Do you want to read this site in other languages?

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Can you choose a “not-highly educated” Christian brother and respect him as your husband?

Japanese cram school source

Japan is probably one of the top nations which has put so much emphasis on a person’s educational background. The names of our high school or university decides his/her worth and social position. As a pagan child, I had been brought up in such an environment. My father is a skilled surgeon and all of our family and relatives are university degree possessors.

Students hold a morale-boosting rally at Yoyogi Seminar's Kokura cram school in Kita-Kyushu, Fukuoka Prefecture, days before they were to take the National Center Test for university applicants in January 2013. (Asahi Shimbun file photo) source

So I used to dream like this; My future husband must be highly educated and,,,he must have a honorable title so that others may think we are prestigious people.

In other words, my value systems had been stained with worldly standard to the highest degree.

After believing Jesus Christ as my Savior, however, He started to challenge this kind of value system. How? Through communal life with other Christian sisters while I was serving in the church in Tokyo.

One of them used to work in a nightclub. Well, I had never talked nor interact with a woman in a bar up until then and I felt a bit awkward in this new living environment at first. However, as the time passed by, I could be able to see the life of Christ in this sister and we eventually became the most intimate friends at communal home and in the church. He gave me grace to see the people from totally different viewpoint. “Therefore, from now on, we regard no one according to the flesh.” (II Cor 5:16)

I learned from the Lord that what really matters is whether the person in front of me has walked with Christ or not.  According to the biblical worldview, we are all “earthen vessels” (II Cor 4:7) after all. Some earthen vessels have a bit better shapes than the others but still it does not change the fact that they are earthen vessels. If we polish and boast the shape of our earthen vessels without having the very “treasure” (II Cor 4:7) in it, then what’s the use of all of our efforts?

"But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world." (Gal 6:14)
"For it is written: I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.” Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?" (I Cor 1:19-20)

Reading many accounts of our church history also revealed to me that there has been many devout, wise saints among simple workers/farmers who have truly known the Lord to its depth. Well, I am not against higher education or professionals. I am just saying that the real saints can be found in every sphere of society and that the intellectualism / academic snobbism have no place in His church. 



Thus when my husband did marriage proposal, my new value system in Christ was tested; for he did not have college education nor title in the society. He, however, has noble and untainted character. And he was full of courage and faith in Jesus Christ. He has had deep experiences with the Lord.

I asked myself, “what things shall remain until the end? –isn’t it faith, hope and love? (I Cor 13:13) Our fleshly or worldly titles or names will one day disappear with our fleshly body. The only important thing on this earth is to live with Christ, and through our dedicated lives, His Name shall be glorified. “

I am so grateful that I could make a decision to walk the pilgrim journey with this precious brother in Christ. We have had some difficulties in the world but we have tasted far better spiritual blessings and the peace in our joint-lives.

Noble character does not depend on the educational background or social titles.

The true nobility can be found in the character of Christ and in the souls of the saints who have experienced the new birth in Christ (II Cor 5:17).


Thank you for reading, my sisters!  

8 comments:

  1. Kinuko, what an amazing post. Many Christians out here in North America also place a great emphasize on educational background. I do't know any single young man of my age group who has good education.Girls, I mean Christian girls, chase after men with great education. Unfortunately world priorities seeped into church walls. Parents also put great emphasis on education.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Dear Irina, thank you so much for your great observation. I think the more churches (the Lord's people) stick to worldly values such as educational backgrounds/titles, the more we lose spiritual vitality.

    Last month, I re-blogged Brother Joel's article called "How to Have Confidence Toward God" (http://japanesebiblewoman.blogspot.gr/2015/02/how-to-have-confidence-toward-god-when.html). Brother Joel Horst is a young man of God who truly dedicated himself to Jesus Christ. He is a farmer and we highly respect him.

    I believe that great men in the Christian church are those who have known the Lord and live up to His teachings with all of their hearts, minds and souls. And we should resist against the worldly standard consistently so that His life might flow through our lives and our churches.May God restore all of us! Thank you so much Irina! Kinuko

    ReplyDelete
  3. I know one lady who gave up her marriage when she was so young.Because her mother(very passionate christian) said to her again and again that her daughter has to marry the man with highly educated,with wonderful carrier, at least more than the daughter herself.The mother also said that she never allow her daughter to marry unless her daughter find the man like that,because truly hope her daughter to become happy. The mother also pushed the daughter to go to famous university to enter famous campany,and the daughter did it.The mother(I think she is in her 60's,now retired) has also steller career.For her,to have wonderful career means the way to be happy.But as the result of that,the daughter got to feel that she never can marry in her life.

    It is very unhappy story,I think.Even some christians think like that. Influence of our society is often working on them,too.
    Sanae

    ReplyDelete
  4. Dear Sanae, thank you so much for your comment. Your comment always makes me ponder the issues and I deeply appreciate your reflections.

    After reading your comment, I thought like this; what is the definition of “success” in the modern evangelical churches in general? Is it “cost-free” prosperity or cross-bearing which will lead us to eternal life and heavenly glory eventually?

    I have seen and heard the sermon messages like : “If you believe Jesus, then you will be a successful man and woman.” I think this is the Gospel of Pragmatism and not the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

    I found one excerpt this morning and I’d like to share with you. Here it says about the gospel of pragmatism and prosperity:

    “Sadly, this is not the church’s finest hour. We live in an age of weak theology and casual Christian conduct. Our knowledge is insufficient, our worship is irreverent, and our lives are immoral. Even the evangelical church has succumbed to the spirit of this age…

    Perhaps the simplest way to say this is that evangelicalism has become worldly. This can be demonstrated by comparing it with yesterday’s liberalism. What was once said of liberal churches must now be said of evangelical churches: they seek the world’s wisdom, believe the world’s theology; follow the world’s agenda, and adopt the world’s methods. According to the standard’s of worldly wisdom, the Bible is unable to meet the demands of life in these postmodern times.

    By itself, God’s Word is insufficient to win people to Christ, promote spiritual growth, provide practical guidance, or transform society. So churches supplement the plain teaching of Scripture with entertainment with entertainment, group therapy, political activism, signs and wonders—anything that promises to appeal to religious consumers. According to the theology, sin is merely a dysfunction and salvation means having better self-esteem. When this theology comes to church, it replaces difficult but essential doctrines like the propitiation of God’s wrath with practical techniques for self-improvement.

    The world’s agenda is personal happiness, so the gospel is presented as a plan for individual fulfillment rather than a pathway of costly discipleship. The world’s methods for accomplishing this self-centered agenda are necessarily pragmatic, so evangelical leaders are willing to try whatever seems like it might work. This worldliness has produced the “new pragmatism” of evangelicalism.

    (The Doctrines of Grace: Rediscovering The Evangelical Gospel, 20,21)”

    I want to know your thoughts. Please feel free to share with me! God bless you. Kinuko

    ReplyDelete
  5. Dear Sanae, I found an intriguing article which deals with the topic we are talking now.I could see one of the most serious root-causes of our modern evangelicalism through reading this article.

    "Another Possible Gospel of Robert Schuller's"
    http://letusreason.org/Poptea1.htm

    with sisterly love, Kinuko

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thank you, Kinuko.Later I'll read the article.I know that some church got many new comers by teaching the gospel of prosperity,pragmatism.In our age everybody seems to seek something to succeed. Sadly some people try to use God for their wishes. Once one man asked me 'If I accept your God,my depression will be taken away?'.I could not answer because I felt that he just wanted use God for his happiness...Thank you for sharing about this important issue. I ponder it again.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Sanae, I was deeply touched by your comment. Yes people treat God like a fairy. They want only to receive but not to give. As for that man, I would have responded that "God can heal your depression, but the thing God desires the most is personal relationships. If you accept Jesus into your heart you'll become new born-again person." I went through depression three years ago and it was one of the worst moments of my life.

      Delete
    2. Thank you,Irina for your warm comment.One lady asked me to talk with him(her younger brother with depression).I think because she knew that I also had experienced depression,she might expect me to give him some effective advice.I was 22yrs old at that time,could not answer what I felt.'Yes,what our God want you is to accept Him. Off course He can heal you,but you have to surrender yourself to Him.'
      Irina,thank you for sharing your thought and experience sincerely.
      You and sisters always share precious mind.I also knew the bitterness of depression,but this seems to be good for me, because I can share the experience also with you.
      Love,sanae


      Delete