The Unequal Yoke

“Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers, for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?" 2 Cor. 6:14, 1514Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? 15And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? (2 Corinthians 6:14‑15).
The children of Israel had been separated from the nations by God. Four times Balaam sought to curse them, and when this failed he succeeded in getting them to mingle with the Moabites, and to join themselves to Baalpeor (see Num. 22:2525And when the ass saw the angel of the Lord, she thrust herself unto the wall, and crushed Balaam's foot against the wall: and he smote her again. (Numbers 22:25)), and thus ruined the people who had been called out to be a living witness to the one true God.
Many Christians who once were bright, earnest, separated, and devoted children of God, have been ensnared by Satan, formed an unequal yoke, their testimony spoiled, and they are today total wrecks, and a danger to all who come near. Satan ever seeks to get the thin end of the wedge in first, and few see where it all leads until too late.
You, my true fellow-believer, have been marked off from the world, and bound with indissoluble ties to every child of God, but as surely separated from the unbeliever as Israel was from the nations. Christ has won your heart, and this world you can only know as the place where He was crucified. Grace has taught you that you no more belong to it than does your rejected Lord, and to be a friend of the world is to be false to Christ. An unbeliever has taken his side with the world and against Christ, for "he that is not with Me is against Me"; he hates His name, despises His word, and tramples His blood under foot.
Of all evils the saddest consequences come from the unequal yoke. A young man or woman becomes engaged to an unconverted person, and often deceive themselves by the fact that they are very moral and upright, and thus seek to persuade themselves that they are not doing wrong; but the truth is, they are being joined to an enemy of God, a hater of Christ, and a child of wrath.
There is no middle path, and bitterest sorrow is the only harvest that can be reaped.
“Can two walk together except they be agreed?" Amos 3:33Can two walk together, except they be agreed? (Amos 3:3).
Useful lives have been ruined, and much dishonor brought upon the name of the Lord Jesus through this unequal yoke. It is neither faithfulness to Christ, love to them, nor justice to yourself to continue for another moment such an unholy path.
“Ponder the paths of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil." Prov. 4:26, 2726Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. 27Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil. (Proverbs 4:26‑27).
The enemy may also allure the Christian by the cycle, football, cricket, and many other clubs where the unequal yoke is formed under the plea that (1) "Recreation is needed"; (2) "What harm is there in this?" (3) "May I not by joining be an influence for good?”
Let us openly and honestly face these queries.
(1.) Recreation is necessary, especially for the young, but is there none better than that which is in disobedience to the Word of God?
(2.) The "harm" lies, not in riding a cycle, or playing at football, etc., but in the unholy alliances with the world.
(3.) Are you really sincere in your plea that you may be an influence for good to others? Is this your real and sole object in joining? Do you seek to embrace every opportunity of speaking for Christ, or is it not true that you dare not introduce Him because you know He is not wanted? O, be real before God! These things are not the trifles they at first sight appear. Beware lest you so become one of the world that, like Lot, your testimony is not believed.
Then, again, there are religious associations where believers and unbelievers are joined together, and some, alas! go so far as to include every parishioner-regardless of new birth-and oftentimes immoral persons are allowed to take the Sacrament professedly in remembrance of the Lord's death. This is the very worst kind of evil. How can they remember a Person they know not? God says to His own people who thus mix with what is so false,
“Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you." 2 Cor. 6:1717Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, (2 Corinthians 6:17).
Dear fellow-believer, ponder these things well. They are not small and insignificant matters. Not only your blessing, but the glory of Christ is at stake. The unequal yoke includes every association-religious, commercial, or otherwise-where believers and unbelievers are joined together by common ties.
“Ye are not your own, for ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's." 1 Cor. 6:2020For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's. (1 Corinthians 6:20).