Sunday, April 22, 2012
“Are Weddings Ungodly Traditions or Traditions of Men?”
This question concerns almost everyone. Even if you are married already, you will give out for marriage or attend a wedding. A wedding is the ceremony in which a male and female actually come together ceremoniously to pronounce their vows openly in the presence of witnesses as a testament of their love. During a wedding, people exchange vows. It is a symbol of their commitment unto death. The wedding day tradition of parents walking their children unto the altar to abandon them to the groom or bride is a symbol of sacrifice. That is why elopements should be discouraged because they make the child a buffer sacrifice; meanwhile, every sacrifice must be offered by the owner or next of kin. Marriage is a covenant where both the groom and bride are sacrificed to produce one flesh. Theretofore the wedding, they become one unto death, and they start to build a new family. Some do it in secret while others do it in plum and pump. Some organize it in church while others do it on the beach. Some do it in the forest while others do it the desert. Notwithstanding, there remains one lingering question; "are weddings ungodly traditions or traditions of men?"
Nowadays, it has become a wastage mill whereby people expend not only financial resources but human resources that leave some indebted for a very long time. There are varying traditions surrounding weddings. In matriarchal societies like amongst the Asians especially the Indians, and westerners, the parents of the bride spend; meanwhile, in patriarchal cultures like in Africa, the parents of the groom spend to make that day a memorable day for their child. The conclusion is that everyone is spending. Yet, is that godly?
We determine if something is godly depending on what position the word of God tilts on. Wedding falls under ceremonies, and Israel had ceremonial laws (Ex 34:25-26; Lev 19:1-37). Those ceremonial Israeli laws are not the same as the moral laws, popularly known as the Ten Commandments (Ex 20:3-17; Deut 5 7:22) because they (ceremonial laws) do not transcend cultures. Consequently, the Bible is not that explicit on wedding ceremonies, although it shows giving into marriage. Nowadays, cultures have given new meanings to what a wedding is. Therefore, we will instead look at some wedding practices in different cultures to see which elements are godly and which ones are not as the notion of wedding is not inherently righteous or inherently evil.
Weddings are not intrinsically malevolent else Jesus would not have attended one. His first miracle was turning water into wine in a wedding at Cana. Some people consider the day as the most important and others do not. While there is no injunction against holidays, there are guidelines to manage days of feasting in our lives as God must be the center of them (Rom 14:5-9). In whatever we do, we are to do it for the glory of God (I Cor 10:31).
If you have the money, spend it, but if you do not, do not borrow. It is sorrow to borrow! God does not want you to be involved in debts. Borrowing to organize a wedding is a sinful tradition. Make a simple wedding according to your means. I doubt that God will take the glory that you spend all the money you would have raised up your kids just for a wedding. Some people borrow money and wed, then divorce and leave themselves with insurmountable debts. Would God take glory in that? Some people organize a wedding and on that day, they drink and get drunk. In some traditions, the groom and bride sleep with a stranger for the last time. Some have ended up knitting their spirits with the last person they had sex with on that wedding night. The way you celebrate your wedding may add to your happiness in marriage or be a premonition for imprecation and unhappiness. Some people have ruined their marriages on the wedding day because they kept God out of its celebration. Everything you do in life should be for the glory of God who gave you the opportunity to even live, and perhaps wed.
Do you want a happy marriage? Then involve God in your wedding. I am not saying you must celebrate your wedding in church because some churches are dens of thieves and temples of Satan than are of God’s house. I am saying that everything you do during and after that day as is with your whole life, should be for the glory of God. Do you wonder why some people wed today and divorce tomorrow? God was not the wedding planner!
Making church weddings compulsory as some churches are doing is the doctrine of men (Mk 7:13). God simply does not want anyone to be alone, but He has given you the privilege to celebrate it where and how you want. Loneliness is not a good thing( Gen 2;24) and to avoid fornication, everyone should get their own spouse (I Cor 7: 2), even though some of you are never satisfied until you sleep with someone else’s spouse. Yes, some of you are EVIL. You are called home wreckers! Am I now your enemy because I tell you the truth? Relax! People wed as a sign of commitment.
It rests to see if people even keep that commitment anymore. You can do the exchange in a church or out of church; it does not matter. If you regard the church as the preferred locale, then do it. Nonetheless, it is preposterous to think that until you celebrate your wedding in a church, God will not bless you. What about those cultures with no churches? What about the weddings before the existence of churches? What if in your village there is no church? Shouldn’t the people wed? God is the blesser of marriages and the one joining the people together. As you know, the wedding is a mere ceremony. Once the two people have made their vows to each other in private, they are married. Any other thing that comes thereafter is a ceremony and left for everyone to handle as they want as they come public to seek the endorsement of witnesses,
However, whether a wedding took place or not, it does not peter out the existence of a marriage again because a wedding is a mere ceremony just like baptism. Whether there is baptism or not, it does not annul the existence of repentance and salvation. As a wedding is a mere symbol which is an occasion for witnesses to show their support for you.
The absence of a wedding is not a license for cohabitation in the sense that, you cannot simply move in with a boyfriend or girlfriend and call that marriage. Before we call any union marriage, it must be between male and female, the two must make a vow unto death before God and then must have the presence of witnesses. Once that is done, the rest is ceremonious but consequential.
Until then, wed if you can, but do not sweat about it if you cannot.
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