Today I want to touch on the topic of being “Equally Yoked”
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? –2 Corinthians 6:14 , King James Version (KJV)
Webster’s dictionary defines a ‘Yoke’ as
A wooden bar or frame by which two animals are joined at the heads or necks for working together.
So, how does this apply to relationships, you ask? I can’t even begin to describe to you how excited I am to explain this concept.
Lets first look at some examples:
See the yoke between the two oxen? Farmers can attach equipment to the yoke, and the animals pull it together. The animals in the picture above appear to be going in the same direction. This represents two Christian people in a relationship together. Both heading toward Christ, and doing God’s work. It also represents two Christians of simliar walks, because the animals in the picture are both oxen…
These animals represent two Christians who are going in the same direction, but still aren’t equally yoked. Maybe one is full on fire for chasing after Christ, and the other is back sliding. Either way, this Donkey and Ox will head in the same direction, but reach their goal slower. Also, the stronger one is going to basically pull the weaker one along, which will cause the stronger one to become tired.
Thou shalt not plow with an ox and an ass together. — Deuteronomy 22:10
The animals in this picture, do not desire to go in the same direction. By attempting to take separate paths, they struggle, become frustrated, and ultimately break their yoke. This represents a believer and an unbeliever becoming married.
So the Bible is comparing the Yoke to Marriage. In Marriage, you become “Yoked” with your spouse. Men, that means that we always need to be in agreement with God and our wives about which direction our marriages are going to take, among many other things.
One common misconception about the phrase “Equally Yoked”, relates to money and education. This term does not apply to one spouse having a four year college degree, and the other one not. Or one person making $100k a year, and the other making $20k. I’m not saying that those varibles don’t have an effect on a relationship, but they don’t influence a persons ability to seek God or assume a leadership role in marriage.
We need to remember that when we marry someone, we become ONE with them. I will dive deeper into that in a later post, because that one concept is deep all by itself. The Bible goes on to tell us that we become one flesh with our spouse after marriage, and after having sex with someone, we develop a soul tie… wow.. I already know what my next post is going to be..
So think about this. If marrying someone develops these supernatural bonds with them, how stressful will it be when you start going in separate directions? Things may appear to be fine now, but being married to an unbeliever is like a supernatural nightmare. For those of us who are dating, we have an opportunity to marry an equal partner from the beginning.
For those men who are already married, but their wife is the unequal partner, it’s time to get on your knees and start praying. Ask God to completely and radically change your relationship so that he is the focus. Pray that he speaks to the heart of your wife, and that a seed is planted for her to seek God more. Sit down with your wife, and have gentle, loving conversations about God, Christ, and your walk. Then let God do the rest of the work.
Lastly, some of us men are to blame. Our wives go to church every sunday, sing on the choir, go to Bible study, etc. We only go on Christmas, Easter, and maybe Mother’s Day. We as men need to wake up and realize that God has called us to so much more. Even if you are a man who attends church on a regular basis, that’s not enough. We need to actively be seeking him for ourselves, and for our wives. My reccomendation would be to find a men’s group at your church, and go out to special men’s services and retreats if your church has them. Once you begin the effort, God will begin shaping you in ways that you never could have imagined.
I hope this post helps someone. There is so much to being equally yoked, but I’m almost at 1000 words as it is..
It’s hard to cover all the “Meat” in these posts, so I try to hit a few important points.