Monday, July 23, 2012

Marriage and Taking A Wife (and her family)

QUESTION RECEIVED (From outside the USA, not from my church or a friend) 

I am dating a girl who is extremely close with her family.  Not a bad
thing but she feels the need to submit to them which is fine but she
has expressed the desire for me to submit to her father in certain
things as well.  I struggle with this because he does not have
authority in my life and is a controlling and at times manipulative
person.  I fear that if I begin the process of allowing him to control
my relationship with her that this will carry on when hopefully we
marry.  I am not trying to be arrogant or hard hearted but just really
torn here on what to do.
Do I allow a person to have that kind of control in my


It is well to marry a girl that has respect for her father from a biblically functioning family.
This following verse is interesting.  The man leaves his family.  The woman is not described as leaving hers. 

                                                                                                                                                            Genesis 2:24 (ESV)Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall   become one flesh.

The woman has a lifetime of learning how a family functions from her own family.
This training will not be undone happily in your lifetime.

I cannot tell what you mean by submitting to certain things.  A wife’s father deserves respect.  Unless this contradicts Scripture then why is there a problem?

 Ephesians 6:2 (ESV)
2“Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise),”

She probably is a fine Christian girl.  This is great and a qualification for a future spouse of a Christian.
This does not mean you have to or should marry her.
Her idea of family is planted in her whole life experience.

And guess what?  Her father is in charge of her welfare now and not you.
The father has a permanent role in her life.
So far you are not permanent.
Will you always agree with this man? No.
Do you respect his faith and character and motives?

Do not fool yourself into thinking unchangeable personalities and family patterns
will change because you got married.
You can make your life and the woman’s miserable.
There is sacrifice in marriage. 
Your question is  - Can you live forever with the way things are?

The clincher in knowing my wife was the right one for me was
my wife’s great respect for her family.
As a great elder in my church said once-
“Take a good look at the mother who answers the door when dating .  You are going to be seeing her again in about twenty years if you get married to the daughter.”     

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