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.
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.
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