10 Behaviors for Christian Women to Avoid in a Potential Spouse: part 3 of 10

Note: The following post was written by my friend Laura. On this blog, I have often offered men suggestions about what to ask prospective mates. Laura’s article looks at the problem from the other side, offering women suggestions about what to look out for in a husband candidate. I’ll be posting one per day for the next 10 days.


Apart from the decision to follow Christ, marriage is the biggest decision you will ever make. It is a lifelong commitment that will impact every area of your life for as long as you both shall live. As Jesus’ disciples realized and the apostle Paul taught explicitly, for many people it is better not to marry at all (1 Corinthians 7). But for those who do marry, it must not be entered into lightly. Here are ten behaviors to avoid in men when considering committing for life.

3. Unwillingness to make enemies. One of the most concerning characteristics I see in many men today is an unwillingness to stand up for what is right if it means getting pushback, losing the approval of others, or making enemies. But women are required to respect their husbands, and a woman cannot respect a people-pleasing pansy who kowtows to the masses and concerns himself with the opinions of the secular culture. Such a man has not yet reached maturity. He is not ready to be a husband or a father. In fact, Paul says he is not even a servant of Christ (Galatians 1:10; see also 1 Corinthians 4:1-4). And when faced with the choice between protecting his own reputation or standing up for truth and honor and goodness, he will almost certainly protect himself and lose your respect very quickly. It is absolutely critical to find a man who is willing to make enemies over matters of conviction and truth, and to leave behind the people-pleasers who need the approval of men (and women).

One of my favorite portrayals from classical literature of a man who is not afraid to make enemies is Cyrano de Bergerac. In the 1897 play by Edmond Rostand, Cyrano is an outstanding duelist, a gifted poet, and a nobleman serving as a soldier in the French army. His character is brash and strong-willed, and he is not afraid to make enemies in his quest for excellence. He speaks, writes, and fights with conviction, refusing to be influenced by the culture around him, even at the expense of fame and fortune.

At one point in the story, Cyrano is offered the opportunity to have one of his plays performed on stage if only he will allow Cardinal Richelieu to change some of it. In perhaps his most famous speech, Cyrano refuses, declaring to his friend,

And what would you have me do?

Seek for the patronage of some great man,

And like a creeping vine on a tall tree

Crawl upward, where I cannot stand alone?

No thank you! Dedicate, as others do,

Poems to pawnbrokers? Be a buffoon

In the vile hope of teasing out a smile

On some cold face? No thank you!”

Instead, Cyrano will remain free…

To sing, to laugh, to dream,

To walk in my own way and be alone,

Free, with an eye to see things as they are,

A voice that means manhood- to cock my hat

Where I choose- At a word, a Yes, a No,

To fight- or write. To travel any road

Under the sun, under the stars, nor doubt

If fame or fortune lie beyond the bourne-

ever to make a line I have not heard

In my own heart; yet, with all modesty

To say: “My soul, be satisfied with flowers,

With fruit, with weeds even; but gather them

In the one garden you may call your own.”

Cyrano knows that by refusing to compromise in order to please the crowds—to make friends everywhere “as a dog makes friends”—he may never be applauded or even accepted by men, but he will maintain his integrity, even if he must go it alone.

In contrast to Cyrano, King Saul of Israel was a man who longed for the approval and praise of others. Ultimately, Saul was removed from leadership when he failed to follow God’s instructions to destroy all of the Amalekites and their livestock because he was more afraid of making human enemies than he was of disobeying God. The Lord had ordered Saul, “Now go and strike Amalek and utterly destroy all that he has, and do not spare him; but put to death both man and woman, child and infant, ox and sheep, camel and donkey.” (1 Samuel 15:3) But Saul spared Agag, the king of the Amalekites, as well as the best of the sheep, oxen, lambs, and other livestock.

When confronted by Samuel, Saul at first insisted that he had fully obeyed the Lord. But Samuel heard the bleating of the sheep. Saul then tried giving excuses for his actions, but eventually he was forced to acknowledge his disobedience, saying: “I have sinned; I have indeed transgressed the command of the Lord and your words, because I feared the people and listened to their voice.” (1 Samuel 15:24).

Saul was the most powerful and influential man in all of Israel. He had a tremendous opportunity to lead the people closer to God, but he threw it all away because he “feared the people and listened to their voice” rather than accepting disapproval from others.

In the book of Galatians 1, the apostle Paul rebukes those who have perverted the gospel by accepting a distortion of the truth. He says, “But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.” And then he adds, “For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.”

In 1 Corinthians 4, Paul again contrasts being a trustworthy steward with being a people-pleaser when he writes, “This is how one should regard us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found faithful. But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by any human court. In fact, I do not even judge myself. For I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not thereby acquitted. It is the Lord who judges me.” 

In other words, Paul didn’t care what others thought of him; in fact, he didn’t even care what he thought of himself. He only cared what the Lord thought of him, and so must any man who is worthy of the love and submission of a Christian woman.

15 thoughts on “10 Behaviors for Christian Women to Avoid in a Potential Spouse: part 3 of 10”

  1. “woman cannot respect a people-pleasing pansy”

    Amen – now you are speaking my language!

    We are a culture of soyboys seeking safe places.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I did my Old Testament Historical book Exegesis paper on 1Samuel 15 (Obedience is Better Than Sacrifice).

    Amalek is the special enemy of Israel — a traditional and persistent enemy who also allied with other enemies of Israel. Interestingly, Haman, mentioned in the book of Esther, is mentioned as an Agagite — and one reasonable theory is that Agagite refers to this particular king of Amalek (who escaped). And Haman was the equivalent of Hitler in his day — Haman wanted to exterminate the Jews.

    Meaning, Saul’s disobedience had REAL long-term consequences for Israelites.

    Saul was everything one would humanly want in a king: tall, handsome, charismatic — kind of like the JFK of his day.

    However, he was fatally flawed — he did not want to obey God when it counted and decided to do this his way.

    Moreover, the language as he meets Samuel (as you pointed out, he was afraid of people — but also his words are hauntingly similar to the Pharaoh’s as well as in structure) — he is actually not repentant of his sins.

    So not only is your paragraph below true:
    Saul was the most powerful and influential man in all of Israel. He had a tremendous opportunity to lead the people closer to God, but he threw it all away because he “feared the people and listened to their voice” rather than accepting disapproval from others.

    It is also the case that 1) Saul wanted to “believe and follow God” on his own terms rather than on God’s terms and 2) when confronted with his sin, Saul rationalized and still expressed his disobedience.

    One takeaway for dating (as well as in general) is to be discerning and to discern whether they are truly following God — or only when it’s convenient, on their own terms rather than on God’s terms — and also how people react when confronted with their sin.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I was (graduated more than a decade and a half ago), and Gordon-Conwell — mostly South Hamilton.

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  3. Making enemies is shaking your death rattle, in the workplace at least.
    I’ve encountered several enemies in my 63 years of life who hated me simply because I breathed the same air as them. And an enemy today can easily be triggered and take your life, destroy your property, destroy your livelihood, destroy your family, destroy your business, and on and on.
    Low impulse control, lack of restraint, and no fear of consequences exacerbates this madness and depravity.
    While I’ll stand my ground (especially when it comes to Wintery Knight’s evangelical theological worldview) on core moral principles, one has to “go along to get along” in the workplace when it comes to toxicity and sloth. It’s not being a wimp or soy boy, it’s about survival and staying employed. Yeah, speaking up when something is clearly egregious (unethical practices, unsafe conditions) is one thing, but saying something to/or about a member of the woke (especially females and minorities) will land you instantly out the door.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, nobody is saying you have to fall on your sword in every battle or in the workplace. But, you should be witnessing for the Lord in your private life – and that will make enemies of family and friends at the least.

      And, of course, if you are in healthcare and told to assist in an abortion or lose your job, it should be clear that you can’t compromise on something like that. And, yes, that has happened.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Point taken on the scenarios described. But you can win the battle, and then lose the war. Going through life being polemic (e.g. like many evangelicals), combative, and having a chip on your shoulder like a telephone pole is a losing proposition. In these times, having employment is almost a privilege and luxury. You get more flies with honey than you do with vinegar. Unless its a truly moral/ethical issue (abortion, same sex marriage, fraudulent business practices, etc.) why throw gas on the fire. Watch one’s back and trust your gut.

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        1. Well, I am retired, so I don’t have to worry much about that.

          As for the “more flies with honey” philosophy, that is true, but they are mostly dead flies. Moralistic therapeutic deism (the ultimate “virtue” is being nice to others) is what is sending millions of church-goers to Hell.

          If Jesus had followed that philosophy, He never would have been crucified. In this culture, we better have enemies somewhere, because if not, then it means we are hiding our lamps under a bowl and not representing Christ. The closer we follow Him, the more enemies we collect. No enemies at all means we are not on the Narrow Way and not following Him.

          That does not mean we have to go out of our way to make enemies and be a jerk, but just speak up winsomely against child sacrificers and the Alphabet Mafia, and we will get plenty of enemies, LOL.

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        2. I think most of the people who complain about Red Pill and Black Pill men can’t really articulate the social changes that cause men to become interested in those ideas. People who are critical of Red Pill for example seem to me to be just anti-male. I.e. – they don’t know about the changes brought about in women and social institutions by feminism. They just like that men are suffering, and want them to keep marrying women as before, under the new rules.

          It’s a mischaracterization to call Red Pill “nihilistic”. There are plenty of Christian Red Pill men, included husbands. Not to mention Christian MGTOW men, who are often just chaste and wealthy. Like me.

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