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Family Forum discuss Question Regarding Courting in the The Christian Walk forums; Recently, I've been thinking about various marriage and courtship scenarios because I'm finally reaching an age where it may be reasonable to expect it in ...

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    WaywardNowHome's Avatar
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    Question Regarding Courting

    Recently, I've been thinking about various marriage and courtship scenarios because I'm finally reaching an age where it may be reasonable to expect it in the near future.

    One scenario that has got me thinking is the following: suppose that I meet a nice Christian girl and we become good friends, we hit it off, etc. and we stay good friends for a while before it reaches a point where I am considering marrying this girl and she reciprocates the notion. However, let's say her parents are not Christians, maybe even anti-Christian, and they've been trying to subdue the Christianity in her life.

    How is someone in this position supposed approach the situation? More specifically, what if I ask her father for his daughter's hand in marriage and he adamantly refuses due to my Christian identity? Am I to honor that decision and move on?
    Joel Lee
    New Hope Presbyterian Church (Glenside, PA)

    Student of Westminster (Philly Campus)

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    Idelette's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WaywardNowHome View Post
    Recently, I've been thinking about various marriage and courtship scenarios because I'm finally reaching an age where it may be reasonable to expect it in the near future.

    One scenario that has got me thinking is the following: suppose that I meet a nice Christian girl and we become good friends, we hit it off, etc. and we stay good friends for a while before it reaches a point where I am considering marrying this girl and she reciprocates the notion. However, let's say her parents are not Christians, maybe even anti-Christian, and they've been trying to subdue the Christianity in her life.

    How is someone in this position supposed approach the situation? More specifically, what if I ask her father for his daughter's hand in marriage and he adamantly refuses due to my Christian identity? Am I to honor that decision and move on?
    That is truly a difficult situation, I can empathize with this as my father is an unbeliever and he's certainly tried subduing my faith over the years! I think honoring any father (believer or not) is very important, and should be done with much grace! I think if you do find yourself in this situation....I can't stress the importance of prayer and seeking godly counsel from the leaders of your church! I would probably talk with them at great length first before you approached the father.

    As a side note......
    I've often wrestled with this issue myself, as I do want to honor my parents. But, I know that God is so much greater than any obstacle! I am convinced that if it is His will for my life, then over time He will work out those details even if it is difficult for me! I have seen Him work in my parent's in ways that I didn't expect before, so I am confident that God will work out all things! I hope that can give you some encouragement!
    Last edited by Idelette; 05-22-2009 at 06:11 PM.
    Yvonne K.
    Greenville Presbyterian Church
    Free Church of Scotland (Continuing)



    "A man's most glorious actions will at last be found to be but glorious sins, if he hath made himself, and not the glory of God, the end of those actions." -Thomas Brooks

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    Spinningplates2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WaywardNowHome View Post
    what if I ask her father for his daughter's hand in marriage and he adamantly refuses due to my Christian identity? Am I to honor that decision and move on?
    Only if you want to preserve a good Christian witness.
    Alan Hughes
    PCA
    Lake Zurich, Illinois

    If you think I'm a Hyper-Calvinist, God planned that thought before the foundation of the Earth. If you try to tell me that God only planned some things and not all things, then your problem is with God not me.

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    CredoFidoSpero's Avatar
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    If it helps, I have had more than one Christian friend whose parents were very hostile to their faith - even one whose Catholic parents basically disowned her for a while. But watching a young man living by Biblical principles who is respectful and protective of his daughter through the whole friendship/courting/engagement process goes a long way in melting a father's heart. And I've known unbelieving, previously hostile, fathers who gave unreserved consent and blessing when the time came to ask for their daughter's hand.

    If you get to that point and the father does say no, that is a hard one, but respecting his no would be good Christian witness, and a good witness to your character. And if you really want to marry each other, I think you should consider backing off and waiting and seeing if his heart can change.

    I think it's best to just commit yourself to do what you know is right according to God's Word; God can take care of the rest - even the unregenerate heart is in His hands.

    "When a man's ways are pleasing to the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him." Proverbs 16:7
    Ashley
    Crossbridge Community Church
    Texas
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    Idelette's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CredoFidoSpero View Post
    I think it's best to just commit yourself to do what you know is right according to God's Word; God can take care of the rest - even the unregenerate heart is in His hands.

    "When a man's ways are pleasing to the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him." Proverbs 16:7
    Amen! I couldn't agree with you more!
    Yvonne K.
    Greenville Presbyterian Church
    Free Church of Scotland (Continuing)



    "A man's most glorious actions will at last be found to be but glorious sins, if he hath made himself, and not the glory of God, the end of those actions." -Thomas Brooks

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    Grace Alone's Avatar
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    Is there somewhere in scripture that says the father has to give "permission" (especially if she is grown and living on her own)?
    I think it is desirable to have her parents' blessing, and I think it would serve you well to do whatever you could to win them over long before you get to that point. I am sure you wouldn't be pushing your beliefs on them, so I don't see why that would really be a problem.
    Janis
    Christ Church ARP, NC
    "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved." Eph. 1:3-6 ESV

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    AThornquist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WaywardNowHome View Post
    One scenario that has got me thinking is the following: suppose that I meet a nice Christian girl and we become good friends, we hit it off, etc. and we stay good friends for a while before it reaches a point where I am considering marrying this girl and she reciprocates the notion. However, let's say her parents are not Christians, maybe even anti-Christian, and they've been trying to subdue the Christianity in her life.
    You rock. How convenient that you give this scenario since I may be in it in the future, except an added issue is that the father has been a professed Christian for 20 or so years yet abused several of his daughters their entire lives. I hardly care for the man's opinion because of that, even more so now that the girl is living on her own. Anyway, thanks for bringing up the scenario, bro!

    (And I can see you with your potential helpmeet--"I am disinclined to remain in our marital dispositions. I move to become one flesh. Do you reciprocate the notion?" .... So romantic )

    Quote Originally Posted by Grace Alone View Post
    Is there somewhere in scripture that says the father has to give "permission" (especially if she is grown and living on her own)?
    I think it is desirable to have her parents' blessing, and I think it would serve you well to do whatever you could to win them over long before you get to that point. I am sure you wouldn't be pushing your beliefs on them, so I don't see why that would really be a problem.
    I concur completely. Hopefully people interact with your thoughts.
    Last edited by AThornquist; 05-22-2009 at 08:21 PM.

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    John Lanier's Avatar
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    Grace Alone,

    I think you are referring to 1 Corinthians 7:36-38.
    The question would be whether or not she is still under her father's rule. The Scripture interestingly enough gives no age for the daughter in 1 Corinthians. So my daughter can't get married until she is at least 50. Ok maybe 45, maybe.
    John Lanier
    Grace Heritage Church, Auburn, AL
    Lanett, AL

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