In our Christian journey, one of the frequently asked questions relates to the matter of a believer forming a union with a non-believer. This is a question that often comes up, particularly among young adults and college students. At the heart of the question, one can discern an underlying query: “As a Christian, am I allowed to marry a non-Christian?”
The scriptures provide a simple response to this: No. But this straightforward answer may not satisfy everyone’s curiosity. Hence, we must delve deeper into the scripture, to comprehend why the Word of God directs believers not to marry non-believers. This exploration will reveal a divine, glorifying vision of marriage that believers should cherish, rather than dread.
Genesis introduces the essence of this union: two human beings, made in God’s image, forming a ‘one-flesh’ union. This unity should be visualized as a fusion, rather than a mere adhesion. The concept of marriage reflects this fusion: it’s not a mere contractual agreement but a divine covenant where two become one, creating something new and strong.
However, after the fall, the sanctity of marriage was affected by human sin. Throughout Biblical history, God warns his people not to marry those from different lands, not due to racism, but due to religious reasons. God’s primary concern was the purity of his people’s worship. He wanted to prevent his followers from being led astray by their spouses into worshiping other gods, a tragic phenomenon epitomized by the life of King Solomon.
Solomon, a man known for his wisdom, was swayed away from worshipping God by his numerous foreign wives. A cautionary tale that rings through the centuries, reminding us of the potential perils when believers unite with non-believers.
With the advent of the Church and the New Covenant, the principle remains intact. Believers are still called to marry ‘only in the Lord’ as the Apostle Paul states in Corinthians. Being ‘unequally yoked’ with non-believers pollutes our worship and undermines our renewed nature in Christ.
But, what is the ultimate purpose of marriage for a believer? Yes, companionship and family life are crucial aspects, but above all, a Christian marriage should be a testament to God’s glory. When a Christian couple live in harmony, their relationship portrays the love of Christ, and this love serves as a beacon of hope to the world.
If we purposefully form this divine covenant with someone who does not accept Jesus as Lord, our marriages may not fully mirror this sacred mystery. Therefore, let’s remember the ultimate goal of our union: to glorify God, to strengthen our worship, and to proclaim His gospel to the world.
In the end, a believer should seek to marry a fellow believer who will support them in their spiritual journey, helping them to run the race with patience, bringing honor to God, and bringing joy to their own lives.