Marriage Covenant: 1+1=1

“Jesus replied, but at the beginning of creation God ‘made them male and female.
For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh.”-Mark 10:6-8

The concept of the soulmate is selfish. If you think you can complete someone else, that your very existence is required to make another person whole, this isn’t love but arrogance. It is pride, the very opposite of love. The idea of the soulmate is selfish because it implies a specific person is required for your happiness. This places ridiculous expectations on a partner, which no person can fulfill. It also means that you are an inadequate human being unless you are in a relationship with a specific person. This is awful news for anyone who is single, widowed, or in a difficult marriage.

The soulmate myth is a monstrous lie. Seriously, a monster is involved. The soulmate myth comes from Plato’s Symposium, in which a group of men attempt to answer the question, “What Is Love?” One of the philosophers shares the creation myth of a four-armed, four-legged, two-faced creature with two different genitals. Zeus, the thunder god, feels threatened by this powerful creature and decides to split this beast in two, creating male and female. Each person has a counterpart they are in search for, distracting them from threatening the gods. Today, the idea of the Soulmate threatens our understanding of love and marriage.

Love is not self-seeking. It is not arrogant. Nor is it needy or demanding. Love is giving without expecting anything in return. It is continual acts of love that make relationships last. Sacrificial love is the foundation for all types of healthy relationships. You don’t need a specific person in order to love but rather you need to be a loving person. You can be a loving person whether you are single or in a difficult marriage. The choice to love or not is always in our control despite the circumstances we face.

Love is an action, not a feeling. Falling in love is a trap. It’s buying into the soulmate myth. Rather we need to be people who walk in love. Walking in love is a lifestyle. You can choose love at all times regardless of relationship status.

The equation of marriage with a soulmate worldview is ½ + ½ = 1. The biblical understanding is 1+1=1. There is a big difference between the two views. The biblical understanding is one of love. The soulmate perspective is one that undermines Christian love. Jesus reveals to us perfect love that casts out all fear. It is love that cost our Jesus Christ his very life, a life that he willingly gave up for his bride, the Church. Let us walk in love as Jesus walked. Let us rely on Christ’s grace to find our completeness rather than looking for it in other people.

1 Comment

  1. Thanks for giving clear reasons why “soulmate” is a lie and a trap. Plus, it is at direct odds with popular western culture, and as a result is echoed among young people throughout the world. Your thoughts offer hope, and an escape from this prison!

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