Tuesday, 15 November 2016

IS INTER-RACIAL MARRIAGE SCRIPTURAL?




It is sad that there is world-wide prejudice amongst people of different race. White people are prejudiced about coloured people and vice versa. As Christians, this shouldn’t be for Christ died for all men. John 12:32 ‘and I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.’ Romans 14:11 For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God." Yet despite this, we still have Christians who are prejudiced against people of different race or colour.


Often Christians ask if inter-racial marriage is scriptural. I believe it is, but let's actually see what the Word says....The case for the Ethiopian (black) woman in Numbers 12:1-10


And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married: for he had married an Ethiopian woman. And they said, Hath the LORD indeed spoken only by Moses? hath he not spoken also by us? And the LORD heard [it].


(Now the man Moses [was] very meek, above all the men which [were] upon the face of the earth.) And the LORD spake suddenly unto Moses, and unto Aaron, and unto Miriam, Come out ye three unto the tabernacle of the congregation. And they three came out.

And the LORD came down in the pillar of the cloud, and stood [in] the door of the tabernacle, and called Aaron and Miriam: and they both came forth.

And he said, Hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you, [I] the LORD will make myself known unto him in a vision, [and] will speak unto him in a dream.

My servant Moses [is] not so, who [is] faithful in all mine house.

With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even apparently, and not in dark speeches; and the similitude of the LORD shall he behold: wherefore then were ye not afraid to speak against my servant Moses? And the anger of the LORD was kindled against them; and he departed.

And the cloud departed from off the tabernacle; and, behold, Miriam [became] leprous, [white] as snow: and Aaron looked upon Miriam, and, behold, [she was] leprous. 

Here we see that the LORD was angry because of the way Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses marrying a black woman. If Miriam was made a leper because of Gods' displeasure in her speaking against an innocent man then we can see that God has no qualms about inter-racial marriage. Obviously, God did not even hint that Moses had sinned by marrying an Ethiopian woman.

The Bible never classes a coloured person as a second rate person as we see in this beautiful story of the Spirit causing Philip to evangelise an Ethiopian (black) eunuch. And then we see his subsequent salvation and baptism. 

Acts 8:26 And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert. And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship, Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet.

Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot. And Philip ran thither to [him], and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest? And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him. 

The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth: In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth. And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the man of himself, or of some other man? Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus. 

And as they went on [their] way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, [here is] water; what doth hinder me to be baptised? And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him. And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing. 

So even though man makes distinctions, God sees people as people regardless of their race.Nowhere in scripture do we see God telling us not to marry if our intended spouse is of another ethnic or racial persuasion to us....He does tell us repeatedly that we are only to marry another Christian of the opposite sex I might add.... and I see that as irregardless of colour or race...

There may be a few more difficulties with handling the prejudices of others: I do not see that as a scriptural matter. Obviously from the scriptures showing Miriam and Aarons' disapproval of Moses' marriage to a woman of colour, we can see that there has always been a prejudice of some people regarding inter-racial marriage. However, God does not require that we marry only someone of the same race as ourselves...only we are to marry "in the LORD"


© Glenys Robyn Hicks     -picture depicts Moses and his Ethiopian wife

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