God created the adam in God’s image; in the image of God [God] created him – male and female [God] created them.
– Genesis 1:27
The first human being was created wholly female and wholly male at the same time. … And some say: The first human being was half male and half female, and was then split into two separate beings. Still others say: The first human being was an infinite, genderless mass.
– Genesis Rabbah 8:1 [ca. 400 CE]
The two most often cited Biblical texts concerning homosexuality are both found in the book of Leviticus, where they are in the context of a larger section directing sexual behavior. First, it is written: “Do not lie with a male as one lies with a woman; it is an abhorrence.” (Leviticus 18:22) The second citation is from Leviticus 20:13, where we read that “If a man lies with a male as one lies with a woman, the two of them have done an abhorrent thing; they shall be put to death-their blood guilt is upon them.”
However, we are also guided by the very basic belief that all human beings are created b’tselem Elohim(in the Divine image), as it says in Genesis 1:27, “And God created humans in God’s own image, in the image of God, God created them; male and female God created them.” Rabbi David Saperstein said in Congressional testimony in support of ENDA that “regardless of context, discrimination against any person arising from apathy, insensitivity, ignorance, fear, or hatred is inconsistent with this fundamental belief. We oppose discrimination against all individuals, including gays, lesbians, and bisexuals, for the stamp of the Divine is present in each and every one of us.”
Each of us, created in God’s image, has a unique talent, with which we can contribute to the high moral purpose of tikkun olam, the repair of our world. Excluding anyone from our community lessens our chance of achieving this goal of a more perfect world.