This is a series I wrote a few years ago, before my husband and I got married. It was some of the points God began showing me as I was starting a new journey and preparing for the Godly man He had planned for my life. I hope this series helps someone who is looking for THAT man. Remember, you do not have to compromise what God instructs.
This is Part 2:
An Unequal Yoke is a Heavy Yoke
This is the second blog on a series describing what the Bible commands I must find in a husband.
He MUST be a Christian. Not just in word, but in his life, in his beliefs, in his actions. Does he have a desire to be “Like Christ”? Does he strive to live a righteous and holy life?
When searching the “web” one will find many arguments about the Bible NOT being specific about a believer marrying a non-believer. I think in our culture today, reasons are looked for to make “sins” acceptable. This time, I choose NOT to. In examining closely, I find many scripture in support of marrying another Christian. Let’s look at a selection of those:
Going to Genesis Chapter 24:1-4 we find:
Now Abraham was old, advanced in age; and the LORD had blessed Abraham in every way. Abraham said to his servant, the oldest of his household, who had charge of all that he owned, ” Please place your hand under my thigh, and I will make you swear by the LORD, the God of heaven and the God of earth, that you shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I live, but you will go to my country and to my relatives, and take a wife for my son Isaac.”
From this scripture, we can see it was important for Abraham’s family to continue the future generations with “like minded” people. First of all, the Canaanites were not “God’s People”. The Bible gives warning against the way the Canaanites’ worshipped and even warns against living among them:
Exodus 20:3-6 You shall have no other gods before me. “You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand [generations] of those who love me and keep my commandments.
Exodus 23:24 Do not bow down before their gods or worship them or follow their practices. You must demolish them and break their sacred stones to pieces.
Exodus 23:33 “They shall not live in your land, because they will make you sin against Me; for if you serve their gods, it will surely be a snare to you.”
2 Corinthians 6:14-18 says: Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” “Therefore come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.” “I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.”
While some commentaries will dispute the concept of this being about marriage, to me it is clearly good advice to not be joined with unbelievers. If this was important for ANY relationship, why would it not be so with marriage? Marriage is to be a life-time covenant. Living in a marriage with someone who is not a Christian is a constant battle. Scripture does tell us very specifically that a woman is not to marry an unbeliever in 1 Corinthians 7:39 (NIV):
A woman is bound to her husband as long as he lives. But if her husband dies, she is free to marry anyone she wishes, but he must belong to the Lord.
We see in other scripture the stark difference in those who belong to Christ, who live a life for Him, and those who do not.
John8:42-44 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and have come from God, for I have not even come on My own initiative, but He sent Me. “Why do you not understand what I am saying? It is because you cannot hear My word. “You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
Ephesians 2:1-5 And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved)
Ephesians 5:5-10 For this you know with certainty, thatno immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not be partakers with them; for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light (for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth), trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.
Scripture is clear of the distinction between those living Godly lives and those living unholy, unrighteous lives. Marriage is a relationship full of bumps and potholes along the road. Why would people of God want to add to the disparity of traveling a road with someone who is going in the opposite direction? One may think, “But the man I am dating is a good man. He may not have made a commitment to Christ, but he is not a follower of Satan.” God’s Word also has an answer for a dilemma such as this. Matthew 12:30 is spoken by Christ:
He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me scatters.
In denying to accept the gift of salvation and living as a child of God, one chooses to live for the Adversary, Satan. Having been in a relationship where we were not traveling in the same direction with the same purpose, I can tell you I look forward to the day I can share with the man of Christ, whom God has purposed for me. I know life will not be “perfect”, but with Christ as our focus and Heaven as our eternal goal, the journey will be well worth the adventure. Find the one true soul mate, to me, means spending that eternity in a place our souls call home. In John 11:25-26, Jesus assures us of that promise:
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?”
So, in my heart and mind, I am resolved to the Biblical proof given. A Christian should marry a Christian.
NASB used unless otherwise specified.