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Real Marriage [Hardcover]

Mark D Driscoll
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Jan. 3 2012

Most marriage books assume the author did it right. Most marriage books barely mention friendship. Most marriage books use “intimacy” as code for “sex.” This is not one of those books.

In Real Marriage, Pastor Mark Driscoll and his wife, Grace, share how they have struggled and how they have found healing through the power of the only reliable source: the Bible. They believe friendship is fundamental to marriage but not easy to maintain. So they offer practical advice on how to make your spouse your best friend – and keep it that way. And they know from experience that sex-related issues need to be addressed directly.

Five chapters are dedicated to answering questions like:

  • Should I confess my pre-marital sexual sin to my spouse?
  • Is it okay to have a “work spouse”?
  • What does the Bible say about masturbation and oral sex?

Stunningly honest and vulnerable, Real Marriage is like a personal counseling session with a couple you cannot surprise, you cannot shock into silence, who will respond to every question with wisdom, humility, and realism.

If you want to have a long-lasting, fulfilling marriage you should read this book. Wrestle with this book. Pray over this book. Share this book. And discover how God can use it to change your life.


“If you’re married or plan to be someday, do yourself a favor and read every page of this book.” —DRS. LES & LESLIE PARROTT Founders of and authors of Love Talk

“Whether engaged, newlywed, or veteran, Real Marriage will serve as an invaluable resource. I highly recommend this book.” —ANDY STANLEY author of The Grace of God and Senior Pastor, North Point Community Church

"One of my greatest concerns is that culture is going to continually define and redefine what marriage is and is not, and the church is going to simply sit on the sidelines and react rather than seeking to actually become proactive by confidently teaching what the Bible has to say about it.  That is why I am so thankful that Mark and Grace Driscoll wrote this book.  Their approach to marriage, its benefits and challenges are transparent and challenging and I honestly believe that every married couple who will work through what they lead us through in this book will not just merely have a marriage that survives in this world but rather thrives in it." — PERRY NOBLE Senior Pastor, NewSpring Church

"Our thanks to Mark and Grace Driscoll who have served this generation well by tastefully but boldly addressing the real issues facing real marriages. Taking the unchanging truth of God’s word and sprinkling in is the story of God’s mercy in their own marriage they have filled every chapter with real helpfulness. This book is powerful, biblical, practical and healing for marriages that hurt. My wife and our adult children read it to great profit." — DR. JAMES MACDONALD Senior Pastor, Harvest Bible Chapel and Bible teacher for Walk in the Word

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Real Marriage + The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Complexities of Commitment with the Wisdom of God
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Product Description

About the Author

Mark Driscoll pastors Mars Hill Church in Seattle, Washington, one of the fastest-growing churches in the nation. He is the author or coauthor of twelve books, including Real Marriage and Doctrine: What Christians Should Believe. Mark and his wife, Grace, have five children.

Grace Driscoll is a graduate of the Edward R. Murrow School of Communication, Washington State University, where she earned a BA in Public Relations. She delights in being a stay-at-home mom, where she and her husband, Mark, raise their three sons and two daughters.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Review of Real Marriage Jan. 4 2012
It seems every time Mark Driscoll gets up to speak, writes a blog post, or publishes a book there are droves of people who are against it even before viewing the content for themselves. While I agree that a lot of criticism towards him is warranted I do think a lot of it unhelpful and presumptuous. The same has been true with Real Marriage: The truth about sex, friendship and life together. On the first couple pages we are presented with numerous glowing reviews from some of the big guy of Christianity (Celebrity Pastors ;-)), Andy Stanley, Darrin Patrick, Daniel Akin, James Macdonald and Wayne Grudem. I found helpful what Wayne and his wife had to say about the book.

While some sections will be controversial, this book as a whole is a wise, insightful, biblical, and startlingly honest guide to happy marriage. Mark and Grace Driscoll rightly warn about the long-lasting consequences of sexual sin, point out the way to a very happy marriage in obedience to God, and bravely address questions that are rarely brought up in a church setting.

Real Marriage is divided into three main sections. Part 1 ' Marriage, Part 2'Sex, and Part 3'the last day. I found the first section very helpful and applicable Chapter 2 brings to light a subject not found in most marriage books. Marriage is about friendship. The Driscolls spend chapter 2 unpacking for us how friendship in an integral part of a truly Christian marriage and a safeguard against emotional adultery. They share that in their marriage we have made the mistake of assuming we were friends and not working on our friendship as we ought. (page 27) I really liked the analogy used to explain how our marriage changes from being a journey between friends to a team of business partners trying to the pay the bills etc.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great read Jan. 24 2012
By Dr. Rob
Real marriage is vintage Mark Driscoll. The book is full of excellent information, honest interaction with difficult issues, and a willingness to push the lines of prudish evangelical Christianity. Grace Driscoll is very helpful in this honest interaction with her own brokenness and pain.

I appreciated the authentic honesty of Mark and Grace, willing to share from their own shattered lives lessons that can help other imperfect couples. Their raw honesty might offend some, but I found it refreshing and helpful. In fact in my perception this is a great strength to the book.

Chapter 5 is worth the price of the book in its handling of potential conflict issues, forgiveness and bitterness. It was extremely helpful in paving a road forward that will help rebuild broken couples. Was very helpful.

The chapter that most will turn to right away is the Q and A on what is allowed and not allowed in sexual interaction in marriage "can we_______?". This chapter was a disappointment to me in its handling of Scripture and difficult questions. The Driscoll's attempt to be raw and honest again, and some was helpful, but not sure I agree with Biblical interaction or conclusions. This is a chapter that is worth doing, but would prefer more sensitivity to those of us who are not quite as raw, and some of it seems to be written for the shock value.

If you can put up with some of the shock and awe, this is an excellent book on marriage that deals in an honest way with the path towards a healthy marriage. I would recommend it with a few reservations. This book meets a huge need in the Christian church for a broken but hopeful look at marriage.

Book has been provided courtesy of Graf-Martin communications, Inc. Available now at your favourite bookseller
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
"Real Marriage" by Mark and Grace Driscoll
As I enjoy reading, and also enjoy free books, I am part of this thing called booksneeze. It is from Thomas Nelson and I can order one book at a time (from a list of books), read the book, and post a review on the book. Recently i read the book "Real Marriage" by Mark and Grace Driscoll and here is my review.

As you can probably guess from the title, this book is about marriage. The Driscoll's talk about everything from being a servant lover, to working through the shame of sexual assault, to enjoying our freedom in Christ with regards to our marriages, to answering some of the most common questions people have about sex. They use their own marriage as the backdrop to the book and they share some of the heartaches and struggles that they have been through over the years.
The main message of the book is essentially that we are to learn, from scripture, how to be the wife or husband that God intended us to be. Along the way we are to search our lives and as we are made aware of areas we have veered off course we are to repent (turn from those things) and seek God's direction instead of our own.

My reaction to the book:
I thought this was a fantastic book. It was written almost as a conversation, which makes sense as it was written to compliment the sermon series that Mark Driscoll is preaching. The information was great, the statistics were helpful but not overbearing, and the challenge to be who we were biblically created to be was a great challenge. I have read a few books on marriage but this one was different. It honestly made me think about my own marriage and how I was contributing to it.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
good book
Published 5 days ago by Gregory
5.0 out of 5 stars great
great book, really illustrates a marriage the way it should I would recommend this to any group who wants to use this as a study
Published 1 month ago by Wasseem
1.0 out of 5 stars Christian Dr. Phil?
When I found out that Mars church bought their way onto the New York Times best seller list for this book, it somehow all came together for me. Read more
Published 2 months ago by eh.jay
5.0 out of 5 stars Very engaging and helpful
My husband and I found this book very helpful. We weren't having any major marriage issues but it did help us to dig deeper and evaluate possible issues down the road. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Jess
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have for any relationship!
One of the best, and most helpful books I've read on this topic. You don't have to be religious to get a huge amount out of reading this. High recommend!
Published 12 months ago by Michelle Dufrene
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent content
The Driscolls deliver, with a reality and candour that is all-too sparse today. They unleash truths in an open manner, in areas that other "Christians" shrink from in fear. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Tyrel Cooper
3.0 out of 5 stars The Law Of Love
I do not believe that the institution of marriage will disappear. Its survival in the post-modern world is dependent upon people rediscovering or uncovering a code to live by. Read more
Published on Jan. 31 2012 by Kevin Rogers
1.0 out of 5 stars Lies about Sex, Marriage, etc
This book is full of lies, prejudice and fear mongering.
It has gems such as 'Generally speaking, hormonal birth control methods run the risk of causing an abortion. Read more
Published on Jan. 25 2012 by Danny
5.0 out of 5 stars Real questions, real answers
If you are looking for a book that is going to transform your marriage this is the book for you! Authors Mark and Grace Driscoll talk from the heart providing examples from their... Read more
Published on Jan. 17 2012 by Momof4
2.0 out of 5 stars Will the "Real Marriage" Please Stand Up?
Well, Christmas is over, the thank yous are written, general annual meeting reports are handed in, life has settled down to a dull roar. Read more
Published on Jan. 16 2012 by P. Halliday
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