Today I want to talk about the second of the three groups of people that Jesus talks about in Matthew 19 who are unable to marry. You can see the general overview from the initial post here. But as a quick refresher, Jesus said that there were three ways that a person could end up a eunuch (unable to marry). The first was that they were born that way (physically or mentally unable to marry). The second was those that were made that way by man (which I am suggesting can include those that end up there because of the fall of man). The third, which we will discussed in the previous post, are those that choose celibacy for the sake of the Kingdom.
Today I want to focus on the second group, those that because of the fall of man, because of sin, end up celibate.
I believe that there are several ways that one can end up celibate for life because of the fall.
The first is because of being sinned against. In other words there could be situations where someone has been abused physically, emotionally, and/or sexually in such a way as they just decide to remain unmarried and chaste. In other words the wounds cut in such a way that they just can’t enter into that sort of marriage relationship. It’s not that they feel called to Celibacy for the Kingdom or that they are gifted in that way, it’s just that due to what has happened to them they can’t get to the point of marriage.
Obviously we need to be careful declaring this group. God can and often does heal wounds and give incredible grace and healing to us. He can make things right as it were. But not all of our wounds necessarily get healed while we are in this temporal life. In the renewal of all things we will be completely healed, completely free. But as with any area of our life, it doesn’t always happen now. So we need a space in our theology of singleness for these folks.
The next group is sort of the hot topic in todays Christian culture. That is those who are attracted to the same sex. I tried to discuss this in this post, but I have decided that it needs it’s own. That is coming next.
There is also another group that needs to be considered when we think about those who will not marry because of the fall. Those that desire to be married, have the physical capability and mental capacity to do so but don’t end up married because of the fall of man in general.
We live in a fallen broken world. There are those who will just never be asked to marry or those who will ask or desire it but never be told yes. Perhaps because of the fall and brokenness they just don’t seem to be able to interact well with the opposite sex. Perhaps they live in a situation be it geographical, economic, war torn or any other number of environmental or cultural factors it doesn’t happen or can’t happen.
It’s not that these people make a choice or are gifted in that way. What they do choose is to be obedient to the scriptures regarding sex outside of marriage. These folks don’t decide to be Celibate for the Kingdom but they do decide to live a chaste life, and because of their lack of marriage and sex they end up celibate.
It’s important to remember that in the long view, the eternal one, none of us will be married. God is redeeming all of those that are following Him and in the end, at the resurrection and renewal of all things, none of us will be married or given in marriage. This is one reason that while we’re here in the temporal life as the body of Christ we need to recognize, walk with, and encourage all of the folks in these groups. All of them can be in the Kingdom and all of them can be a part of growing it. They are all a part of God’s family.