One way to escape from the denominational contradiction conundrum is to say to you all, “marry only from your denomination.” But that will be foolish talk. The reality of the force of marital attraction and life contradicts that proposition. You’re not the controller of life and so cannot insist on where your partner comes from. Life has a mind of its own. You just appear too small to dictate to it. Some of you have never and will never receive a proposal from a guy in your church. Some guys proposed to sisters in their church who never agreed. And they may never agree till Jesus comes. Now while your prophet is without honour in your church, you’ve always been an attractive proposition to people outside. They are bombarding you left right and center. So you shouldn’t marry any of them just because they aren’t from your church?
Just thank me in advance, I’m here to share with you how not to miss that your Prince/Princess charming who is everything you’ve been praying for but his denominational background. I started last week. Get last week’s talk.
One other thing seems very clear and this is a bigger point; God doesn’t respect our denominational boundaries in leading people together for marriage. I have seen this consistently and have personally experienced it twice or thrice. That God leads folks together who are not from the same church or ‘spiritual tree’ means God doesn’t see denominational and doctrinal differences within the same christian faith as an immovable mountain that should stop people from getting married.
So what is the basis of God’s mindset that any two Christian can secure spiritual agreement sufficient for marriage?
The answer lies with that seven unbreakable points of oneness that we all share in the body of Christ. There is one body (no matter your church, there is just one body of Christ that we all belong to) and one Spirit (the Holy Spirit living in every Christian is the same – catholic or protestant or Aladura or evangelical or charismatic) even as ye are called in one hope of your calling, (the hope of heaven is the same for all Christians and we are going to the same heaven where your denomination doesn’t have any recognition but just one matter for all- are you washed in the blood of the lamb?), one Lord (I don’t know of any truly christian denomination where Jesus is not the Lord), one faith, one baptism (the baptism into his death is the same for all Christians), one God and father of all.
There’s a final point I want to add. There’s one bible. Yes the Catholic have a few additional books in theirs but all the 66 books of the general Bible is in theirs too. And I hope you know this issue is not just a Catholic/Protestant conundrum. Even among Protestants, the issue is serious. I have people who write me who are RCCG members but can’t marry CAC even though there’s one bible. RCCG cannot marry Deeper life even though their GOs are close friends. Lol. Christ Embassy cannot marry Assemblies of God eventhough Pastor Chris can trace his early formative years to that same pentecostal denomination. This one weak me. That C&S will not want to marry RCCG. For what? Lol. When actually RCCG is a modern and reformed version of the C&S. Many of you don’t know that the founder of RCCG, Pa Akindayomi was raised and ordained in the Cherubim and Seraphim Church. I don’t have time to tell you several biblical practices of the RCCG today that were directly lifted from the C&S church.
Now I admit that securing agreements across these denominational divides is not easy but I’m telling you it’s not that difficult because there’s one Spirit and one bible. If the Holy Spirit that is in you is the same as the one in that sister and then it’s the same Bible you both read, spiritual agreement is possible. Maybe you should start from reading the Bible without reading the interpretation of your church into it. Read it with a virgin mind. Read through it as a whole or at least read through the whole of the new testament. It’s not as bulky as some of your professional textbooks that you’ve read three to five times. What is actually important is what the two of you believe and not what your church believes. Your church can believe certain things that you two don’t believe based on your personal conviction from your personal study of the bible. And that doesn’t stop you from attending the church.
Oh you think it’s a big deal not to believe all your church believes? It’s no big deal. Many of you go to Word of Faith churches and don’t believe a thing about paying tithes. Has it stopped you from attending the church? You enjoy all the other aspects of service and leave out the one you don’t agree with. Finish.
Now let me simulate an example of a guy who is a Catholic and wants to marry a Deeper Life member. True life story. Both are born again. The first thing is for the two to know it is workable. Second, they should forget the issue of their different churches and deal with each other as two Christians with varying doctrinal believes. If they make it a Catholic Vs. Deeper Life superiority contest, it can arouse too much negative emotions antithetical to possible agreement. They both should see how they can work out doctrinal agreement between the two of them as individuals. This involves studying the Bible individually and together and discussing it together. Now I’m talking about studying the bible with a virgin mind. Both must also have a mindset that is willing to be wrong. A mindset that accepts the Bible as final authority even if it collides with age long believes. They also should share books or messages that have influenced their believes. Each person should read or listen with an open mind. They should come back and do a review of what they’ve read and share what they are discovering.
There are days the reviews will end in sharp arguments. It’s fine. They can adjourn and come back again for further studies. Gradually, they will be able to understand what each person really believes and may be able to come to agreement. This can take a couple of years but it’s doable. I am a living testimony. I won’t tell you more than that. By the time you achieve agreement, it’s amazing. You’ll enjoy the bliss this brings into your relationship. Oneness of spirit!
You already should have seen that this process is not for those who are lazy. It’s work. You can’t have a mindset that courtship is all about going for dinners and funfair or sexual escapades and be able to do this. Courtship is for work if you want a successful marriage dipped in oneness of spirit.
Now at the end of this process and they both know what they believe and they’re united in it, they can choose to go to either Catholic church or Deeper Life or another church. There is nothing that says it must be the guy’s church. It’s always a matter of mutual agreement. Guys should also not put their churches on their head. There is one body of Christ. It’s more important to keep this woman that God has sent to help your destiny than to keep your denomination. Be flexible.
Whichever church they go, what they’ll participate in in the church will depend on what’s their doctrinal agreement. Myself and my wife may attend a church for instance where we love every other thing except that they curse their enemies. In our study of Mathew 5&6, we have seen this is unscriptural and we decide any time this kind of prayer is raised in church we will change our own prayer point and pray it. We will teach our children that too. Finish. We enjoy the rest of the service.
There are those of you who though attend a particular church have another source where you actively drink from. Maybe a non denominational fellowship or preacher. That should even help your agreement. We can both attend a church and enjoy service while we know that when it comes to doctrine or food for spiritual growth, it is this interdenominational fellowship or ministry or this particular man or men of God that are our main source.
So go to your agreed church, whatever you don’t like remove your eyes, when you return, put on the message of the source you’re both in agreement with and be blessed.
God actually wants some of us to remain in that so called unspiritual denomination so that through the fire we will catch outside, we can bring revival to those denominations. Everyone cannot leave.
Next week, I hope we can wrap up this discussion and talk more about how to walk through synchronising your spiritual believes with your partner as an important step for the synchrony of your spirits. Will also talk about the issue of parents who compel their children to marry from particular denominations.
For a related talk and or more light Search for FALSE IMPRESSIONS @ www.lovestraighttalks.com.