In today’s sermon, I preached about how a Christian’s new identity as a son or daughter or God impacts their relationships with those who don’t share their faith. One of the most important areas where we see this command to “not be unequally yoked” play out is the question of whether Christians should marry (or even date) non-Christians.
As you think about this, I thought I’d point you to a couple of other resources I found especially helpful in wrestling with this myself.
First, check out this video of Tim Keller, former senior pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City. In a post-sermon Q&A session, he gives us a really practical take on what “being unequally yoked” actually looks like in a long-term romantic relationship.
This isn’t just theoretical for Dr. Keller, however. His wife, Kathy, wrote this short article describing how this issue played out in their own family’s life. You can read that short article below.
Finally, take a look at Sean Nolan’s heart-wrenching letter to a Christian friend who recently announced her engagement to an unbeliever. Rather than condemning his friend, notice his concern for her future marriage and ongoing walk with Christ.
What if I’m already married to someone who isn’t a Christian?
While the Bible prohibits marrying someone who is not a believer, many Christians find themselves in an “unequally yoked” marriage. This may be due to ignoring this command in their dating relationship, or it may be that one partner became a Christian after the marriage. Either way, the solution is not to separate from an uneven marriage (1 Corinthians 7:12-13), but to faithfully love and share your faith with your unbelieving spouse. Remember, this is for couples who are already married, not those dating or even engaged.
What should I do if I’m already dating someone who is not a Christian?
First, remember that while Christians shouldn’t date non-Christians, we still should have a desire to share our faith and befriend them. If you’re already dating a non-Christian, you should have an open and honest talk and explain why marriage isn’t an option at this time. Slowing things down to a friendship (with people around you to help keep you accountable) is a great way to love the other person while they wrestle with the gospel. A word of caution: You shouldn’t marry someone if they are an unbeliever, but neither should they feel pressured to become a Christian so they can marry you. For the long-term health of your relationship, both parties need to enter into the marriage with a clear conscience.
As always, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to talk about this further. See you next Sunday!