Question:

I have been in a relationship for 10 months, planning on marriage soon. My boyfriend and I are saved. We are from churches which are different from each other. My parents do not like him for reasons I see as critical and a bit judgmental. I am 25 and my boyfriend is 36. Many things about my boyfriend's past has been circulated, which has hurt him very much. I fully know I love him and know he is a godly man. I am not sure which road to take, a lot of resentment and assumptions have been made. My boyfriend does not agree fully with my parents in some things and they take that as disrespect. I have tried to talk to my parents about how much their negativity has effected our relationship. My mom has told me I am in rebellion against God and am being defiant if I stay with my boyfriend. I have been praying, things are getting a bit out a control. A huge spiritual battle is going on right now. I would appreciate any input, biblically sound of course. How much input should a parent have in a serious relationship? Your web site is very good! I found it searching for an unbiased opinion about this situation.

Answer:

I cannot give much input as you have told me nothing. I can say that marriages where the husband and wife are of different religious beliefs generally do not work well. They often manage in the early days by each going their own ways in regard to worship, but this breaks down when children come into the picture. There are arguments about in whose religion the children should be raised. The children from these environments tend to reject all religion as they see their own parents not agreeing.

It is not disrespectful to disagree with someone concerning a religious belief. There is only one faith (Ephesians 4:4-6). The question is whether a person is following that faith. Parents don't control the faith, God does. Going against what God has taught is disrespectful of God (not a particular set of parents).

Since I do not know you, your boyfriend, or your parents, I cannot make a determination as to whether your parents dislike of your boyfriend is justified or not. Your parents have more experience than you do, simply because they have lived longer. Their opinions should be carefully weighed and compared to what God has said in His Bible. Ultimately, you have to make your own decisions and then accept the consequences of those decisions. You cannot blame anyone else for your choices. "The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself" (Ezekiel 18:20). Your parents will also make their own choices. You are not responsible for the choices they make -- some you will like and others you won't. But they have to live with the consequences of their own choices.