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MANILA, Philippines - He still believes gay marriage is a sin, but Manny Pacquiao denies he referred to a controversial anti-gay verse from the Book of Leviticus.
“Hindi ako nagsabi niyan, kasinungalingan 'yan…Hindi ko alam 'yang verse ng Leviticus kasi hindi pa ako nakabasa ng Leviticus,” Pacquiao clarified in a report on ABS-CBN's TV Patrol. (I deny that, that’s a lie…I'm not familiar with the verse because I haven’t read Leviticus yet.)
Referring to an interview with the Examiner.com, the USA TODAY and the LA Weekly reported that Pacquiao quoted Leviticus chapter 20, verse 13: “If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.”
After the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community slammed Pacquiao, writer Granville Ampong said the reports "twisted" the world champion's stand on same-sex marriage.
"Nowhere in my supposition and integration of my interview with Pacquiao did I mention that Pacquiao recited this Leviticus 20:13 nor did I imply that Pacquiao had quoted such," Ampong said in a follow-up article.
It was Ampong who quoted the Leviticus verse in his article.
Ampong added that what Pacquiao said was, "God's words first...obey God's law first before considering the laws of man."
Gay marriage is a sin
Pacquiao said he is not against gays but insisted that same-sex union is a sin.
"Ang stand ko sa mga gays, wala akong tutol sa gays, eh. Ang ayaw ko lang is 'yung gumagawa ng sin, yung same-sex marriage." (I'm not against gays. What I don't like is committing sin such as same-sex marriage.)
The self-proclaimed reformed Christian also said in the Examiner.com article that "God only expects man and woman to be together and to be legally married, only if they so are in love with each other."
"It should not be of the same sex so as to adulterate the altar of matrimony, like in the days of Sodom and Gomorrah of Old," Pacquiao added.
Day against homophobia
Reacting to the controversy, Bemz Benedito of the LGBT group, Ang Ladlad Partylist, said, “Ang Biblia ay isang aklat tungkol sa pagsasaboy ng pagmamahal at pag-ibig sa sanlibutan at hindi libro na naglalaman ng pangungutya at pagkamuhi sa kapwa.” (The Bible is a book about spreading love to the world, not ridicule or hatred towards others.)
LGBT groups will march from UP Palma Hall to the Commission on Human Rights on Thursday, May 17, for the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia.
The annual observance commemorates the removal of homosexuality from the International Classification of Diseases of the World Health Organization (WHO). - Rappler.com
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