Genesis 24:1-4, Deuteronomy 7:2-5, 1 Kings 11:1-5, Nehemiah 13:24-27
The record of worshiping God did not start until after the fall of Adam and Eve. Then you’ll understand how pure that worship or religion will be. But, organized religion did not start until the nation of Israel got the commandment on Mount Sinai. One common feature of that law are reasons religion matters in marriage. Though you could equate any relationship or union to a marriage, I am talking about the marital relationship between a man and a woman.
Christianity is not a religion, but a way of life. But I will deliberately use the word religion in this post to address the error of most people about Christianity as one of the world’s religion. This view is prominent among the youths who think they can marry anybody with a religious background because the person claimed he or she loved them. To these young Christian, all religions are the same. They believed we all worship the same God. According to these set of people, Christian and Muslim worship the same God but with a different name. The female Christians are the worse culprit on this matter. With that said, they didn’t see reasons religion matters in marriage. That accounts for Christian ladies marrying Muslim and gentiles. Let me clarify some issues.
There are two sets of people in the world, the Christians and others. It is either you a Christian or you’re not. Christians are those who have given their lives to Jesus and accepted him as the lord of their life. Therefore, those Christian who keep a marital relationship with a non-Christian has either of these problems. It is either they are never a Christian or they do not understand the concept of Christianity.
One attribute of a Christian is obedience. A Christian obeys whether or not it is convenient. They obeyed whether or not it tallies with common sense. These are set of people who follow God’s commandment even when it is against public or popular opinion. As a Christian, you subject every decision about any part of your life to the law of God, and marriage is inclusive. To them, religion doesn’t matter in a marriage. The Bible is explicit on why religion matter in a marriage. Let us look at God’s commandment.
- It determines your eternity: Every man stands condemned or justified on the last day base on the acceptance or rejection of Jesus as both the son of God and the savior of mankind. Every religion in a way has a myth about the creation story, the fall of man and the way of redemption. But, only Christianity accepted Jesus as the only savior of the fallen man. Jesus is not one way of the ways to God but the only way. That is one of the reasons religion matter in marriage because if your spouse rejects this truth and you also fall for it you lose your eternity. Therefore, denying Jesus’ divinity and his humanity negate the truth that saves. All religions call Jesus several names and personality like a good man, a teacher, a prophet, leader, etc. However, Christianity accepts Jesus as the only son of God and the only accepted messiah to redeem man from the penalty of sin.
- It affects your Peace: Jesus said: “my peace” I give unto you. Nevertheless, if your spouse didn’t believe in Jesus, how will you have that kind of peace? This is also a reason religion matter in a marriage. Peace can only reign in your family if both of you worship God in an acceptable way through Jesus Christ. Those who marry a Muslim or an unbeliever by occasion or commission know now why religion matters in marriage. Initially, while they are dating the unbelievers promised that they can worship their God because it is only the name that differs. But today they now know better.
- It hinders your prayers: The only prayers that’ll get God’s approved answer are those prayed in Jesus Name. However, you said God answers the prayers of Muslim also, Yes, God created and love all mankind that’s why he rained over the good, the bad and the ugly. But if you desire the blessing of that adds no sorrow, it must be prayed in Jesus name. In Mathew 18 Jesus said if we agree in prayer in his name, he would answer. Now your spouse didn’t believe in Jesus, how then can both of you now pray the prayer of agreement?
- Your worship can’t please God: The Bible principles for the Christians. This is one of the reasons religion matter in a marriage. For instance in Islam, you must face a particular direction (east) before praying. There are a specific number of times you must pray following a routine. According to Islamic teaching if you fail to play by these rules Allah will not accept your worship. This is also why religion is important in marriage. However, Jesus corrected this while speaking with the Samaritan woman John 4. If you marry an unbeliever or a Muslim you can’t have acceptable worship.
- Your morality is questionable: Christianity affects the way you relate with people, your view of life, business, etc. For instance, it is rewarding to kill and be killed in the way of Allah. But the Christian religion teaches otherwise. As a Christian, there are some places, businesses and people you must steer clear of. However, in other religion, these are permitted. This also is part of the reasons religion matter in a marriage. You know one of your duties in marriage is to correct and influence each other. But if the religion of your spouse allows him or her to engage in a certain business or a relationship is at variant with yours, then you will need to compromise your morality. It is then you’ll know my reasons religion matters in marriage.
- You’ll have to contend with polygamy: One reason religion matters in marriage is some religions permit polygamy which Christianity frowns at. As a Muslim man, his family, relatives or friends can influence him to take the second wife. This may be because the family didn’t like the wife or for child delay. If the woman is from the Christian religion, she has to accept the second woman or divorce the man. The unfortunate thing is the man can send this Christian woman out because of the second wife. At other time the man can deny the Christian wife her financial, social, religion and sexual right. It is then she will know religion matters in marriage.
- It affects how you prepare for eternity: Most world religion teaches morality as the qualification for entering eternity. In Christianity, salvation by faith in the atoning blood of Jesus is the ticket to eternity. Islam, for instance, teaches your good work will be compared to your bad work to determine where you’ll spend eternity. Apart from that, your family sacrifices after your death will influence your place in eternity. All these are at variance with the scriptures. So, if you believed in the former, you’ll be relying on personal efforts to change your lifestyle but to no avail. At the end after several failed attempts, you may conclude no one could be Holy. This leads you to conclude eternity is not as difficult as the Bible puts it. This is because your partner in a marriage has influenced you. Now you can see why I said religion matters in marriage.
Let me close with this story. I met a woman when I newly gave my life to Christ. Later, I became her Sunday school class secretary. This woman was passionate about God, but she married an unbeliever. No matter how she uses her Christian virtues to win the husband, the man was a hard nut to crack. He made the woman’s life bitter. Ask that woman if religion matters in marriage, she will tell you better. Twenty-five years later when I met her at our convention for the first time when her husband died, she couldn’t believe what she has been missing for not attending the annual convention. My beloved Christian youth give attention to my reasons religion matters in marriage both now and in eternity. The earlier you realize this, the better for you.
Author: Joseph Akinrinola
Joseph Akinrinola is a Pastor, Sunday school management coach, author, blogger, and a motivational speaker.
Joseph created this blog to help young Christians establish their
feet in Christ, and to provide Biblical time-tested answers to life’s
questions about relationship, christian living and personal development.