[Contents] [About the Participants] [Opening Statement by Fred Phelps] [Opening Statement by John Rankin][Dialog] [Questions from the Audience] [Closing Statement by John Rankin ] [Closing Statement by Fred Phelps]
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Does God Hate Homosexuals?
Opening Statement by Fred Phelps

It is a privilege to appear before this distinguished congregation. The question is, does God hate homosexuals? We lay it down, as an axiom, first off, that the hatred of God is not an evil passion, as it is with men, but is rather an attribute of the almighty that nobody can deny exists, and is talked about in the Scriptures, whereby he has a fixed determination to punish the impenitent wicked forever, in a place called hell.

And I have to tell you, my friends, that it goes way past hate if you credit the Bible with full authority. It goes to abhor, and it goes to despise. Worse forms of the attitudinal approach of almighty God to a certain class of people. In the spring of 1947, as a young ministerial student at Bob Jones in Cleveland, Tennessee, I hitchhiked to Chattanooga to preach my first sermon on the street, and in preparation for it, I memorized the first chapter of Romans, and that’s a good place to start.

I am ready to preach the gospel to you who are at Rome also, said the apostle. So I stood there on that street corner in Chattanooga, and said I’m ready to preach the gospel to you who are at Chattanooga also. For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation for everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also the Greek. For therein is revealed the righteousness of God, from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness. The word “hold” there means choke it. Throttle it. That string of “fors,” that string of subordinating conjunctions, you can’t understand anything about this subject until you connect the string of “fors” in Romans, chapter 1. For the wrath of God is revealed, you’re not preaching the gospel for the gospel, I’m not ashamed of it, it is the manifestation of the way whereby sinners can be saved, for therein is revealed God Almighty’s only plan for salvation from faith to faith, for the just shall live by faith.
For therein is the righteousness of God revealed, and the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who hold, choke the truth, in unrighteousness. So that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God has shown it unto them, so that they are without excuse. For the invisible things of him, see that string of “fors”? “For the invisible thing of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood.” Being understood! Seen and understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse. For when they knew God, or at least had that knowledge of him, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things. And they worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is God blessed forever: Amen. And for this cause God gave them up.

I’m telling you, my friends, when you start out preaching the gospel at verse 15 and declare you’re not ashamed of it and track that right straight down you come to “for this cause God gave them up” to uncleanness, to dishonor their own bodies among themselves, through the lusts of their own minds. And as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them up to vile affections, for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature.

Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet. And as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them up to a reprobate mind. That phrase means they can’t think straight about anything. Gave them up. Gave them up. Gave them up. Verse 24, gave them up to uncleanness, God gave them up. Verse 26, gave them up to vile affections, God gave them up. Verse 28, gave them up to a reprobate mind, God gave them up. Verse 30, they are the hated of God. Verse 32, who knowing the judgment of God, that they that commit such things are worthy of death, not only do them, but take pleasure in them that do them.
I’m here to tell you that homosexuals are described there though not named. They’re not called sodomites, they’re not called anything, but who can deny that that chapter deals, starting with I am preaching the gospel to you, says Paul, at verse 15, and I’m not ashamed of it, for this, for this, for this, for this, right down to verse 32, the last verse, where it says, these creatures that God says he’s given up three times—and I’ll put it to you. If God almighty says he’s given them up, where is the power in the moral universe that can draw them to Christ?

The Lord Jesus says in John 6 that no man can come to me except the Father which sent me draw him. And him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out, but you’re not coming to me unless the Father that sent me draw ya’. And I have loved them with an everlasting love, talking of the others, and with an everlasting course of kindness have I drawn them. But these, who, when they had some knowledge of God glorified him not as God, and neither were thankful, but became vain in their imaginations, their foolish hearts were darkened, professing themselves to be wise they became fools, changed the glory of the incorruptible God in an image made like the corruptible man, and birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things, and worshipped and served the creature. They worshipped themselves, my friends, these beasts, whatever you call ’em!

Hated of God, verse 30, points to an extant and well familiar Hebrewism or phrase, look at Proverbs 22:14. Look at that. There it is expressed concisely, that Hebrew phrase of an extant, and everybody knew it. Proverbs 22:14. The mouth of strange women, mouth singular, women plural. The substantial equivalent of the mouth of strange flesh. Jude 7: Even as Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities round about, giving themselves over to fornication and going after strange flesh.

The mouth, Proverbs 22:14, of strange women, strange flesh, is a deep pit. He that is abhorred of the Lord shall fall therein. Don’t tell me that the Bible doesn’t teach that there are some people that God hates, and goes way past hate, and goes to abhor. And I’ll tell you that this debate was had, in 1520. Martin Luther debating Erasmus of Rotterdam. And it raged and went on with a flourish for almost a year. And Martin Luther’s side of it was transcribed and printed, the printing press having fairly recently been discovered. They said, we’re going to print all your stuff up, Brother Luther. He said, nothing I’ve ever written of the hundreds of books, and sermons, and pamphlets, and tracts, deserves to be printed up, deserves to survive to posterity. But The Bondage of the Will deserves to survive to posterity.

And we’re going to spend just a little time here today, but I’m telling you that that book has now been reprinted, and you can buy it. That’s my part of this debate, what Martin Luther said to Erasmus in 1520, and now it’s reprinted. In our mother tongue. Sharp, ringing, clarion, Anglo-Saxon English. Of course God hates people, and not just their sins! And that is a diabolical doctrine of devils, it had no traffic at all 15 to 20 years ago, certainly when I started preaching it had no traffic, this nonsense that God loves the sinner and only hates the sin. And in no other area of life would that silliness be tolerated for a minute. Who does a judge send to the penitentiary? The criminal or the crime? Who does God send to hell? The sinner or just his sins? I tell you, it’s a metaphysical impossibility to separate the sin from the sinner.

And the Lord Jesus on an occasion said, I will forewarn you, my friends, whom you should fear. Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear. Fear him who, after he has killed the body, hath power to cast both soul and body into hell. Yea, I say unto you, fear him.
In every high school literature book in Kansas, and probably in Wyoming, and in most states, they’ve got a little section, and I blew it up to in make the point here today. It’s an exemplar of how all the preachers, or virtually all the preachers in this country, preached on this subject in the 1700s and 1800s, and certainly in the 1600s. I’ve got their sermons, hundreds of them. You can get this sermon off the web, JonathanEdwards.com. Punch in “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.” I say, it’s set forth in all the high school literature books as an example of Early American Literature and how all the preachers used to preach it in those days. Don’t tell me God only hates the sin and not the sinner! There’s not one iota of scripture for that.

The God that holds you over the pit of hell, much as one holds a spider or some loathsome insect over the fire abhors you! Abhors you! And as dreadfully provoked, his wrath toward you burns like fire, he looks upon you as worthy of nothing else but to be cast into the fire. And he has purer eyes than to behold your iniquity with any kind of tolerance. Pluck that down off the web and read that, and your argument is with God almighty, and not with Fred Phelps, if you insist that God doesn’t hate people, you insist he doesn’t hate people.

I say it’s gone way past hate, way past abhors, and into despise. Deuteronomy 32, where Moses is lambasting these people for having become now a perverted, perverse, and crooked people. Having departed from the Lord, having forgotten God. Verse 19: And for this cause God abhorred them. You can’t manufacture things like that, those are the solid pronouncements of the word of God almighty. And the metaphors, the similes, and the similitudes. Hosea 12:10 says that the Lord God teaches things through his prophets by similitudes. I’ve used similitudes, and John Bunyan, as the preface of his classic work, Pilgrim’s Progress, plucked that verse forth and says, I am teaching you, in Pilgrim’s Progress, by the use of similitudes. And I say to you that the favorite similitude of God almighty and all the book of God is that these sodomites, these homosexuals are dogs. Dogs because they’re filthy, dogs because they’re disease-ridden, and dogs because they’re libidinous to the nth degree, and dogs because they’re impudent, and impertinent, and are proud of their sins. Everybody in the world knows you can’t go to heaven without repenting of your sins.

And everybody in the world knows you can’t repent of something that you’re proud of. It’s an axiomatic matter of fact. You’re proud of your sin. These are the only preachers in God Almighty’s universe that brag about their sin! You never heard of an adulterous pride parade. You never heard of a bank robber’s pride parade, even a pedophile pride parade. It’s unthinkable! They’re proud of their sins!
Jeremiah 6:15 says, were they ashamed when they had committed these abominations? Nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush. Therefore they shall fall with them that fall, referring to the final sentence of condemnation from God almighty, consigning these creatures to the fires of hell.

And the dog, set forth in Deuteronomy 23:17, there shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel. And thou shall not bring the hire of a whore, or the price of a dog, a sodomite, into the house of the Lord thy God. Dogs, sodomites, it is expressly said in the great messianic psalm 22, crucified the Lord Jesus Christ.

Everybody knows that Caesar, who was in charge when John the Baptist got his head cut off — Tiberius Caesar — and who was in charge when they crucified the Lord Jesus. And when Pilate would have let him go, and the Jews said, if you let him go, you’re not Caesar’s friend, and he’s living over there on the isle of Capri in the beautiful harbor of Naples, chucking wave after wave of sodomites out so that he might have sex with them, and his specialty being little boys. Historical fact.

Psalm 22:16: The dogs compass me about. They pierced my hands and my feet. And three verses down the Lord Jesus, prophetically in that psalm says, deliver my soul from the sword and my darling from the power of the dog. And the Lord Jesus said in the Sermon on the Mount, give not that which is holy to the dogs. You know he said that. You tell sodomites that God loves them, and I say you’re giving that which is holy to the dogs. And the Lord Jesus Christ never died for a dog or a hog or a pig. He died for sheep, and metaphors and similitudes have powerful sway when God almighty says I will teach my people through the prophets, by the use of similitudes.

Philippians 3:2 said beware of dogs, and when you come to the end of the book of God, chapter 22 of Revelation, talking about the glories of heaven, and blessed is he who keeps his commandments, or rather does, blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to enter into the city through the gate. Verse 15, but without, outside the city, no hope of going to heaven, are six categories of people, and the first category is the sodomites, the dogs.
Now the Lord Jesus Christ, Luke 17, talking about this weighty matter, said as it was as in the days of Lott, they ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted it, they builded. A brief, six-clause description of a vibrant, prosperous, thriving society of people. They ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded. But the same day Lot went out of Sodom, it rained fire and brimstone from God out of heaven and destroyed them all, and even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.

That is a situation obtains. Next verse, the second to shortest verse in the English Bible. Remember Lot’s wife. Remember Lot’s wife. Jonathan Edwards has a great sermon on that also, and I recommend “The End of the Wicked as Contemplated by the Righteous.” If you want to know what all the preachers were preaching in this country in the 1600s and the 1700s and the 1800s, I recommend that you pluck down off the web JonathanEdwards.com. I recommend that you go to any Bible bookstore and get The Bondage of the Will by Martin Luther.

And oft times in chapel, when the old Dr. Bob Jones would be speaking, oft times he would say, what this country needs is 50 Jonathan Edwardses turned loose in it. There’s a book out of his sayings, the sayings of Dr. Bob Jones, Sr. It’s got that one in it. What this country needs is 50 Jonathan Edwardses turned loose in it.

Just immediately prior to the Savior saying as it was in the days of Lot, and the question turns, naturally, did God love those people as the fire and brimstone was coming down on them or not? He’s got a very peculiar way of showing it, wouldn’t you say? Sixteen billion people on this earth, if you credit the prevailing authority, Professor Ray Winkle for it, 16 billion people lived in this world in the days of Noah, and Noah, by faith, moved with fear and warned of God, of things not seen as yet. Prepared and are to the saving of his house, by which, also he condemned the world and became an heir of that righteousness which is by faith alone. Preached for 120 years and nobody was persuaded. You know that’s so. You know that nobody was persuaded.
God says, it’s time to get on the ark, the flood’s coming, and nobody but his wife and his three boys and their three wives were persuaded! God’s not running out of room in hell, and it made no particular difference in this grand sweep of eternity. Did God love those 16 billion people that he destroyed in a fortnight? And have they now been suffering in hell for 4,653 years, take a year or two? Suffering in hell and never to be pardoned? Never to be turned loose?
Any man worships this beast, or his image, or receive this mark in his forehead or in his hand, the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture in the cup of his indignation. And they shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the lamb. And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up forever and ever, and they have no rest, day nor night. Does God love those people who he says are tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the lamb, all the while he’s tormenting them exquisitely? Fire and brimstone? Does he love those people? He’s got a very peculiar way of showing it, wouldn’t you say?

Compared, especially to this other group of people, the great multitude that no man could number, from every nation, kindred tongue, and tribe. Clothed in white raiment and palms in their hands, and he that spake to me said, who are these, and I said unto him, sir thou knowest. He said these are they that came out of great tribulation and have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the lamb, and therefore are they before the throne of God day and night and serve him in his temple, and he that sitteth in the midst of the throne said, dwell among them. The Lord Jesus Christ will feed them and lead them under living fountains of waters and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes. New bodies classified with four distinct characteristics: beauty, agility, impassibility, the word means you can never know pain again, or sorrow, impassibility, and spiritual, spiritual bodies with enormous strength and alacrity.

That’s something of the glories of heaven, set over against a stark reality and over those who are suffering in hell. And you’re trying to tell me or anybody with a modicum of brains in his head that God loves them the same? Very peculiar way of showing it.

And just before saying as it was in the days of Lot, the Lord Jesus Christ says as it was in the days of Noah. Now when Ham, Noah’s son, and his youngest grandson Canaan had some kind of homosexual relationship with the drunken Noah, and you read about it in Genesis chapter 9, verses 22, 23, 24, and when Noah awoke and knew, and knew, what his younger son had done unto him, the old rabbis and the ancient expositors of that place say that Ham taught people to live as they did before the flood. To have sex with mothers and daughters, males with males, women with women, and with animals, as they lived as they were before the flood.

Throws a lot of light on Genesis 6 where it says the Lord God says, I’ve had enough of these people. They have deeply corrupted themselves, I’m going to annihilate, annihilate, the whole race. They lived as they were before the flood. Sodomites, my friends. Homosexuals, if you please, my friends. Sex with mothers and with daughters, and incest, that same place in Leviticus 18 that says thou shall not lie with mankind as with womankind, it’s abomination, also says, next verse, neither shalt thou lie with any beast to defile thyself there with. Two verses up, it proscribes incest, bestiality, homosexuality, incest, those heinous crimes that do something and stamp and mark the soul as being one who is abhorred of God. Second Peter 2 where it talks about Lot and the destruction of ancient Sodom and then says, he delivered just Lot, and the Lord knows how to deliver the righteous. Out of testing, out of temptations. And the Lord knows how to reserve or preserve the unrighteous, these that he has just described as vexing Lot’s righteous soul day by day, knows how to preserve the unrighteous. That word means pickle, it’s the notion of how we put up preserves. It means pickle them in their sins. They hated God, they despised God, they manifested how filthy they were, living like dogs on this earth, living like animals such that Peter describes them in Second Peter 2:12 as natural, brute beasts made to be taken and destroyed.
And talks about their filthy sex habits in verse 22. It has happened unto them according to the true proverb. The dog has returned to his vomit again, and the sow that was washed to a wallowing in the mire. A description by the Lord God almighty using similitudes, of the filthy habits and lies of these creatures of whom it is said that God hates them as it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated. What are you going to do with that? Romans 9:13, as it is written. That the purposes of God according to election might stand, it is said, before either of the children were born, twins, in the mother Rebecca’s womb, neither having done good or evil. That the purpose of God according to election might stand. As it is written, Jacob have I loved, Esau have I hated. How are you going to mangle that verse, brother? Why will you not be content to listen to the brightest and best of all the gospel preachers for the last 2,000 years preaching it this way?

That there’s such a thing as the wrath of God, that there’s such a thing as a hatred of God, that there’s such a thing as hell. And those who insist on living depraved, degenerate lives in this world, who die in their sins, split hell wide open, I say to you. And it’s mere folly and sophistry, and what the old preachers called sophism. Playing on words. Creating new doctrines called doctrines of devils. Doctrines of devils, that God loves the sinner. What are you talking about, that God loves the sinner and only hates his sin? What do you mean that God doesn’t hate these creatures, and how would you describe that attribute of the almighty? The almighty God comes and says to the sons of men, I have loved the righteous, I have hated the wicked. I have prepared a place for those who live soberly and righteously and godly in this present time. And who are penitent, and who have abandoned. That the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation and teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly lust we should live soberly, and righteously, and godly in this present world, looking for the blessed hope and glories appearing.

These vain, proud, arrogant beasts calling themselves homosexuals and gays nowadays have not the least interest in repenting of their sins. Indeed, they laugh at you if you suggest it to them, and they insist that it’s not a sin. Yes, God hates homosexuals.


  Contents] [About the Participants] [Opening Statement by Fred Phelps] [Opening Statement by John Rankin][Dialog] [Questions from the Audience] [Closing Statement by John Rankin ] [Closing Statement by Fred Phelps]
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