Single Christian Women Have No Protection according to some preachers
I’m watching pastor Jeff Schreve on his weekly series, “From His Heart Ministries” giving a sermon on marriage today. Schreve seems like a sincere pastor and an all around nice guy, but he seems to believe in male headship, and as (Link): I am a biblical egalitarian, I don’t share his view on that matter.
However, another thing Schreve is talking about that I find disturbing: he said in part of this sermon that a woman is under the protection of her mom and dad until she marries, then she is “under the protection of her husband” when she marries. The Bible does not teach this concept, not in the New Testament.
((edit): This teaching also sounds eerily like Reconstructionist / Quiverfull teachings, see: (Link): Christian Patriarchy Group: God Demands You Marry and Have Babies to Defeat Paganism and Satan. Singles and the Childless Worthless (in this worldview))
Problem: I am in my early 40s, pastor Schreve, and never married. I am single, a Christian woman. So who is my “protection,” pastor Schreve?
I am not the only one, there are many, many Christian women my age and older who have never married, and a lot of them live alone, work jobs, and pay rent alone.
Who is our “protector”? If you say God, Holy Spirit, or Christ, I don’t get it – would that same answer also not be true for married women? Why would a woman’s “protector” go from Father, Spirit and Son to husband just because she marries??
(Edit.) I watched the following Sunday’s sermon, where this same pastor did a topic about the role of women. I don’t recall everything he talked about, but I do remember he once again neglected to mention women over the age of 35 who have never married or had kids.
Schreve again mentioned how there is no higher calling for a woman than to raise children (although, again, the Bible does not teach either concept, but actually holds (Link): singleness and being childfree in higher esteem and no, the Bible does not teach that God “calls” some to singleness, either, so a preacher cannot brush this off by saying, “It’s okay for YOU to be single if God called you to be” – I have addressed these unbiblical views in other posts, so I shall not get into them here – see some of the links at the bottom of this post for more).
See also, on this blog:
(Link): Are Marriage and Family A Woman’s Highest Calling? by Marcia Wolf – and other links that address the Christian fallacy that a woman’s most godly or only proper role is as wife and mother
Some married women are infertile and unable to have a baby: how do you suppose it makes THEM feel to hear that their only God-approved role in life is to crank out a kid, if they want one, and are unable to have one? And neither should women who choose NOT to reproduce, though they are capable, be made to feel ashamed of this, or judged, or condemned.
Schreve basically said that it’s “best” for a woman to stay at home and raise her kids while the husband works outside of the home. That is his opinion, and he is welcome to it, but please, point me to the Bible verses that teach this view (the Bible is silent on the matter).
I could just as easily argue that it’s best for a child for the father to be a stay- at -home dad and raise the kids, while mom goes off to work.
I’m astounded that this pastor, like so many other Christians, continue to assume that everyone over the age of 25 is married and/or a parent these days.
Census data continue to show that more and more Christians over 20 are not marrying at all, or not marrying until much later in life (current percentage of adults over 18 who are single is now 44%).
I sent his (Schreve’s) ministry an e-mail mentioning all this but all I got was a reply saying they would forward my e-mail to the pastor. (edit, Feb 2014. I never got a reply to that e-mail, nor was the topic addressed and corrected in future sermons.)
I wish pastors would wake up and realize this is 2012 and we are no longer living in 1955 America where everyone is married by 20 years of age with three kids.
By hyper-focusing on marriage and parenting, and telling never married, childless or childfree women over the age of 40 that their greatest, or only, calling in life is to be a wife and mother, you are needlessly marginalizing and insulting never- married adults, widows, the divorced, and the childless and the childfree.
If you are a preacher who holds such views about marriage, gender roles, parenting and/or you are neglecting the never-married adults (as well as other singles, such as the widows) in your audience, you are also neglecting, or violating, biblical passages such as (Link): Matthew 10:34-37 and (Link): Matthew 12:46-50 . You need to repent of your nuclear family, strict gender role views, and marriage idolatry.
(This post has been edited to add new links)
Related posts, this blog:
(Link): If the Family Is Central, Christ Isn’t
(Link): Parenthood Does Not Make People More Loving Mature Godly Ethical Caring or Responsible (One Stop Thread)
(Link): Lies The Church Tells Single Women (by Sue Bohlin)
(Link): Ever Notice That Christians Don’t Care About or Value Singleness, Unless Jesus Christ’s Singleness and Celibacy is Doubted or Called Into Question by Scholars?
(Link): Marriage Does Not Make People More Loving Mature Godly Ethical Caring or Responsible (One Stop Thread)
(Link): According to Pastor ( Jimmy Evans ) It Takes One Man and Woman Married To Equal A Whole – so where does that leave adult Christian singles ?
Driscoll also has incorrect, unbiblical views about adult celibacy:
(Link): Preacher Mark Driscoll Basically Says No, Single Christian Males Cannot or Should Not Serve as Preachers / in Leadership Positions – Attempts to Justify Unbiblical, Anti Singleness Christian Bias
(Link): There is No Such Thing as a Gift of Singleness or Gift of Celibacy or A Calling To Either One
(Link): False Christian Teaching: “Only A Few Are Called to Singleness and Celibacy” or (also false): God’s gifting of singleness is rare – More Accurate: God calls only a few to marriage and God gifts only the rare with the gift of Marriage
(Link): The World Does Not Need More Marriage Sermons – They Don’t Stop Divorce or Get People Married
(Link): Preacher Whose 90% of Sermons are About How to Have a Great Marriage Warns Audience Not to Make Marriage an Idol – Kerry Shook Update and Irony Alert
(Link): Never Married Christians Over Age 35 who are childless Are More Ignored Than Divorced or Infertile People or Single Parents
(Link): Douglas Wilson and Christian Response FAIL to Sexual Sin – No Body Can Resist Sex – supposedly – Re Celibacy
(Link): A Grown-Up, Not Sexed-Up, View of Womanhood (article) – how Christian teachings on gender and singlehood contribute to raunch culture and fornication etc
(Link): ‘God’s Purpose for Women,’ by Matthew Hagee – Hagee Teaches that Single Unmarried Women Do Not Have a Purpose in Life God has no purpose for singles
(Link): The Irrelevancy To Single or Childless or Childfree Christian Women of Biblical Gender Complementarian Roles / Biblical Womanhood Teachings
(Link): To Get Any Attention or Support from a Church These Days you Have To Be A Stripper, Prostitute, or Orphan
(Link): The Obligatory, “Oh, but if you’re single you can still benefit from my marriage sermon” line
(Link): Do You Rate Your Family Too High? (Christians Who Idolize the Family) (article)
(Link): Family as “The” Backbone of Society? – It’s Not In The Bible
(Link): Why Unmarried – Single Christians Should Be Concerned about the Gender Role Controversy (some preachers are teaching that unmarried adults are not 100% human, not 100% in the “image of God,” that they must marry first)
(Link): The Netherworld of Singleness for Some Singles – You Want Marriage But Don’t Want to Be Disrespected or Ignored for Being Single While You’re Single
(Link): Christian TV Personality and Preacher ( Jimmy Evans ) Says You Cannot Meet God’s Destiny For Your Life Without A Spouse = Anti Singleness Singlehood Singles Bias Prejudice Making Idol out of Marriage
(Link): Single Adults – Why They Stay and Why They Stray From Church – Book Excerpts
(Link): Christian Stereotypes About Female Sexuality : All Unmarried Women Are Supposedly Hyper Sexed Harlots – But All Married Ones are Supposedly Frigid or Totally Uninterested in Sex