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I have never seen anything in the Bible that mentions that being transgender is a sin, but people tell me all the time that I am an abomination. I'm still a good person and always try to do the right thing, but I don't understand how this one thing makes me bad. I know that the Bible says "A man must not dress as a woman." or something like that. But the thing is, I do consider myself a woman, as do my loved ones and most everyone I come in contact with. I have never seen anything in the Bible that says that just because I have an X and a Y chromosome then I am a male. Another argument that I hear is "God looks down on all forms of homosexuality", but transgenderism is not a form of homosexuality. In fact, it's arguably unrelated. So given that the Bible doesn't strictly define what "gender" is, what does the Bible say about transgenderism?

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"Pastoral advice" questions are absolutely off-topic here, because good advice relies on having more information than is possible to get on an internet forum. If you need advice on this issue, please talk to a pastor or counsellor. –  DJClayworth Aug 3 '12 at 14:26
@DJClayworth I'm not seeking advice, nor do I need it. My question is strictly impartial. What I am asking is whether or not it is a sin, which can be answered completely objectively and bears no contingency on my personal connection to the issue. That being said, what I am asking is what the Bible says about it, as I have seen nothing about the subject mentioned in the Bible. –  allycatgirl Aug 3 '12 at 14:43
@Mike Yes, I was born male but am now fully accepted as female. I have breasts (they're real), but have not gone through any kind of surgery (nor do I intend to). The difficulty that I have with this question though is that I'm a virgin, and am not attracted to men. Does the Bible say anything about that? –  allycatgirl Aug 3 '12 at 14:52
Are you saying you have male sex organs but have a sort of genetic anomaly in that you also have natural breasts and you are attracted to woman? If so I would think that you are a man who has a physical anomaly which has no moral implications. In that case the Bible has nothing special to say because you are a regular person in your mind, you just have a confusing physical anomaly. I would only say that you may want to ensure you see yourself as male and do not let your breasts confuse you over your sexuality. If you would like me to open a chat room, I can. –  Mike Aug 3 '12 at 15:22
I guess a chat would be good. I don't want to get into too many more details here, since I know this is a not-so-well understood topic--even outside the Christian community. I'll also modify the question to make it more impartial, so as to avoid any "potentially awkward" discussions coming up in this thread. But, a chat room would be cool :) –  allycatgirl Aug 3 '12 at 15:31
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closed as not constructive by DJClayworth, Andrew, wax eagle Aug 3 '12 at 16:53

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3 Answers

The Bible indicates that not only are transgender people not good people, but neither is anyone else.

as it is writen: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one... for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” Romans 3:10-12, 23 ESV

It is commendable that you try to do the right thing all the time. Yet, the Bible is clear that our good works do not justify us before God.

For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin. Romans 3:20 ESV

So, the fact that you are apparently a good law-abiding citizen who is kind to your neighbor is great for our society. Yet, even a non-transgender person who is celibate is not righteous before God based on his or her works.

Christianity teaches that God's holiness is so great that even the smallest sin will separate us from Him. Yet, the Love of God is so great that even the greatest sin can be forgiven.

For you, what is in the past is really irrelevant. Perhaps it was a sin, perhaps it wasn't. It does seem that God designed you a certain way, so it could be argued that one does not have the authority to change what God has done. Yet again, that is in the past, so it really doesn't matter.

All sins can be forgiven, but no amount of good works can earn favor with God. So, we must all come to God through faith in Jesus Christ to receive forgiveness for all our sins and to be made holy in His sight.


So, what does God think about a transgender person? I am convinced that God loves that person, just as He loves every person. In fact, Jesus indicates that the love that exists within the Trinity is the same love with which God loves every person in the world.

Even though God loves that person, He requires that person to not attempt to be righteous on his/her own, but to accept His plan of salvation through faith in Jesus to receive forgiveness and life.


For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 ESV

As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. John 15:9 ESV

I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me. John 17:23 ESV

Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life. John 5:24 ESV

18 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit 1 Peter 3:18 ESV

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. Ephesians 2:8-9 ESV

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I'm really glad that you see me as no different than anyone else :) I agree, being a good person and being obedient to God are two different things. I think I should have rephrased the question though. I meant to ask, "Am I sinning by being a transgender person?" –  allycatgirl Aug 3 '12 at 13:21
@allycatgirl If someone were to sterilize themselves, they would not be sinning by being sterilized. Whether or not the act was a sin can be questioned, but not the continuing state that results. So, I don't think you are sinning in being a transgender person. What should be considered, though, is whether or not becoming a transgender person was wrong, as it could be considered to be contrary to God's design for you. –  Narnian Aug 3 '12 at 13:25
Makes sense, I suppose. So even when guys get vasectomies in their 40's after they're married, that's a sin? It never occurred to me that that might be a sin –  allycatgirl Aug 3 '12 at 13:38
@allycatgirl It could be a sin. A state of being is not a sin, but a specific act certainly can be. An attitude can be a sin as well, as greed, anger, hatred and bitterness are all sins. Being sterilized cannot be a sin, but getting sterilized could be. I'm not making the call on that, though. –  Narnian Aug 3 '12 at 13:40
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You are sinning by virtue of being a human being. As it says in Romans 3:10

As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

In other words, we're all sinners. The good news is that God loves you anyway! He desires you to be his child and that he could be your God. He will save you if you cry out to Him.

End of story.

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Whoops. Hadn't read Narnian. Same idea. I'm just being shorter... –  Affable Geek Aug 3 '12 at 14:50
No no no no no. You are not sinning by being a human being. It is true that all humans sin (except one!) but that doesn't mean that being a human is a sin. –  DJClayworth Aug 3 '12 at 16:14
@DJClayworth: "By virtue of being" is not the same thing as "by being". Your version is causational, what Affable said may be be understood as only correlational. –  Caleb Aug 3 '12 at 17:04
@Caleb Thank you. It was intended to be correlational only. –  Affable Geek Aug 3 '12 at 17:08
In German, I would say, "es gehort" - it is an attribute that adheres to all human beings. I can't think of a better way to express this in English than "by virtue of being." According to the link you gave- "by virtue of" :.... On the grounds of, by reason of, as in By virtue of a large inheritance she could easily afford not to work . [Early 1300s] In other words, it inherently flows from being a member of the class. –  Affable Geek Aug 3 '12 at 17:24
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There's an old phrase, "if you have to ask, you already know" - and to get to the core of your question, if you're asking to get a community's approval for what you are doing, it's a dishonest question (and overlaps into pastoral counsel - a realm of questions out-of-scope for this site), and should be closed.

That being said, transgender operations were not possible in Jesus' day (or before), so the Bible does not directly address the topic - just as the Bible does not directly address watching horror movies: a Biblical approach and set of principles/doctrines need to be built on clearer passages.

In the case raised in this question, being "transgendered" is no worse a sin than is lying, stealing, lust, putting-up idols, etc. Certainly someone who is transgendered (ie, has had the medical procedures needed to switch genitalia, etc) can be saved:

realizing the fact that law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers and immoral men and homosexuals and kidnappers and liars and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching, according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, with which I have been entrusted.


Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

Likewise, a Christian could sin in any area and yet still be forgiven - if he confesses and repents.

However, a mere mental assent to the principles of the Bible, Christianity, belief in the existence of Jesus, God, etc is NOT enough:

You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.

Satan knows who God is (and even has to get His permission to operate):

Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. The Lord said to Satan, "From where do you come?" Then Satan answered the Lord and said, "From roaming about on the earth and walking around on it."

The act of transgendering is [most likely] a sin*, as it is a rebellion against the way God made you - just as acting as a homosexual, or having extra-/pre-marital sex, or lying is a sin against the way God made you and against His perfect order in the world.

So, if, knowing about God, His plan for creation, the path of salvation, etc you then become transgendered, it's a sin. Likewise, if you transgender before knowing about God and Christ, it is a sin.

Such a choice (as with any sin) can be forgiven, and you can be saved ex post facto. I could see how such an action after being saved (or, more accurately, after thinking you are saved) could be the "unforgiveable sin" - blasphemy against the Holy Spirit.

*I am NOT saying that the surgery is inherently wrong, nor would corrective surgery and actions taken to repair imperfections/allow normal functions to work, etc are good - and bring the body back to line with what God intended (eg correcting misaligned testes, opening a vaginal tract, etc)

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Because this argument that this is an "advice" question is so prolific, then from here on out I will speak in the third person (even though it really doesn't make a difference...the question is the same), so as to alleviate the perception of a partiality towards myself. The thing that makes this such a difficult question to answer is that who is to say that God didn't intend for a transgender person to be his/her preferred gender, just as He intended someone born with cancer not to have cancer? –  allycatgirl Aug 3 '12 at 15:03
@allycatgirl - who is to say you are right, and God is wrong, in that He did intend for you to be the gender you were born with? –  warren Aug 3 '12 at 15:33
No, I mean who is to say that we're not both right? –  allycatgirl Aug 3 '12 at 15:38
@warren pretty over-simplified here. –  DJClayworth Aug 3 '12 at 16:35
@allycatgirl - you can't both be right when you're holding opposing views –  warren Aug 3 '12 at 17:03
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