5 Biblical Reasons NOT to Get Married

Warning: Hyperbole about to ensue.

Whenever people get their panties in a bunch over marriage, divorce, same-sex marriage, and gender identity issues, I can’t help but want to go back to the Bible, which is very anti-family and anti-marriage all together.

Usually when the Bible does talk about marriage, it’s not in a ritualistic sense, like, “This is how Christians get married…” but more in a, “Welp, you’re married, so this is how it’s going to work now that there are married Christians, and Christian families.” Marriage in culture existed before Christianity did, so Christians had to figure out how to appropriate it into their culture, instead of listening to what the Bible says and just not get married.

Here are 5 Biblical reasons not to get married

  1. Adam and Eve.

Let’s just start from the beginning. Adam and Eve are not good examples of a couple or as parents. People quote Genesis and refer to Adam and Eve like they are some kind of model of perfection, but they are responsible for the fall of mankind AND the oldest son MURDERS the younger. I don’t know what made people decide it was a good idea to get together and procreate after this. It’s as if our relationships were doomed from the very get go.

2. Pretty much every relationship and family in the Old Testament AFTER Adam and Eve.

Does anyone actually read the Bible? Multiple wives. Murder. Rape. Adultery. Incest. Manipulation. It’s like people were considered property or something.

3. The Cost of Discipleship: Luke 14:25-27

Large crowds were now traveling with Jesus, and He turned and said to them, “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters — yes, even his own life — he cannot be My disciple. And whoever does not carry his cross and follow Me cannot be My disciple.

And there’s more…

Matthew 10:37 Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

And more…

John 12:25 Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.

It seems pretty clear to me that Jesus is not for family. It’s not something that he talks about a ton. We don’t even hear much of his own relationship with family. He wasn’t married as far as we know.

Basically, every Christian needs to be prepared to give up everything AKA person at any moment, and being married and having children does not lend itself very well to that.

Christians don’t want to be married because Jesus said that it’s good to be married, they want to be married because they want it. It’s as if people and relationships are things. And Jesus is definitely not for wanting, getting, or keeping things.

4. Jesus says to GIVE UP EVERYTHING.

I have never understood how Christians do mental gymnastics to get around this.

Luke 14:33 “…those of you who do not give up everything they have cannot be my disciples.”

Matthew 19:21 “If you want to be perfect, go, sell all of your possessions and give to the poor. And you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

And there’s more… Luke 18:22, Acts 2:45. Acts 2:45 is compelling because it is the example of the first Christians doing this command. If you are married and you have children, you are much less likely to share because it’s all about your family before anyone else.

Putting your family before the needy and poor in your Christian community is anti-Christian. How do you get around this? Don’t get married or have a family.

5. Paul on Marriage: 1 Corinthians 7

This is a treasure trove. In the first verse, it appears that the Corinthians assumed that they couldn’t have sex (with anyone), and it was complicating the community. Paul clears this up by letting them know they can get with their spouses–BUT NOT TOO MUCH.

Paul also highly recommends that widows not remarry, and that the unmarried remain unmarried.

1 Corinthians 7:28 “But if you do marry, you have not sinned; and if a virgin marries, she has not sinned. But those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this.”

Paul is LITERALLY reassuring the community that marriage isn’t a sin, but probably isn’t worth going through if you’re a Christian.

Why do we do it? And why do we care how other people do it?

Probably because sex is the biggest competitor with religion.

So, Christian, if you’re not married, don’t fret! You’re probably closer to Christ and more Christian than the rest of us who put a ring on it.

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Separation of Life and Ministry

I was reading through my first post for “Just Be God’s” and it was a different time to be sure. My social life and work life were not at all related to “serving” or “ministry”, and I had the time and energy to really commit to church as a hobby. It was/is the best way I know how to care for and be cared for by others. What I needed at the time.

Then there is this other world, the serving and caring for others world. This world where you work your booty off as a teacher or minister or counselor or chaplain, and get paid to think about religion and spiritual things and help people. This world where you hear true, intense, and terrible stories that you wish weren’t a part of the human condition. Where there is little to no separation between home and work. For some, this may sound awesome. It is.

But is it?

When I wrote about asking God for a sign, and committing to going to church and seeking spiritual things, I had a special space for it. I made special space for it. It wasn’t my everything, but it was for everything. When religion and spirituality become everything, it’s like I need to find a special space where it isn’t or where it’s different. I have to create space to grow for myself, where I do not have to support others or hold their spiritual space.

Is this wrong? Or is this right?

I’ve been reading a book called “Proverbs of Ashes” and it’s blowing my mind. It takes a lot of simple Christian ideas that a lot of people live by, and says, “That might not be the healthiest thing to teach people (especially the marginalized, abused, and women).”

Sure, to make meaning of suffering (once removed), as a closeness to Christ or as a way to help others or as a learning experience, is nice, but is that what God wants for us? If you wouldn’t tell that to a person during their suffering, why would that work after the suffering?

In a very trivial sense, there may be people dying in their ministries because they believe, and have been taught, this is what God wants. God wants suffering? Exhaustion? Workaholics? God wants us to lie to ourselves and say we love it? Rejoice in our suffering?

Or does God desire that you have the space to love and serve and be loved and served? I hope for the latter God.

 

Reflection for the 5th Week of Lent: Psalm 126

Reflection for the 5th Week of Lent: Psalm 126

Click the link above.

I volunteered at Tobar Mhuire Retreat and Conference Centre last year.  Here, I wrote a blog post for their Lenten series.  Enjoy!

Here is another link to blog from HuffPo…

And here is the actual transcript so I don’t lose it…. Continue reading “Reflection for the 5th Week of Lent: Psalm 126”

Lenten Locavore?

mebyeasterLast night I had a semi-long text conversation with my friends about what to do for Lent.  The three of us are very pious and disciplined (yada yada), and we weren’t sure what to do.  I mentioned that I was thinking about being a locavore, and my friends seemed to think that was a good idea, even though I might starve in the middle of New England Boston winter.  This might also be the reason why Boston Locavores disbanded over a year ago, and why when I search for “Lent Locavores,” Google give me nothing new.

I just want to mention that I am afraid to do this, and I kind of don’t want to, so, naturally, Lent seems like a good place to pick this up.

I’m not going the traditional route, just cutting myself off (I would starve, and this is kind of a last minute thing!), it will be more of a conversion/transformation journey.  I want to pay  more attention to the things I use and I consume (not just food).  I want to think about the things I consume regularly, and try to find a local option.  I want to understand what is the BEST option if I can’t live without it, and I can’t find it local.  Lent this season, is a spiritual foodie research project.  And, yes, like everyone else, I am using Lent as an excuse to do this.

I am making myself do something that [I hope] will be good that I naturally avoid doing… because it’s too hard, or I want to remain in ignorance, or whatever reason.

So, the first part of this Lent Locavore thing is figuring out some rules.  I don’t want to make it too convenient/easy for me, but also not impossible.

  1. Anything that I have to eat/planned pre-Lent is ok to indulge during Lent. (No, I did not go out and get tons of supplies. Right now, I desperately need groceries.)
  2. From Ash Wednesday on: only buy local food.
  3. Throughout Lent take note of what I’m eating, spending, learning, etc. (Notebook and Blog)
  4. On non-food products that are bought, investigate more about where they come from and if it’s even possible (or better, or not) to get them locally sourced.
  5. Remember: this is for Jesus.

But there are more questions about these rules I’m still working out!!!!!  Read on…

Something I’m not decided on is whether or not I should consume non-locally stuff if I didn’t buy it (e.g. at a dinner party, or something).  Obviously, I don’t plan on gorging myself with Doritos every chance I get, but it’s something worth considering.  Gifts should be received, right?  But don’t take advantage of the giver.

What about local businesses that don’t source local stuff?  What immediately comes to mind for this is local beer.  Is it ok to support my local community making something that might not be made of all local stuff?

I don’t want to become all fundy about this, and that’s why it’s a journey.  It’s not going to be perfect, it is going to be messy, I might hate myself for it, I might love myself for it, I’ll probably fail miserably.  But, I have to try and I have to hope.