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Biblical Abominations

Updated: Sep 18, 2023

Blog title card; topic is explaining the Biblical term "abomination"
Biblical abomination

Throughout the New Testament we find certain kinds of people who will not enter the kingdom of God. Lists of such people are found in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, Galatians 5:19-21, and Revelation 21:8. Most of the entries are easily understood: we understand what an adulterer is; what a sorceror is; what a drunkard is; what a liar is; who the effeminate are; and who those who practice lasciviousness are. If one of these terms is confusing, you can simply find its definition in the dictionary. Christians understand Jesus’ words in Luke 18:17 that only those who “receive” the kingdom of God will enter it. We also understand what Jesus meant in John 3:3 where He said that “except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

These Biblical descriptions are plain and easy to understand. However, in Revelation 21:8 the Bible includes the “abominable” in the list of those who will be cast into “the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone.” This term is less self-evident. Who are the abominable? The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines an abomination as “something regarded with disgust or hatred.” The Bible defines an abomination as something God hates. Any of the things that the Lord hates is an abomination, and the people who commit any of these abominations listed within the Bible are the abominable.

One controversial category of abominations is found in the Old Testament law: eating unclean animals such as shellfish, camels, coney (rabbits), hare, and swine (Leviticus 11: 4-10). These animals were abominable to the people of Israel. After the Resurrection, this law that applied to Israel was no longer in effect. The Lord clarifies this distinction in Acts 4 when He declares to Peter, who saw a vision of unclean animals that the Law prevented him from eating, that “what the Lord has cleansed, that call not thou common” (Acts 4:11-15). Paul later tells us the following: “For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving” (1 Timothy 4:4). Shellfish, pork, and even camel are all permissible to eat during the Church Age.

What of the other abominations in the Law? Are they permissible now as well? Bible believers and now even the secular world are familiar with Leviticus 18:12, where we are told that homosexuality is an abomination. This condemnation continues throughout the Bible and is reinforced instead of repealed by Jesus, His disciples, and the apostles. In other Old Testament Scriptures, the Lord declares other things to be abominations that are similarly condemned throughout both the Old and New Testament. Among these are:

  • Idolatry, the worship of graven images (Deuteronomy 7:24-26; 13:14; Isa. 44:19)

  • Practicing as diviners, enchanters, witches, wizards, or necromancers (Deuteronomy 18:10-12)

  • A proud look, lying, murder (specifically of the innocent), devising wicked plans, running to mischief, being a false witness, and sowing discord (Proverbs 6:16-19)

  • Illicit sex, which includes fornication, adultery, prostitution, and incest (Ezekiel 16:22, 58; Ezekiel 22:11; Ezekiel 33:26)

  • Stealing and breaking promise (Jeremiah 7:9-10)

  • Crossdressing (Deuteronomy 22:5)

  • Sacrificing to Molech (the parallel to which is modern-day abortion) and profaning the name of God (Leviticus 18:21).

As Christians, we should avoid, pass away from, and turn from all abominations (Proverbs 4:14-15). However, instead of running away from these abominations, there are “churches” all around the world that accept the behavior of idolators, homosexuals, transexuals, the proud, and murderers. In churches today there are teens who practice fornication. There are men and women who commit adultery physically, mentally, or through pornography. These abominations are ongoing, yet instead of preaching against them, the pastors of those churches accept them as normal. The Bible clearly states that we Christians are to “have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them” (Ephesians 5:11). Church leaders who are guilty of these things we are to “rebuke before all, that others may fear” (1 Timothy 5:20). These warnings are not idle. There are Christians who have allowed these abominations in their churches today so that they can be “politically correct” and “accepting to all.” Paul tells us to be wary of “false teachers” (2 Timothy 4:3-4), who do what exactly what we see today: promote, enable, and allow these abominations.

The lost world is enslaved to abominations and in need of a Redeemer. We should not allow abominations in our churches or in our lives. We should teach our children from a young age that God hates these abominations, and those who practice them will not see the Kingdom of Heaven. Teach them the gospel of Jesus Christ so they will be saved, always reminding them of God’s forgiveness towards believers. We should study and keep the Bible close to our hearts, “for out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: these things which defile a man” (Matthew 15:19-20). Without biblical teaching and preaching, we will accept these abominations. With the Spirit’s help and the guidance of the Word of God, we will see these evil deeds for what they are, avoid them, and teach others to do the same.


The above article was written by Jonathan Thornton. He is a military veteran and member of NorthStone Baptist Church in Pensacola, FL. To offer him your feedback, comment below or email us at

Every Tuesday, SFL publishes relevant Bible-based content. Check back next Tuesday to read the next SFL article.


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