As we saw on the previous page, the whole point of the Old Testament Law was to make sure that Israel did not get its moral values from the behaviour and practices of the nations around them. “You shall not be like them….”.
It had a totally different source. The Word of God.
That being said, there is much more to hearing the Bible today than simply pointing to a verse in the Old Testament. That will not resolve complex questions about sexuality for everyone.
Jesus appears to forbid divorce, for example– but we still allow divorce. That is because we consider the context of his words. Our understanding is that he legislated against Jewish men divorcing their wives for any cause at all, and marrying again. It was sufficient in that society for a husband to say “I divorce you” three times to his wife to allow him to marry another woman. That, says Jesus, is adultery.
But it does not mean that every person who remarries after divorce in the UK in 2021 is guilty of adultery. That would be to take Jesus’ words out of context.
So what does God say about matters of identity, sexuality, relationships and marriage? Two of our home groups plan to tackle the five part course called “Living in Love and Faith” in order to explore that question. We will interview them at the end and we very much hope that others in the church will want to join groups later in the autumn. We can run groups any time until Easter 2022.