This is one of the basis of contention in marriages today. Many people have lost faith in the Word of God because of the gross wickedness of those who claim to be born-again, sometimes holding spiritual offices and publicly known as members of the household of faith. We must not be quick to dismiss such people, by saying they were (are) not born-again. This argument, even if true, does not placate those who have been made miserable in life and marriage by such men. The story in 1 Samuel 25 helps us to see things clearly.
“Now the name of the man was Nabal; and the name of his wife Abigail: and she was a woman of good understanding, and of a beautiful countenance: but the man was churlish and evil in his doings; and he was of the house of Caleb.” 1 Samuel 25:3
Abigail was described as “…a woman of understanding and of a beautiful countenance…” This simply meant that apart from Abigail’s beauty, she was not a careless girl, she had the capacity to discern what was right for her to do. For it to be stated, it meant that it has been proven over time that she had understanding. But unfortunately when it came to whom she was to marry, she seemed not to have exercised her discernment. May be the reputation of the man asking to marry her was too great for her to subject to such analysis.
This was a man from the house of Caleb. Caleb was one of the two men that God Himself attested to their lives before Israel entered into the Promised Land. Joshua was the second man (Numbers 14:24, 26:65). To be from that house was a huge reputation. And sometimes, one will just wonder, “what else does a sister want than a man of that calibre, a seed of Caleb?” It’s like saying a man from the family of any of our prominent Christian leaders. Unfortunately, something was missing in that man’s life.
Now, this is where many of our sisters run into error, especially those who are well brought up in the faith and do know better. Every man that comes to seek you in marriage, regardless of their reputation, must be subjected to the same degree of spiritual scrutiny you will subject the brother you term “unserious” or “unbeliever”. What you are looking for is not merely a testimony of their faith, but a testimony of their character. A testimony of faith can be given by the suitor himself, but a testimony of character can only be discovered over time. And it must be your own discovery, and eventually your reasonable persuasion.
How can a man be from the house of Caleb and be churlish (cruel, hardhearted) and evil in his doings? That was the kind of man Nabal was. Nabal is that “brother” that can give the testimony of his salvation but has no fruit to show for this alleged salvation. Nabal is quick to claim his connection to a godly heritage except that his wickedness betrays such a connection. Nabal is that rich businessman that has a good position in church but has no right standing with God. Nabal is a member of a reputable denomination but his name is not in the book of Life. This kind of man is becoming rampant today and it has made many people, even “christian” women, to cast aspersion at or at least dismiss some aspects of the Word of God.
The Word of God says “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.” (1 Thessalonians 5:21). The Word of God has never failed. People run into all kind of heartaches that made shipwreck of their faith, because they ignored the due process of the Word of God. When you say “I sensed in my spirit that this is the right man for me”, what do you mean by that? I am not criticizing your spirituality, I am only strengthening it. Put whatever you say you sensed in your spirit to the test. When you conduct the test of truth, it will amaze you how many things you sensed that are actually not good for you. In fact, my personal belief is that the more you put your private, subjective feelings under the infallible, objective Word of God, you will get better at discerning rightly.
Note: Unless otherwise stated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the King James Version.
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