Question: I am a Christian woman, living with a non-Christian man. Living together bothers me and I know it is a sin. I love him and want to marry him, but is it wrong when he is a non-Christian? If it is, how do you leave someone you’ve known for 12 years? I pray and pray and I think God is telling me it would be ok and that I would be able to help, with God’s help to turn him toward God more than he already has. Thank you.
Answer: I am afraid you were right with your first comment, “Living together bothers me and I know it is a sin.” Yes, to marry a non-Christian is wrong, no matter how much you love a person! This is what God says about the subject:
“Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols?
“For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: ‘I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people. Therefore ‘Come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, says the LORD Almighty.'” (2 Corinthians 6:14-18)
I have seen it over and over again where Christians thought that they could marry the unsaved and they could win them to Christ, but the marriage ends in divorce. We cannot go against Christ’s commands and expect His blessing on our lives. There are just so many problems that arise in mixed marriages that God has warned us not to do it.
It is more involved than just “love,” even though the movies would have us believe “love” is everything. You have your whole life ahead of you, how are you going to spend it?
Will you live for yourself or for Christ? If you love Christ, then you will want to keep His commandments. How many Christians around the world are giving their lives for Christ every day? Why is it so hard for us to “suffer” for Christ by taking a stand for what you believe, no matter what the cost!
Yes, you will need to pray about how you will say it to him, but if you love the Lord and want His best for your life you need to do it. He may fly off the handle at first, but if he is really the one God wants for you he will at some point want to listen to what you have to say.
Tell him something like this, you know we have been together for a long time, but now I am convicted about it and have been for some time now. The reason for this is because I am a Christian and I cannot continue on living this way. God is speaking to my conscience and I know what we are doing is wrong. I want God’s best for your life and my life, and that means you need to receive the Lord as your own personal Savior before we can have this kind of relationship.
You will need to make other living arrangements if you are living together, and wait for his decision. Have other Christians praying for you before you make your move to talk to him. If you don’t have a church home find one! Do not listen to the Devil and put this off to a “more convenient time.” God is speaking to you now, so now is when you need to act!
Also, you do not know how long your “boyfriend” has to live, none of us do. How would you feel if God wanted you to take a stand now, so he could get saved, but you put it off or were too afraid to say anything and he went out into eternity without Christ?
Maybe your friend is putting off his decision for Christ because he thinks it is not all that important to you. Paul the Apostle was giving his testimony to a king one time and the king told Paul, “Go away for now; when I have a convenient time I will call for you.” (Acts 24:25)
“.This is the pattern of man. Indecision. Deferring the decision. Putting it off for a more convenient time. Being convicted by the Spirit, even a powerful experience of conviction, does not guarantee conversion. It takes acting on that conviction to bring conversion, and that step Felix wouldn’t take. Convicted? Yes. Afraid? Yes. Conversion? No. He put it off. ‘Go your way now, Paul. When it’s more convenient, I’ll call you.’ He was deferring the most important decision of his life.
“How many people have made this same mistake, putting off the decision to commit their lives to Jesus Christ? When the moment came, when that hour of God’s Spirit was there, they put it off! With Felix, the convenient time never came. Tragic! It never came.
“This is true of so many people who put off their decision for Jesus Christ, waiting for a more convenient time, only to discover that they sinned away the day of grace and that more convenient time never came! Hell is filled with people who decided to wait for a more convenient time.” Chuck Smith (The Word For Today Bible)
I need to say this, I believe God is saying this to you-“you need to make this decision and do it now while God is speaking to you by His Holy Spirit. This is also the message God is giving your friend.” Now what you do with this message will be up to you. What will you decide? You have waited long enough, now is the time to move!
If you are willing to wait to marry a Christian, whether it is this man or another “born again” Christian, God will give you the desires of your heart. Pray for courage to make the right choice, and we will be praying for you too, and all those out there who are in the same position you are. Remember, the course of your life will be determined by what you do with this message, it is not a light thing that I am saying to you!
In Christian love,
Gary T. Panell
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