How Christians Keep Christians Single (part 2) – The Unmarried Movie
See previous post about this topic: (Link): Christian Teachings on Relationships Are One Reasons Singles Are Remaining Single (even if they want to get married)
(Link): BGBC Survivors Blog has several good posts about singleness in Christianity, by Julie Anne. I believe she has a new blog now, and the old one is shut down.
Here is one post at the old blog location where Julie Anne discusses a video advertising a movie called “Unmarried,” and where she also discusses how Christian teachings about dating, gender, marriage, and sex, are unintentionally keeping singles single.
(Link to blog post): The UnMarried Movie: Singleness as a Result of Rigid and Controlled Parenting
(Link to video itself, on You Tube):
The man in the video describes singleness – or maybe he meant specifically delayed marriage – as a “problem.” Well, yes, prolonged singleness is a problem for those of us who wanted marriage, were assured by Christian leaders if we just had enough faith that marriage would happen, but it did not happen for us.
But to treat singleness as a problem in and of itself is biblically inaccurate and a slap in the face to and an insult to singles, whether they chose to remain single or did not choose to remain single.
The man in the video says that delayed marriage and the “rise of singleness” means there is “no future for the church.”
Only someone who truly idolizes marriage and who grossly misunderstands singlehood could arrive at that conclusion. Christ taught that the church would be increased through preaching of the Gospel to the unsaved, not through patriarchy, or through marriage, or by Christians having babies.
I’d also add that the constant worry over marriage and lack of marriage taking place is another form of IGNORING SINGLE PEOPLE and THEIR NEEDS.
Most churches, from the main stream to the nutty fringe churches, will pay you no notice until and unless you are married.
Instead of continually obsessing on marriage and why it’s not taking place, why don’t these churches start to pay attention to the singles they already have now, singles of all ages, and meet them where they are? Their only need is not to get married. While they live alone, they have other needs and problems.
Here are some excepts from Julie Anne’s page about the video:
—- start quote [by Julie Anne] —
And then there were the purity rules – no boy or girl should ever be alone together. Relationships had to go through the father, girls were given purity rings by their fathers (and mothers) and they pledged to remain virgins until marriage, sometimes signing a covenant . . . . and so on.
As I was thinking about modesty and purity, it made me wonder about the movie, UnMarried. Do you suppose all of these modesty and purity rules may have backfired and contributed to the growing number of singles? The people behind the UnMarried movie come from the patriarchal background. They believe in moms having lots and lots of babies to populate the earth with more Christians. Singleness remains a threat to their way of doing things because no babies means fewer Christians in future generations (as if they are the ones who determines if their child was elect, right?).
For years these [Christian] kids were told [by churches and Christian parents] don’t look at the opposite sex, don’t lust, don’t touch. And now the producers of this movie are telling these same young adults: hurry up and get married. Perhaps they might even say these singles are in sin and preempting God’s plans for His church by their “prolonged adolescence”. I’ve certainly read it before by folks within this movement.
Yup, I think it backfired. It is my opinion that the movie, UnMarried is an attempt at damage control. They are trying to recover from the mess they made by their ridiculous rules of making sure their children were completely modest and virginal. Legalism backfires, people. It just does not work the way people want. It usually produces extremes. In my former church, the result of this kind of legalism was a lot of young adults acting out sexually. It can go the other direction, too – prolonged singleness. They’ve raised a bunch of adult children who have difficulty functioning normally in a mixed-sex society. They may be afraid to look at the opposite sex for fear of lust and sin. They may be afraid to talk to someone of the opposite sex because they aren’t married yet and fear, What would people think? In most circles I am familiar with, a young couple would not be allowed to go to even Starbucks alone unless a little sibling tagged along.
Read the rest of that post (Link): here, and check out the rest of her blog for other posts about singlehood.
Churches really need to start meeting the needs of singles of ALL AGES as they are currently, instead of only obsessing on getting the under- age- 25 singles married off.
The under age 25 age group might have other needs – why do the churches only care about their marital status?
The Bible does not teach that Christians are to be this marriage- minded.
The Bible does not condemn singles who want marriage, but it does not foster this bizarre, overly narrow fixation on marriage nor does it treat singlehood in this derogatory fashion, as though singlehood is a disease that can lead to the ruin of civilzation.
As long as the pagans keep having babies, there are plenty of them to convert to Christianity; ergo, the church will not die off if Christians stop having marriage and babies of their own. There will always be plenty of pagan kids and pagan adults to give the Gospel message to.
These Christians who are so insanely marriage- and parenting- obsessed need to trust God more. Instead, they are trying to rely wholly on their own effort (procreation of their own, or preaching fertility to other Christians) to repopulate God’s kingdom. God says in the New Testament that his kingdom will now be repopulated through sharing of the Gospel.