Recently, I came across a statement by a man who is contemplating divorce due to his sexless marriage, and just the wording made me want to put this out as a warning.
Love is a perishable commodity.
There are so many ways I could go with this, such as taking the opposite tack, that love, if it is true love, is eternal, or that God’s love is unconditional. Yup, all that.
But we need to realize that love is not something to presume upon. If we abuse love, it may very well wither and die. Hence the well-known Walk-away Wife and Walk-away Husband syndromes.
But here’s the catch: yes, love may be perishable, but the fact is that we are the only ones who can kill it.
There’s a way to handle a woman, said the wise old man.
Simply love her.
~ From Camelot.
Earlier this month, Julie Sibert, of Intimacy In Marriage did an excellent post for wives on Three Ways To Like Sex (When You Hate Your Body). It was an excellent post, and as I read it, this song from Camelot came drifting back to my mind. You know that I have a problem with the way that the today’s church has twisted Paul’s instructions for husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the church. Continue reading
I just finished a series in which I attempted to bring balance to the discussion of Christian marriage and the validity of sometimes having to bring an end to a dysfunctional marriage by divorce. The springboard into that series was the attempt to provide an answer to the question “how much refusal is refusal,” and when does it justify separation and divorce.
In preparing for that series, I came across several “testimonies” from refused spouses who told of trying to have discussions with their refusers about the sorry state of their marriage bed, only to that these discussions turned back on them with accusations with a common theme–the refusing spouse accused the desirous spouse of wanting too much sex. (Just for your info, I’ve read stories in which both husbands and wives are accused of this, so it’s not solely a wife-specific complaint.) Continue reading
(This is the fourth of a four-part series; here are the links to part 1, part 2 & part 3.)
Over the last three posts, I have been attempting to answer the question of how to quantify refusal. As a reader said, it takes only one act of adultery to break the marriage covenant, but surely one “Not tonight” does not constitute refusal, thus violating the marriage covenant.
Since Jesus addressed divorce in the cultural and historical context as a rabbi, I went back to rabbinic writings to find out how the rabbis of Jesus’ day addressed the topic of refusal, and I discovered several things:
- the rabbis believed sex to be a right and responsibility of marriage;
- the rabbis even went so far as to list the amount of sex a wife would be entitled to;
- The rabbis viewed sexual neglect as a violation of the marriage covenant deserving of non-support (after one month) and divorce (after one year.)
And what was incredible to me was that… Continue reading
(This is the third of a four-part series; here are the links to part 1, part 2 & part 4.)
In this series of posts, I am addressing questions from a reader who asked if it were possible to quantify the amount of sexual refusal needed to justify labeling it as a violation of the marital covenant and therefore a just reason for divorce.
My first post stated that I accept as a given that there are four valid reasons for divorce, and not just the one, adultery, as most Christians believe. My last post pointed out that (in OT times and up to the time of Christ) refusal was stated by Jewish leaders as a reason for divorce, and I presented the view that refusal is a deliberate violation of the marriage vow of fidelity to your spouse. Continue reading
(This is the second of a four-part series; here are the links to part1, part 3, & part 4.)
In my last post, I started addressing a question or two put to me by a reader asking if it is kosher to consider sexual refusal as a valid reason for divorce, a la adultery. After all, he correctly noted, it only takes one act to commit adultery, whereas refusal is a long-term situation. At what point does it become “sexual immorality,” he asked. In fact, he asked that question again in response to my One Coin, Two Sides post:
There is a slight problem with the abandonment is equal to adultery argument in my opinion. The act of adultery along with sexual abuse (may as well throw that in for good measure) is sustained by a single act. A single act of adultery would be grounds for divorce and a single act of sexual abuse could mean a lengthy stay in jail. Now clearly a single act of refusal, even though it may be a break of the marriage covenant, wouldn’t even raise an eyebrow in most circles.
So when does refusal become abandonment and then possibly/maybe grounds for divorce,1-day, 2-weeks, 3-months, 9-months….?
(This is the first of a four-part series; here are the links to part 2, part 3 & part 4.)
And, I’m back. I guess. I think. Maybe. Anyway, here I am today.
As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I follow quite a few marriage bloggers and writers on Twitter, and recently, divorce has been a trending topic among them, with an increase in the number of posts and tweets encouraging Christians to continue to hold on to their marriages for the Kingdom. I can understand that, by the way. Back in December, Michelle Weiner-Davis, of Divorce Busters, sent out a tweet stating that January was Divorce Month, and recommended that New Year’s Resolutions for starting divorce proceedings be abandoned. Continue reading
This is the last of a three-part series; here are the links to part 1 and part 2.
In my first post in this series, I presented the possibility (probability?) of a wide-spread acceptance in the Christian church of the idea that women are more godly, holy and spiritual than men, and included quotes from others who said that they have bumped up against the idea. I posited that this assumption might be a reason for the disconnect between men and the Church, and presented findings from a Pew Research study showing that, of all the world’s religions, Christianity is the only one with a greater female membership.
My second post explored material that showed that the presumption of a female-superiority teaching is actually quite possible and that there is a very good likelihood that this teaching is at the root of much of the dysfunction that troubles today’s church. Continue reading
This is the second of a three-part series: here are the links to part 1 and part 3.
In my last post I presented the idea that, contrary to the teachings of the Bible, today’s church had somehow gotten hold of the idea that women were superior to men and without sin. I admit that it is a novel idea to articulate, but since it seems that this is held as truth by more than a few Christians (however tacitly), this seems like a good time to bring the teaching out into the light of day and examine it.
I cited several writers who have suggested that they have come across the concept in their interactions but didn’t give any particulars or examples, other than to comment that they have observed evidence that it is held by some Christians. While it might be difficult to find a teacher or preacher who openly avows support for such a belief, I did cite a study by the Pew Research group that might demonstrate the results of such a teaching being promulgated. In that first post, I included the Pew Research chart that showed that in all branches of Christianity (save the Orthodox branch) women outnumber men as adherents. The chart further showed that every other major religion has more male adherents than women, leaving Christianity as… Continue reading
This is the first of a three-part series: here are the links to part 2 and part 3.
We have a problem in the church. It appears that nearly one-half of the church is made up of carnal, fleshly-minded people whose only thoughts are with satisfying their appetites, and have no desire nor ability to truly seek after God. They hide behind a facade of Christianity but, in fact, are incapable of self-control and are unable to submit to the direction of the Holy Spirit and pursue spiritual goals.
I can only be speaking, of course, about husbands, for it is well-known that wives are more spiritual, more holy and more godly than any ordinary man could possibly be. I know, I know; in the past, I’ve said that there are two sinners in every marriage, but today, I repent of such drollery. I have seen the error of my ways. Continue reading