Bethke: “Christians Do Not Need To Get Married To Live A Full And Flourishing Existence”

Bethke: “Christians Do Not Need To Get Married To Live A Full And Flourishing Existence”

Before I get to the link itself (the editorial is located on The Christian Post site), whoever Tweeted the link to the article via Christian Post targeted “Young” Christians. I tweeted that account to tell them their quote – “[Christians] Do Not Need To Get Married To Live A Full And Flourishing Existence” applies equally to older Christians as well.

I find it irritating that frequently, when commentary about marriage comes up on Christian sites, nine times out of ten, it addresses singles who are in their 20s, or at least younger than age 35. There are adults singles who are over the age of 35, and I am sick and tired of this group being ignored.

My second point of contention is the headline itself as it appears on the Post’s page:

  • Jefferson Bethke to Christian Singles: Don’t Make Marriage an Idol

Normally when I link to other people’s blog posts or to news articles, I like to keep the original headline intact, or as close to the original as I can. In this case, I opted to change it as it appears in the heading on my blog. I find that headline as it appears on The Post to be problematic and troubling, because it seems to imply that a single adult wanting to get married is idolatry itself.

That is not so. Merely wanting something it not necessarily tantamount to making whatever that ‘something’ is into an idol.

Too often, Christians shame single adults for wanting to be married – stop it.Stop doing that. There is nothing wrong with a single adult wanting to be married or experiencing episodic bouts of unhappiness or frustration with being single when they’d prefer to be married.

Secondly, it’s generally not adult singles who make marriage into an idol, but churches, church culture, and 95% of married Christians.

Often times, married Christians make marriage out to be God’s intended purpose for most people, and they behave as though singleness is “second class,” a mistake, a bad thing, or a disease to be cured.

Would yours truly writing this post like to be married? Yes. However, this does not mean I take kindly to either being ignored due to my single status or treated as though I am not worthy, good, or worthwhile because I am single. (Please see this post on my blog for more on that.)

Here is the link to the Christian Post editorial (I changed the headline in my link to something less grating)  what he says in this interview / editorial applies to singles of all ages, not just “young Christians”:

(Link): Bethke: “Christians Do Not Need To Get Married To Live A Full And Flourishing Existence”

  • Young Christians should understand that being single is acceptable within the church, and they should avoid an idolatrous worship of marriage, evangelical speaker Jefferson Bethke said in a recent YouTube video.
  • In a brief video on his personal channel, Bethke addressed the idea of singleness, suggesting that often times, the modern church does a poor job of making single Christians feel welcome and accepted.
  • His message, he explains, is directed specifically at church leadership, as he believes churches need to sincerely ask themselves “are we making a space for single people?”
  • “So many times, we do such a bad job of creating a space for singles,” Bethke explains, adding that young Christians “do not need to get married to live a full and flourishing existence.”
  • Bethke notes that while church leadership don’t explicitly say it, singles can feel like “you’re a JV Christian until you get married.”

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Household Liturgies (by Jonathan Storment) – Turning Marriage and the Nuclear Family Into Idols

Household Liturgies (by Jonathan Storment) – Turning Marriage and the Nuclear Family Into Idols

  • PREFACE: my blog stalker, John Morgan, is probably going to take this link I spotted today and share it on his own blog, reference it on his own blog, or visit this other blog to leave a comment there.
  • The guy apparently takes content from my blog without giving me credit, which is not only dishonest or unfair, but it’s hypocritical, because in the past he deemed me untrustworthy for not stating my real name on my blog or posts.
  • If you think I am untrustworthy for using a pen name, or for whatever reason, stop taking any links, content, and ideas from my blog to use on your own blog, or to run over to other sites I link to in order to leave comments there. You are being a huge hypocrite.
  • Please see (Link): this post for more on John Morgan or (Link): this post. Thank you.

Spotted on scotmcknight’s Twitter (and this is on his Jesus Creed blog):

(Link): Household Liturgies (by Jonathan Storment)

Some of what Storment and Smith discuss as seen in this post on Jesus Creed blog was referred to in secular studies such as mentioned here (Link): Greedy Marriages.

Storment quotes an author named Smith on this page, then inserts his own comments between Smiths’s words, so, depending on whom I am excerpting below, you’re either reading Storment or Smith (if you find this confusing, please click the link above to see the post on the Jesus Creed blog; the formatting there will make it more clear who the writer is):

Excerpts:

  • By Jonathan Storment
  • ….Smith’s [James K.A. Smith, author of “You Are What You Love”] great strength is being able to connect classic Christian wisdom with his keen insights as a cultural critic.
  • For example, Smith points out that it shouldn’t be surprising to us that family/marriages are falling apart in today’s world. Because we have made them cultural idols, and our practices have formed us into thinking of marriage and the nuclear family as an ultimate.

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Christian Speaker Christine Caine Apologizes to Adult Singles For Singles Being Marginalized by the Church, for Church Idolizing Marriage

Christian Speaker Christine Caine Apologizes to Adult Singles For Singles Being Marginalized by the Church, for Church Idolizing Marriage

I was watching the TBN program “Praise the Lord” tonight (April 22, 2016), and Christian speaker Christine Caine (who I don’t know a whole lot about) was a guest.

Caine has a new book called “Unashamed” she was there to promote. I have not read the book; it’s supposed to be released in May of 2016.

If I am remembering the program correctly, Caine said a chapter in her book apologizes to adult singles (especially the women) – the never married, the widows, the divorced – for how the church (as in church universal, all Christians) have sidelined, ignored, or heaped shame upon adult singles for being single.

Caine informed hosts Lori and Matt Crouch that about 57% of people (not sure if she meant 57% of people in the United States or the entire world) are single now – but the church keeps holding marriage up as the example, so that women who don’t marry by the age of 35 are made to feel ashamed or like failures.

Caine also mentioned that the 57% number is also the same figure for the church, that there are many, many single adults in the Christian faith.

Caine said that the church ignores the never-married and the “single again” (such as widows). She apologized to them for this.

The Crouch couple, Matt and Lori, who own TBN, seemed a little surprised or shocked to hear that 57% of adults are single in and out of the church.

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Eight Ways to Rethink the Conversation About Singleness by K. Kreminski

Eight Ways to Rethink the Conversation About Singleness by K. Kreminski

  • PREFACE: my blog stalker, John Morgan, is probably going to take this link I spotted today and share it on his own blog, reference it on his own blog, or visit this other blog to leave a comment there.
  • The guy apparently takes content from my blog without giving me credit, which is not only dishonest or unfair, but it’s hypocritical, because in the past he deemed me untrustworthy for not stating my real name on my blog or posts.
  • If you think I am untrustworthy for using a pen name, or for whatever reason, stop taking any links, content, and ideas from my blog to use on your own blog, or to run over to other sites I link to in order to leave comments there. You are being a huge hypocrite.
  • Please see (Link): this post for more on John Morgan or (Link): this post. Thank you.

This blog post by Kreminski about singleness (link and excerpt much farther below) hits on several points I’ve been raising on my own blog for the last 3 or 4 years:

Christians are already too marriage focused, and in their defensive posture of saving culture and marriage from what they perceive as threats (such as homosexual marriage and liberalism), they hype marriage to the exclusion of singleness.

Some conservatives and Christians go so far as to denigrate singleness in order to extol marriage, something the Bible never does. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 7 it is better to stay single than marry, and that marriage does nothing but bring people problems in life.

I have also noted on my blog many times before that the demographics in our nation (and others) have shifted with more people staying single over their lifetimes, or, if they marry, they are marrying at much older ages than they used to. Most conservative expressions of Christianity, however, continue to cater to married couples.

Out of the Christians who do notice this demographic shift, they shame singles for being singles and promote something called “early marriage.” These Christians shame and scold Christians to get married, rather than just accept them in their single status.

In previous blog posts, I have also discussed what I termed “Married People Privilege.” Married people, especially ones with children, like to think that their lives are ten times more difficult than that of childless singles.

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Americans Are Nostalgic for a Family Life That Never Existed by S. Coontz

Americans Are Nostalgic for a Family Life That Never Existed by S. Coontz

I have blogged about this book before, back in 2013. You can read the former post (Link): here.

Here is another review of the same book:

(Link): Americans Are Nostalgic for a Family Life That Never Existed

Excerpts:

  • March 2016
  • By Stephanie Coontz
  • There is a tendency for many Americans to view present-day family and gender relations through the foggy lens of nostalgia for a mostly mythical past.
  • …One example of how discussions of family life are still distorted by myths about the past is the question of how marriage has evolved historically.
  • Both sides in the Supreme Court decision extending marriage rights to same-sex couples demonstrated confusion on this issue. In his dissent from the majority opinion, Chief Justice John Roberts wrote, “For all . . . millennia, across all . . . civilizations, ‘marriage’ referred to only one relationship: the union of a man and a woman.”
  • Its primordial purpose, Roberts asserted, was to make sure that all children would be raised “in the stable conditions of a lifelong relationship.”
  • These assertions are simply not true. The most culturally preferred form of marriage in the historical record—indeed, the type of marriage referred to most often in the first five books of the Old Testament—was actually of one man to several women.
  • Some societies also practiced polyandry, where one woman married several men, and some even sanctioned ghost marriages, where parents married off a son or daughter to the deceased child of another family with whom they wished to establish closer connections.
  • The most common purpose of marriage in history was not to ensure children had access to both their mother and father but to acquire advantageous in-laws and expand the family labor force.
  • …In Anglo-American common law, a child born out of wedlock was a filius nullius, a child of nobody, entitled to nothing. Until the early 1970s, several American states denied such children the right to inherit from their biological father even if he had publicly acknowledged them or they were living with him.

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If You Were Sexually Abused, You Cannot Work At These Churches

If You Were Sexually Abused, You Cannot Work At These Churches

Not only is child sexual abuse addressed on some of these employment forms, but according to these articles (links farther below), some churches ask applicants about their views on fornication, or if they’ve ever been accused of homosexuality.

I find this pretty hypocritical. If you’ve followed this blog before, you know I was waiting until marriage to have sex – as a result, I am now over 40 years of age and still a virgin, because I never married.

What I have observed as I’ve gotten older is that while many Christians pay “lip service” to respecting adult virginity or celibacy, that in practice, they do not.

Sometimes, some Christians (conservatives, no less, but also most progressives) ridicule and mock virginity, and they ridicule or put down adult virgins for being virgins. (Please see the links under the “Related Posts” at the bottom of this post for examples.)

Not only is there little to no philosophical, theological, or intellectual support for adult virginity (and by extension, adult singleness past one’s mid 20s or so), but there is no concrete support – churches and Christians seldom have ministries to meet the needs of adult single celibates.

There are rarely sermons preached on a regular basis on adult single celibacy – compare that to the topic of marriage. Most churches offer a “ten steps to a stronger marriage” type sermon series once every few weeks but never sermonize about singleness.

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Stop Pressuring Women to Be Moms: It’s Insulting to Assume We All Want The Same Thing by R K Bussel

Stop Pressuring Women to Be Moms: It’s Insulting to Assume We All Want The Same Thing by R K Bussel

(Link): Stop Pressuring Women to Be Moms: It’s Insulting to Assume We All Want The Same Thing

Excerpts

  • I used to wonder why my childfree friends were so adamant about what they didn’t want—but I get it now
  • We talk a lot about freedom of choice when it comes to reproduction, but there’s still one choice that women face an unconscionable amount of backlash over: the decision not to have kids. In an essay for (Link): Marie Claire, writer Starre Vartan details the opposition she’s faced in the dating and medical arenas over her choice to remain childfree, with a gynecologist telling her “That’s what we’re here for” and two boyfriends deliberately removing condoms during sex in a disgusting attempt to force her to change her mind:
  • “I…explained how terrified I was, physically and mentally, to be pregnant, to care for needy small humans. Two different, otherwise wonderful, handsome, and brilliant men said they ‘understood’ after I opened up about my fears. And then they each promptly sabotaged the birth control that I was very strict about.”
  • Assuming that all women automatically want kids is insulting—to everyone. It insults those who do plan to have kids or are parents already by diminishing the sheer amount of physical and emotional labor that goes into the undertaking. It insults those who don’t want kids, or aren’t sure, by elevating motherhood above every other option….
  • …Nobody wins by coercing someone else into becoming a parent, or making someone feel guilty, damaged or ostracized for not wanting kids.

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Men Aren’t Entitled to Sex: Crybaby Guy Throws Racist Fit at Woman Who Politely Refuses to Hook up by R K Bussel

Men Aren’t Entitled to Sex: Crybaby Guy Throws Racist Fit at Woman Who Politely Refuses to Hook up by R K Bussel

It sure does seem that a lot of guys think they are owed sex.

A lot of Christian men not only feel that they are entitled sex (once married), but both before and after marriage, they feel entitled to everything from women: they expect to have their egos stroked all the time, for instance.

Do you Christian men who arrogantly expect women to uplift you and tell you how great you are, ever consider encouraging women in your lives, whether they are single or married?

Women sometimes need or want some external validation, yet whiny men (including Christian ones) seldom consider giving any to women. They rudely assume God put women here only to meet men’s needs. Nope: it goes both ways.

Women have needs too. Women have days or phases in their lives when they get tired, discouraged, worn down and could use a kind word or a helping hand.

(Link):  Men Aren’t Etitled to Sex: Crybaby Guy Throws Racist fit at woman who Politely Refuses to Hook up by R K Bussel

Excerpts:

  • Even if he buys her dinner, even if she asks him out, even if she flirts—there’s no excuse for this behavior
  • …That he turned on a dime to insult her should tell us that he only saw her as an object he wanted available for his pleasure, whether to stroke his ego or stroke other body parts. The moment she rejects him, even though she doesn’t say a single negative thing toward him, he interprets that as pretty much the worst thing a woman could do to him. Her not wanting sex automatically means, in his mind, she’s basically an evil bitch who’s wasted his time.
  • Another obvious statement: her not wanting to have sex with him doesn’t automatically mean she didn’t like him, or didn’t have a good date. Maybe she did, maybe she didn’t, but by treating sex as the one and only arbiter of success, he turned what could have been a fun night into a nightmare.

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James Dobson’s Flawed Take on Population Decline (no.1: We’re Not in Decline) by T. Grant

James Dobson’s Flawed Take on Population Decline (no.1: We’re Not in Decline) by T. Grant

As this report notes (link is much farther down this blog page), more pressure is placed on WOMEN to marry and have children than is placed on MEN.

I know that culture and Christians can treat single / celibate / childless men like trash, but they are TEN TIMES worse on Christian WOMEN in these regards.

Women get far more pressured to marry and have kids than men do or ever will.

Women get more shamed and insulted by Christians (and at times, secular culture) for staying single, celibate, and childless than males ever are.

Just because most women are capable of carrying a baby inside them, society and churches think it’s their DUTY to have a baby (as though women serve no other purpose in life), and if they choose to opt out (or cannot have a kid), they are still marginalized or insulted for it.

Men don’t face nearly as much insult or pressure to have kids as women do.

I am right of center – but I agree with this left wing (liberal) guy that other right wingers such as Dobson’s real goal is to be against what he perceives as liberal threats to the church or culture. That is one very real motivator some right wingers have, in why they do things like harass women to have children.

I also want to say how utterly moronic I find this approach by Dobson.

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A Liberation Theology for Single People by Christena

A Liberation Theology for Single People by Christena

Shepherdess2 on Twitter sent me a link to this (the link is farther below, thank you Shepherdess2) – I sure do appreciate that. At this point, I’ve skimmed over the first half and like what I see so far.

The author seems to touch on a few themes I have on my blog a time or two before, like how in spite of the fact conservative Christians say they respect singleness, they actually spend more time and attention supporting marriage than they do singleness, which I believe reveals their true feelings, as far as I am concerned.

For every book, sermon, or blog post by a conservative Christian group about singleness, I can point you to ten more about marriage by those same people.

She (the author Christena), like I, have noticed that most Christians are out of step with our changing culture: over half of Americans are now single, but many Christians take no notice of this and continue to act as though everyone is married with children at home.

The few Christians who have noticed this change in demographics go into fits of hysteria or complaining, yelling and screaming at young people to marry, when they should rather be assisting singles where they are in their singleness.

(Link): A Liberation Theology for Single People by Christena

Here are a few excepts:

  • ….Now that I’m “35 and alone,” I’m beginning to formally construct a liberation theology of singleness. This article is just a beginning — and I’m hoping for feedback from single people.
  • The Love of God for Single People
  • A couple of weeks ago while I was at Biola University (an evangelical Christian institution), the administration highlighted a brand-new (Link): Center for Marriage and Relationships (CMR). Generously funded by the university, this center seeks to strengthen marriages by offering premarital resources, free marriage conferences, and online articles such as “5 Healthy Habits of Happy Couples.”

  • To be fair, the CMR’s webpage does include one video on “healthy perspectives on marriage and singleness” in which singles are encouraged not to view singleness as “a malady to be cured.” 

  • However, the large volume of marriage-centric resources compared to the lone video on singleness suggests that singleness — while perhaps not a malady — is definitely not worth thinking about, supporting or investing in.

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Christian Blogger About Divorce, Pastor Andrew Webb, Thinks All To Most Mid-Life Never – Married or Single – Again Adults Are Mal-Adjusted, Ugly Losers Who Have Too Much Baggage

Christian Blogger About Divorce, Pastor Andrew Webb, Thinks All To Most Mid-Life Never – Married or Single – Again Adults Are Mal-Adjusted, Ugly Losers Who Have Too Much Baggage

Holy guacamole did I ever find a post by a Christian guy who really knows how to slam never-married or “single again” adults.

I was astounded by parts of this guy’s post.

I almost re-tweeted a link to his blog post about divorce from my Twitter page (I saw someone else share it on Twitter), thinking someone may find it helpful (judging from the title alone, it sounded like it might be a good page) but thankfully, I skimmed it first.

I left a reply under the guy’s post, and his blog says my post is awaiting moderation. Who knows if he will approve it to appear or not. I have copied in my reply farther below. I tried to be civil in my reply.

I’m going to try to be charitable here on my own blog: maybe this guy does not realize how deeply insulting his blog post is – the parts where he talks about divorced people or the never-married.

This guy should realize that upholding marriage or discouraging divorce does not necessitate INSULTING SINGLE PEOPLE.

You do not have to scare married people out of divorce by suggesting that all “single again” or never-married adults out there are great big, scary losers who have a lot of baggage, so if married people divorce, they won’t be able to find a great partner.

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Complementarian Churches and the Single Adult Woman by J. Dyer

Complementarian Churches and the Single Adult Woman by J. Dyer

This is a page by a woman in her mid 30s who thought she would have been married by now but still finds herself single. She describes how the gender complementarian churches she has attended don’t minister to adult single women properly.

She also notes in this page how following all the usual Christian dating advice has not worked – she’s tried it all and is still single; this is a phenomenon I’ve blogged about before.

(Link): Complementarian Churches and the Single Adult Woman by J. Dyer

Excerpts:

  • …But it [meeting a spouse at church] didn’t [happen]. Well-meaning friends told me all manner of things about how God must be teaching me something (it appears I’m a slow learner). Or–my favorite–if I could just delight in the Lord, when I least expected it, God would bring “the man” into my life.
  • Churches often try to tell women how to be women without considering the whole range of God-inspired possibilities. There will always be outliers to the model they create.

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Virginity is a Sacred Choice, Not a Shameful Status by C. Martin / Giving Sex to a Man is Not A Relationship Lasting Guarantee Contra Comic Chelsea Handler

Virginity is a Sacred Choice, Not a Shameful Status by C. Martin / Giving Sex to a Man is Not A Guarantee for a Lasting Relationship – Contra Comic Chelsea Handler

The following blog post contains strong profanity in places and some frank sexual talk.
—————————————–
Not that I object to this editorial per se, but it’s being carried by the same site (a pro-life site) that (Link): usually denigrates female virginity – because they put too high a premium on people pro-creating, and if a woman is remaining chaste, she is, in their opinion, in sin, or error or some sort, for not having sex and making babies, because supposedly, a woman’s only purpose in life is to make babies (even though the Bible no where teaches this concept).

But here is a guest editorial they are featuring where the author is defending a person’s right to sexually abstain, and it’ okay.

(Link): Virginity is a Sacred Choice, Not a Shameful Status by C. Martin

Excerpts:

  • by C. Martin
  • Our society is obsessed with talking about sex, regardless if you’re having it or not. Take for instance the recent March (Link): cover of People magazine, which featured the title, “Bachelor’s Sean & Catherine, Waiting for Our Wedding night.”
  • To make things a bit clearer, they added below the title, “No sex until ‘I do.’” The cover may intrigue those who scratch their heads, wondering in earnest why anyone would (gasp) wait to have sex.

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Francis Chan Challenges Christians: Stop Idolizing Family, Put Christ’s Mission First

Francis Chan Challenges Christians: Stop Idolizing Family, Put Christ’s Mission First

Yep. Christians idolize the family. I’ve been blogging about that for a few years now.

(Link): Francis Chan Challenges Christians: Stop Idolizing Family, Put Christ’s Mission First

Excerpts:

  • March 23, 2016|3:20 pm
    BY KEVIN PORTER , CHRISTIAN POST REPORTER
  • Many Christians have lost their edge — their radical, burning fire for Christ, says preacher and author Francis Chan, a firm believer that while family is important, the mission of the Kingdom of God should come first.

    In a video message recently shared by (Link): ChurchLeaders.com, Chan says that after many Christians get married they place Christ’s mission on the back burner, spending their days in the bubble of relationships, children and the comfort of security.

  • The preacher challenges married Christians to stoke the flames of their passion for Christ and his work, and to step out of their comfort zones to take more risks to further His Kingdom.

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Church Knew of Preacher’s Affairs, Advised Him To Keep It Quiet

Church Knew of Preacher’s Affairs, Advised Him To Keep It Quiet

This is a follow up to my previous post (there are further updates at the bottom of this post):

The pastor I reference in my headline of this blog post is Tullian Tchividjian.

I know I probably should not be surprised at this point, but I still find myself surprised or dumbfounded at how so many Christians or churches today do not take sexual sins seriously.

I already know that most churches prefer to hear sexual purity sermons (Link): from fornicators than they do from actual, honest- to- God adult virgins.

But I thought, maybe, just maybe, some churches out there at least have the sense to sermonize against adultery and other sorts of sexual sins, or hold sexual sinners  ~ especially pastors who commit adultery or some other sort of sexual sin – accountable.

But no. They don’t.

This article says that this church knew about their preacher’s adultery (even the previous one), and asked him to keep it hush-hush.

Unbelievable.

What is that verse from the Bible, again?: “God is shamed and judged negatively among the Gentiles because of your behavior.” -or something like that.

Okay, take that verse and reword it slightly to, “God is shamed and judged harshly among the Non-Christians because of your behavior,” and I think that would apply.

Do these churches and people claiming the name of Jesus Christ not care at all about what Jesus taught?

Do churches today and Christians not care about Christian ethics and morality, about doing the right thing, even if doing so may be unpopular?

How can anyone who claims to be a Jesus-follower be so causal about following His teachings?

Note that this other woman he had an affair with is MARRIED.

That’s right, Christians like to depict SINGLE women as the threats to married men, when here we have married people cheating on their spouses with OTHER MARRIED PEOPLE.

(Link): Coral Ridge Elders Knew of Tullian Tchividjian’s Affair With Married Woman, Advised Him to Keep Secret, Source Alleges 

  • BY LEONARDO BLAIR , CHRISTIAN POST REPORTER
  • March 18, 2016|4:07 pm
  • At least two elders at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Florida allegedly had knowledge that their former pastor, Tullian Tchividjian, grandson to evangelical icon Billy Graham, had engaged in an adulterous affair with a married member of his flock and advised him to keep it secret from his wife.

    Reacting to a (Link): report in The Christian Post Thursday that Tchividjian was fired by Willow Creek Church in Winter Springs, Florida, after they were blindsided by his latest confession, a highly placed source informed CP Friday that the recent disclosure is really the result of a “systemic cover up” by church leaders that began two years ago.

    “Tullian had actually been confronted about that two years ago. At the time, he was confronted by two elders at Coral Ridge and Steve Brown (Key Life Ministries), and confessed to having a relationship with a married woman,” said the source.

    “At the time, he was not advised to step down as lead pastor, but instead was advised not to immediately inform his wife about the matter — she only learned about this last week. To make matters worse, the two elders never informed the rest of the session about this situation. One can only wonder whether the second situation could have been averted if the first situation had not been covered up,” the source continued.

    “This is not a situation that Tullian had kept quiet and suddenly disclosed to someone for the first time last week. It’s been known by at least three others in addition to Tullian and the woman involved for over two years,” the source added.

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Preacher Tullian Tchividjian Possibly Involved in Another Inappropriate Sexual Relationship (March 2016) / Why Do Christians Not Have a RBGR – Reverse Billy Graham Rule

Preacher Tullian Tchividjian Possibly Involved in Another Inappropriate Sexual Relationship (March 2016) / Why Do Christians Not Have a RBGR – Reverse Billy Graham Rule?

Here is a story of a male preacher who allegedly cheated on his wife, possibly more than once, if the new report is true (links farther below). It makes me wonder: do Christians not have a Reverse Billy Graham Rule?

Normally, Christians adhere to this sexist idea that single women are sexual sex pots, temptresses, who will try to bed a man, especially if he is married.

Yet, I never hear these same Christians issue a “Beware of Christian Married Men Who Will Try to Sleep with Women” rule or advisement to single – or married – women.

Think about it. Married Christian men, including men who work as preachers, have sex with women they are not married to (see more examples (Link): here). Some of these married pastors who commit adultery will cheat not only with single women, but with women who are married to other men.

Yet – I never really hear of Christian women who insist on taking a chaperone with them when meeting any and all men, whether in public or in private.

I don’t hear Christian women insisting that an office door must stay open when they meet with  any or all men, all due to the percentage of slime ball married male pastors who do in fact take advantage of women.

I don’t see, in other words, most Christian women treating all Christian men as potential rapists or as sexual temptresses, but Christian culture sure does treat women in this manner:

However, it’s not women taking advantage of married men in the majority of these news stories, it’s quite the opposite.

Yet, there is no Reverse Billy Graham Rule in place to protect women from men.

I am not arguing in favor of a Reverse Billy Graham Rule, you understand, merely pointing out the sexist double standard held by Christians on this issue.

Preacher Tullian Tchividjian Possibly Involved in Another Inappropriate Sexual Relationship

This post is an update to this older one on my blog:

According to reports at Warren Throckmorton’s blog, Tchividjian may have been involved in yet another inappropriate sexual relationship with another woman.

You can read more about it here:

(Link): Tullian Tchividjian Out at Willow Creek Presbyterian; Majority of Liberate Network Board Members Quit

Excerpt:

  • March 2016
  • Tchividjian’s dismissal (Link): appears to be related to new allegations of wrong doing involving another inappropriate relationship prior to the affair which led to his resignation at Coral Ridge.
  • Also, the woman with whom Tchividjian had an improper relationship has accused him of owing money to her husband and of fooling his counselor while still pursuing her.

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Viral Virgin Brelyn Bowman Talks Purity Backlash From Christians, New Book ‘No Ring, No Ting’ (Interview)

Viral Virgin Brelyn Bowman Talks Purity Backlash From Christians, New Book ‘No Ring, No Ting’ (Interview) 

I agree that those Christians (or ex Christians) who are opposed to sexual purity (virginity) lifestyles or teachings have gone overboard with it – as have some secular liberals.

Women (or men) who, of their own freewill, choose to abstain sexually are mocked or ridiculed for abstaining. (I have links with examples to this under the “Related Posts” section at the end of this post).

I think it’s very hypocritical for people to champion all sexual behaviors or choices of women EXCEPT FOR staying a virgin until marriage. Celebrity women can yak all day long about their sexual conquests on Twitter or in interviews, and nobody raises a fuss – but the moment a woman makes public that she’s waiting until marriage (or a serious relationship) to have sex, she will be faced with a lot of ridicule and criticism. Even by so-called feminists, who claim to respect all sexual choices of women.

I have blogged about this woman previously (Link): here.

(Link): Viral Virgin Brelyn Bowman Talks Purity Backlash From Christians, New Book ‘No Ring, No Ting’ (Interview) by C. Thomasos – March 8, 2016

  • Brelyn Bowman says she wasn’t surprised that people in the secular world disapproved of her posting a gynecologist’s purity certificate on social media after her wedding day last year. But she was shocked by the backlash that came from Christians.
  • The 23-year-old wife of gospel singer Tim Bowman Jr. says she made the decision to honor God by abstaining from sex until her wedding day. Soon after she proudly announced to the world on Instagram that she had remained a virgin until her wedding day by showing the certificate she presented to her father, a number of Christians responded in anger.
  • Bowman told The Christian Post that she was mostly surprised that many of those who left negative comments about her decision to show her father the results of her gynocological exam that revealed she was still a virgin before her wedding day identified as Christians.
  • “That’s what I couldn’t understand. So it was kind of like, why do we, as Christians, bash one another instead of protect one another and spread the message of God to those who may not understand?” she questioned.
  • “It’s OK for a girl who gets pregnant out of wedlock to say ‘OK, I’m pregnant’ and we celebrate the baby. But it’s not OK to say ‘Hey, I’m a virgin.'” she asserted. “Maybe the certificate wasn’t right, but neither was her getting pregnant. We still celebrate the baby.”

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Ministering to the Unmarried at Home and Abroad by C. Darnell

Ministering to the Unmarried at Home and Abroad by C. Darnell

(Link): Ministering to the Unmarried at Home and Abroad by C. Darnell

Excerpts:

  • March 8, 2016
  • For Kim Jackson, staying single into her 50s wasn’t a “big holy decision.” She dated through her 20s, but never met the right person.
  • “I had some pressure from friends and family for quite a while—now I’m so old, I guess they gave up,” said Jackson, now 58.
  • The percentage of unmarried adults in America has been growing since the 1970s. Today, almost half of U.S. adults are either divorced, widowed, or never married. But much church activity revolves around couples and families.
  • Jackson doesn’t begrudge the church its focus on families, but more could be done to make singles feel comfortable, she said.  Sunday school class names like “Pairs and Spares” or “Fish Out of Water” make singles feel like they don’t have a place in the church.

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Women Are Still Being Told To Lower Their Standards / Stupid Sh*t People Say to Singles by S. H. Weiss

Women Are Still Being Told To Lower Their Standards / Stupid Sh*t People Say to Singles by S. H. Weiss

One thing the author of this page brings up is something I have as well: women are just as visually oriented as men are and do care about what men look like. However, women are conditioned by secular society and religious groups to think they should not care about a man’s physical attractiveness.

Women are conditioned to look past a man’s ugliness to consider his other traits – is he smart, financially stable, and so on.

Now, I do think some people are in fact way too judgmental or picky regarding physical appearance in dating or whom to marry.

But, on the other hand, there is absolutely nothing wrong in wanting to date or marry someone you consider attractive. I don’t think people of either gender should be super picky about looks, but it’s okay to have some preferences or standards.

The woman who wrote this says she caught some guy she knew lying in his dating site profile – he was 35 years old but claimed on his dating profile he is 25 or 30 years old. She asked him why he lied about his age.

He claims it’s because he wants to start a family and a woman in her 20s is guaranteed to be fertile.

First of all, women in their 40s (and 30s) still menstruate and get pregnant, so you don’t need to marry a 20 something to have babies. Some women in their 20s are childfree or infertile.

Secondly, as I noted before, I advised single women who read this blog to lie on their dating site profiles about their ages, to make themselves younger than they are.

As so many men are this very shallow and particular about age in a woman (many of them have a cut off age of 29, while for others, it’s about 35), go ahead and cite yourself as being 20 or 30 something on your profile if you are over 40 and want dates.

The worst thing that will happen once the guy gets to know you after he meets you via a dating site is that he will decide to stop dating you. Big whoop.

I have seen or read about a lot of men ages 45 and older who lie about their ages on dating sites. I’ve had guys who are obviously 65 or older (they have all white hair) who contact me on dating sites, who claim to be 41 or 42 years old. Men lie out the ass about their ages (and their height, according to other women) all the time on these sites.

(Link):  Liberated Shmiberated!: Women are Still Being Told to Lower Their Standards (& it’s messed up!) by S. H. Weiss

Excerpts:

  • February 2016
  • …It is Traister’s message that I would like to share with the women I have spoken with lately, women who feel they need to defend themselves to others about why they are not married, why they are not “just settling down already” and why they are “being too picky.”
  • The women I speak of range from early 30s to early 40s. Some of them have never been married, while others were married briefly. A third of them are divorced and have children. The one thing these friends have in common is that they all say that are not “single by choice.” They express the desire to find their perfect life partner.
  • ..However, there are Yentas everywhere, some well-intentioned and others questionably motivated. This is especially true for those who are part of a tight-knit or religious community (ranging from the Mormons to the Modern Orthodox Jewish).

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All The Single Ladies by Rebecca Traister – Various Links to Reviews or Commentary About the Book and Its Issues

All The Single Ladies by Rebecca Traister  – Various Links to Reviews or Commentary About the Book and Its Issues

There are currently a million links about the new book “All the Single Ladies” by Rebecca Traister

Up til now, I have made individual blog posts about that book – reviews, commentaries that reference it, or interviews with its author.

I no longer feel like devoting that much effort into blogging about it, so here is a lone thread crammed with links about it.

This post may be edited in the future to add new links about this book as I find them.

Some of these links might only be tangentially related to the book. I only have one life to live, and I don’t want to spend it blogging about this one book.

It sometimes takes me a long time to put a single blog post together – especially hunting through the “Categories and Tags” area of the blog area, having to skim through a long list of tags. It’s a time consuming pain in the ass.

One thing you will notice in many of these articles is how often Traister points out that men do not usually face as MUCH social stigma or penalties as often in life -or employment- as single women do for being single. Which is true.

As I have written of before, (Link): Men are not hounded, judged, or shamed nearly as much as women are for remaining celibate, single, and/or childless.

The fact that a woman author had to write a book discussing singleness among women speaks to how much singleness is different for women than it is for men – it is far more socially acceptable (and among Christians) for a man to remain single and childless than it is for a woman.

Do some segments of culture harass men over being single or kid-free or question their manliness? Yes.

I am not saying that life or church is a cake-walk for never married or childless or childfree men. But as a matter of comparison, on a scale of one to ten, with one being “awesome and great” and ten being “terrible and hellish” single and childless men get treated to about a, I don’t know, a four on that scale, while women get a nine or a ten.

Because women have vaginas, they are expected to have babies. There is far more stigma attached for a woman to be single and without children than there is a for a man, because church and society do not expect having babies to be necessary for a man to be fully a man socially or biologically. Not near as much as it is for women.

Women get pressured for more often and more severely to marry and have babies than men ever do or ever will.

I am not saying men get ZERO pressure, only that they get a 1 or a 2 in pressure, where-as women get a 9 or 10 in pressure on the scale of marriage and natalism.

It is far easier to drift thru life as a single bachelor dude with no kids than it is for a woman to go through life with no husband or no kids – you won’t get judged as much by family, church, politicians, conservative think tanks, over this stuff as a woman does over it. And it’s sexist bullshit.

Here are the links (more might be added to this post in the future as I find them):

(Link):  The Single American Woman via NY Magazine

(Link):  Review: Rebecca Traister’s All the Single Ladies is a reassuring balm to the rhetoric that surrounds us 

  • Yet in spite of these harsh truths, All the Single Ladies is celebratory, the stories of real women who are single a reassuring balm to the rhetoric that surrounds us. Traister asks, by outlining the ways women can succeed when their societies support their choices, to consider what we really mean when we tell women to marry for better or worse.
  • Her argument – that our public policies are what need to change, not the rate at which we marry or the age we do it – prioritizes equal pay over joint accounts, better health-care provisions over shared plans, comprehensive child care instead of Mommy-and-Me clichés, and other tangible solutions instead of abstract platitudes.

(Link):  Rebecca Traister’s ‘All The Single Ladies’ is a singularly triumphant work

(Link):   Single Women are Quietly Remaking Our World

  • By Emily Simon
  • “Single women are taking up space in a world that was not designed for them.”
  • That sort of statement – at once radical and obvious – is characteristic of Rebecca Traister: a happily married mother of two who is currently encouraging us to recognize the cultural and political power of single women.

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