Dear Priscilla, the first enquiry that should preoccupy you regarding this guy that’s talking about a relationship is the question whether he has indeed become a new creation. Whether old things have indeed passed away and whether all things have become new. As basic as this point may appear, it is the most important precondition for a marital journey that’ll last and be fulfilling.
See, God never planned marriage for a carnal, unconverted person. He or she can’t just handle marriage. That’s why in the beginning, the couple He made marriage for were spiritual. They possessed the nature of God. And until that nature was extinguished by sin, their marriage went on well. The moment the nature of God left and was replaced with the carnal nature of the devil, that marriage immediately went down in its beauty and bliss.
The fact is that having a successful marriage requires faithfulness (having a single sex/love partner); sacrificial love (doing good to your partner even when they are doing bad to you); forbearance (capacity to tolerate offences and provocation for a long time without losing your cool); control over your tongue (to the end only gracious words proceed out of your mouth even when you’re provoked); Self-control (success over the tendency for angry outbursts); Humility (an attitude that eschews asserting himself and his importance; condescending like a child); and forgiveness (even when your partner has not agreed to wrong or requested for same).
Let me tell you plainly Priscilla, a man that has not become a new creation does not possess all of these qualities that marital success requires. Don’t deceive yourself. An unconverted person lacks the capacity for faithfulness for instance. It’s not his fault. It’s the nature he carries. He can’t be faithful no matter how much you gag him or monitor his interaction with the opposite sex. Faithfulness is only a fruit of a life that has been re-born from above.
He can’t love sacrificially too. A carnal man doesn’t understand the idea of doing good to someone that’s maltreating or misbehaving towards him. So expect tit for tat; do me I do you! And usually, it is tit for tat that snowballs little quarrels in marriage, and vests on them an endless lifespan.
A carnal man can’t forbear too. He has a short fuse. A little misunderstanding and he has hurled hurtful words at you, smashed your phone on the ground, with the possibility of some physical blow as an icing on the cake. And don’t expect that if you report him to his Parents or Pastor, he will listen. An unconverted man is not broken. It takes brokenness to submit to authority. He will shout down his parents and stop going to church. Abiotan! You will be in a very abusive marriage, yet no way of salvation because your husband has shut out everyone that can talk to him. Hellish! Hopeless! May God give you the courage to avoid this kind of marriage by all means.
Settle this in your heart once and for all- an unconverted, unregenerated man is a bad material for marriage regardless of other good qualities he may possess. No matter how much you panelbeat him or encourage yourself that he is not too bad, if he is not a new creation, he doesn’t have what it takes to hold marriage successfully. He may wish to; he may determine to but the power to do will be absent.
So what is the test that a man is truly converted? That he goes to church and sings in the choir? Or because he follows big men of God on social media? What is the true unmistakable evidence of genuine conversion? Let’s gather here again next week for a straight talk. I’m just determined that no LSTian will get it wrong. Even if you’re determined to get it wrong, your plan will fail in Jesus’ name.
Peniela Eniayo, Akintujoye