endorses homosexual behaviour and we shall provide one such example, which is exemplified in the story of the relationship between Daniel and the prince of the eunuchs. The verse is:
- “Vayiten ha-Elohim et-Daniyel leKHesed u’leraKHamim lifnei sar hasarisim” (Daniel 1:9)
[i.e., “Now God had brought Daniel into favor and tender love with the prince of the eunuchs” (KJV).]
The Hebrew words, which describe the relationship between Daniel and the prince of the Eunuchs, are “KHesed” and “RaHamim”.
The first of these indeed means “goodness, kindness, faithfulness”. The word “RaHamim”, however, derives from the Semitic root R-H-M, which refers to a womb.1 The KJV’s rendering of “RaHamim” as “tender love” would therefore entail and indespensible element of physical love, or love which is manifested through physical contact.
Now, look at our two characters: The prince of the eunuchs is of course an eunuch. Daniel, in the opinion of the Jewish commentators, was also an eunuch.2 Hence an affair between them involving physical love would correctly be termed as a homosexual affair (i.e., between an eunuch and another eunuch).
Of course there is no “twisting” done to the sense or material of the verse, which are presented as they stand. Some may object that it is quite impossible for an eunuch to have any sexual contact. I would like to highlight this argument by pointing out an even more elementary matter: the deprivation of the testes or external genitals in a man or boy does not result in the change of sex of the same to a woman or girl. Hence the “tender love” between Daniel and the prince of the eunuchs would nonetheless remain a homosexual affair.
Secondly, the terms “eunuch” and “castration” are invariably spoken of male subjects; the correct corresponding term for females is “spaying”.
Thirdly, why should one entertain the possibility that the eunuch (as in Daniel’s “prince of the eunuchs”), would have to be the active sexual partner, when the common sense assigns to him the passive role?
Fourthly, it is also abundantly clear that this is not the only homosexual affair from the Bible. It is also believed that Jonathan and David too (according to the Biblical account) were more than just the “closest of friends”; they were passionate homosexual lovers.3
The Bible, like any rich and complex text, can be seen to contain multiple layers of meaning, some of which might indeed suggest an endorsement of homosexuality. Hence from this brief exposition, it is inconceivable that the “word of God” would condone such a horrible and unnatural sexual act, as the Bible obviously does.
- See The Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew and English Lexicon (Hendrickson Publishers, 2001), p. 933; c.f. Strong’s no 7356
- The statement, that Daniel was a eunuch, is quoted by Origen with approbation in his “Commentary to Matthew”, Book xv, section 5: “For the children of the Hebrews say that Daniel and his three companions Hananiah, Azariah, and Mishael were eunuchized in Babylon and thus was fulfilled what Isaiah said to Hezekiah: “They will take from your seed and make of them eunuchs in the house of the king of Babylon” [Isaiah 39:7]”
- The interested reader can read a 170-page book on this very issue.