Father & Mother
by Cornelius Hanko
Courtship & Marriage
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1. Leaving Father and Mother
2. Seeking a Life Mate
4. Single Persons Who Do Not Marry
6. Wedding Plans
7. "And He Shall Cleave unto His Wife"
8. "And They Shall Be One Flesh"
Rev. Cornelius Hanko gives practical instruction and
pastoral wisdom on finding a godly marriage partner and maintaining that
marriage. Courtship is something that young people are interested in, but,
''a serious son of the church is not merely interested in finding a mate,
but realizes that he needs a companion and a helper to carry out his
calling in God's church'' (p. 6) insists the author. Young men and women
should not ''play the field'' for ''dating is not a frivolous game that
can be played without doing serious damage to some innocent victim'' (p.
9) warns Rev. Hanko.
The main point of courtship, writes Rev. Hanko, is to
get to know each other. This is often forgotten in the author's
experience. ''Listen'', he warns, ''There are many young people who plunge
into marriage only to realize that they have never learned to know each
other'' (p. 11). Conventional dating doesn't always lead to a
knowledge of the other person:
''You cannot attain that by going out for a ride,
spending long hours under the moonlight ... watching movies ... whispering
sweet nothings in each other's ears, or trying to show with your actions
how much you care. If you want to know each other you must discuss
subjects of common interest. It is a bad sign, if you cannot find plenty
of subjects that you enjoy talking about together. If you have no common
interests before you are married, do you expect to find them afterward?''
(p. 13) asks the author.
There is a grave danger that young people will date and
ultimately marry an unbeliever or somebody spiritually incompatible. ''You
must be of the same doctrinal and religious convictions. That is simply a
must. If you contemplate being joined at some future date in the permanent
bond of marriage, you must be of one heart, one mind, when it comes to
your spiritual life'' (p. 13) warns the author.
highly recommended for parents who want to teach their children about the
importance of marriage, for young people contemplating marriage or
courtship, and for engaged couples.
"Much common sense and biblical wisdom is to be found
in this little book ... How careful young people must be to seek the
guidance or God with regard to a spouse! In a day when sex before marriage
is regarded as the norm it is good to have the teaching of the Bible on
moral purity clearly spelled out. The emphasis that is laid on the
interest of the whole congregation in a member’s marriage is also
wholesome. It is a common saying that 'love is blind' but Hanko advises to
enter marriage with both eyes open" (Free Church Witness).