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But, Why Shouldn't Christians Date Non-Christians?



Being a Christian doesn't omit you from depravity. You're still susceptible to sinful influence. Don't substitute what should be an element of sanctification with destructive romance.

Jesus said, "if anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and pick up his cross daily and follow me." This is a significant call to action. It's a call to abandon anything that would deter us from pursuing Christ and reaching the world. You and your spouse should be championing each other in these pursuits. But this cannot be done with such a ball-and-chain burden of an unequally yoked relationship.

I've been in young adult ministry for over the past 10-ish years and have seen a destructive pattern among some millennial Christians:

Dating outside of the faith.

Ya'll, stop it. Seriously stop it. Your "justifications" for doing so are more painful than President Trump's tweets. This should be a given, a black and white, a non-negotiable...but for many in the Church they still do it regardless of what the Bible or wise counsel tells them...and then it hurts in the end. Christian girls think they can "fix" the non-believing guy who they've fallen for, while the Christian guys think they can "lead" the non-believing girl into a relationship with Christ. These are common vernaculars and they're both loads of crap.

Why should Christians refrain from dating non-believers?

1.) Your spouse is your terminal accountability partner.

Pursuing Christ is terminal. Marriage should be as well. Praying for each other, speaking scripture over each other, and walking hand-in-hand in sweet communion with the Holy Spirit is nixed when unequally yoked. The absence of this communion will create a lasting, grieving thirst that goes unquenched. In life you have friends, best friends, and then there's your spouse– the ultimate priority. The mostest bestest friend everrrr. It is imperative that your spouse be the most compatible relationship that you have.

2.) Your standards will be different– important standards.

Outside of scripture, there's hardly a reason to not have sex outside of marriage. That said if you're pursuing sexual purity, which you should be as a Christian, then you are setting yourself up for failure. But the contrast in standards is not isolated to sexual purity. The music, movies, language, and other cultural entities that you would want to keep out of your house may make a way in, which can also influence your children (elaborating on that later). Also community is huge for anyone, believer or not. Community isn't just about having fun, but it's about meeting needs and growing together in like-minded ways. Unequally yoked couples will face a huge conflict of interest in this important area. Being a Christian doesn't exempt you from depravity. You're still susceptible to sinful influence. Don't substitute what should be an element of sanctification with destructive romance.

3.) It's unbiblical.

This reason alone should be the final word on the matter.

"Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?" –2 Corinthians 6:14

The analogy here is of a pair of oxen who are pulling a plow or wagon. The yoke is a wooden bar that harnesses the pair of oxen together in efforts to use their strength mutually to get the job done. If one oxen is significantly stronger than the other, it will pull the entire load off the road, dragging the weaker oxen with it into destruction. In this analogy, the load being pulled is the process of sanctification and the oxen are the romantic couple. Unequal yoking will surely deter the pursuit of righteousness. Your goals will conflict and considering the gravity of the sanctification process, this relationship will cause tremendous pain to your spiritual development. This verse isn't specific to romance, but considering the context it undoubtedly applies. There's also a host of verses on purity, growth, ministry, discipleship etc. that will all be compromised if your relationship is not Christ-centered.

4.) Raising children will be even more complicated and painful.

Taking your children to church, sheltering them from bad influences, and raising them to love Jesus are but some of the issues that are compromised when in an unequally yoked relationship.

This should terrify you.

Raising children isn't easy and the impressionable stages of adolescence casts a dark shadow of grief on a family when the child rebels. You may want to enroll your kids in Christian school but if your spouse isn't seeking Jesus then that is a HUGE financial waste to them. You may want to sign your kids up for AWANA or other Church programs, which may be fine to your spouse but what if they want to include your kids in activities that fall in contrast to biblical teachings? This isn't hypothetical, it's inevitable.

I've never done this before but I'm going to conclude by repeating my introduction.

Jesus said, "if anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and pick up his cross daily and follow me." This is a significant call to action. It's a call to abandon anything that would deter us from pursuing Christ and reaching the world. You and your spouse should be championing each other in these pursuits. But this cannot be done with such a ball-and-chain burden of an unequally yoked relationship.

For the gospel,

–JWR


Hi, my name is John and I love coffee. As I write this I’m sitting in a local roastery sipping a “mudslide” espresso with cream and two and a half sugars. There are few things in life that I feel merit precise orchestration with no room for error, coffee is one of them.

My life belongs to Jesus. I am his son and He is my King. His work in my life is reason enough for my faith to be made complete. He lived to die for me so that I may be credited righteous thus I will live for Him. I believe one area that has been greatly ignored by Christians is culture and politics. We must be active in representing our faith in these communities, but not in a relativistic or compromising way.


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