Can Two Same Sex Attracted Individuals Enjoy Romance, Provided They Abstain from Sexual Activity?
By Guy Hammond
Executive Director: Strength in Weakness Ministries
Since publishing my most recent book GAY & CHRISTIAN, a work that dismantles the arguments of pro-gay apologists and Bible revisionists who teach that God blesses homosexual union, a new question has arisen several times that I would like to address.
The question posed is, why can’t two homosexually attracted Christian individuals enjoy romance provided they abstain from sexual activity?
It’s a good question. I even appreciate the desire to find a “workaround” that is still within the traditional biblical sexual ethic that says sexual intimacy is reserved for a man and woman bound together in marriage.
Being a homosexually attracted Christian is an incredibly challenging road to travel. As one myself, trust me when I say I am completely sympathetic to the immense difficulties that same-gender-attracted Christians face, when every fiber of your being says this is what you were created for, while at the same time your faith says this attraction is not compatible with its values. I know the tension we are dealing with here.
All that said, what is my response to the query: why can’t two homosexually attracted Christians enjoy romance, provided they abstain from sex?
The argument assumes that the sexual component of a gay relationship is the only concern, but it is not. The fact that two Christian men or women would be enmeshed romantically, with a starry-eyed desire, is equally problematic, and here’s why.
Romance by its nature is erotic. If you take the term “romance” out of the relationship, then it’s just two men or two women who have a brotherly or sisterly love for one another that speaks to commitment, a bond, and a care for each other, but certainly not to eroticism. Admitting that the relationship is romantic in nature takes the human connection to a whole different level that God never intended for members of the same gender.
Romance is about a sexual, chemical, and emotional tension between two people. That is what makes romance so intoxicating: the sexual tension that is coupled with a desire to lure one into an eventual sexual relationship. Romantic dating, moonlight dancing, champagne and flowers, romantically holding hands, whispering sweet nothings into each other’s ear, cuddling, and gazing longingly into each other’s eyes are all about the restraint of an erotic connection. If that component is present, then it is not romance; it is just two people of the same gender enjoying each other’s company.
So, while two gay men or women who are in love may not be involved in a sexual relationship, the fact that it is romantic in nature celebrates the possibility of a sexual relationship equal to a man and a woman who are open to the possibility of a marital consummation.
Now, of course, if two men or two women just enjoy spending time with one another because of their shared experiences and interests, there’s nothing wrong with that. Indeed, I can promise you that any two heterosexually attracted Christian men who share living quarters and enjoy each other’s company, having a brotherly love for one another, would be stunned if it was suggested that must also mean there is a sexual tension between them.
It’s not that two men can’t love one another. In fact, male love, in its most masculine, heterosexual form, is hugely unapologetic. Men have no problem being open about their deep, brotherly bond and the love that they have for their male friends, but would never in a million years desire to experience romance with those male friends. The depth of the commitment and love is there, but not the romance.
So, no. From the Christian perspective, because romance by its nature is erotic, it’s not possible for two Christians who are homosexually attracted to be in a romantic relationship at any level, even if they were to commit themselves to abstaining from sexual activity.