What do you do when you meet someone you want to be married to but you or he is not eligible to marry? This piece examines the plight of single Adventist women over 50 who are seeking mates.
I have met dozens of single women in the Adventist church who are not happy with their status. Being a woman over fifty myself, I certainly understand how lonely it can become when your children are grown and have flown the coop, never mind that I have been married for many years. Do you find yourself talking to the television and answering back? You might be one who pursued career before family and having self-actualised in terms of your status and positioning in life, your maternal or your nurturing instincts kick in and your realise that time is short. It may even be too far gone for maternity, but you still want a companion or a lover.
So you start to look for a mate and find that it is rather more difficult than you anticipated. It becomes frighteningly obvious that most of the available men or you yourself are divorced. The stark reality suddenly bares its teeth- you cannot marry him lest you face the risk of committing, what I would like to call, “biblical” adultery.
Based upon what the Holy Bible teaches about adultery a person who is divorced cannot remarry.The dilemma of the older woman is that most of the single men in her age group are not really eligible, because of this teaching. This would so because it is very hard to find a man that age who has never been married. My dears friends what to do?
Christ himself, in answering his followers questioning about adultery, explains that while the Mosaic law was compromising in allowing divorce to take place for various reasons, it was because of the hardness of heart of the people back then. But in his day,he says divorce is only allowed on a single basis- sexual immorality or in other words unfaithfulness- on the parts of either party. He even goes further, as to say that if a man commits adultery and then marries a woman, he forces her to be an adulterer, herself.
The other issue that the older woman has in the Church is that Adventists should not marry outside of the Faith. This teaching is not to be taken lightly, because of the seriousness of the man’s role in a family. He is the head of the woman, as Christ is the head of the church. It means therefore, that he is the priest and the leader in the home.If he is to do well in that role then he has to be a believer in the Word and he must be a firmly committed follower of Christ. so if a sister feels so constrained to look outside of the Church for a mate she is likely to be dis-fellowshipped.
There are situations where women (and men) have gone outside of the faith, found spouses and then come back into the faith. But this seems to me to be a rather dangerous and presumptuous practice. Where is the line drawn between obedience to God’s teachings for your own salvation and a husband? What happens when the romance is over and reality sets in? Does he/she edge back out of the faith and lose his/her soul? This has occurred I am sure on many occasions. But it begs the question is marriage that important. What is is worth to gain the whole world and lose your soul?
Singleness is believed to be a God-ordained. The Bible says that God has a special work for the single person to do . Whilst a married woman is committed to her husband, a single woman is more committed to God, so she will be given special responsibilities to perform for the Lord. But is marriage that important, or is God’s work of greatest import?
This subject matter can be a very testy one. This debate around the subject of marriage led to a heated argument, among some single women around the subject drawing emotional fire. Some of them were upset that they do want someone but have not met the right one within the constraints of the Church. Some even complained about how unfair it appears to be in such a predicament. But is marriage that important, or is salvation worth much more?
The conclusion seems to be that you ought to be contented with your status;if you are married, stay married; if you are single stay single. Consider singleness, as practice for the heavenly realm, in which Christ declares that we will all be like the angels. There is no marriage in heaven, no sex, neither male nor female.
By: Karen V.Morgan