To the best of my knowledge, everyone in the youth group expects to get married. Why is this so? It’s tradition. Everyone gets married if they[sic] have a choice, right? So, what am I going to say now? Am I demanding that we all remain celibate? Not really.
What does [the] Bible say about celibacy? Let’s take a look at what Jesus says and what Paul says. Then, we’ll glance back at Genesis. In Matthew 19:31, Jesus says, in reply to his disciples’ question regarding the benefits of not getting married, that we should accept it [celibacy] if we can, but not [accept it], if we can’t. He implies that marriage [is] only around as God'[s] gift to us because some people choose not to remain celibate. Feel free to read the passage to explore the context further. Paul says in I Corinthians 7:41-50 that it is better for people not to marry, “but if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.” Feel free to read the passage to explore the context further.
That sounds an awfully lot [as if] God doesn’t like marriage. He does, though. Genesis 2:26 reaffirms the notion that marriage is cool with God, especially since he designed it. Feel free to read the passage to explore the context further.
So what’s my point? When a youth like myself approaches a fellow Christian seriously with the question of remaining celibate, he is often not encouraged to stick with such ideas as permanently abstaining from marriage. However, suppose a youth like myself approaches a fellow Christian seriously with the question of [getting married]. He is warmly greeted with a plea to pray for the right spouse that God will prepare for him. Why is that? Let’s stop. Celibacy should not be as rare as exorcism or speaking in tongues. Neither Paul nor Jesus tells us that it is good for a man to speak in tongues, but if he cannot control his mouth, then he shouldn’t [with the possible exception of I Corinthians 14]. Do not discourage those who wish to remain unmarried. [Celibacy] is God-honoring and good.