Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord."
Distractions or Fuddy-Duddiness?
Fasten your seatbelt for what stands to be an unpopular blog post, for it is perilous to challenge cultural assumptions.
Satan can use legitimate things, even very good things, to distract us from Jesus and present us with obstacles to holy living. A lot a weddings happen in Christian circles, and while working to make them as Christ-honoring as we can, we are wise to be alert to pitfalls of typical weddings in modern day western culture. Pitfalls like what?
- Materialistic excess. The average Twin Cities wedding costs over $22K. Many couples feel pressured to spend money on various elements of their weddings just because they have seen those expenditures at other weddings. Further, some families hamstring other financial priorities on account of what the weddings costs amount to. I am not arguing against material things, but against excess. Very nice weddings, drenched with significance and heartfelt meaning, can be done in ways that preserve financial resources for other priorities.
- Objectification of women. Many Christian women dress the least modestly that they will ever dress in public and in church with hundreds of people eyeing them. I am not arguing against classy festive garb or God-given skin, nor establishing artificial external standards by asking what our hearts are saying.
- Mimicry. Who are we copying when we introduce things like pairing off of unwed couples in gyrations to music orchestrated by DJ’s with strobe lights while alcohol flows?
I sometimes get the impression that weddings supply an excuse to set aside the decorum otherwise expected, but not really embraced from the heart. It’s not clear to me what we’re pointing to with some of the elements of some weddings of great people that I love. Maybe I’m just a fuddy-duddy.
Pastor Sam Crabtree is Bethlehem's Executive Pastor and Lead Pastor for Life Training.