How to Build Godly Relationships – Be Not Unequally Yoked

“We should never partner with anyone who has not partnered with Christ! Okay, Partner?”

Howdy, Partner! Just this morning I was praising the Lord for God’s grace in my father’s life in his latter years. At my ordination service, God saw fit to save him, allowing my parents to become “equally yoked” together—again (my mother was unsaved when they married, so they would have been equally yoked—yet lost). I also praise God daily for the partnership or “yoke” in Christ that I enjoy with my wife, Lori. There is no measure of treasure like the fellowship of a relationship that is an equally yoked partnership!

You might ask, “What is a yoke?” It is a joining of two individuals together or a binding agreement. To be joined in this manner would have to denote that these two individuals are going in the same direction and have the same goals.

Let me share a couple of verses with you relating to this matter. Second Corinthians 6:14-15 says, “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?”

Much the same as having a yoke in marriage, we can have a yoke in friendships or business relationships. I’m here to tell ya, Partner, that God knew the danger of darkness that would be introduced when mixing the righteous with the unrighteous. When we step outside God’s clearly defined boundaries, disappointment and grief are sure to be brought to the front and center of these relationships.

I have observed over the past several years of ministry that one of Satan’s masterpiece devices for the crippling of young believers has been the “Unequal Yoke.” I have seen many bright and happy saints caught in this subtle snare and practically ruin their life and testimony for God in the world. The unequal yoke has killed many a fruitful tree in the garden of the Lord and paralyzed many an arm once strong and active in His service. As a watchman for souls, I am to sound the alarm in warning for those prone to being bound unequally. I have seen the following four ways in which an unequal yoke is presented in Scripture:

  • The Social Yoke, or the “Unequal Yoke,” with unconverted companions. “Know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever, therefore, will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God” (James 4:4). “If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him” (1 John 2:15).
  • The Matrimonial Yoke, or the “Unequal Yoke,” in marriage. “Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son. For they will turn away thy son from following me, that they may serve other gods: so will the anger of the LORD be kindled against you, and destroy thee suddenly” (Deuteronomy 7:3-4). To the saints of the present age the Word is equally explicit, “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers” (2 Corinthians 6:14); and “Married…only in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 7:39).
  • The Commercial Yoke, or the “Unequal Yoke,” in business. “Thou shalt not plow with an ox and an [donkey] together” (Deuteronomy 22:10). We are also told in the Bible that “Whatsoever ye do, in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus” (Colossians 3:17); and “Whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31).
  • The Religious Yoke, or the ‘Unequal Yoke,” in the worship and service of God. The wheat and tares, or the children of God and the children of the devil, will both grow together in the field (and the field is the world) until the end (see Matt 13:24-30, 38, 39); but they are not to be yoked together in the church, or associated in the worship and service of God. We read of the early church that “all that believed were together,” and “of the rest durst no man join himself to them” (Acts 2:44; 5:13).

There is an RU Recovery Program principle that states, “Those who do not love the Lord will not help you serve the Lord.” If you are saved, your direction and goals should be entirely different than of those who are not…are they?

[Tweet “My friend, don’t be a bloke who thinks it a joke to have an unequal yoke!” – Steve Curington]

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Steve Curington grew up in a Christian home and graduated from North Love Christian School in 1984. After high school, Steve started a 10-year addiction to alcoholism and cocaine. After a serious car accident, Steve found complete sobriety through his relationship with Jesus Christ. After his recovery in 1996, Steve began Reformers Unanimous, a faith-based addiction ministry. What started as a humble, Friday night addiction class with four regular attendees in Rockford, Illinois, grew to a class of more than 300 people from the community and then spread to other churches across the country and around the world. The founder of Reformers Unanimous International (RU) died suddenly on October 30, 2010. Mr. Curington, a husband and father of five children, was only 45, but he accomplished more in his 15 years of ministry than many do in a lifetime. We know his work, his writing, his voice, and his reach will live on.

2 thoughts on “How to Build Godly Relationships – Be Not Unequally Yoked

  1. Another wonderful post Brother Curington! I teach a “College & Career” SS class, and this is a huge problem with this age group. I will share this with my class on Sunaday. Thanks Again.

  2. My husband is not a believer. I admit i feel sad and alone sitting in church surrounded by couples. I yearn for my husband to have the freedom and joy God brings to His children.

    Am i condemned bc i am unequally yoked

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