A Child's Question
by Ken Taylor
John was feeling bad. He didn't know what the trouble was, but he didn't want to play, and he didn't want to read, and he didn't want to do much of anything.
"Mother," he said, "I wish I didn't have to be a child. I wish I was a grown-up so that I could do lots of things."
"What kind of things?" Mother wanted to know.
"Oh," he said, "lots of things. I would know what I was going to do when I grow up, and I would know who I was going to marry, and I would get to go to other parts of the world and see what they are like. Mother," he said, "I know who I would like to marry when I grow up. I would like to marry Judy."
"Judy is a very nice girl," Mother said, "but I'm afraid that Judy doesn't know much about the Lord Jesus. If she is not a Christian, you could never marry her and be happy with her, or with anyone else who is not a Christian."
"Why must I marry a Christian?" John wanted to know. "If the person I wanted to marry is nice, wouldn't that be alright? Even if she doesn't know the Lord Jesus?"
"No," said Mother, "it doesn't work out very well. When people who love the Lord Jesus marry people who don't love Him, they are never very happy. Do you know why?"
John thought for a minute. "Well," he said, "probably it would be because I would always be wanting to do what the Bible says, and the other person wouldn't want to, but would want something else. Then we would be unhappy because we would have to do different things."
"Yes," said Mother, "that is just what happens."
"But wouldn't the person who wasn't a Christian become a Christian when she married someone who loved the Lord Jesus?" John wanted to know.
"Lots of times that is what Christians think when they marry those who do not love the Lord," said Mother. "But usually it doesn't happen that way. Usually the person who isn't a Christian laughs so much at the other person that after they have been married a little while the other person stops loving the Lord as much as he did before. He doesn't feel like praying and reading the Bible anymore because the other person thinks that is very foolish. And because the other person likes to do things that Jesus wouldn't like, the Christian begins doing those things too. So instead of the person who isn't a Christian becoming one, usually the person who is a Christian becomes a very poor one."
"Does the Bible teach that it is alright to marry people who aren't Christians?" asked John.
Mother said, "There is a verse in the Bible that says: "Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common?" (2 Cor.6:14, NIV). That means that we must not marry unbelievers -- non-Christians. So if anyone does, he is disobeying God."
"Then I have decided not to marry Judy when I grow up," John said, "because I'm going to obey the Word of God. Unless Judy becomes really and truly a Christian. And even then, maybe by the time I am grown up I will want to marry someone else instead."
Mother smiled a little smile. "That may very well be," she said. "But meanwhile we will pray for Judy."
This page was created on 15 April 1998
Last updated on 15 April 1998