Our Question Box

Dr. Leonard Greenway, pastor of the Riverside Christian Reformed Church of Grand Rapids, Michigan is in charge of Our Question Box. This department is for everyone. Questions from all ages are welcome. No signatures are required and no names will be published.

From a reader who gave me the choice of answering by mail or in THE OUTLOOK, and then left me without a choice because his letter bore no return address:

Question: In our Bible discussion the pastor said the marriage ceremony is not necessary, and even more, a justice of the peace is not necessary for a couple to be married. This is especially thought-provoking to me, since then common-law marriage would be O.K. What then makes a marriage?

Answer: I suggest you ask your pastor to give your Bible discussion group an outline of a marriage service without a ceremony, and then ask him whether he would be willing to have his children enter holy wedlock under such an arrangement.

From a reader in Wisconsin:

Question: In Matthew 24 Jesus tells His disciples about the signs that will precede His coming again wars, famines, earthquakes, persecutions, hatred, false prophets, the love of many waxing cold because iniquity shall abound. We can plainly see these signs fulfilled today. When we see these things Jesus tells us to lift up your heads, for our redemption draweth nigh. Does this mean that we must pray for these signs? If we do not pray for these signs, would that mean that we do not care to have Jesus return? I cant see that these signs are in harmony with God‘s command.

Answer: Following the pattern of the Model Prayer our Lord gave us, where we pray for the coming of God’s Kingdom, not for the signs of its coming, I should say that our Lord expects us to pray for His return, but not for the signs of His return.