A commenter, Bee, suggested that single mothers give their children up for adoption at birth. As a parent of three adopted children, shouldn’t I get behind this plan? No. Children are meant to be with their biological parents. Society and the church should do what it can to keep children with at least one (ideally both!) of their biological parents. Parents are not generic units than can be interchanged at will. Adoption must always be the option of last resort after all other options are shown to be worse.
Dalrock has a better plan: shame the single mothers publicly.
“Imagine if we simply made a public note in the wedding ceremony, and in the run-up to the wedding, that the single mother understood the seriousness of her sin and was repentant of it, and was deeply grateful that her husband-to-be was willing to be so gracious as to marry her despite the extra burden she has placed on their marriage?”
“We wouldn’t have to be cruel about it, just honest, humble, loving, and sincere.”
You can dress that pig up and put pretty lipstick on it, but it is still public shaming. Might as well lovingly, humbly, honestly, and sincerely sew a scarlet letter onto her wedding dress.
In Matthew 18, Jesus laid out the procedure for dealing with unrepentant sin. First you must approach your brother one-on-one and in private and confront them in their sin. If they refuse to repent, you bring a few witnesses and privately confront them again. Failing that, you bring it before the church and publicly let the church decide. If at any point your brother repents, you have won him over. You are then required to forgive him. And lest this be unclear, Jesus compares the wages of forgiven sin to be akin to a cancelled debt: it is as if the debt never occurred.
What Dalrock’s suggestion does is highlight only one sin in particular. This is a blatant violation of Matthew 7:1-5. Jesus instructed not to judge others, for the standard in which you judge others will be the standard in which you are judged. If you judge others for repented sin, you will be judged for your repented sin. By judging others to a standard you do not judge yourself, you are guilty of hypocrisy and worthy of the greater condemnation.
John 8:1-11 describes a woman caught in adultery. Jewish law required that both the man and woman caught in adultery were to be stoned to death. His accusers knew this, which is why it was a trap. If Jesus agreed to stone her, he would be violating the law. If he agreed to let her go, he would be approving adultery. Jesus responded by holding the woman’s accusers to the higher moral standard, accusing them of hypocrisy by selective enforcement of the law. The accusers had highlighted her sin in particular, rather than the sins of the adulterous man or their own sins. When then accusers leave, Jesus refuses to condemn the guilty woman and instead points her to repentance.
Dalrock’s suggested declaration implicitly denies that the single mothers are truly repentant, otherwise a public label would not be required. This exposes the selective judgmentalism for what it is: hypocrisy and pride.
It is wrong to violate Jesus’ teachings, no matter how honest, humble, loving, and sincere you are.