Adultery Gene?

Adultery Gene?

You guys called it.

Several previous Average Joe posts explored the question of whether there was a genetic connection to homosexuality (here, here, and here). To paraphrase some of your responses, it didn’t matter if science eventually detected a genetic origin for homosexuality: the biblical injunction stands. After all, science has uncovered a genetic connection to alcoholism, and might yet divulge a genetic basis for behaviors like fornication or adultery.

Swedish researchers report (Marital Crisis? Blame It on Male Genes) that a gene variant, allele 334, may explain “why some men are more prone to stormy relationships and bond less to their wives or girlfriends.”Men with one or two copies of the gene behaved differently than those who lacked 334, and their relationships suffered accordingly. Those with two copies of allele 334 were twice as likely to have had a marital crisis as men without the gene.

Martin Ingvar, a professor of neurophysiology at Stockholm’s Karolinska Institute, said that “These are original findings which shed light on the fact that all of our behaviours are influenced by both nature and nurture. Even complex, cultural social phenomens such as marriage are influenced by a person’s genetic make-up.”

What does this mean?

To be clear, the study identified bonding issues and not marital infidelity. But if the research holds up, what does it say about authentic human choices? One can imagine the “I can’t help it, I’m hardwired”defense for adulterous behavior.

From a Christian perspective, why would a Creator endow some men with this gene and not others? For that matter, why would God equip people with any gene that manifests itself in behavior the Bible deems sinful?

One of the researchers cautions that the effect of the genetic variation is modest and cannot predict future behavior, but perhaps an atheist might see a reason to believe in naturalism. Nature gave us the genes, and we choose to express them the way we do because we’re simply keeping our genes going. The notion of sinful behavior—a product of biblical morality—should be relegated to the wastebasket of tired ideas in favor of evolutionary preferences.

Your comments?