More Singles Commentary by Mark Driscoll (“Two Mistakes Singles Make”)

More Singles Commentary by Mark Driscoll

Hats off to Stephanie Drury who must have a stomach made of iron. I am guessing she visits the Mars Hill (Driscoll’s) blog daily? I don’t have the fortitude to do that.

Anyway, I found this link via Drury’s Facebook group, Stuff Christian Culture Likes (link)

Here is the link to Driscoll’s page, which I will dissect momentarily:
(Link): Two Mistakes Singles Make

Driscoll actually lists, under point 1,
MISTAKE #1: IDOLIZE MARRIAGE

Remember, Driscoll is directing this advice at the UN-married.

And I say: No, no, no (I sound like Amy Winehouse there, sorry).

It’s not singles who idolize marriage, it’s Christian culture, primarily the Christians who are already married, such as Driscoll himself.

Driscoll actually wrote an editorial idolizing parenthood a few weeks ago, called “Who’s Afraid of Pregnant Women.” You can read it here:
(Link): Who’s Afraid of Pregnant Women, by Driscoll.
Driscoll’s editorial was similar to the one I wrote about here, one by Hemingway:
(Link): Response to the Hemingway Editorial ‘Fecundophobia’ – conservatives and Christians continue to idolize children, marriage – which is unbiblical.

Both pieces, the one by Driscoll, and the one by Hemingway, idolize pro-creation and leave no room for the New Testament’s position that lifelong childless-ness and singlehood are fine with God.

It’s hypocritical for Driscoll to shame Christian singles who either desire marriage and parenting for themselves, or who choose to forgo one or both, when he is in fact upholding marriage and parenting in editorials, blogs, and sermons as being laudable goals all should aspire to, especially women.

Not only do married Christians idealize and idolize marriage and parenting, and hold both up as benchmarks a Christian needs to prove success in life, but if a childless or unmarried Christian actively pursues both or either, they will be guilted and shamed for it by these marriage- and parenting- idolizing married Christians, even as Driscoll did in (Link): his previous posts about singles.

If you, a single, admit to wanting marriage, or ask for prayer from another believer that God send you a spouse, or you admit to using a dating site to try to find a marital partner, these pro-marriage married Christians will accuse you of lacking faith, worshipping marriage, trying to fill Jesus’ place with a spouse ((Link): see Driscoll again), not being content in your singleness, and all manner of other negative accusations.

Marriage does not happen magically, folks.

If you were not fortunate enough to meet your sweetie while in college and find yourself still single at age 30 or older, you have no choice but to actively pursue a mate via bars, night clubs, dating sites, and so forth.

From the time I was a pre-teen up until my mid or late 30s, I sincerely believed the Christian propaganda that if only I prayed for a spouse, stayed sexually pure, put God first in my life, trusted God, etc, that God would send me a spouse.

And yet, I find myself still not-married at age 40+.

Obviously, being passive about getting a husband (ie, using prayer, faith, etc) does not work.

(I am not saying that being active is a guarantee, either: sadly, even though some people chase after a spouse and join many dating sites, they sill remain single.
But in my view, your chances of getting married are bound to increase if you do go out and look, and not simply sit about praying and waiting.)

In his introduction, Driscoll gets it wrong:

    For the first time in American history, the majority of adults are single rather than married. Nine out of ten people eventually marry. The average man is about 30 years old for his first marriage, and the average woman is in her late 20s for her first marriage. This is nearly a decade later than was the case 60 years ago, which has contributed to such things as fornication and cohabitation.

Later age of marriage does not necessarily increase, or contribute to, fornication. I’m in my 40s and still a virgin, hello.

It’s both a Christian and Non Christian myth that no human being can go without sex past one’s early or mid twenties, so to stave off fornication, it is assumed one must marry by age 18 or 21.

By the way: I may be a virgin at age 40+, but I have a normal libido.

It’s another false assumption by married Christians and married Non Christians that a 40 year old virgin must:
1. have a medical problem leading to low libido
2. be fat and ugly (not true, I was engaged and have been “hit on’ by both Christian and Non-Christian men)

One reason of several I am still a virgin in my 40s is due to SELF CONTROL and CHOICE.

God did not magically “gift” me or “call me to” virginity, celibacy, or singleness.

Truths:
1a. People CAN CONTROL THEIR SEXUAL BEHAVIOR.
1b. Just because you get horny does NOT mean you HAVE TO HAVE SEX.

These (points 1a and 1b) are points that continue to sail over the heads of the Mark Driscolls of the world, due in part to secular influences in their thinking and a misunderstanding of the Bible’s teachings on celibacy, singlehood, and sex.

Also, marriage does not preclude or prevent sexual sin:
I have many, many blog posts on my blog here where I have linked to many news stories of MARRIED CHRISTIANS, some of whom are preachers, who have been caught, or arrested for, among other things, rape, pornography, spousal abuse, drug abuse, running prostitution rings, or for raping children.

It is simply naive or false to depict singleness as being a position where in one is more apt to commit sexual sin, when there are so many married couples who are having affairs, using porn, visiting prostitutes, or molesting children.

I could be wrong, but since Driscoll cites the information about age of first marriage being late twenties for most people these days, as opposed to a few decades ago, when many people got married early/ mid 20s, that he seems to be an advocate for “early marriage.” I have links below refuting the “early marriage” view that so many Christians are currently advocating.

Driscoll’s point two is MISTAKE #2: DEMONIZE MARRIAGE, where Driscoll writes,

    Your greatest joy is being alone. You like your freedom and don’t want anyone else to encroach upon your life because you’d be forced to consider them, accommodate them, or serve them.

This view is not biblical, so I have no idea why he’s putting contentment with being alone down, as though it is a negative thing.

The Bible does not command all to marry but rather presents life time singleness as being perfectly acceptable to God.

The Bible does not condemn preferring solitude, introversion, or singleness to being married or wanting companionship.

I’d also have to point out to this guy that as my dream of marriage fades, I’ve had no choice but to learn to accept my singleness. I’ve grown to enjoy my time alone (it also doesn’t hurt that I am naturally an introvert and prefer being alone, yay me).

Would this Driscoll guy rather I cry into my pillow nightly over being single, or just enjoy living my life as-is?

Driscoll just said in his (Link): previous post about single women that single females should not put their lives on hold and mope about over not being married.

Now, however, Driscoll seems to be saying if you have mostly made peace with your alone-ness, that is wrong too.

Well, FFS, which is it?

Does Driscoll want singles mooning, moping away, and pining for marriage, or coming to terms with being mostly okay with singlehood?

That’s one thing I hate about these articles by Christians about singles: they are chock full of double standards and contradictions, and this is but one:
Married Christians want you to be happy being single but not TOO happy.

You, as an adult single, according to married Christians, are supposed to find just the right balance of hankering for marriage, but not be so okay with being single that you’re not spazzing out and worrying over being single.

Married Christians claim they want you to be “content” with your singleness, yet, if you truly are content with it (at least part of the time, or most of the time), they disapprove of your contentment.

It seems to piss off some married Christians that you, the single, feel fine with being single, if not all the time, at least most of the time. Some married Christians want you, the single, to pine and hanker for marriage, at least a little bit, and if you do not, they assume you are selfish or unChristian in some capacity.

Why do married Christians – and it’s not just Driscoll, I’ve seen other preachers espouse this same advice and views – keep putting these unfair, nonsensical, contradictory, weird burdens on to the shoulders of adult singles?

Do you ask any other sorts of Christians in your church to maintain these sorts of odd, diametrically opposed views and beliefs? Probably not.

At another point Driscoll writes,

    I had a recent conversation with a single Christian man in his mid 30s that illustrates this point. He does not believe he has the gift of singleness…

The Bible does not contain the phrase or teaching or concept “gift of singleness.”

I have blogged about this many times before, I refer you to those posts:

The money winning quote from SCCLs Facebook commentary (Link to SCCL post) on this particular Driscoll page goes to:

Cristyn Kelly

    As a woman who was a single in the church until age 27, I just want to give a hearty EFF YOU to pastor Driscoll.

    When you are constantly taught that your worth is derived from being a wife and a mother, and wives and mothers are idolized on mothers day and other days of the year, how the freaking hell are you supposed to NOT think about getting married all the time and obsess over it?

    I mean, have you BEEN to pinterest lately (which I am so thankful didn’t exist when I was single)?

    Young women are idolizing marriage because you are telling them that that is the end goal in life, and the thing to aspire to most.

    You can’t have it both ways. You can’t tell young women that they must get married in order to have any worth, and then turn around and tell them to quit obsessing over it.

    This is really unfair, and it’s not treating them with any kind of love or respect whatsoever.

    You’re forcing them to hate themselves. Ugh, my heart goes out so much to the single women in his church.

Cristyn Kelly is absolutely correct: most married Christians set marriage up as an IDOL then they shame singles for trying to achieve it for themselves.

Another good quote from the SCCL page:

    by Anna Juniper Roberts
    My FAVORITE thing! Married people assuming they know more about being single than single people!

This was also a funny and somewhat accurate portrayal of Driscoll’s commentary, by Clayton Gruenstein

    To singles: I don’t want you to feel as marginalized as you actually have been lately, so here’s some generic online advice. Don’t idolize what I have and you don’t.

    Don’t demonize the blessing of marriage that you don’t have either.

    It’s just that you should’ve been married 10 years ago. Sorry you missed it and became shameful fornicators.

    One day you may be blessed with marriage and gain the extra special understanding I have, and you might even get a chance to experience the joy and pride that comes from patronizing the unmarried with worthless advice surrounded by an air of false superiority.

Other interesting quotes from the SCCL discussion thread:

by Paul Valentine

    then there’s this: “… Chris­tian­ity Today shows that 45 per­cent of Chris­tians indi­cate hav­ing done some­thing sex­u­ally inap­pro­pri­ate, and 23 per­cent hav­ing extra­mar­i­tal inter­course (Ander­son, 2000). These num­bers pretty much mir­ror the national averages.” Apparently Christian marriage leads to fornication and adultery.

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Related posts, this blog:

(Link): Mark Driscoll on Single Christian Women Who Desire Marriage – the positives and negatives of his piece

(Link): Douglas Wilson and Christian Response FAIL to Sexual Sin – No Body Can Resist Sex – supposedly – Re Celibacy

(Link): Mark Driscoll pastor of Mars Hill – views on singleness

(Link): Obnoxious and Sexist Preacher Mark Driscoll Wants Christian Singles to Stay Single Indefinitely – And Even Though Unwanted, Prolonged Singleness has Been a Huge Issue For Christian Singles for A Couple Decades Now – Driscoll: ‘Christians should not marry pro choicers’

(Link): Mark Driscoll pastor of Mars Hill – views on singleness

(Link): Response to the Hemingway Editorial ‘Fecundophobia’ – conservatives and Christians continue to idolize children, marriage – which is unbiblical

(Link): Why So Much Fornication – Because Christians Have No Expectation of Sexual Purity

(Link): Is Desire For Marriage Idolatry? (No, it’s not)

(Link): Christian Double Standard – Pray Earnestly For Anything & Everything – Except Marriage?

(Link): Videos About Family Idolatry by Christians / Desiring Marriage is NOT Idolatry

(Link): Hypocrisy in Christian Culture – Those who idolize parenting chide infertiles for trying to have kids

(Link): Obnoxious and Sexist Preacher Mark Driscoll Wants Christian Singles to Stay Single Indefinitely – And Even Though Unwanted, Prolonged Singleness has Been a Huge Issue For Christian Singles for A Couple Decades Now – Driscoll: ‘Christians should not marry pro choicers’

This page is also useful for HETERO singles and HETERO celibates:
(Link): New website launched to help Christians experiencing same-sex attraction / Editorial about Celibacy by Ed Shaw

(Link): The Holy Spirit Sanctifies a Person, Not A Spouse – Weekly Christian Marriage Advice Column Pokes Holes in Christian Stereotype that Marriage Automatically Sanctifies People

(Link): No, Christians and Churches Do Not Idolize Virginity and Sexual Purity – [they either downplay both or attack both]

(Link): Christians Who Attack Virginity Celibacy and Sexual Purity – and specifically Russell D. Moore and James M. Kushiner

(Link): Sometimes Shame Guilt and Hurt Feelings Over Sexual Sins Is a Good Thing – but – Emergents, Liberals Who Are Into Virgin and Celibate Shaming

(Link): Anti Virginity Editorial by Christian Blogger Tim Challies – Do Hurt / Shame Feelings or Sexual Abuse Mean Christians Should Cease Supporting Virginity or Teaching About Sexual Purity

(Link): I thought Christians “worshipped” virginity? Guess not: TLW (True Love Waits) Spokesman Says TLW Will NOT “Elevate Virginity” – Life Way to Relaunch “True Love Waits” Campaign

(Link): More Virgin and Celibate Shaming in Article: How the New Abstinence Movement is Trying to Reshape Our Views on Sex (from Relevant Magazine) Another Christian Anti Virginity Hit Piece – Fornicators Need To Repent of Their Pride in their Fornication Testimonies Maybe?

SEXUAL SINS BY MARRIED COUPLES, some are CHRISTIAN:

(Link): New Study Released: Cheaters: More American Married Women Admit to Adultery (links)

(Link): Pro Ball Player Convicted for Kid Diddling Three Kids Claims to be an Outstanding Christian (and he’s married with a kid of his own) – again, why should Christian single gals limit themselves to only marrying Christian men? The Whole “Being Yoked Equally” thing is irrelevant and unduly limiting for singles

(Link): Married Christian Woman Sexually Preys on Kids At Phillips’ Family-Worshipping Church – Married People Not More Godly Than Singles – Married Sex Must Not Be As Hot As Christians Teach

(Link): Update: Family Worshiping Cult Leader – Preacher Doug Phillips – Admits to Physical Affair / And Christian Skeptics Who Deny that Churches and Christians Harbor Stereotypes Against Unmarried Women (and Men)

(Link): Wife of Kinda Famous TV Preacher Guy Committed Multiple Affairs – He tells congregation at church service

(Link): Pastor Busted in Prostitution Sting – If Married Sex So Great Why Do So Many Married Christian Men Have Affairs

(Link): Wife of Preacher Shoots, Kills Him, Recounts Years of Physical and Sexual Abuse – So Much for the Equally Yoked Teaching and the Notion that Christian married sex is Mind Blowing

(Link): Prejudiced Writer Stupidly Blames Slutty Halloween Costumes and Societal Ills on Childless the Childfree, and Unmarried Adults – but Married people and parents are not perfect either

(Link): Why Christians Need to Uphold Lifelong Celibacy as an Option for All Instead of Merely Pressuring All to Marry – vis a vis Sexless Marriages, Counselors Who Tell Marrieds that Having Affairs Can Help their Marriages

(Link): More Married Couples Admit to Sexless Marriages (various articles) / Christians promise you great frequent sex if you wait until marriage, but the propaganda is not true

(Link): False Christian Hype About Waiting Until Marriage For Sex – We’ve Gone From “It’s Mindblowing” to Now: “It’s Magical” Re: Timothy Keller / Tim Keller Virginity Celibacy Singles PreMarital Sex

(Link): Pat Robertson Excuses Female Adultery – hey, we are all “sexual beings”

(Link): Married Preacher and Father of Five (Geronimo Aguilar) In Trouble Over Multiple Affairs and Sex with Kids

(Link): Married Man Having Affair With Married Woman

(Link): Self Professing Christian Married Guy of 21 Years and Father of Two Admits to Being a Pervy Unfaithful Rat Bastard Who Uses Cheating Sites to Hook Up With Greedy Vapid 20 Somethings

(Link): Married Youth Pastor Father of Four Caught Raping and Molesting Several Little Boys claims the molesting kept the boys sexually pure and cures them of homosexuality

(Link): Married Couple Charged With Making Dog Porn (wife had sex with dogs while husband filmed it)

(Link): Ex-mega church IFB pastor (who is married) Jack Schaap gets 12 years in teen sex scandal

(Link): Why Christians Need to Uphold Lifelong Celibacy as an Option for All Instead of Merely Pressuring All to Marry – vis a vis Sexless Marriages, Counselors Who Tell Marrieds that Having Affairs Can Help their Marriages

MATERIAL REFUTING EARLY MARRIAGE

(Link): A Response by Colon to Regnerus Re: Misguided Early Marriage Propaganda

(Link): The Nauseating Push by Evangelicals for Early Marriage

(Link): A Case Against Early Marriage by Ashley Moore (editorial)

(Link): Rush to early marriage feeds Utah’s higher-than-average divorce rate (article)

(Link): Secular Media Also Pushing Early Marriage

(Link): Misapplication of Biblical Verses About Fertility (also mentions early marriage) – a paper by J. McKeown

(Link): Laurie Cole: Another Early Marriage Supporter

MARRIAGE DOES NOT GUARANTEE SEXUAL SATISFACTION ✤

(Link): Marriage Doesn’t Necessarily Guarantee Great Sex or Any At All

(Link): More Married Couples Admit to Sexless Marriages (various articles) / Christians promise you great frequent sex if you wait until marriage, but the propaganda is not true

(Link): Her Marriage is Sexless While She Cares For Sick Elderly Father

(Link): Woman who was virgin on wedding night now gets next to no sex in marriage

(Link): False Christian Hype About Waiting Until Marriage For Sex – We’ve Gone From “It’s Mindblowing” to Now: “It’s Magical” Re: Timothy Keller / Tim Keller Virginity Celibacy Singles PreMarital Sex

(Link): Wife Writes to Ask Amy About Her Sexless Marriage October 2013

(Link): Getting Married Does Not Necessarily Guarantee Frequent Hot Satisfying Sexy Sex – Husband is Sexless for Eight Years (article)

(Link): Resident Christian Marriage Advice Writer at Christian Mag Admits Some Christian Marriages are Sexless