David the Bi-sexual?

It has become consistent revisionist apologetics to make the following argument.

John Shelby Spong and Barry Lyn both utilized this claim in debating Dr. James White, and some students at Indian University took it upon themselves to make this argument after a public Douglas Wilson lecture. Structurally the argument is as follows:

David was a man after God’s own heart
David was a bi-sexual
God has no moral qualms with Bisexuality (which by definition includes homosexuality).

The argument has a flaw in both it’s second premise and it’s conclusion.

The first premise is correct, David is identified in Scripture as a man after God’s own heart.

Acts 13:22 After removing Saul, he made David their king. God testified concerning him: ‘I have found David son of Jesse, a man after My own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.’

The argument flaw in the second premise is the assumption that David was in fact a bi-sexual. It is exegetically obvious that David was attracted romantically to women. Very early on he found himself more than one wife (2 Sam. 2:1). Also, in a moment from David’s life that will come up later, David so passionately desires a bathing woman that he takes her for his own ignoring the fact that they are both married. David obviously romantically desires women.

The idea that David was bisexual comes from his relationship with Jonathan, Saul’s son. They have an intensely close relationship. Jonathan chooses David over his own father’s love, and when his father tries to kill him over it, he still can only think about David. They constantly risk their own lives for one another, and they clearly care for one another deeply.

However, the strongest argument for their potential romantic relationship is found in 2 Samuel 1 after David learns of Jonathan’s death.

1 Samuel 1:26
I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan; You have been very pleasant to me. Your love to me was more wonderful Than the love of women.” 
This passage is used as overwhelming evidence that David and Jonathan were romantically involved. However, the passage itself identifies something interest. Certainly David cannot be accused of believing that homosexual relationships are as natural and beneficial as heterosexual ones as advocates for homosexuality naturally promote. They very text indicates that David recognizes that the love men receive from women is significant and unique. If David believed the love men received from women was and could be equal to the love they receive from men, then this text would carry no weight. The very fact that David said this is a recognition that men ought to receive something from women that is better than men. Only under the assumption that men and women love differently and that a man’s love from a woman is more significant does this text carry weight. David is claiming he was so close with Jonathan it was better than something it isn’t supposed to be better than; that’s his very point. Clearly, David believed that men and women love each other in unique ways that is not supposed to be rivaled by their own male and female counterparts.

The next point is that the text does not immediately imply romantic love; although it is textually possible. It is simply an assumption, and one that lies in the face of David’s obvious passion for women and marriage to women. It also flies in the face of the lack of any textual evidence that they ever were romantically involved or even could be. Lastly, it is an assumption that stands against the very fact that David was becoming King of the Jewish nation that upheld the Levitical laws which charged homosexuality with death, yet, this grievous Jewish sin was never noticed by any prophet or person of the nation.

The conclusion has a flaw in the premise too. And that flaw is the assumption that if David was a man after God’s own heart then all of his behaviors are good in God’s sight. Yet, where do they get that idea biblically?

In 2 Samuel 11, as previously mentioned, David sees Bathsheba bathing. He then lusts, commits adultery, and also commits murder during the cover up. How does the Lord respond? By telling David that he is a man after His own heart therefore all He does is just and good? No, the Lord responds through the Prophet Nathan by rebuking David in chapter 12. Nathan rebukes David and rhetorically asks, after all God has done for David, how could David do “what is evil in [God’s] sight?” (2 Samuel 12:9). David being a man after God’s own heart was not a title that implied moral earthly perfection. It implied a stark contrast to the previous King Saul who did not desire to rule for the Lord. David loved the Lord and tried to love God’s law and run His kingdom for His King. David often fell short, but He desired to be just and he loved God deeply.

Was David a bi-sexual? The overwhelming evidence is that he was not. However, if he was, then it falls into the basket of sins that Christ endured the wrath for in David’s place. Maybe David did express homosexual desires for Jonathan. If he did, his sin was paid for upon his repentance and belief in the God who justifies.

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