Finding a Spouse

He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord” (Prov. 18:22).

- Proverbs 18:22

Before we look at our main point for today, let us again recognize the goodness of the single life. Because marriage is so highly esteemed in Protestantism, it is easy for the unmarried to feel like second-class citizens in the household of faith. Too many of us assume there has to be something wrong with those who remain single their entire life. However, being single does not make someone less of a person; remember, the Lord Jesus Christ was a single man! Moreover, Paul even tells us the single life is better in many ways than married life because it enables men and women to devote themselves wholly to the work of the church (1 Cor. 7:25–40).

Paul also recognizes that the Lord has not given everyone the grace and gift for unmarried life, and so it is not wrong to look for a spouse (vv. 36–37). In fact, today’s passage is one of many biblical texts that commend marriage. How then does a person who desires marriage find a husband or wife? How can we help a single friend or family member locate a good spouse if they want to be married?

The Lord forbids Christians from marrying non-believers (2 Cor. 6:14); thus, finding a good spouse will involve going where godly, single people congregate — places like churches and parachurch organizations. God will probably not bring a man or woman into a single person’s life if that person prays without acting. David did not just pray when he faced Goliath, he also fired his slingshot (1 Sam. 17). Looking for a spouse should not be the primary factor in attending church — that would be hypocrisy. But Dr. R.C. Sproul reminds us there is nothing wrong with being on the lookout for potential mates as you grow to spiritual maturity in your local congregation.

Single Christians should also seek counsel from friends and family when it comes to choosing a spouse. It is easy for us to marry someone for the wrong reasons, but godly friends and family can help us see the red flags we might overlook in others. This should encourage married people in the church to be truly involved in the lives of single people and develop close relationships with those who might need your wisdom in finding a mate.

Coram Deo

Whether we are married or single, let us all take the time to get involved with others in our churches. Single people and married couples equally need each other to help them grow in the faith. Perhaps if you are married, there is a way for you to be involved in a singles ministry or college group. Maybe if you are single you can join a Bible study made up of married couples. Married or single, we are all one in Christ Jesus (Gal. 3:28).

Passages for Further Study

Josh. 23:11–13
Ruth 3
1 Cor. 12:12–31
Titus 2:1–8

Permissions: You are permitted and encouraged to reproduce and distribute this material in any format provided that you do not alter the wording in any way, you do not charge a fee beyond the cost of reproduction, and you do not make more than 500 physical copies. For web posting, a link to this document on our website is preferred (where applicable). If no such link exists, simply link to www.ligonier.org.

Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: From Ligonier Ministries, the teaching fellowship of R.C. Sproul. All rights reserved. Website: www.ligonier.org | Phone: 1-800-435-4343