Unequally Yoked - The Balance of Being in the World but Not of It

Judging from the landscape and corruption in the United States from the highest political offices to the lowest paid workers, there is a problem with those who carry the banner of Christianity as a whole. There are many things to discuss, but I think that we as Christians have become unequally yoked with unbelievers to our demise. The divorce rate of Christians is close to the same level of unbelievers. There are more and more people being brought into the Christian fold who never really repent (turn) of sin.  Confession maybe, but repentance? Not as likely.  Many pastors have been trying to combat this by reminding professing believers that once a person confesses, they must repent and strive for a new life on the narrow path until the end. The change isn't instant, but there should be a progression toward righteousness by grace through faith.  What seems to be happening is that the progression is going the other direction.  It seems like we have a lot of professions of faith, but no real evidence of a changed life. This has caused me to look at myself to see what kind of beam is in my eye.  Where have I gone wrong? And why are so many brothers and sisters falling pray to besetting sin?  What is the cause?  I am sure there is a plethora of things that I could cover. What does it mean to be "unequally yoked?" That phrase comes from 2 Corinthians 6:14 NKJV "Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness?" The words "unequally yoked together" come from a Greek word: "heterozygeō" which means to come under an unequal or different yoke, to be unequally yoked. It would be like trying to yoke two different animals unevenly while pulling the same cart, or another way to put it would be like if someone was to put truck tires on one side of a vehicle, and small car tires on the other side. Eventually there would be an accident. It just doesn't work. So where do we draw the line? I have been thinking on this after reading 2 Corinthians 6. It is clear that our nation, churches, and homes are rolling into a ditch. I can see it, and perhaps you have seen it too. The world system spoken of in the Bible has something to do with it, but we are our worst enemy.  Idolatry, covetousness, sexual immorality, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, the pride of life, anger, wrath, maliciousness, disrespect, filthy communication, and murder are all great problems in our nation, church, and homes. The more we are inclined to such evil, the more we probably should stay away from influences that lead us to it. The president said not too long back that we aren't a Christian nation. I think he is right, and that is a sad statement. What are we? One thing I know for sure is that we are an unequally yoked nation. We have called people to the light only to find ourselves stumbling into the pit we are calling them out of.  Below is the Holy Scriptures on this along with a commentary from Matthew Henry.  He had a few thoughts about this subject and I would like to share them with you. He said it far better than I.

2 Corinthians 6:14-18
14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?   15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?   16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.   17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,   18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.

Matthew Henry Commentary

II. The caution or exhortation itself, not to mingle with unbelievers, not to be unequally yoked with them, v. 14. Either,
In stated relations. It is wrong for good people to join in affinity with the wicked and profane; these will draw different ways, and that will be galling and grievous. Those relations that are our choice must be chosen by rule; and it is good for those who are themselves the children of God to join with those who are so likewise; for there is more danger that the bad will damage the good than hope that the good will benefit the bad.
In common conversation. We should not yoke ourselves in friendship and acquaintance with wicked men and unbelievers. Though we cannot wholly avoid seeing, and hearing, and being with such, yet we should never choose them for our bosom-friends.
Much less should we join in religious communion with them; we must not join with them in their idolatrous services, nor concur with them in their false worship, nor any abominations; we must not confound together the table of the Lord and the table of devils, the house of God and the house of Rimmon. The apostle gives several good reasons against this corrupt mixture. (1.) It is a very great absurdity, v. 14, 15. It is an unequal yoking of things together that will not agree together; as bad as for the Jews to have ploughed with an ox and an ass or to have sown divers sorts of grain intermixed. What an absurdity is it to think of joining righteousness and unrighteousness, or mingling light and darkness, fire and water, together! Believers are, and should be, righteous; but unbelievers are unrighteous. Believers are made light in the Lord, but unbelievers are in darkness; and what comfortable communion can these have together? Christ and Belial are contrary one to the other; they have opposite interests and designs, so that it is impossible there should be any concord or agreement between them. It is absurd, therefore, to think of enlisting under both; and, if the believer has part with an infidel, he does what in him lies to bring Christ and Belial together. (2.) It is a dishonour to the Christian's profession (v. 16); for Christians are by profession, and should be in reality, the temples of the living God—dedicated to, and employed for, the service of God, who has promised to reside in them, to dwell and walk in them, to stand in a special relation to them, and take a special care of them, that he will be their God and they shall be his people. Now there can be no agreement between the temple of God and idols. Idols are rivals with God for his honour, and God is a jealous God, and will not give his glory to another. (3.) There is a great deal of danger in communicating with unbelievers and idolators, danger of being defiled and of being rejected; therefore the exhortation is (v. 17to come out from among them, and keep at a due distance, to be separate,as one would avoid the society of those who have the leprosy or the plague, for fear of taking infection, and not to touch the unclean thing, lest we be defiled. Who can touch pitch, and not be defiled by it? We must take care not to defile ourselves by converse with those who defile themselves with sin; so is the will of God, as we ever hope to be received, and not rejected, by him. (4.) It is base ingratitude to God for all the favours he has bestowed upon believers and promised to them, v. 18. God has promised to be a Father to them, and that they shall be his sons and his daughters; and is there a greater honour or happiness than this? How ungrateful a thing then must it be if those who have this dignity and felicity should degrade and debase themselves by mingling with unbelievers! Do we thus requite the Lord, O foolish and unwise?


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