The Bible narrative points to the dangers of being spiritually unequally yoked together, a term that those with agricultural knowledge are quite aware if incorrectly hitching a strong and weak force together as oxen, it is much more difficult to go in a straight line or be in agreement.
It is not an impossibility to reconcile different outlooks, but it sure makes it more difficult when dealing with relationship essentials as entertainment or leisure time, financial decisions, or how to raise children.
The clashing of values will typically take place when compromises are attempted, but unfortunately some adjustments will be less about compromise and more about someone sacrificing their beliefs to keep the peace.
Dating by Biblical requirements direct believers to only consider other believers as partners because it is difficult to reconcile light and darkness principles. Anyone can look wonderful for a short period of time. Getting married is relatively easy, but staying married is the true test of a solid relationship.
In ministry one sees the results of spiritually diverse individuals seeking counseling in the church office in a desperate effort to resolve ongoing issues. Much of the strife is generated when a believer and non-believer’s value systems cannot be amicably resolved. The subject base is really irrelevant since it could be a large issue with how to spend Sundays to the proverbial “straw that broke the camel’s back”. As the Bible states, “it is the little foxes that spoil the vine”.
It is difficult to have a healthy outcome because it all gets back to submission, respect, spiritual authority, and sacrifice. The ambiguity of compromise and how one feels about it today can take its toll on any relationship, particularly if one perceives themselves as the one giving in more than the other.
Samson and Delilah were unequally yoked together and it came to a head by the revelation of the secret of Samson’s strength during a quiet moment and the ongoing pursuit Delilah had to know Samson’s secret. You had two different perspectives processing the moment, one acquiescing to persistence to keep the peace, and the other persisting in order to get financial gain.http://www.biblegateway.com/resources/commentaries/IVP-NT/2Cor/Unequal-Yoking-Unbelievers
This exchange between Samson and Delilah represents why it is so difficult because the ultimate goal could easily be diametrically opposed to what the other is thinking or expecting. Samson’s giving in to Delilah could be translated over to a lot more innocent disagreements today, but the consequences could be just as devastating.
Divorce and infidelity is more rampant inside the church than outside, however what is an ongoing theme to much of this turmoil is that many church couples have unequally yoked themselves to somebody with different spiritual authority and values. The common theme is…well, they will change or I can change them. The other changes all right and it is usually for the worse.http://www.ngabo.org/propheticvoice/sexualimmorality.htm
The variables as patience, sacrifice, self-control, and forgiveness play a huge role of whether an unequally yoked relationship can survive or not. The dating period is a time where these limits, boundaries, and middle ground can be set, but every scenario is difficult to predetermine. Things can fall apart over something big or small that is unanticipated.
Opposites can be an attraction, however there will be a point where somebody will be required to compromise should a point be reached in the relationship when one may tire of being sacrificial. There is a defining moment in most relationships where “one cannot serve two masters”, and this is particularly true when the parties are unequally yoked together. One spiritual authority will usually acquire dominance.
The problem is…..which one?