Gift of Singleness Gift of Celibacy Unbiblical – Those Terms and Teachings Contribute to Fornication / Editorial About Sex Surrogates
Much farther below is a link to an editorial by a writer at Christianity Today about sex surrogates – there are people, such as paralyzed people in wheelchairs, who hire people to have sex with them.
“Sex surrogacy” apparently happens frequently in Europe and has begun making inroads in the USA.
I can’t speak for Europe, as I’m not as familiar with their evangelical culture, as I am with the American.
If the Christian evangelical, fundamentalist, and Baptist church in America presented virginity and celibacy as a viable, real alternative to pre- marital / extra marital sex, as a standard anyone can achieve, instead of, as they do, erroneously painting virginity and celibacy as though only a few very holy, few chosen have the G.O.C. (“gift of celibacy”) or G.O.S. (“gift of singleness”), perhaps there would not be as much fornication as there is, and no need for “sex surrogates.”
By the way, NEITHER CONCEPT, GOC or GOS, IS TAUGHT IN THE BIBLE.
God does not “gift” any one with singleness, or with celibacy.
God does not determine in eternity past that some Christians will be elected unto celibacy and singlehood; marriage and singlehood are personal choices God leaves up to YOU-
-if celibacy were taught in this way, as something that is open and possible for everyone, then most would feel they had a shot at resisting sex before marriage (or outside of it).
- (Link): There is No Such Thing as a Gift of Singleness or Gift of Celibacy or A Calling To Either One
Part of what is feeding the fornication among Christians is this false teaching of GOS and GOC: Christians mistakenly think only a few chosen few have “the gift of celibacy,” including famous Christian personalities, such as this guy:
Marriage is pushed so hard by evangelicals and other branches of American Christendom because most Christians assume nobody but nobody can practice sexual self control, that lifelong sexual control is possible only by the tiny minority God ‘gifts’ it to.
It is therefore further reasoned that marriage is the ONLY answer to avoiding fornication for the large part, as in 99%, of humanity, that has not been “gifted with celibacy.”
Christians think of celibates as being “specially gifted” by God, unlike the ordinary believer in the pew, and celibates are thought of as being so very rare.
The Bible does not teach that celibacy or singlehood are gifts God gives to people. Singleness and celibacy are presented in the Bible as options open to any and all believers in Christ.
Marriage is explained in the Bible as being a good gift of God, and it seems to imply this is also true of singleness, but God leaves it up to each person which route they will go. Neither is a status God “calls” one to, “bestows,” or “predestines” one to.
In other words,
God does not pick the name “Jane Smith” out of a hat and then say,
- “I shall grant a Gift of Singleness and Celibacy to Jane. I shall never send Jane Smith a husband, and I shall remove all longing for sex and marriage from Jane, unlike 99% of other Christian women, who I will permit to have these things and desires”
-but this is often exactly how GOS/GOC is taught, caricaturized, and understood among Christians, even among Christian adult celibates and never married themselves, unfortunately.
Anyone can be content in singleness or live without sex.
Christians misunderstand GOS/GOC to mean that God must supernaturally lower the libido in celibates, that God removes all hankering for sex and marriage from them, but this is not so.
The thing is, even celibates have and experience sexual desire: but we maintain the self control not to act upon it.
There is no special God- given super power or “grace,” that makes celibates immune from having sexual feelings (again, this is how most people understand the GOS and GOC talk, and the Bible no where teaches either concept).
All adults and teens are quite capable of exercising control and not having sex. It is up to your personal decision, not to any special “giftings of God” that only a few have been granted by God.
To tell me otherwise is to offend me, because it’s hard work being celibate – I’d like to have sex, believe me. I don’t find it easy abstaining. The only thing that has kept me a virgin this long was personal choice, will power, and trying to live by the Bible’s teachings on sex – not from any magical super powers that God gifted me with, puh-leeze.
Christian singles everywhere:
Please stop using the terms ‘GOS’ and ‘GOC’
By using these terms – which most Christians don’t get to start with, they twist them and misunderstand them – you are helping to perpetuate some of the very problems Christian singles face, the ones I blog about on this blog.
The Bible does not teach GOS/GOC, and even if you believe it does, telling other Christians that God created GOS/GOC is not going to garner you any respect from Christian culture.
Christian culture is so steeped in marriage worship, they already disrespect singleness enough as it is.
Pentecostals think that speaking in tongues is a “gift for today,” and that does not stop Baptists and other cessationists for saying tongues is demonic, stupid, weird, and unbiblical.
You’re not going to get respect for being a virgin at age 40 or 50 merely by telling Christian culture that God “gifted you” with it.
Most Christians think singleness is the rare gift of the few, that only some Christians receive, which makes them assume only a tiny bit of Christians have been enabled to live single and celibate – which is a lie; all Christians are capable of it.
That, coupled with the ‘no expectation of virginity,’ is what is playing into all the fornication among Christians, and the lack of respect for virginity to start with.
Most Christians don’t get that singleness and virginity are personal choice, and that is how they are presented in the Bible.
Maybe if Christians could finally realize that God values both marriage and singlehood equally, and it’s up to each believer which to choose, they’d be a bit more courteous to singles, or value singleness a bit more, not view it as the province of only a few freaky weirdos that *thank God!* they did not get the gift of, but only a few others got stuck with (I mean “gifted with”).
The following editorial about sex surrogates touches on the fact that for a lot of people in secular culture, sex is seen as a rite of passage into adulthood.
But that is the same view in a lot of Baptist, fundamentalist, and evangelical churches as well: you do not become a full fledged adult, supposedly, until and unless you have sex and/or become married.
A previous (Link): editorial by another writer did a nice job of explaining this (as did the book “Singled Out” by Colon and Field).
Even churches maintain the idea that until one becomes sexually active and marries (and no, it doesn’t have to be the other way around despite Christian protests to the contrary), one is not really an “adult.”
(Link): Why We Don’t Need Sexual Healing
- Sexual surrogacy is on the rise as an ethical discussion in Europe; in France, this issue is being championed by women and men with physical disabilities who aren’t able to find sexual fulfillment through any other venue. It’s legal in Denmark, and by some, it’s being promoted as the next “Right to Choose” cause.
Surrogates work with individuals who have intimacy issues, either physical or emotional, or those with mental or physical disabilities and would otherwise not get the chance to experience sex. The act is meant to humanize them and meet a physical need that probably wouldn’t be met otherwise.
The coverage of sexual surrogacy, from the starkly honest perspectives of people with disabilities or in some cases their families, offers an intriguing picture at a difficult, often lonely life. A wheelchair-bound woman on the streets of Paris, loudly proclaiming to passer-byers that she has sexual needs, too, is hard to ignore. My initial response was, “Go ahead. They deserve sex. Every human deserves sex.” Right?
That’s the underlying argument for surrogacy, a compassionate defense of the necessity and right to sex. Sex is considered an integral part of the human experience– the pinnacle of adulthood, affection, human closeness, and enjoyment.
… Sexual desire—intense, demanding, and immediate—is a very real thing. Trust me, I’m horribly aware of that. But, as much as it pains me to say this, it’s not a right or requirement. It’s not a need. And when we try to make these things synonymous with one another, the needs of our bodies begins to reign supreme over all the rest.
Jesus Christ walked this earth for 33 years, unmarried and undefiled, spotless, stainless, and, to be frank, sexless. He lived a perfectly human life—a fulfilling life—but God didn’t work sex and marriage into the short life plan of Jesus on earth, and Jesus didn’t demand it.
This has a profound theological implication for us: Jesus lived his life, wholly fulfilled, because of the relationship he had with the Father. There is something so redemptive about life in the Father that even as Jesus needed to eat and breathe and walk and talk and sleep, he left out sex (and marriage).
By the way, as I noted before, Christians don’t give a crap about singleness (they do not respect singleness or celibacy) unless some liberal scholar or book author says Jesus was married and had sex.
I find it pathetic and hypocritical that Christians do not want to defend virginity, celibacy, and singleness unless and until that of Jesus’ status in those areas is attacked.
Christians went bat crap crazy when author Brown released his ‘DaVinci Code’ book several years ago with the fictional plot line about Jesus marrying Mary Magdelene and having a daughter with her.
Why is it hunky dory for Jesus to be a virgin and single adult, but not me? Christians treat all other singles, besides Jesus and maybe Apostle Paul, like losers, freaks, and weirdos.
Why are Jesus and Paul the exception, why is their single status respected, but not that of other adult Christian virgins/ singles in this day and age?