Here is the text:
'Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practise homosexuality,* nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of heaven.' 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 (ESV)
Actually, I think we should extend this to include 6:11:
'And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of God.'
Now first a technical matter of translating two key Greek words (indicated by the asterisk above): 'men who practise homosexuality' translates the words malakoi and arsenokoites. It is not too difficult to work out that these words concern men and sex: malakoi means a 'soft man' and arsenokoites literally is 'men' plus 'bed'. What is more difficult, indeed the subject of ongoing debate, is what behaviour or behaviours are being indicated by these words. To give one for instance, is malakoi about 'effeminate men' akin, say, to certain stereotypes about homosexuals, or is it a word indicating a male prostitute, or is it a word for the (so called) passive partner in a sexual act between two men? If the last then is arsenokoites a reference to (so called) active partners in such acts? Further, noting the Hellenistic background , with its custom of men loving men in a socially accepted manner, that is, older men having a younger male for a period prior to marriage, is Paul 'having a go' at this specific practice by using these two words?
Or, is malakoi a reference to something we cannot now be clear about, but arsenokoites is a generic word for all men who engage in sex acts (for which 'bed' is a euphemism) with other men? One part of the debate (indicated by me in an earlier post) concerns whether arsenokoites is a coined word from Leviticus 18:22 and thus is a very direct linkage between New Testament and Old Testament concerns about homosexuality.
In short, quite a few questions. In Part 2 I will explore these and further matters.