Genesis 26:34-35 – INCOMPATIBLE!
The engine of a FIESTA in a FERRARI! PICKLES and ICE CREAM! There are certain things that definitely DON’T go together. ALUMINIUM FOIL and MICROWAVES (Julie discovered this some time ago). CHILDREN and CANCER. Wouldn’t it change the world if HONESTY and POLITICS went together?
It was dark when I dressed, and when I arrived at the Church building, we sat around in a small circle of dedicated students learning and reciting Greek declensions with our Pastor. It was about halfway through one of these early morning classes that I noticed my shoes. I was wearing TWO DIFFERENT KINDS OF SHOES! Very embarrassing. I wonder if anybody else noticed? Certain things should not be worn together.
Deuteronomy 22:10 (NLT) says “You must not plough with an ox and a donkey harnessed together.” The idea here is that there are certain things that are totally INCOMPATIBLE. They were never meant to be placed in the same yoke, never meant to be together in the same equation. Just won’t fit! Won’t make sense! Doesn’t work well!
Just when everything is working out well in Genesis 26:34, Esau decides to marry two unbelieving Hittite women. MARRIAGE is one of the most important decisions we make in this life. Esau doesn’t consult his parents but instead reveals his blatant disregard for them. I know that he was 40 years old but the fact that he didn’t even talk with his parents about his decision shows he knew they would not be pleased with his choices.
Esau has already shown his blatant disregard for the promises of God by selling his birthright for a pot of stew. But why did he want to marry Hittite women, who were idol worshipers and who REJECTED THE GOD OF ABRAHAM? Esau seems to be intent on distancing himself even further from God by refusing to come under His authority in his life or to be accountable to Him in any way. He is making it plain that he is not a believer.
This decision makes both his parents miserable to the point of being grief stricken for the mess Esau is making of his life. He has blown it big time. Adultery and bigamy. Hebrews 12:16 calls him immoral and Godless.
Esau is not a believer but for followers of Christ, the principles are clear. There are certain things that DEFINITELY DON’T GO TOGETHER. Idols and belief in God. Christ and the devil. Light and darkness. Good and Evil. Righteousness and wickedness. A FOLLOWER OF CHRIST MARRYING AN UNBELIEVER. 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 (NLT) says “DON’T TEAM UP WITH (be UNEQUALLY YOKED with) those who are unbelievers.” It’s like harnessing an ox and an ass together.
The picture of being UNEQUALLY YOKED comes from farming life. Oxen and mules don’t work well together. They will pull a load differently, so if you put them in the same harness, they’ll be very ineffective. 1 Corinthians 6:15 goes on to say “How can righteousness be a partner with wickedness? How can light live with darkness? What harmony can there be between Christ and the devil? How can a believer be a partner with an unbeliever?”
“What’s so bad about believers marrying unbelievers? Big deal!”
I can’t afford to be too quick in dismissing what God has to say. Marrying someone who does not share my beliefs IS a big deal. It has to do with who I allow to speak into my life. Romans 12:2 (NLT) says “Don’t copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”
I love my wife and even more important than my marriage relationship is my relationship with God. I was once INCOMPATIBLE, UNEQUALLY YOKED for any kind of relationship with Christ. He could not and would not have a relationship with me because my sin made me completely incompatible.
But on a Christmas day many years ago, I gave my life to Christ. On that day I appropriated what Christ did for me personally. Christ paid the penalty for my sin when He died on the Cross for me. He exchanged His righteousness for my sin. When that amazing transaction took place and I stood before God clothed in the righteousness of Christ, I became TOTALLY COMPATIBLE for a relationship with Him. Has that transaction taken place in your life? Have you considered the radical difference it would make in your life should you decide to believe in Christ and appropriate what He has done for you?
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