Born This Way: Do “Biological Factors Drive Homosexuality?”

by Ken Ham on June 7, 2021
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We’ve all heard the argument and seen the rainbow-colored signs—“I was born this way.” As the reasoning goes, people are just born homosexuals and therefore same-sex desires and behaviors are natural and acceptable. A recent article, reflecting on several studies that searched for the elusive “gay gene,” makes this very argument:

However, biologists have documented homosexual behavior in more than 450 species, arguing that same-sex behavior is not an unnatural choice, and may in fact play a vital role within populations . . . 

Nonetheless, misconceptions persist that same-sex attraction is a choice that warrants condemnation or conversion, and leads to discrimination and persecution . . . 

While there is no single “gay gene,” there is overwhelming evidence of a biological basis for sexual orientation that is programmed into the brain before birth based on a mix of genetics and prenatal conditions, none of which the fetus chooses.

While this article presents the research as clear cut, the truth is more complicated. As Dr. Georgia Purdom powerfully shows in her presentation Are People Born Gay?, the scientific jury is still out on the question of a genetic or biological basis for homosexuality. For example, many of the studies done on the question had a small sample size and only had participants from one ethnic background—and that’s a big problem for research comparing genetic differences between individuals.

Discover more scientific and biblical answers to this question in Dr. Purdom’s presentation, available for free for a limited time on Answers TV. (Our streaming platform is a tremendous apologetics resource—I urge you to try it free for seven days.)

But what if someday it’s unquestionably demonstrated that there is a genetic or biological basis for homosexuality? How should Christians respond? Well, we must understand three truths from Scripture:

  1. We are all fallen with sinful hearts and evil dispositions and tendencies from infancy. Because of our sin nature, every person is born into sin and with a heart that desires darkness, not light and righteousness. Just because a person has debased desires from youth doesn’t make those desires right, natural, or acceptable—it is still sin, according to God’s Word (and this is not true just for homosexuality—it’s true for every sin!).
  2. We are called to deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Christ (Matthew 16:24). Scripture never tells us to pursue our natural desires. Instead, it says those desires are wicked and deceitful (Jeremiah 17:9), and the only answer is repentance and faith in Christ, who gives us new and eternal life. When we joyfully embrace Christ as Savior, we’re given a new power to say “no” to sin and to pick up our cross and follow after him, no matter the cost.
  3. We’re called to a new identity. Our culture says you are your sexual desires—your identity is wrapped up in your sexuality, hence the plethora of gender and sexual orientation identity options. But Christ says you are a sinner in need of a great Savior. When you turn from sin and trust in Christ, you are given a new identity. It’s not grounded in your desires but grounded in Christ and what he has done for you on the cross when he freely forgave the sin debt you could never pay. If you are in Christ, he is your life (Colossians 3:4) and you are a new man or woman in him (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Our culture says that we’re “born this way,” but Christ says, “You must be born again” (see John 3:1–17). It’s only through new birth that we’re reconciled to God, given a new identity in Christ, and given freedom over slavery to sin—including those sins that have tempted us from our youth.

So, is there a biological basis for homosexuality? At this point in research, no, there’s not. But even if it turns out that there is: Christ is enough to conquer any sin.

Get More Answers on Answers News

This item was discussed yesterday on Answers News with cohosts Dr. Georgia Purdom, Avery Foley, and Dr. Gabriela Haynes. Answers News is our twice-weekly news program filmed live before a studio audience here at the Creation Museum and broadcast on my Facebook page and the Answers in Genesis Facebook page. We also covered the following topics:

  • What happened right after the big bang?
  • What is a “trans church”?
  • Have frogs lost their teeth over twenty times?
  • And more!

Watch the entire episode of Answers News for June 7, 2021.

Be sure to join us each Monday and Wednesday at 2 p.m. for Answers News. You won’t want to miss this unique news program that gives science and culture news from a distinctly biblical and Christian perspective.

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,
Ken

This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.

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