Home » Faith » Reblogged: A Christian Wife’s Marriage Catechism (with comments by Angela Wittman)

Reblogged: A Christian Wife’s Marriage Catechism (with comments by Angela Wittman)

Angela Wittman:

For my readers: I am reblogging this Catechism because I am a Christian wife whose husband has not yet confessed Christ and I have found the principles expressed in this catechism to have given me great peace and encouragement during my 30+ yrs. of marriage.

While my friends were divorcing, the good Lord gave me the patience and faith to stay in a difficult (at times) situation and trust Him with the outcome. Now my husband and I are closer than when we were first married and he has become more loving and gentle with me. Of course, if a wife is in an abusive situation, she should flee to safety, but if one is in a tolerable situation, hang in there and trust God. He will heal your broken heart and life. May His name be praised.

And for the Christian man who finds himself in a similar situation, here is a link to “A Christian Husband’s Marriage Catechism:”

http://reformedbaptistfellowship.org/2014/07/09/a-christian-husbands-marriage-catechism-2/

*After “reblogging” this article yesterday and expressing support for the Biblical principles it contains, I was challenged to provide Scripture and portions of the Westminster Confession of Faith that support points 11 and 12:

Q11. How good a husband is my husband to me?
A11. Much better than I deserve, and therefore I will thank God for him every day.

Q12. How good a wife am I to my husband?
A12. Much worse than I ought to be, and therefore I will confess my sins to God every day, asking forgiveness, and to my husband as needed, and continue in prayer for grace to grow into the excellent wife that God wants me to be, and that would be such a blessing to my husband.

My response was to look for Scriptures pertaining to humility, because I sincerely believe this is the message the author was trying to portray in these two specific points. When one is a Christian, there is a profound sense of one’s sin and we acknowledge that we deserve hell, but glory be to God, we have received grace and mercy instead. Of course this humble attitude can and will be exploited and hated by wicked men, but it is an outworking of our sanctification and is something true believers cannot help having.  One cannot delete portions of Scripture because wicked men will abuse and twist them. The Word of God or attitude of the believer is not the problem. The problem is the wicked men who are not truly regenerate – this is why church discipline is so important: The goats need to be exposed and removed from the assembly and their families need godly intervention for protection.

I also posted this section of the Westminster Confession of Faith:


Chapter XXIV Of Marriage and Divorce

I. Marriage is to be between one man and one woman: neither is it lawful for any man to have more than one wife, nor for any woman to have more than one husband, at the same time.[1]

II. Marriage was ordained for the mutual help of husband and wife,[2] for the increase of mankind with a legitimate issue, and of the Church with an holy seed;[3] and for preventing of uncleanness.[4]

III. It is lawful for all sorts of people to marry, who are able with judgment to give their consent.[5] Yet it is the duty of Christians to marry only in the Lord.[6] And therefore such as profess the true reformed religion should not marry with infidels, papists, or other idolaters: neither should such as are godly be unequally yoked, by marrying with such as are notoriously wicked in their life, or maintain damnable heresies.[7]

IV. Marriage ought not to be within the degrees of consanguinity or affinity forbidden by the Word.[8] Nor can such incestuous marriages ever be made lawful by any law of man or consent of parties, so as those persons may live together as man and wife.[9] The man may not marry any of his wife’s kindred, nearer in blood then he may of his own: nor the woman of her husband’s kindred, nearer in blood than of her own.[10]

V. Adultery or fornication committed after a contract, being detected before marriage, gives just occasion to the innocent party to dissolve that contract.[11] In the case of adultery after marriage, it is lawful for the innocent party to sue out a divorce and, after the divorce,[12] to marry another, as if the offending party were dead.[13]

VI. Although the corruption of man be such as is apt to study arguments unduly to put asunder those whom God has joined together in marriage: yet, nothing but adultery, or such wilful desertion as can no way be remedied by the Church, or civil magistrate, is cause sufficient of dissolving the bond of marriage:[14] wherein, a public and orderly course of proceeding is to be observed; and the persons concerned in it not left to their own wills, and discretion, in their own case.[15]

Source: http://www.reformed.org/documents/wcf_with_proofs/index.html

Marriage is not to be entered into lightly, nor should it be with an unbeliever. If your boyfriend or girlfriend is abusive before marriage, it will only escalate after you’re legally tied to that person. It is best to walk away from an abuser – you can’t change them. And by all means possible, protect yourself and your children from abuse: Call the police and seek out a shelter where you will be sheltered and helped. If your church defends the abuser, then you should probably separate and look for a healthy church that will help you and your children. Frankly, if a man has beaten you, he is probably being unfaithful in the marriage bed as well. Seek proof and act accordingly, is my advice. Keep your conscience clear before God and seek His comfort and protection.

In conclusion, please know that I am the daughter of a woman who was so badly beaten by her first husband, a youth pastor, that she had to literally flee in the middle of the night, leaving her sons and belongings behind. It really was a matter of life and death for my mother and she suffered greatly when the church and even her own mother took the side of the abuser. Sadly, she became very bitter at the church in general and her mother in particular. I don’t believe those wounds ever healed before her death in 1995. I pray this doesn’t happen to any of God’s children.

May the good Lord send His mercy and grace to victims of domestic violence and may He deal with the wicked who parade as Christians, but in reality are ravenous wolves. In Lord Jesus Name I pray, Amen.

**For Scripture Proofs for the “Christian Wife’s Marriage Catechism,” please see:

***And for Pastor Meadows final thoughts, please see:

Originally posted on Reformed Baptist Fellowship:

marriage

Providentially, many Christian wives are married to unbelieving husbands. This is a great trial for them, especially if the man is very ungodly. Pastoral counseling discovers that many of these sisters in the Lord are perplexed about how God wants them to relate to their husbands in such a case. I have prepared this brief catechism for some guidance, suggesting that she should memorize it and find supporting Scripture references for its counsel, with careful study of those passages.

I am convinced that even though these are basic biblical truths, many Christian wives would know more peace and confidence in their God-ordained role if they called them to mind every day for practical application in their marriages. Also, these truths should prove helpful even when the husband is a godly man.

May the Lord use this simple catechism to bless His precious daughters in difficult marriages.

D. Scott Meadows, Pastor

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8 thoughts on “Reblogged: A Christian Wife’s Marriage Catechism (with comments by Angela Wittman)

  1. Hey IB – Thanks for the “Like.” I had no idea this little catechism would stir such controversy… Praying for you! I know you’re in a difficult state that is at odds with Scripture and almost anything Christian. :(

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  2. There were some good truths in there, so thanks for sharing it!

    I too have managed to remain married in the midst of so much divorce and misery and although my husband is an awesome guy and committed to our marriage, it is biblical principles and faith in God that has sustained us.

    There is a lot of joy to be found in marriage and of course, peace and love, but I agree with the idea that marriage is not about making you happy. That might be a hidden fruit, but these days far too many people go into marriage with outrageous expectations. I joke about marriage being more like serving 30 to life, but if your expectations are lower, everything good is like a pleasant surprise.

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  3. Thank you for this encouraging perspective! While both my husband and I have been Christians, nether of us are perfect, obviously. I wish I had learned years ago how to respond with a gentle and quiet spirit instead of with pride and fear. I found great encouragement to in this catechism to keep at the work of laying down my life like my dearest Christ did. :-)

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  4. After further reflection and having to defend my agreement with this catechism on Facebook, I want to publicly thank the good Lord for allowing previous heartbreak and isolation in my marriage. It drew me into a deep dependence upon the Lord and His Word that others might not ever know. The tears I cried were soothed by the promises of God and frankly, His Word was my anchor and comfort during the rough times. I don’t think my relationship with Him would be as sweet or deep if I had not experienced these things. So, dear Lord Jesus, You are still my first love and I am extremely grateful for Your work in my marriage and my husband’s heart. You’ve calmed the rough seas and set my feet on a smooth path. I love You for ever. Amen.

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  5. Pingback: Reblogged: A Christian Wife’s Marriage Catechism (with comments by Angela Wittman) | Christian Heritage News

  6. I appreciate you sharing your heart and all of your trials. I don’t understand your situation that you as a believer are married to an unbeliever. I assume you got saved after sometime after your marriage vows, or recommitted yourself then. I don’t think anyone wants to verbally abuse you. But when you make blanket statements, you include all, by saying such things as: if you disagree with this catechism you don’t do your homework, you don’t know what the reformed faith is or its doctrines are, you don’t have sound godly counsel, you do not want the truth in Scriptures. You may have the struggles of a woman who is married to a husband who isn’t saved, however, you teach yourself God’s Word, hopefully, you think for yourself. But what I can say is that you have no idea what oppression feels like as a Christian woman who is married to a Christian man in an extremely conservative church. You claim your Westminster Catechism and Presbyterian background which you stand on your firm faith in all things conservative. I know something about Westminster Catechism/Presbyterian, because I also attended that church and are familiar with the differences between London Baptist Confession of Faith and the Westminster Catechism. So I assume you sit in the pew and take in all that your pastor is teaching, because most people in the Presbyterian churches are decent “folk”. My close family members attend one, and I know what the congregation is like. Then you go home and your husband allows you to worship your Lord freely- which is actually an awesome blessing.
    But on the other side of the tracks it is not so. After attending a London Baptist Confession of Faith Church for the last four years, Reformed Baptist church, I have learned even more than I ever could about myself. It has always bothered me that you have accused others who disagree with you as being liberal, but that is not so. Many who disagree with your beliefs are much more conservative than you in ideas, values, beliefs and opinions. The church we recently left was exactly what we were looking for- homeschooling, headcovering, no Christmas, no Easter services, (long)skirt wearing only, or dresses, even for the men no shorts, and the woman are not allowed to wear tee shirts ever in a no airconditioned house it was button up and button down including a vest if necessary, neck choking necklines, and negative on high heels, wedges, nail polish, ear piercings, jewelry, even wedding rings for some, the girls live with their parents until they get married and none of the women are allowed to receive a paycheck, or babysitting money, if they did make money in the home with a home business it would be handed over to the dad. marriage is not for love, and there is not to be displayed any emotions, or attractions to the opposite sex. a man only can come to the father and ask permission to court the daughter, and then the daughter”trusts” the father’s judgement and enters courtship while trying to learn the basics of what his favorite color is and what is middle name is, some of these courtships happen when no words are ever exchanged between the man and the young woman. three months they are engaged and married. immediately pregnant for some, and then they are to have as many children as possible, helping that process along by having four children in three years, pregnancy, then nurse for a couple months then pregnant again. Depression is mostly denied as a spirtual issue, so unless the woman is suicidal which it has gotten to that point, but it is a secret, then they hospitalize the young woman, say she went to visit relatives and then comes back to marry the man her parents want her to marry. if anyone stands in the way of two families putting these two together they will run them out of the church, because the young man must not have any distractions(love, emotions) when choosing a mate. The women are not allowed to even ask for prayer during prayer request time, let alone say a prayer, even if it is an evening gathering a gathering in the home, only men must speak and pray. A women must “never” complain, and if you cry at a funeral you will be told to be strong. You must constantly speak the mantras correctly when responding to any question, ” i am doing well, I am not happy, but praise the Lord, he wants me to be miserable, and he gives me the strength to get through it!” “we must suffer for the cross” But these women are miserable, because some of them are not allowed to talk to me, because even me a skirt wearing, headcovering mother of five, who homeschools and the whole nine yards…reads her Bible! That is the most controversal thing to date, because I deny how sinful I am, by reading the word, i deny that my curse is that i am deceived, i need my husband to teach me the things is see in Scripture, and I must never read or study apart from him, especially those passages which were never “shown’ to me before. I must however listen to as many tapes as possible for conferences such as Bill Gothard and Doug Phillips and all those speakers. And when having conversation with other women, I must only talk about gardening, nursing, babies, homeschool, which unfortunately I have to do in sin, my pastor says because my husband must provide and work outside the home, but really only he is qualified to do it, but the “good folks” can’t find away around that issue, and suggest that the women only teach the little children, because the older children will soon drop out, get their G.E.D. or just be issued a parent issued diploma. The father can continue teaching the sons in the evening or assign them their own work. And if a mother ever has a disagreement with a son, she must realize her place is beneath her son, and all forms of expression are God-given to boys and allowed. At times it is necessary to yield in submission to the son. Who will most likely never attend college, but college is evil anyways. No seminary teaching or training for these men to follow in the footsteps of the elders. So I just wanted you to know where some of faithful followers of Jesus Christ are coming from when we say, that this catechism is in support of all that I just said. For you this catechism is not tainted with legalistic church experiences, spiritual abuse, spiritual abuse-control husbands are having on their wives. the wording is coded here, and is different then your catechism. Divorce was taught never appropriate no matter what. The only time it is acceptable, which it really isn’t if when a unbeliever leaves a christian. we are taught that if there are any problems, it is a matter for church discipline not the state to handle such issues, because they say the state makes it worse. The most likely advice they give to the abused woman, well, she isn’t allowed to speak with the elders on her own ever….so you see where this leads, we have been preached at the woman must go to her husband all things concerning the elders and it is up to him to seek the elders for council. The woman is deceived to begin with, so it was probably her fault that he did what he did to her or against her. Many people are being exposed now with all this type of false doctrine, i’m not speaking of Jesus’ words on the matter of divorce, but those that go against His words and teachings. The Pastor wrote His own doctrines, and then women were not allowed to comment for some time, then the moderator finally allowed all comments made in the past by women to finally be accepted after much grief. I understand why he initially did not accept female comments, it was because women are not allowed to have conversations with men. period. This catechism was only written to the men of the church- they have to print this out and teach their wives this. A women is not to speak spiritual training on her own, which is why she could never have a Bible study or prayer meeting with other women. I hope you haven’t fallen down in shock over this, and maybe you could reread the catechism, and see what it means to fearful wives who are being taught this by their godly husbands. thank you for your most precious time! Lainajo

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    • Thanks for the comment. Yes, I agree I didn’t help matters by making blanket statements. I have a tendency to do that and I apologize. Also, the pastor who wrote the catechism is not the owner of the blog where it is published. He doesn’t monitor the comments. I communicated with him via Facebook and he really does seem to be a good pastor. His catechism was written for wives who are married to unbelievers – not abusive men. Yes, I came to know Christ after 12 years of marriage to my husband. I have great hope he’ll come to know the Lord, too. :) I think this is such a highly charged, emotional issue that it’s easy for us to find disagreement, when we really should be seeking common ground.

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