Recently, a book was recommended by Ligonier Ministries that tried to shame men into marrying. Here is a review of that book on Amazon.com – currently rated the “most helpful” review, because it quotes the book and cites the page number, so you know this person actually read the book.
Some quotes from the book, which is written by a pastor:
“it is imperative for your well being that you be married, to move beyond the “not good” status of single adulthood” (pg59).
“And the first step for many of us in becoming the men God wants us to be is to become married, so that we will leave behind our selfish ways and begin fulfilling our masculine calling through our relationship with our wives.” (pg64)
“It does not work very well when a man remains unmarried” (pg57)
“to realize how vitally important it is (in the vast majority of cases) that you become married” (pg59).
“Today, when God looks on single males and says, Not good, He undoubtedly has in mind a long list of truly unfit helpers, among them the pornography, video games, sports obsessions, and empty pizza boxes that are intrinsic to so many young adult male lives, even among Christians” (pg60).
“The best thing a young Christian man can do… is to marry a godly woman” (pg59)
“If you have shied away from marriage, let me urge you to reconsider and (perhaps)
to commit to the necessary growing up” (pg59).
“God says the same thing about single adult men today. He looks into their apartments and refrigerators and sighs, Not good” (pg57)
“But it is especially good to have to rise up in masculine virtue and strength for the sake of my wife, leaving behind a self-focus that was, at best, only intended for a temporary season of singleness” (pg64)
“If you are single, what is keeping you from marriage? Pray for God to enable you to take a wife and for God to provide you with a wife.” (pg158)
Keep in mind that Paul was single. Was he able to obey and serve God while being single? According to this pastor, Paul was a self-centered failure who needed to grow up, man up and get married so he could serve God instead of being an irresponsible, messy, immature loser. Paul needed a godly wife to civilize him, but he failed in life because he stayed single and immature. This view is probably the majority view in churches today, and it probably explains why men can’t be bothered with church. According to most pastors, women are already fully qualified to become wives, it’s only that the lazy, useless men like Paul are not mature enough to abandon their video games and pizza boxes and get civilized by their saintly wives.
But what does the Bible actually say about men and marriage?
Let’s look at this exegesis of the Bible from Unmasking Feminism.
And then there is this: 1 Corinthians 7:25-27 and 32-38
Now concerningthe betrothed,I have no command from the Lord, but I give my judgment as one who by the Lord’s mercy is trustworthy. 26 I think that in view of the present distress it is good for a person to remain as he is. 27 Are you bound to a wife? Do not seek to be free. Are you free from a wife? Do not seek a wife.
Some Christians will say the “present distress” cited is not the same distress as our modern times and therefore we can reject this, but yet the bible is suppose to true at all times and all situations. There is and will always be a constant undertone of distress in our fallen world. If there wasn’t, this would be Eden. The distress we are in now, which is clear to any red-pill thinker, is obviously the burden of feminism, liberalism, socialism, et al and the strains it has be put on our society. Under those strains, is it wise to seek a wife? Yes, if you have passions that will prevent you from being celibate, but if you can manage that, under the present distress, is there a point in taking a wife? See “Note” below for more on celibacy. Because there is no going back–these are hardcore, legitimate verses that men need to consider when pondering marriage.
32 I want you to be free from anxieties. The unmarried man is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to please the Lord. 33 But the married man is anxious about worldly things, how to please his wife,34 and his interests are divided. And the unmarried or betrothed woman is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit. But the married woman is anxious about worldly things, how to please her husband. 35 I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord.
Again, if you have your passions under control, a life free of the worldly distraction (known as learning/managing/pleasing your wife) is the better, anxiety free route, to living a life that pleases the Lord. As it is said, “no man can have two masters”. Either a Christian man is single and devoted to the causes of the Lord or married and devoted to the causes of Lord and wife. A distraction for sure, but necessary if his passion burns. He will just have to learn how to keep his wife from becoming a second master.
36 If anyone thinks that he is not behaving properly toward his betrothed, if his passions are strong, and it has to be, let him do as he wishes: let them marry—it is no sin. 37 But whoever is firmly established in his heart, being under no necessity but having his desire under control, and has determined this in his heart, to keep her as his betrothed, he will do well. 38 So then he who marries his betrothed does well, and he who refrains from marriage will do even better.
Those who refrain from marriage with their passions under control will do better. They will be more focused and dedicated on the Lord. That is very clear and Christian men need to hear that in order to weigh marriage properly. There is nothing wrong with marriage, just that it can be burdening. There is nothing wrong with being single, just that you can’t have sex, but as you will see in my “note” below that marriage may entail no sex anyway.
I say all this not to be a downer and to sway men from marriage, but so they can make an informed decision. Wives are not always sunshine and lollipops. The modern Christian message is to just man-up and marry any Christian looking woman and instantly your life will be transformed into this Garden of Eden haven. Don’t be fooled. There will be no heaven on earth. A wife can be a blessing if she is a good wife, one that does not place undue burden and strain on her husband. One that does not cause anxieties. But, and its a big BUT, there is no guarantee that marriage for the sake of marriage will make a woman a good wife or that any given wife will not be wearing sheep’s clothing. Its a gamble and tolerance for risk should be considered. A single, celibate life is for those averse to risk. If you can manage yourself, its smooth sailing and a life with minimal anxieties. That is all you have to control.
1 Corinthians 7 is the chapter that many a pastor cannot afford to take seriously. He cannot accept the plain meaning of the text as it is written. If he did, he would offend many people in the church who believe that the primary purpose of men is to please women, not God. In church, a man has no right to evaluate a women for marriage and then decide for himself whether a prospective marriage is worthwhile for God or not. He has no right to ask a woman questions or lead her in order to see whether she can perform what he needs her to perform in order to make the marriage serve God. Many pastors believe that a man exists to serve a woman, and not to serve God.
When these feminist pastors cannot find support in the Bible to make the case for their “blame men” view, then they resort to shaming men without the Bible. “Man Up” they bellow to single guys – as if marrying a woman were something that could be accomplished by spending more time in the weight room. Or that flexing muscles protects a man from the threat of no-fault divorce. “Single guys: don’t overlook the single moms” as one particularly foolish pastor recently advised. It’s very important to understand that many women who attend church today do not look to the Bible as an authority on morality. Many are also not prepared. Men have to be encouraged to select a woman who is ready for marriage, not be forced to rush into marriage with just any women.
According to polls, women are more likely to support gay marriage than men, for example, which shows that many women don’t really understand the need that a child has for a mother and a father. So that needs to be checked. And women are less likely to know how to defend their faith than men, as well. So that needs to be checked. Some Christian women are attacking the Bible’s teaching on fornication, saying that they should be allowed to have premarital sex if they are “in love”. So that needs to be checked, too. Instead of holding them accountable for being wrong on these issues, many pastors just urge men to “man up” and marry women, as is. But not all women are worth marrying, and so it may be better for a man to stay single if he can’t find a good one.
The best thing for a Christian man to do with a woman is to ask her questions to see exactly how she has applied the Bible to her own life, and whether she has taken on obligations and duties in order to serve God that were not easy or pleasing for her. It’s not enough to ask simple questions and await easy answers, you need to see that she has done the work to move from opinions to convictions. If she hasn’t done the work, then it’s better to stay single (and chaste). As 2 Timothy 2:4 says, “No one serving as a soldier gets entangled in civilian affairs, but rather tries to please his commanding officer.”