Rom. 1:26-27

     I wanted to add to my last post that _pathE atimias_ could also be 
"passions for dishonor" - that is, a desire to do something dishonorable.

     Based on the usage of _phusis, phusik-_ in the NT, I would render the 
phrase _tEn phusikEn khrEsin_ as "their characteristic usage" or "their 
clearly evident sexuality".  _Phus-_ etc. refers to a visible characteristic 
or evident behavior, and thus supports and emphasizes Boswell's thesis that 
the people mentioned here are engaged in heterosexual behavior of some sort 
before "exchanging" it for something else.

     The real trouble is with _khrEsis_: in ordinary Greek it could refer to 
any custom or habit; on the other hand, it could be so specific as to refer 
to the pattern of sexual behavior which distinguished homosexuality from 
heterosexuality.  The use in Pseudo-Lucian's _ErOtes_ is late but telling 
for its context; the "khrEsis" with women is contrasted to the "khrEsis" 
with "paides" (boys/men) in a debate between homosexuals and heterosexuals.  

     On the other hand, I could not find a single example in which _khrEsis_ 
could be used to refer to the "function" of a gender for sexual activity.  
This is, though, what the English translation "use" implies: that a female is 
supposed to be "used" by a male, and that a male is supposed to be "used" 
by a female (I think the many Greek gynophobes would have had a hard time 
with that second statement, which Paul would otherwise be understood as 
making here).  So what I need is an English word that refers to a pattern 
of sexual activity, and I'm not sure I've found it.

     I would render the second part of the phrase _tEn [khrEsin 
understood] para phusin_ as "that sexuality which was not characteristic 
of them" or "that usage which was not evident in their [previous] 
behavior."  Paul seems to be going to all the trouble of using these 
expressions to *avoid* the misunderstanding that he is talking about 
ordinary homosexuals.  That he used Stoic terms which could and *were* 
misunderstood almost from the very beginning of interpretations of Paul's 
passage here is amazing and unfortunate.  It almost parallels his 
pathetically unsuccessful attempt to forestall anti-Semitism in this same 
letter - Paul's very words were used to reinforce the exact kind of 
anti-Semitic "boasting" which he here condemned (cf. Ignatius of Antioch).

Greg Jordan