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About That 1946 Film: A Damnable Theological Heresy

by | Jan 12, 2024

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The film “1946” has ruffled more than a few feathers with its bold assertion that the term ‘homosexuality’ was erroneously introduced into the Bible only in the mid-20th century. This claim, while sensational, crumbles under the weight of historical, biblical, and exegetical scrutiny. Let’s dissect and dismantle this absurd argument piece by piece.

First, the film’s premise is not just flawed—it’s a giant cringeworthy fallacy in historical analysis, leading ignorant viewers down a perilous path of misinformation. Such a bloodcurdling distortion of historical facts is not just a scholarly oversight but a trap that threatens to undermine centuries of clear, biblical theology.

Firstly, let’s address the historical claim. The film posits that the Bible, for nearly two millennia, did not explicitly condemn homosexuality because the specific term ‘homosexuality’ was not used. This argument is a classic example of anachronism—judging historical eras by contemporary standards. The concept of homosexuality, as understood today, might not have a direct linguistic counterpart in ancient texts, but this in no way implies acceptance or endorsement of homosexual behavior. To suggest that the absence of a modern term equates to an endorsement of the practice is not only a leap in logic, it’s a dangerous oversimplification that ignores the broader historical and cultural context in which these ancient texts were written.

Delving into the original biblical languages, we encounter the Greek word ‘arsenokoitai,’ used in 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 and 1 Timothy 1:10. This term, often translated as “homosexuals” in modern versions, has been a point of contention. However, a thorough examination of the historical and linguistic context reveals that ‘arsenokoitai’ refers to men engaging in sexual activity with other men. The term is derived from two Greek words: ‘arsen’ meaning ‘male’ and ‘koitai’ meaning ‘bed,’ with a sexual connotation. The apostle Paul’s use of ‘arsenokoitai’ is a clear reference to Leviticus 18:22, which categorically condemns male same-sex relations.

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To argue that ‘arsenokoitai’ does not refer to homosexuality is to engage in linguistic gymnastics, twisting the text to fit a modern agenda. The early church fathers, well-versed in Greek, understood this term to condemn homosexual acts. The Bible’s stance on sexual morality is not hinged on a single word or phrase. The entire narrative of Scripture, from Genesis to Revelation, presents a consistent and unambiguous view of sexual relations as being confined within the bounds of heterosexual marriage. This isn’t just a side note in the biblical text—it’s a central theme, a picture of the gospel, woven throughout the entirety of Scripture.

The film “1946” also ignores the comprehensive biblical witness on the matter. This is not just an oversight, it’s a purposeful invasion into the territory of biblical truth with an agenda that is as obscene as it is heretical. The clear depiction in Genesis of the union between Adam and Eve lays the foundation for this understanding, presenting the marital bond between a man and a woman as the foundation of human relationships. This is not a mere cultural norm that can be slapped aside by modern reinterpretations. Marriage is a divine ordinance embedded in the very fabric of creation.

To Jesus’ reaffirmation of this design in the Gospels, the biblical testimony is clear and persistent. His words in Matthew 19:4-6, where He quotes directly from Genesis about God creating them male and female and the command that a man shall leave his parents to be united with his wife, stress this truth. These are not the casual remarks of a teacher simply upholding societal norms of His time—they are the authoritative declarations of the Son of God affirming the sacredness of the marital bond as it was originally intended. The entire sweep of the biblical narrative, from the Garden of Eden to the teachings of Jesus and the apostles, upholds this view consistently and emphatically.

In addition, the argument that the Bible does not condemn homosexuality because the specific modern term “homosexuality” is a recent addition, is a cleverly disguised red herring. The Bible, in its rich diversity of language and writing genres, employs a variety of terms and descriptions to articulate its moral teachings. Its clear condemnation of same-sex relations is woven into the very fabric of its overall moral framework. To reduce the Bible’s profound moral teachings to mere contemporary terminologies is akin to smearing its timeless wisdom and a dastardly attempt to kick the true essence of biblical morality to the curb.

Furthermore, the New Testament’s moral and ethical teachings, as expansively expounded by the apostles, clearly uphold and indeed are crowned by the Old Testament’s sexual ethic. To claim that the New Testament somehow represents a departure from the Old Testament’s moral code is not only historically and theologically untenable, but it’s a baseless provocation against the continuity of scriptural truth. The apostles, including Paul, deeply rooted their moral teachings in the Hebrew Scriptures, demonstrating an unwavering commitment to a traditional view of sexual ethics as ordained by the Creator.

The claim that ‘homosexuality’ as a concept is a modern invention and thus the Bible could not possibly speak on it, is not only a flawed argument but a propagation of historical lies. It represents a brazen attempt to impose a modern, distorted understanding of sexuality onto ancient texts. The biblical authors, far from being naive or uninformed, wrote within their specific cultural and historical contexts, with a deep understanding of their culture’s moral standards and values of their times. Their writings, therefore, reflect a profound engagement with the moral questions of their day, not a blind adherence to the fleeting trends of contemporary society.

The film “1946” presents a case that is not only historically and linguistically flawed but also a profound theological heresy. The assertion that the Bible was silent on homosexuality until a supposed mistranslation in 1946 is a gross oversimplification and misrepresentation of biblical teachings. The entire counsel of Scripture, taken in its historical and cultural context, clearly and consistently sets forth a sexual ethic that upholds heterosexual relations within marriage as the normative standard. To claim otherwise is to read contemporary ideologies back into ancient texts, distorting their message and meaning.

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