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Keralabrethren.net: General Forum: "Proper" marriage

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# 02496 :  "Proper" marriage

I am in a bit of a problem and would like to seek some advice. I and my girlfriend have decided to get married. We are both of marriagable age (26 and 23) born again believers and are part of a church. The parents of my friend are refusing at all cost to agree to the marriage. Since they are very powerful people no pastor is willing to conduct our wedding without their consent.

In this situation i am wondering, what is a "proper" marriage? Does the Bible say that a pastor or anyone specific should conduct the wedding for it to be proper? What if we (me and my friend) pray together and say oour vows, and start to live as husband and wife? Of course, i knw from a legal point of view we have to get it registerd but i am asking, from the point of view of the Bible is it ok?

I am really frustrated with the attitude of many so called elders in out church who keep on saying that what is biblical and what is not without any support from the Bible!

Post by : binuthomaskerala  View Profile    since : 24 May 2013


Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 24 May 2013 9:00:32 AM Close

Dear Binu, 

An exact spiritual marriage is that between a born again boy and a girl. You are not overruling this requirement in marrying the girl you want to marry. If both of you are partakers of Lord’s Table I can not question whether your faith is unto saving.  It must be.  Spiritually and legally you are entitled to marry her.

 

Every ‘proper’ marriage is set with all human ordinances. These ordinances which may vary from place to place are no harm as long as parents of both the sides are willing.  If not so, you will have to take drastic steps to marry the girl. First of all, you two should not indulge in going out for merry making anywhere.  You should not loose your Christian identity in the eyes of this world. Both of you in your separate places keep this issue in your prayers. Let there may be some time allowance to find whether the girl’s parent change their mind in acceptance of the marriage.

 

When God united Adam with Eve, He alone was the witness and there were no ordinances followed. Ensure that the girl is thoroughly willful in marrying you. Because, as you go on in the marriage process, the consequences will not be as congenial as you expect, especially when the girl’s parents are so ‘powerful’ that they can do any thing as a resistance your marriage. (I conveniently presume that the ‘power’ you mentioned is financial and their contact with outside world)

 

Keeping God as your witness as He was in the Garden of Eden, you can marry the girl before the Registrar of Marriage, according to Christian Marriage Act. When time passes on, thing will turn normal, I am sure. However, just before and after marriage, for some time, you both have to face some hardships and the girl must be ready to meet it and you too. I have written this from my own personal experience.

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Reply by : tomj   View Profile   Since : 24 May 2013 1:43:59 PM Close

 Dear Binu,

My advice –

1.       Do not rush into marriage for a period of time. Allow some time [may be 6 months] to pray about it; fasting & prayer would be ideal, at least one day a week; say, from morning to evening or whatever you are physically capable of. If possible, both of you do it and it will be a sign of your total surrender to God. [Fast more days if possible.]

2.       Seek counsel from at least 3 mature Christians, not necessarily elders or pastors. This could be 3 mature Christian couple because you would get the perspective of a woman also. Meet with them often and ask them to pray for you. You can meet with them together or separately.

3.       At the end of six months, re-evaluate your commitment and desires based on the counsel you received from these people and what the Holy Spirit had revealed to you. God will certainly answer your committed prayers. I am a firm believer of prayer and fasting [but fasting should be very private & should not be announced to anyone; keep that between you & God. Every time you feel the hunger pain, it should trigger you to pray with diligence.]

4.       At the end of six months if you both are still committed to be married, arrange a meeting with her parents [at least make an attempt] and reveal your intentions to get married. Your Christian counselors could/ should also be present in the meeting. I believe, by then you will have a clear path revealed to you.

5.       To answer your other question – you don’t need a pastor to officiate a Christian marriage. As long as two Christians are getting married it is a ‘Christian marriage.’ It would be ideal to have at least two other Christian friends to be present as you make your covenant to your spouse. They will be your witnesses. All other formalities in regard to the laws of the land must be met as well.  

Tom Johns

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Reply by : rtdaniel   View Profile   Since : 25 May 2013 7:04:25 AM Close

Dear Binu,

Please go to the Youth Forum and read the last posting on "Love Marriage"

 

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Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 27 May 2013 9:07:08 AM Close

The outline of Mr.RTD’s post is Binu has to give up loving a girl altogether.  His father will take up this matter (seeking a bride for his son) to God and God alone, he should not consult with any one, should not attempt to get any details. God will show the way finally.

 There are three responses here and it is not known what Binu thinks of.

 

 I will write my view on Mr.RTD’s post later on after reading what Binu says.

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Reply by : binuthomaskerala   View Profile   Since : 28 May 2013 5:42:28 AM Close

 Thank you all for your comments.

Brother Tomj, it is refereshing to hear what you say, for I have been driven to frustration by the so caled pastors and elders who want to pass on their opinion in the guise of "God's will". We have been doing what you have suggested. Moreover this is not a relationship that has happened over a few weeks or months. We have been talking and praying about this for more than a year now. Thank you for your advise as it reassures us taht we are not thiking of doing something utterly sinful as many "spiritual" believers are telling us

bro rtdaniel, thank you for your comments, but I have no intention to reopen the question of whether "love marriage" is biblical or not. I have heard more than enough nonsense from all sorts of "spiritual" people who misquote and misuse scripture to prove anything they want. I am firmely convinced that the Bible no where mentiones how one should go about finding a spouse. And I also know that in many cases "God's will" is only a cover up for the most compatable (read professional qualification/bank balance/skin colour/property/family name, etc. etc.) girl or boy! 

 

 

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Reply by : tomj   View Profile   Since : 28 May 2013 3:36:33 PM Close

Dear Binu,

Thank you for your response. Let me mention few more things. As you pray and prepare for this life together please pay attention to the following also. You need collective decisions – the two of you.

1.       Evaluate your income. Are you able to support her? Do not count on her present income because what if she needs to take time off to take care of the house/ children, then you may not have a second income.  

2.       Do you have enough funds to secure a place for your own either as owned or rented?

3.       Put together a very realistic budget by two of you individually listing all your present obligations and expected expenses. Then combine those to make sure you are able to manage the needs.

4.       Include your tithes [10%] as part of your expense. [I regret my past failures.]

5.       Are you both united and in agreement with where you will fellowship? Do you think this fellowship would support you and welcome you as a family? Do not cause a division over this issue. Do not be a party to someone supporting you and someone disassociating with you. Stay away from such a situation.

6.       Go over with your fiancé about the potential impact of her family distancing her from them. Is she able to emotionally cope with her Father/ Mother or Siblings not in touch with her at least for a period of time?  

7.       Have you evaluated and communicated with her how your parental family & siblings would deal with this issue? How would that affect the whole scenario?

When one family is non-supportive, you have a greater responsibility to structure your financial situation expecting nothing from them until they are legally obliged to part with the family property; this could be many years from now.

Hope these pointers are helpful.

Tom Johns 

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Reply by : binuthomaskerala   View Profile   Since : 29 May 2013 4:38:12 AM Close

 dear Tomj, i am really thankful for the very important points you have pointed out. Not only are they practical but extremeley importnat too. While we have thought about some of these issues (esp finances), there are certain others which are entirely new to us (points 6 and 7). 

As for point no. 5 we have both come to the decision that we will not continue with the churches we are part of curretly. The reason for this decision is not entirely related to the question of our marriage. I have for about two years now been entirely dissatisfied with many aspects of the pentecostal church I have been part of and have been mulling over the question of joining another church. The problems associated with the question of marriage are probably the proverbial last straw only. I am seriously considering the CSI or methodist church. And yes, I am absolutely sure I dont want to be part of the Brethren denomination (I know this is a Brethren website, and I dont intend to offend anyone, but more than 50% of my family is Brethren and hence i know why I dont want to be part of this group!)

 

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Reply by : tomj   View Profile   Since : 29 May 2013 3:25:19 PM Close

Dear Binu,

I am glad most of the pointers are helpful to you. I am very encouraged to see that you both have looked into some of those already. Those are signs of maturity and seriousness of this important event in your life. My prayer is that you would build a family together and remain as true witnesses to God and if time is given blessed with children who become faithful in the things of the Lord. With that concern in my mind let me bring out some additional pointers in light of your decision regarding the church that you would like to fellowship at. I am not a great ‘fan’ of organized denominations. But Bible gives important guidelines by which one should choose a congregation he or she would like to attend.

1.       God’s purpose for the church must be our purpose of being in that church. (a)The foundation of that church must be the truths found in the scriptures – Truths from the Bible must have complete authority in teaching as well as in practice[1 Tim 3:15.] (b)Christ alone is the Head of the church [Eph. 1:22; 4:15 & Col. 1:18]

2.       While seeking for a church to attend, one should look for a place where (a) gospel is preached as it is found in the bible (b) sin is condemned (c) worship is from the heart; not merely liturgical (c) opportunity to minster to one another exist.  [Acts 2:42 & other passages]

3.       One should find a place where the proper Headship of the church is recognized and practiced. Not one person, whether as the Pastor, Elder, Priest or Pope considered as the head. These men would die, but the church of the living God must continue on.

4.       Church should practice to have the biblical pattern of leadership. The following two offices are found in the bible and local gatherings must practice to have those in place. Those offices are elders & deacons – both plural. The local congregation must be able to identify who their elders & deacons are without going through any guesswork. They must be publicly recognized and identified because it is biblical.

5.       What do they teach about the Bible, God, and Jesus Christ, the Trinity, sin & salvation?

6.       Do they follow believer’s baptism? [The mode of baptism whether as immersion or otherwise may not be greatly important. I am not dogmatic about those. But believer’s baptism is scriptural.]

7.       Their teachings/ practice about the communion/ Lord’s Supper. Weekly communion or Lord’s Supper could be ideal but we do not need to be totally dogmatic about it either. But clear teachings and willingness to practice the Lord’s Supper is essential.

8.       Is the current congregation / leadership welcoming towards you? Your presence must not cause a division in the foreseeable future.

9.       If you decide to join an existing congregation you should honor their leadership & practice. You do not join that place ‘hoping’ to change them.  

10.   If you found a ‘perfect’ church to join, DO NOT join them; YOU will certainly ruin that fellowship. [We are all saved ‘sinners’ &  we all carry heavy baggage; every congregation is comprised of people with varied personalities and quirkiness. Have a mindset to appreciate each other in spite of their apparent flaws. DO NOT try to change them; YOU change.]  

I failed to put the above pointers in the order of priority. Although all are important and it is possible that I may have missed few others with practical implications, we may face difficulty in finding any congregation that has all of the above. Especially when we are dealing with newer congregation, we need to be willing to settle for the ‘essentials.’ These ‘essentials’ can be’ subjective’ because certain people find certain things more important than others. My assessment may not be everyone else’s. Having said that let me prioritize by picking the numbers based on how I would choose.  Few of the top ones are truly essential and are equal in importance. I would pick 1, 2, 5, 6, 3, 4 & 7. 8-10 are practical suggestions.

Please do not underestimate the importance of choosing the right congregation to attend. You as the spiritual leader of the household, you are going to be impacting a generation to follow [if time permits.] I wrote this much because I want you to be reminded of the paramount importance of this decision and not to consider this in a rather ‘nonchalant’ [= unexcited or casual] manner. I am not suggesting that you would take it so; but a word of caution.

Tom Johns 

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Reply by : rtdaniel   View Profile   Since : 31 May 2013 9:59:51 AM Close

Dear Binu and Kristianjude,

Mr.Kristianjude or others might have misunderstood my posting on marriage. I have only tried to bring out the Biblical principles in marriage. The practical application can vary from person to person.  I must also state that I have seen some young men who clearly followed these principles and are happily married.

Now, loving a girl is not unscriptural. But how you came to love that person is what is to be questioned.  In most cases it is out of lust. As one of the famous preachers in Kerala once said, “One should only marry a person whom he or she loves.” Love starts before marriage and not after marriage. Christ loved us and still we are in love though the marriage has not taken place. The process of finding and selecting a partner should be according to the Bible or the plan and purpose of God.  It is not a sin to be interested in a person of the opposite sex. But if the individuals are clearly guided by the spirit and have found out the will of God in that relationship, before they get involved in a deeper relationship, many problems can be avoided. That does not mean that everything will work out so smoothly, but the Lord will ultimately work it out. Sometimes it may be so difficult for the parents or the church members to accept, but if you wait patiently for the working of the Lord, He will work it out in His perfect time. If you want everything to happen according to your plan and in your time it may not happen. I have seen miracles happen in such kind of relationships when they have committed everything to the Lord and decided to wait up on Him. Leaving the Church fellowship or the family member who did not agree with you is not the remedy.  It will only be a temporary relief which in most cases will prove to be more detrimental. I am also not of the opinion that just because a relationship is not accepted by the parents it should be considered as something outside the Lord’s will. The most important thing is to make sure that the relationship is of the Lord and if it is so He will work it out.

Daniel.

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Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 31 May 2013 10:11:03 AM Close

I have nothing much to debate with you,  Sir.

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Reply by : beracah   View Profile   Since : 3 Jun 2013 5:48:36 AM Close

Assembly membership:-

Fellowship in a godly church with godly leadership would be a great blessing, an encouragement for God’s people. There could be many such supportive, nurturing churches with responsible leaders. There are many failed churches falling short and far removed from being an average one. Most of them are not different from a crowd without godly integration infested with all kinds of politics, group-ism and leadership wrangling. There are very few churches without an in-house opposition group. A semblance of peace exists only where the carnal elements that are bent upon creating trouble for anything and everything are in charge and control. Imagine the fate of sheep led and fed by a bunch of carnal, unspiritual elements!!  
 
God’s Will in marriages:-
Interfering unwisely in the lives of others and passing unsolicited comments is a pastime for some. They have an opinion about everything concerning others and expect others to live as these intruders choose, direct and dictate. Such people undertake the “painful” task (for whom?) of dispensing god’s will for others. Christians must learn to mind their own business and allow others to find and do God’s Will in their lives. When someone is doing God’s Will, the witnessing fellow Christian must have the willingness and spiritual goodness to appreciate it, and bless the Lord for that.
 
Church functionaries (Pastors, Elders etc), fellow Christians, family members including parents could make mistakes while ascertaining God’s Will in marriages of fellow believers or family members. All the marriage proposals emerging form love affairs are not in the Will of God. Similarly all the opposition to love marriages also is not in the Will of God; but it is in the will of the parties involved / concerned. God “may” reveal His will about a couple to unrelated third parties; but I pray the Lord to reveal His Will to the man and woman who are getting married.
 
BTW, in this context, it must also be noted that all the marriages negotiated, proposed by the Church Functionaries, Parents, Spiritual Brokers, Fellow Christians, etc need not always be in the Will of God. Many marriages have taken place and are taking place on considerations other than God’s Will approved by all the above parties that claim to hold the kingdom of god intact from breaking up; who pretend to be the gatekeepers of the kingdom of heaven.
 
Those who are selfless and love the couple, who are interested in their well being, their spiritual standing, testimony and relationship with God, may counsel them; pray for them. I thank Br Tom Johns for his wise counsels and bless the Lord for this dear brother.
 
Regards, PTV
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Reply by : binuthomaskerala   View Profile   Since : 3 Jun 2013 12:08:34 PM Close

"Many marriages have taken place and are taking place on considerations other than God’s Will approved by all the above parties that claim to hold the kingdom of god intact from breaking up; who pretend to be the gatekeepers of the kingdom of heaven." 

 dear beracha (PTV), your words capture my feelings exactly. This was one of the key reasons I felt so absolutely frustrated. People just have an opinion and would do anything to prove their point!

Tomj, thank you for your detailed comments and also taking the time to prioritise them :-) Though you say that your points 8-10 are simply practical suggestions, I think they are absolutely essential. I only wish more of our discussions are focused on such "practical" matters rather than on pedantic and microscopic doctrinal issues which do not benifit anyone. Although I can sense the concern in your words, with all due respect, I think I disagree with your on the topic of baptism. Though I myself was baptised after I confessed faith in Christ, I think infant baptism is also valid. I duck imagining the heated volly of comments that my statement will draw :-) My reasons for thte position I take are many but I think will just pulll this thread in a completely different direction.

 

 

 

 

 

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Reply by : tomj   View Profile   Since : 3 Jun 2013 1:16:00 PM Close

Dear Binu,

I’d be glad to stay focused on the practical suggestions. I felt the need to remind you of the husband’s responsibility as a spiritual leader of the family while choosing a church to attend. I do not want to dwell on those since the focus of this thread is somewhat different.

Feel free to discuss other issues without the fear of repercussions because of your stand on baptism. Since you have accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior and trusted Him for the forgiveness of sins, we are brothers in Christ. Other things matter only when we consider choosing a place to fellowship. So, please be bold and bring your concerns to light. If I/ we could be of additional help please don’t hesitate. I have posted my personal email elsewhere at multiple times. If you like to have it please leave a message here. In any case, since some might be praying for you, an update of some sort would be greatly appreciated to see how things progress.

Dear PTV,

I appreciate your words of encouragement and the feelings of appreciation are mutual. Continue to minster to the needs of people as there are so many needs among us. We are in desperate need for leaders who would empathize with their fellow brother’s and sister’s needs of every kind.

Tom Johns

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Reply by : tomj   View Profile   Since : 4 Jun 2013 11:21:27 AM Close

Dear Kristianjude,

As an independent reader, it did not even cross my mind that PTV was addressing anything you wrote. I felt it was just general statements. PTV can verify it on his own,  but I just wanted to express what I felt when I read it.

 

Tom Johns

 

 

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Reply by : binuthomaskerala   View Profile   Since : 4 Jun 2013 12:31:18 PM Close

Tomj, u asked me to feel freee to discuss other issues...well there are  many issues i like to discuss but I usually keep it to myself because most of the people I have encountered are not interested in discussion...they are firmly convinced they are right and others are wrong, so all they want to do is try to point out thte faults of the other persons argument. And so I have just kept my thoughts to myself...but since u ask i think i will open another topic and write abt some of the those thoughts. As for update on the issue I open the topic for, it looks like my friend's father is relenting a bit. but for the time being we both have decided not to rush but take your and a few other people's  advice and give it another six months or so. thank you for your prayers.

kristianjude: you say that love marriage is purely sexual attraction. I think you are completely mistaken and you have no idea what you are talking about.

From your comments I guess you are suggesting that a proper way to get married is the "traditional" way where the girl and the boy meet in the parents house and then decide to marry. If so, tell me why do they have to meet? what does a 10 or 15min or 1 hr meeting do? if at all there is a chance to get misled by sexual attraction alone then the arranged marriage is a more probable way. Well sexual attraction is very much part of the eqwuation...whats wrong about that? it is a natural human response given by God and hence should not be condemned. If you want to eliminate sexual attraction then people should get married without seeing each other...not even a photo..or like in the olden days get the parents to fix the marriage when the children are born...

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Reply by : binuthomaskerala   View Profile   Since : 4 Jun 2013 12:34:44 PM Close

 to contine from where i stopped in the earlier post to kristianjude:

In a love marriage the boy and the girl have a chance to know each over a longer period of time and hence progress beyond the purely sexual or physical attraction. I think  all that you can imagine about a girl and a boy together is sex, and so let me suggest that the probelem is with you. You need to seriously understand that a man and a woman can interact at various other levels and their relationship need not be centred around sex.

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Reply by : samuel.v.j   View Profile   Since : 4 Jun 2013 3:36:40 PM Close

 Dear "binuthomaskerala"

There is no harm in getting married as per the laws of the land , and as per the scriptures and assembly, both should be born again and baptized and in the fellowship. No one is going to stop anyone from getting married, but as a personal request and advised by brethren above, please wait for some more time, convince your parents and get married with thier blessing. They have a major part in our lives to play, they have made us, brought us up, taught us, they have been in all our ups and downs of our life. For Adam was Eve, God was the Father to them, who made them by his own hands, and later from there we see the parents role they chose partners for thier children. There was an instance when Samson took a decision against the parents will, and we know the consequences later.

Just imagine the case , we are in our young age now, we go ahead and get married against the will of the parents, God blesses us with children, with great passion and love , we make them grow up , giving them the best of everything in our lives , making ourselves starve at times, and one fine morning, the children say , we dont need your advices dad and mum, I know what to do, whether let it be love affair  or any other  habits they develop, what will be our reaction and feeling . 

Therefore please take the parents and assembly into confidence and proceed with marriage.

 

 

Yours in Christ

 

Sam

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Reply by : beracah   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2013 4:09:44 AM Close

Quote

He will not deny that the ‘some’ he referred to is myself and keeping me in his mind he has made that comment. End quote

 

k-jude,

Hope you are not flattering yourself too much. Take and apply whatever suits you.

 

You may be suffering Persecution complex / syndrome; such have a tendency to read hidden or threatening meaning in everything, even in benign remarks; perceives attacks on their character or reputation that are not apparent to others. 

 

You were not part of the “some” I had in my thoughts when I wrote the post you referred to. It was not directed against you or any other contributor in particular. But, if it suits you, take it. Be assured that I won’t go for indirect speech where I have to address you directly.

 

Regards, PTV.

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Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 5 Jun 2013 9:00:50 AM Close

Binu,

I have seen that you were lamenting that you don’t want to get engaged in discussion because most of the people you have encountered are not interested in discussion...they are firmly convinced they are right and others are wrong, so all they want to do is try to point out the faults of the other persons argument. But when you came forward for the first time to interact with me, you opened it with an argument, not a discussion. When I said that the basic instinct of every love affair is purely sex attraction, you have not just asked for the reasons only.  If you would have done so, that would be your willingness for a fair discussion.  Instead of that, you came up trying to point out the faults of mine.  This is a bad attitude which you said you do not like. You too are interested in arguments rather than discussions.

 

 

This is my one time post to you to clarify my position for the question you have raised and I have no interest to make any more posts addressing you.

 

 

You have said that sex attraction is a natural human response given by God and hence should not be condemned. You have made a false accusation. Where I have condemned sex attraction? When I say that sex attraction is the basic instinct for love affair, I mean that love affair origins with this attraction as base for it.  I am speaking of its nature.  It is not a condemnation.  If so, I would not have supported you for your love marriage in my first post. It shows you have not read my first post attentively or else your power of understanding is very minimal. When I support your love marriage do not expect that I have to appose the traditional way of marriage fixing. One your sentence goes like this: ‘If you want to eliminate sexual attraction …..’.  How did you make such a wrong conclusion that I want to eliminate sexual attraction? I honour sex, I like sex and that is why I have two sons. And this sex is basic for any love affair.

 

 

Regarding this love issue, I will write further in a separate thread later on.

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Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 6 Jun 2013 4:22:22 AM Close

Binu,

If my post is discomforting to you and you want it deleted, you may remove the portions addressed to me in your post.

 

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Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 7 Jun 2013 10:41:06 AM Close

Dear Sam,

No harm in getting married as per the laws of the land and as per the Scripture.  This point is right. Then, how a pair fallen in love can get married as per assembly? What is an assembly’s stance in the case of a love marriage? Do you mean that a boy being a member of Brethren should marry only a Brethren girl?

 

Taking an example from OT’s historical events can not substantiate your justification for marriages arranged by parents. You have not rightly accessed Samson’s story. His parents did not say that he had to marry a girl whom they would choose.  They said Samson can make a choice for himself, but from among the daughters of his brethren, or among all their people.

 

Another interesting point here is the apparent wrong decision Samson took was actually a plan by God.  There is no any general lesson available in Samson’s peculiar life history (I am speaking of only Judges 14:1-4). Do you think that every boy and girl should marry only according o the will of their parents without any question? Can you say that every parent will take a right decision? Have you not heard stories of arranged marriages that failed at last? (I am speaking of believers only). Even Adam and Eve are not an exemplary pair to follow.

Bottom line message is both the parents and children should reciprocally exchange their views and look into all the aspects that surround a married life.  Children should honour parents’ view and parents should value what the children say and see that the marriage goes off well, whether it is a love marriage or an arranged marriage.

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Reply by : samuel.v.j   View Profile   Since : 15 Jun 2013 1:05:34 PM Close

 Dear "kristianjude"

"Then, how a pair fallen in love can get married as per assembly? What is an assembly’s stance in the case of a love marriage?"

 

This is where you are confusing everyone, the decision of falling in love are between two individual person (opposite sex or the same sex as some fight today for thier rights), whether it be from the same congregation, or from outside, but  why do we all want that the congregation to  endorse our decsion, each congregation has thier own congregational  bilaws based on thier understanding from the scriptures, and same way each parents has thier own concerns over their children . Of course all parents want thier children to be happy after thier marriage also , when the parent forecasts ,  thier children will depend on them again after marriage in the long run or several other reasons  , they sure will have thier concerns. 

And the way you have understood Samson's case let it be the same way as you understand, we see the parents concern there, and later we know  what happened to the wife which was taken by his own decision.

And in your opnion even Adam and Eve were also  not a perfect couple, so who is a perfect couple. Our opinions and our freedom of right to say  can state  many things .

 

"Bottom line message is both the parents and children should reciprocally exchange their views and look into all the aspects that surround a married life.  Children should honour parents’ view and parents should value what the children say and see that the marriage goes off well, whether it is a love marriage or an arranged marriage."

What you have stated above is 100% correct, what I personally suggest, take the parents and congregation into confidence, even though it make take a bit time, if they cant wait until that time, they are free to approach  the judiciary for thier rights of getting married with a witness of couple of friends.

 

Sam

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Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 15 Jun 2013 1:54:37 PM Close

 Thank you dear Sam

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Reply by : tomj   View Profile   Since : 16 Jun 2013 4:52:16 PM Close

Brother rtdaniel wrote the following;

“Now, loving a girl is not unscriptural. But how you came to love that person is what is to be questioned.  In most cases it is out of lust.”

I think it is better to rephrase the above statement for proper perspective. The people from Kerala/ India are somewhat trained to think that way. Our culture somehow used to indicate that sitting next to a woman even in a public place should invariably cause sexual agitation in the minds of them; particularly in men. The Indian movies, especially the Malayalam ones, depicted the idea of ‘looking at a male and female’ would somehow lead to the girl getting pregnant. Any form of interest between a man and a woman in such stories should involve sexual union at some point. The more recent movies [the very few I had the patience to watch or found tolerable] do not show such ‘take a look and get pregnant’ themes.  There are many stories of boys and girls having just friendship and nothing sexual. In short, the idea of women as the sexual object is slowly fading into the background.

This doesn’t mean that India is free from sexual atrocities. With great deal of shame and pain we read about the brutal attacks on women; incidents such as attacking a lady by a group of boys in a public bus; hotel owner chasing a foreign tourist that lead her jumping out through the window; hooligans pushing and shoving women in the crowd etc. Such things perhaps happen more in India than other countries, although no place is immune to such crimes.

In light of what is happening socially among the younger generation, it is presumptuous to say that loving a woman stems from lust. In fact, I question the wisdom and prudence to consider it that way. We, who are older and so accustomed to ‘looking & becoming pregnant’ could be reflecting our tunnel vision, as we fail to see the possibilities of love at a platonic [=non-sexual] level.

I have witnessed and had been friends with several young couple who had platonic courtship and eventual marriages. Placing a taboo on ‘loving’ as mostly ‘lust’ is from our failure to see what could otherwise be a wonderful and mostly ‘essential’ part of any marriage.  

Proponents of arranged marriage proudly point out to the ‘success rates’ of Indian marriages and the higher percentage of divorce rates among others. Statistically it must be accurate. The people of India in general, not necessarily just the believers, do have a greater commitment towards marriage. It is commendable and it is God ordained to be so. It is a cultural taboo to have someone ‘divorced’ in the immediate family. That too can be a positive influence. But majority of our marriages are hanging strongly on the commitment ‘thread’ and lacking on the passion side. God demands both. So there is no reason to be overly proud of the success rate statistics. So, I do not see anything wrong about love-marriages. In fact, I may even discourage and counsel against anyone getting married otherwise. Let there be love, passion & deeper commitment in marriages. These are all God-ordained factors of marriage.

Tom Johns

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Reply by : moses2006   View Profile   Since : 19 Jun 2013 12:01:25 AM Close

Dear Tom,
 

Could'nt it be argued (not that this is my position on this issue) that to "fall in love" (as happens among youth) almost always happens by forces buried in the carnal impulses of the flesh, and as such, is contrary to the general direction to crucify the flesh and be always led by the Spirit (Rom 8:14)? And the usually cited examples for both cases are Issac (who patiently waited for Eliezer to bring Rebecca to him) vs. Samson (who lusted for and demanded his parents to get him a Philistine woman). Such examples are usually stated as warnings of what can happen, when we deviate from being Spirit-guided to being flesh-guided.

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Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 19 Jun 2013 10:01:54 AM Close

“Now, loving a girl is not unscriptural” – This is the sentence quoted by Mr. Tom as stated by Mr. RTD. This statement conveys the meaning that loving is scriptural. My assertion is, a carnal love, a love between a man and a woman as being attracted to each other sexually, is neither unscriptural, nor divine.  I couldn’t see that this love has been taken as a subject matter anywhere in the Scripture. Scripture neither endorses nor rejects it.

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Reply by : rtdaniel   View Profile   Since : 24 Jun 2013 9:39:03 AM Close

 

Dear Tom and Kristionjude,
 
I feel that you are very selective in reading and interpreting. Often you (most of the readers) read with much prejudice and speculation. I am not trying to counter any body’s opinions. Please read all what I have posted. The answers for all your questions are there.
I am not just a “Kerala Brethren” as you might presume. I have lived outside India most of my youth. The early part of my married life spent in the most sophisticated city in Asia and then in America also. I have lived and worked with people from over 40 different countries and have seen all their culture.
Love relationship should only start after knowing God’s will. Not after a period of intense courtship as it is practiced in the west. Courtship is not necessary to find out God’s will. “Arranged marriages” and “Love marriages” both breakdown for the same reason. The only reason is that it is not in the will of God. Even if a couple get in to a relationship out of God’s will for any reason, if they have a desire to live in the will of God the marriage will be blessed.
I am posting part of my write-up again for your perusal.
RT Daniel
 
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Reply by : rtdaniel   View Profile   Since : 24 Jun 2013 9:45:33 AM Close

Please continue to read:

 

The idea of an engagement period is often considered unimportant for many reasons. But it is Biblical. A couple has to get to know each other and develop a love-bond between them during this period before they are formally married and begin a family life. Learning to love after marriage is not the Biblical pattern. Dating and courting as it is practiced in the Western society should only be done during this time. Such things are not essentially wrong, after two people have known God’s choice for them and have decided to accept each other. In fact such a period might be necessary to understand each other and develop a strong affection for one another. Dating and courting are not necessary to find out God’s will and are not acceptable before knowing God’s will, before making a firm decision to accept one another. It should be remembered that, it is possible for even a highly spiritual couple to become prey to the desires of flesh. So, utmost care must be taken to avoid any possibility of yielding to temptations. Engagement does not give a license to do all what they want.
The book of Song of Solomon is not only an illustration of the relationship between Christ and the Church. It also portrays the love between a bride and her bridegroom in a romantic setting. That is why such an explicit language is used. A couple is encouraged to develop this kind of love and romance between them during the engagement period just as the church is expected to develop this spiritual intimacy with Christ while she is in the world. Bible never gives any freedom for physical intimacy before marriage. They are to live separately and not to ‘come together’ until they are united in holy matrimony. It is also clear in the writings of the apostles.
In the book of SoSo the Holy Spirit gives some clear guidelines and steps of restrains a couple should maintain. Ch.2:7 “I charge you… …..” This chorus is repeated in ch.3:5 and in ch.8:4. In the first two places it was before marriage or during their engagement period while they continued to cultivate their love. This expression is clearly is the evidence of her commitment to a chaste life before and during the marriage. She invites accountability to the daughters of Jerusalem. She knows that the intensity of her love to her beloved cannot yet be experienced until the wedding. So she invites the daughters of Jerusalem to keep her accountable regarding her sexual purity. This is a good example to be followed by every couple before marriage. This will help a couple to keep themselves from falling in to lustful temptations and keep themselves pure during courtship.
In ch.8:1 she says if you were my brother I would have kissed you outside without being embarrassed. This indicates that she withdrew herself from publically expressing her love to her husband even after marriage. By this time the marriage already took place (Ch.5). Yet it was not suitable or fitting to the culture to express their love in public. It was acceptable for a sister to express her love to her brother in public. But not between husband and wife. So she restrained herself and waited until they are in a privet circumstance.
Young couple should take this very seriously. You have three generations of people before you. Before you involve in any act of affection in public you must consider these three generations. While some form of expression is acceptable to your generation will it be acceptable to the older generation and will it be an example to the younger generation, will it offend anyone? Will it create confusion and dishonor to the Lord or bring harmony and honor to the Lord?
Throughout the Bible wherever the topic of marriage is discussed, it speaks of man ‘taking’ a wife for him and the woman ‘given’ in marriage. (Luke 20:34). Christ also speaks about the one that are given to Him by the Father (John 6:39; 10:29). Isaac took Rebecca (Gen 24:67) and she was given (Gen 24:51). This teaching is evident in Paul’s writings also. The man has the right to take a wife for himself, but not without the permission of her parents. She has to be given in marriage. The mystery concerning Christ and the Church is being unraveled progressively through this picture of a man and a woman coming together according to the design of God.
 
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Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 25 Jun 2013 3:34:44 PM Close

 Dear Sir,

Based on my reading your above post, here are some questions to you from me.  Please do consider my questions are seriously asked. I am not getting in vain arguments.  Yes, I accept *I have my own perception of God’s will in marriage and will be there God’s will for any individual pair particularly.  My questions are not based on my perception, but they are logical based on what you have written. Please do accept I am asking these questions sincerely.

1. Your statement: Love relationship should only start after knowing God’s will.

My question: What I have understood from your statement is that when a boy or girl gets an attraction towards the opposite sex and looks it as love, then he/she should go to God and find out God’s will in this affair.  That means, God may have the will or not. And so, if God has will in the matter, what I presume is that the basic instinct developed in he/she is God given, otherwise is must be from the Devil (what is the sure way of finding God’s will in the case is my sub question).

2. Your statement: Even if a couple get in to a relationship out of God’s will for any reason, if they have a desire to live in the will of God the marriage will be blessed.

My question: When a couple got married without God’s will, but starts living a good Christian life and receives God’s blessing, a couple got married with God’s will, but live according to their flesh not living in the will of God, has to loose the blessing from God and therefore, my point here is to seek God’s will in marriage is quite immaterial, if how a couple lives after the marriage only matters.

In your second post on the same date, in most part of it, you have given stern instruction that physical relationship between a couple before marriage is wrong. Sir, it looks you have misunderstood the love concept we have (or it is better to say-I have) brought in here. For me, it is true that sexual attraction (an emotional factor) lays the base for a love upon which other features like educational equality etc get built. My assertion for the emotional factor should not be misunderstood that I encourage love making before marriage.  In this regard, you can refer to my following words that appear in my post dated 24 May 2013 in this same thread: 

First of all, you two should not indulge in going out for merry making anywhere.  You should not loose your Christian identity in the eyes of this world. Both of you in your separate places keep this issue in your prayers

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

* I may write later my view about God’s will in marriage

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Reply by : rtdaniel   View Profile   Since : 26 Jun 2013 8:26:32 AM Close

 

Dear Cristianjude,
 I do not know whether I can answer your questions satisfactorily, but will make an attempt.
When a person feels any kind of interest in another person of the opposite sex he/ she must go to God and put this matter before Him. Only after getting proper conformation from God they should proceed any further. God will sometimes say yes or no and sometimes say wait.  A godly person must be willing to understand this will of God and okay it. This will avoid unnecessary heart brakes. The western culture of finding God’s will after a period of dating and courtship is not the Biblical culture. A child of God should be willing to abandon the culture of his land and take up the Biblical culture.
The missionary organization I worked for several years had a very strong “social policy” which was formed by the leaders from the western culture. My opinion is developed and formed within that frame work of rules which I later found are very scriptural.
It is very difficult to suggest any particular way of finding God’s will. It differs from person to person and circumstances. I have been lead of the Lord by specific Bible verses, listening to a recorded message, consulting with matured Christians, reading books and even through dreams and signes which I specifically asked for. One time the Lord told me to wait and I stopped praying for that matter. A year after the Lord made that thing to happen without my knowledge. I realized that only after several years. During that process the Lord also worked out several impossible things to achieve the ultimate result.
I am not saying that to seek the will of God is immaterial to the marriage. But by any chance if it happens the following steps are necessary: realize the mistake they made and accept it, confess it before the Lord, to their parents and to the assembly, ask for real forgiveness. Then make a strong decision to live for the glory of God in obedience. Our God is a God who can forgive and expect a sinner to come back to Him. When a person is accepted by the Lord the assembly should also be willing to recognize it and accept that person.  A sinner must be reconciled to God and be restored to fellowship. The process should be:  confession, forgiveness, reconciliation and restoration.
Physical relationship of any kind before marriage is forbidden in the scripture.  The marriage manual in the Bible is the book of “The Song of Solomon.” Read it carefully and understand the restrictions and permissions given in that. In my previous posting I have mentioned few. It is very clear that physical relationship will give way to lust and temptations. The devil is so cunning and will try his best to make a saint fall. We are commanded to resist the enemy. The Shulamite took some solid measures to avoid the temptation.
Sexual attraction between two persons does not mean desire for sex. It means attraction between two people of the opposite sex. One should not allow the desires to play any part in it. Sexual desires come in when you allow uncontrolled social behavior. A man can be interested in a woman without being sexually attracted. The inner man and its qualities manifested in her/ his life will attract a person of the opposite sex. . But in most case it is the opposite as you said. That is why we should be careful.  
Human beings are emotional beings. We cannot live without being emotional. But one should not allow any emotional factor to play before he/she find out the Lord’s will. You can become emotional once you find out God’s will and sure that you are going to marry that person. It is very difficult to explain the subject of sexual attraction and emotion. I do not have the ability or wisdom to do that.  
When factors like education, beauty and wealth, family status and compatibility come in between a relationship it is absolutely not of God. God knows what you need and trust him to provide what is best for you. Remember that God does not give a choice in this matter.
RT Daniel
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Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 26 Jun 2013 10:39:23 AM Close

Dear Sir,

You have once again stressed that pre marital sex should be abandoned, as if I am denying it. No Sir, I am not denying you and agree with you fully. My statement at the end of previous post holds this point (Statement: My assertion for the emotional factor should not be misunderstood that I encourage love making before marriage).

 

With regard to the rest of your writing, asking any more questions, I think, may be perplexing and so, I am closing my discussion with you here on this subject. I will clearly explain my view on God's will in marriage in a separate thread.

Thank you.

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Reply by : kristianjude   View Profile   Since : 29 Jun 2013 5:01:44 AM Close

This has reference to ‘moses2006’s post dated 19 Jun 2013 00:01:25. There are people who look at ‘love’ as of two types, one is platonic and the other is carnal one. For them, ‘platonic love’ may be harmless, whereas the second one must be seriously looked at, as it may affect the spirituality of a person. But for me, I do not give importance to classify this love as ‘platonic one’ and ‘carnal one’.  But there is another way of classifying ‘love’ in general. Love of affection – a love between family members, love between friends, love of romance and godly love, i.e., God’s love towards mankind.

 

The third one, Love of romance, a love between a man and a woman, is our subject matter. Each and every case of this love is an out come of sexual attraction. This attraction is intrinsically interwoven in every love affair, even in the case of a love which is called ‘platonic’ outwardly. Each and every human being, whether male or female who develops with a healthy Steroid hormone undergoes this experience of attraction one time or other and even at various times. Two persons who are opposite in sex getting mutually attracted and when meet each other personally, chemistry works out, and then they speak out their desire for each other and call this ‘a love’. When they want to get united as a ‘husband and a wife’ for ever because of this love bond, there enters their sixth sense. Apart from this love, they think of other social issues they may face in future as they will get married. If their love bond is so thicker and they are confident of over coming the hurdles, then this love becomes successful, or otherwise they may part as good friends.  This is what happens around us generally. Until this point, there is no sin even if believers go through such an experience.  

 

Where arises the problem 

 

I think, it is here where I may share my view for ‘moses2006’s question (though it has been directed to Mr. Tom). When this love of romance, if looked at as a carnal one and is apparently anti spiritual, it leaves a room for questions as asked by ‘moses2006’.  

 

His question is: Couldn’t it be argued (not that this is my position on this issue) that to "fall in love" (as happens among youth) almost always happens by forces buried in the carnal impulses of the flesh, and as such, is contrary to the general direction to crucify the flesh and be always led by the Spirit (Rom 8:14)?

 

I understand he has not asked this question to defend any of his arguments, but to get a clear view on certain points. ‘moses2006’ has mentioned ‘Roman 8:14’ and has said that a carnal love is contrary to the general direction to crucify the flesh and be always led by the Spirit. Rom 8:14 reads that for as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. If this verse has to be taken for consideration, then we have to assume that who fall in love are not those led by the Spirit of God and thus loose the status being the sons (or children) of God. This thought ultimately brings in the doctrinal issue here, the doctrine of salvation. We can consider relatively what Galatians 5:24 says: ‘And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires’.

Passions and desires are not here associated only with sexual desires, but also with many other evil characters as listed in the chapter. If passion and desire for sex has to be crucified, one can not even advance towards his wife for a private relationship. Sexual attraction and a legitimate sexual desire is not a sin. When this sexual attraction takes a perverse path towards a wrong woman and that leads to an illicit relation, there arises the problem.  A determinant believer should not fall prey to such a sin if he wants to be of Christ and has crucified the flesh with its passion and desire for adultery and fornication. Can it happen to believers? Surely it can happen, if not diligent. 1 Cori 5:1 is a pathetic example.

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