(Jack Johnson) #1

There is a question that huants me.
Several years ago, a Christian family from my village married they daughter off to a Hindu boy, there were dating for quite some time. So in the morning there had a Christian marriage ceremony in a church and in the evening and marriage ceremony the Hindu way.
I asked the girls father why are you doing this? To which he replied for my daughter’s happiness.
This really hurt me, seeing him raise his children in a Christian community and marrying her off in this fashion.
Last year another marriage took place in the same way from the same village.
How can we deal with this in showing them the right way. God’s way,

(Lakshmi Mehta) #2

@Jack_Johnson, that is sad that a Christian Father let the daughter to be married off in a Hindu way. But I can understand why he may be doing that. I had a converse situation in my life. I grew up in a Hindu family and parents had to marry me off in a Christian way due to my change in faith. My parents accepted the decision with a heavy heart out of love for me and they wanted to see me happy even though it was opposed to their wishes in many ways. The one reason they were able to do that was because they believed all paths led to the same God. So Hindu parents while trying to be flexible about Christian customs can put pressure on the Christian to accept Hindu customs. For the Hindu, when it comes to own family members, they don’t feel the marriage is fully blessed unless done according to Hindu customs. So many Hindu-Christian couples end up getting married in two ways.

In this situation though, if the Christian daughter is willing to be married to a Hindu boy, I suspect she may not be aware or even understand the Bible’s reasons for saying, " Do not be yoked with an unbeliever. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common or what fellowship can light have with darkness " in 2 Cor 6:14 and the uniqueness of Christ. I think the conversation may have to start with uniqueness of Christ. I would be even more concerned about the marriage than the ceremony. I think our beliefs however strong, can slowly change when we marry someone with a different faith. We can never know if the change we want will happen in the spouse. I think talking about repercussions of interfaith marriage on their own faith and the upbringing of children will also be important. Another important thing is to know that Hindu gods are real spiritual beings and not mere myths. The ceremonies with all the chanting to the Hindu gods would clearly be in opposition to God of the Bible. The father is making a compromise for the happiness of the daughter but is not realizing the sacrifice of faith that is happening in the process.

These are just a few initial thoughts. Not an easy conversation to have. God bless your conversations. Hope this is helpful.

(SeanO) #3

@Jack_Johnson I think @Lakshmismehta made a great point about the daughter perhaps not being fully committed to or aware of Christian teachings. Assuming the daughter may not be truly walking with Christ at this time, I thought it may be helpful to consider what options a Christian parent would have if their daughter chooses to marry a non-Christian. This article gave some advice within an American cultural context for a parent whose daughter is marrying outside the faith.

I think some of the good points in the article are:

  • you can share your Biblical and practical concerns with your daughter, but she is an adult and you must respect her right to make a choice
  • have healthy boundaries - recognize what you can and cannot control - do not go against your conscience, but do speak the truth in love
  • consider all options - seek wise council - do not rush into a decision in the midst of charged emotions

Do you feel that this advice applies within your cultural context? Is it helpful in any way in this situation?

Sphere of Influence

I also thought it would be helpful to discuss sphere of influence. How much influence do you have in the lives of these men who are giving their daughters away? Are they acquaintances or close friends? Have you earned the right to speak hard truth into their lives or do you have a position that would allow you to do so without being dismissed offhand?

(Carson Weitnauer) #4

Does anyone from the @Interested_in_Hinduism have any personal experience and wisdom they can share for this important question?