WHEREAS, Marriage is the foundation of the God-ordained institution of the family (Genesis 2:18-25; Matthew 19:4-6; Mark 10:6-8); and
WHEREAS, The union of one man and one woman is the only form of marriage prescribed in the Bible as God’s perfect design for the family (Genesis 2:24; Hebrews 13:4); and
WHEREAS, This traditional family is the fabric of all social order and the foundational institution that builds and maintains strong societies; and
WHEREAS, God established the family as the primary and most influential social institution of mankind and ordained that each human family begin only with the marriage of one man and one woman (Genesis 2:18-25; Matthew 19:4-6; Mark 10:6-8; Hebrews 13:4); and
WHEREAS, The viability, strength, and stability of the social order within any nation is more dependent upon the wellbeing of this traditional family structure than any other social institution or agency; and
“WHAT EXACTLY IS FORBIDDEN
It seems to be becoming commonplace to suggest that what is forbidden is anal intercourse, or anal penetration, and that alone. That suggestion leads some to far-reaching conclusions. We forbid what is forbidden, but anything other than what is biblically forbidden is permissible. A relationship between two males that avoids actual anal intercourse or penetration is perfectly valid and halakhic. The other sexual behaviors in which they may engage are not forbidden.
WHEREAS, In May 1993, the Hawaiian Supreme Court ruled that the state’s exclusion of same-sex couples from marital status may be contrary to the Hawaiian state constitution because it amounts to invidious discrimination; and
WHEREAS, The Hawaiian Supreme Court has instructed the state of Hawaii to prove compelling state interests for limiting marriage to heterosexual couples; and
The following paper was submitted in concurrence with teshuvot by Rabbis Roth and Levy and in dissent from the teshuvot of Rabbis Elliot Dorff, Daniel Nevins and Avram Reisner, Rabbi Gordon Tucker, and Rabbis Myron Geller, Robert and David Fine in Shevat 5767- February 2007.Concurring and dissenting opinions are not official positions of the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards.
WHEREAS, An increasing number of businesses, including corporate leaders such as IBM, AT&T, Sprint, Hewlett?Packard, Xerox, Time?Warner, Microsoft, Eastman Kodak, and Walt Disney, have established employee policies that recognize and extend employee benefits to a category of personal relationship called "domestic partner"; and
WHEREAS, On May 15, 2008, the California Supreme Court struck down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage thus frustrating the will of the people who, on March 7, 2000, voted in favor (61.4%) of Proposition 22 which affirmed, “Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California”; and
WHEREAS, From the beginning, the Bible establishes the basis for sexuality by declaring that human beings are created in God’s image as “male and female” (Genesis 1:26-27) and that “a man leaves his father and mother and bonds with his wife, and they become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24); and
WHEREAS, Jesus answered questions about marriage by reaffirming this male/female and “one flesh” creation pattern for sexuality (Matthew 19:4-6); and
1) We consider the desire for same sex erotic activity to be a רצי like any other רצי. There should be no discrimination against anyone based merely on the presence or absence of such feelings.
2) Everyone has an equal obligation to observe the law, whatever the content of a person’s רצי may be. We recognize that observing any law will be more difficult for some than for others; people for whom observing a law is more difficult deserve our understanding and support, but their greater degree of difficulty does not absolve them of responsibility.
A. Piskei Din: Legal Findings
Based upon our study of halakhic precedents regarding both sexual norms and human dignity, we reach the following conclusions:
1. The explicit biblical ban on anal sex between men remains in effect. Gay men are instructed to refrain from anal sex.