Sunday, April 1, 2012

Real Marriage

By Mark and Grace Driscoll. Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Typical of contemporary therapeutic Christianity, the Driscolls try to repair the damage of our pornified culture to marriage. They use the Bible as a sort of spiritual DSM-IV, showing how Scripture teaches that sex is good, wholesome, and a gift from God - as long as it is kept within a Christian marriage.

Sex is vital to the health of a marriage. Frequent sex is a holy part of a strong marriage at every age, yet should never be used as a bargaining chip, which the authors warn is a form of prostitution.

The therapeutic part of this book means that Christianity and God are seen as tools towards personal development. Being a Christian is healthy for your psychology and therefore for your marriage. The scope of this book is not God or salvation per se, but Christian marriage and its practicalities, including anal sex, hand jobs from the wife, and the like.

The goal of therapeutic Christianity is not spiritual striving or overcoming one's selfish, sinful desires in the ascent to God, as it had been at some point in western Christian history. In short, the goal of therapeutic Christianity is not God. Instead, the goal is happiness, including happy marriages. The Christian will have a happy marriage, or he is not living a godly, sanctified life.

In the Driscoll's therapeutic Christianity, the gospel serves us. God is a master psychologist and counselor who solves all our problems.

Real Marriage illustrates ego-centered Christianity. Its mediocrity is boring more than anything else. One hopes that Christianity offers more than guilt-free mutual masterbation.

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