Abstract

One of the strongest arguments that supports an affirming view of same-sex relations is the so-called excessive-lust view. While there are some strengths to this argument, this article will point out the historical and exegetical deficiencies of the excessive-lust interpretation of Romans 1. In particular, there was a diversity of perspectives on same-sex relations in the ancient world, and therefore it cannot be assumed that Paul only had one—the excessive-lust—perspective in view. Moreover, the mention of female same-sex relations, along with Paul's use of φύσιν (“against nature”) and his appeal to the creation account, steer his argument away from an excessive-lust view. Finally, this article will examine Paul's language of passion and desire to show that it does not parallel the excessive-lust perspective that we find in Greco-Roman literature.

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