Ryan Feb 7, Faith , Family 2 comments. Should you enter the world of matchmaking, or should you stay out of it and mind your own business? I, for one, believe that biblical matchmaking can be extremely valuable. But what does the Bible say? In Genesis 24 , Abraham expresses concern for his son, Isaac. He wants to make sure Isaac has a marriage that honors God, so he entrusts one of his servants to go and find a wife for Isaac.
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One of my greatest highlights was successfully matchmaking two God to help a Christian man and woman find and get to know each other.
Opinions expressed are solely those of the author s. Despite our ever-greater mobility and even more efficient connectivity, sociologists continue to note that Americans struggle to form lasting, fulfilling relationships of all kinds, but especially marriages. We face a very real epidemic of loneliness, one that is, not coincidentally, accompanied by a steady decline in marriage. According to Pew Research, marriage rates have fallen to historic lows over the last 30 years, especially among younger people.
At the same time, the typical age at first marriage has climbed to a historic high. And so they are turning online. Many happily married Christian couples began their stories together via an online dating service. At the same time, plummeting marriage rates and spiking loneliness rates indicate that even our best technologies will never fill the hole left as families, churches, and communities become less central to our life together. The loss or decline of core social institutions in recent decades is well-documented.
Just in my lifetime, extended family, youth clubs, civic organizations, and the church have all become less important to more people than ever before.
Should churches aid matchmaking for lonely singles?
Everyone knows that setting up your friends is a nice thing to do. Eliezer prays to God for guidance to find Isaac a match, and he devised a test to find Isaac a bride: he stood by the well with his camels and observed the girls who came to gather water. As Eliezer was finishing his conversation with God, a beautiful young woman named Rebecca came to the well.
Eliezer asked her for a drink of water, and she gave to him and drew more water for his camels. Although Eliezer makes matchmaking seem easy, he had the hand of God guiding him.
When it comes to marriage there is no such a thing as “the one. That this is so becomes immediately apparent when we consider the idea in practice. If God has destined one particular mate for every person throughout time what would happen if just one person wasn’t “listening to God’s voice” and chose the wrong mate? It would have a domino effect that would prohibit anyone in future generations from being able to marry their soulmate.
Let me illustrate. David’s soulmate is Mary. David, however, marries Jane because He failed to hear the voice of God telling Him to wait until Mary comes along. What does Mary do, then? She has to marry someone other than her soulmate. She marries Glenn. But Glenn was soulmate to Brenda. Now that Brenda’s soulmate has married someone else, she is forced to marry Roger.
In Orthodox Jewish circles, dating is limited to the search for a marriage partner. Both sides usually the parents, close relatives or friends of the persons, and the singles themselves, involved make inquiries about the prospective partner, e. A shidduch often begins with a recommendation from family members, friends or others who see matchmaking as a mitzvah , or commandment.
Some engage in it as a profession and charge a fee for their services. Usually a professional matchmaker is called a shadchan , but anyone who makes a shidduch is considered the shadchan for it. After the match has been proposed, the prospective partners meet a number of times to gain a sense of whether they are right for one another.
For those who believe in the Bible, they need to know that there’s someone in God’s mind for each. God knows who you should get married to.
Matchmaking or pairing exercise may not be an uncommon practice, as some who are happily married today can attest to have found their better halves through it. Prophet Fufeyin: Eh you! You back! Lady: I am not married sir Prophet Fufeyin: Your husband is not here? You are not married? Prophet moves into the congregation and comes back to meet the lady. When do you want to get married? Lady: Today sir.
Lady: Yes Prophet Fufeyin: Go and hold the person you would like to marry Lady: moves into the congregation in search of her would-be partner I want you to direct me Prophet Fufeyin: Na me go direct you? Have you seen the person? Lady: still walking around No I never see for this side. From here Fufeyin called the lady to try another section of the church while explaining that her problem is that she has been covered with a mask to search for husband forever.
Our God, Our Matchmaker
A member of the church I attended as a single Christian wrote a song that became a favorite at weddings there. Many couples included it in their wedding ceremonies, and Evie and I began our own service with it. He planned us for each other. If he wants you to be married, he has one ideal choice in mind.
As I have counseled single women and men through the years, I often heard pleas for help to find a Christian person to date. There are many different kinds of Christians. How does one get help to find a similar kind of Christian? One who values mutual submission and servant leadership in marriage? Before I continue, I want to be clear that I do not believe marriage is the ultimate destination or fulfillment in life, as Christian culture often suggests.
We were created for community, but that community does not need to be marriage, nor should marriage be our only or primary form of vulnerable community. This can be a very difficult thing, especially in cultures that idolize marriage over other forms of community. What follows is geared toward those who are actively seeking marriage, but I pray that we will also learn to celebrate singleness as a good thing and work to be the kind of communities where people who are not married do not feel isolated or alone.
Some people meet their partners with little effort. For many of us, meeting potential partners with similar values is difficult. Matchmaking services have been the staple to forming marriages for thousands of years. In Genesis 24, we read the story of a famous matchmaker. He is unnamed in this chapter, but Jewish tradition tells us this was Eliezer, the servant of Abraham.
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Gayla Parker , October 21, When it comes to love stories, I have a few rules. First of all, the boy and the girl have to get together in the end. Secondly, no one can die in my love stories. I have been known to turn off a movie just before tragedy strikes at the end and make up my own ending! In my movies, it is a must for everyone to live happily ever after.
a lot of questions surrounding shidduchim, the process of Jewish matchmaking. the prohibition of lifnei iver lo sitein michshol and other Biblical prohibitions.
But if you think about that idea for a while, some questions and problems present themselves. And what about the gift of singleness? Neither here nor anywhere else does Paul—or any biblical writer—lock God into a required response to any human need. There is always the possibility that God will choose not to meet a need directly but to give the grace to live contentedly with unfulfilled desires, a point Paul stresses in his second letter to this church 2 Cor Still Paul puts the accent on hope in his teaching on marriage, and throughout his writings urges us toward faith in a God who provides all of our needs in Jesus Christ Phil If you want to be married, you certainly have reason to stay hopeful that God will provide someone to meet that need unless he changes your desire or in some clear way shuts the door.
Again, it is important as you maintain this hope to keep your expectations within reasonable bounds. The person whom he gives you to marry will have imperfections and failings, just as you do.