Age difference- Should we get married? B.C. Paper 2

Happy wedding photography of bride and groom at wedding ceremony. Wedding tradition sprinkled with rice and grain

Andrew strolled into his counselor’s office in tears. Twelve years of torture. Andrew wanted out of his marriage. What was his reason? Initially, the marriage was going well. Over time, however, Andrew proclaimed that he finds himself truly unhappy in his marriage and has come to the conclusion that he married the wrong woman. She wasn’t what he wanted. He exclaims, “I have really nothing in common with my wife: conversation interests, political, religious, hobbies, nothing. Recently, we had to separate due to my work, and I was bored one evening, and spent some time with another woman, who I am now having an affair with. Does this make me a horrible man?”[1] At the heart of this story is selfishness. As a counselor, people will come into our office wondering whether or not they should marry for a variety of reasons. Generally speaking, marrying another person should be done wisely. When a couple is trying to make a decision for marriage, they should look at heart motivations, spiritual maturity, and chemistry.

            Many people in the world marry for the wrong reasons. People desire someone for what the other party can provide. And once that person can no longer provide, they are thinking about divorce. For example, people marry others because of fame, social status, finances, good looks, boredom, happiness, charm, fun, etc. However, the heart of the Christian is to marry to be a witness for His Gospel. In Ephesians, Paul talks about how the Husband loves his wife just as Christ loved the church- “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her.” [2] In addition to being a witness for the Gospel, the Christian man marries for companionship (Genesis 2:18)[3] , children (Psalm 127:3-5)[4], and sexual fulfillment (1 Corinthians 7:9)[5]. Marriage is a beautiful thing. Marriage is valuable because it gives glory to God. While we wait for the eternal marriage, we get married on Earth as a representation of Him and what He has done in our lives. Marriage is a covenant of companionship in which each party promises to provide companionship to the other person, leaving and cleaving to their spouse. Children are a blessing, sex within marriage is a good thing and it needs to be pursued within that context. It is not good for man to be alone. Men need an Ezer to be on mission with them and help them accomplish God’s purposes. These are the heart motivations of a Christian man. Marrying someone is not about fulfilling desires only God can meet. Marrying someone is about being a witness for His Gospel and serving the spouse. Just as Christ came not to be served but to serve, we emulate him by showing an Agape, Phileo, and Eros love toward a spouse.

            Maturity is the most important aspect of choosing someone to marry. Scripture calls us to abandon childish ways. Paul talks about how “When I was a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.” (1 Corinthians 13:11). [6] We move on the spectrum of love from an immature to a mature love that emulates Christ. And that’s skillful living or Chokmah- skillfully living out the principles of the Bible in daily living. When does a boy become a man? According to Al Mohler, there are 13 marks of manhood that exude maturity and readiness for marriage.[7] These marks include: Personal maturity sufficient to be a responsible husband a father, economic maturity sufficient to hold an adult job and money, physical maturity sufficient to work and protect a family, sexual maturity sufficient to marry and fulfill God’s purposes, moral maturity sufficient to lead as an example of righteousness, ethical maturity sufficient to make moral decisions, worldview maturity that understands what is really important, relational maturity that respects others, social maturity that contributes to society, verbal maturity that communicates like a man, character maturity that demonstrates courage under fire, and Biblical maturity sufficient to lead in the church.

In addition to these marks of manhood and general maturity, we should look for patterns of spiritual maturity specifically. Anyone can profess Christ but it is the Man or Woman that has proven faithful to Christ over time that we should pursue. Some marks of spiritual maturity include committing to Christ, striving for sanctification, fellowshipping with other believers, being in the Word, consistent prayer life, serving others, being Gospel-centered, discipling others, having the humility to be corrected, exuding fruit, putting off sin, putting on Christ, being involved in ministry, showing patterns of loving and serving others, and primarily living for The Gospel and God’s Kingdom.

            When choosing a life partner, Chemistry is important. Being able to talk about life together and being interested in the same activities will direct the course of the relationship. For example, a huge conflict has just emerged if someone wants to be a missionary in India and the other party wants to serve in the local church. Going on, both parties should be attracted to each other. Solomon describes the sexual relationship and how both spouses delight in each other. The author of proverbs states that “Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth, a lovely deer, a graceful doe. Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight; be intoxicated always in her love.” A mature man has eyes and a heart for the wife of his youth only. He takes steps to avoid deep emotional bonding with other women and is above reproach in this area. He speaks well of his wife and serves her all his days even if she doesn’t provide anything in return. This is the sacrificial love that God requires. It’s a lifetime commitment that emulates the commitment God has to us. If we are his, we will be with Him for all of eternity. We couldn’t provide anything to God but He still loved us. All we could provide was our detestable sin and filthy rags. In the same way, we are to show the same type of God-honoring love to the cherished wife of our youth. It’s an opportunity to love and serve others greatly!

            More specifically, the situations of teens, age gaps, and widows need to focus on specific aspects of maturity. Most teens aren’t financially set to support a partner and they marry for the wrong reasons. An age gap of 13 years puts the partners in different places in life. A 40 year old and a 27 year old may have similar physical energy right now, but when the couple gets older, they will be in different places. There is nothing Biblically speaking that prohibits couples from getting married with an age gap unless, obviously, it’s illegal. Going on, widows may have children or ex-husbands who are still in the picture. Whatever the situation, the most important thing to look for are marks of maturity. The other issues may be hard to deal with, but aren’t nearly as important as marks of maturity from boyhood to manhood, and from being a girl to being a woman. There’s a visible transition from being spiritually immature to spiritually mature.

            In conclusion, couples should generally get married if their motivations are pure, are on a trajectory of spiritual maturity, and have chemistry. Marriage is a great picture of the eternal marriage we will experience and is a wonderful gift. As the author of Ecclesiastes put it- “Enjoy life with the wife whom you love, all the days of your vain life that he has given you under the sun, because that is your portion in life and in your toil at which you toil under the sun.” We serve Christ and Him crucified together for His glory and being a witness to His Gospel. Marriage is God-centered and doesn’t last forever. But we continue toiling under the sun all of our days until we enter into the eternal marriage with our Savior. Keep on toiling.

[1] Dr. Kurt Smith, LMFT. “‘I Married the Wrong Person, Please Help.’” Counseling for Men, Guy Stuff Counseling, 8 Dec. 2022,

[2] Omega, Alpha. Logos Bible Study Platform,

[3] Omega, Alpha. Logos Bible Study Platform,

[4] Omega, Alpha. Logos Bible Study Platform,

[5] Omega, Alpha. Logos Bible Study Platform,

[6] Omega, Alpha. Logos Bible Study Platform,

[7] “From Boy to Man-the Marks of Manhood, Part One.” Albert Mohler,


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