Tuesday, March 03, 2009

What He Must Be, If He Wants to Marry My Daughter-excerpt 1

As promised yesterday, I will post a few excerpts from Voddie Baucham's new book, What He Must Be, over the course of this week. In the first chapter, entitled, "Mutligenerational Vision, Voddie describes the point and purpose of the book.
This book is built on a single, simple premise: I believe fathers have a God-given responsibility to see to it that their daughters marry well and that their sons become worthy husbands. As such, I believe it is necessary for fathers to model biblical manhood, teach biblical manhood, and hunt for biblical manhood on behalf of their daughters. Similarly, I believe fathers with sons have a responsibility to prepare their sons for marriage.

Several years ago, when Jasmine was much younger, a family friend went through a difficult divorce. The breakup did not come as a surprise. It was obvious that theirs was not a God-honoring, biblically functioning marriage, and the handwriting had been on the wall for quite some time.

As things began to work themselves out and the dust began to settle, we talked with our children about the pain and high cost of divorce. As we took advantage of this teachable moment, Jasmine said something that I'll never forget. She looked at me, shook her head, and said, "Daddy, I’m glad I’ve got you to pick my husband." She was dead serious. She had just witnessed the consequences that often accompany a decision to marry an unworthy man, and although she wasn't old enough to understand it all, she did understand that her father was there to protect her.

I have no intention of picking Jasmine's husband for her. We do not advocate arranged marriages. Nor was that my daughter's understanding of the process. She was merely acknowledging what she had been taught all her life--the fact that her father intends to play an active role in the process of finding and evaluating potential suitors (27-28).
Baucham is not some moralistic idealist. In fact, one of the attractions about this book is its repeated appeals to the gospel. He is not offering some kind of formula that will insure a perfect marriage or a life of wedded bliss. Rather, he is calling for parents and young adults to wake up to the miserable failure of our culture's common approach to marriage.
We must find a better way. We must commit ourselves to preparing our children to find suitable mates without relying on the pagan, relativistic mythology that dominates our day. Divorce courts are filled with people who "followed their hearts" and married Mr. or Mrs. Right. There has to be a better way. This is not to say there is a sure-fire guarantee against failure. Nothing could be further Vom the truth. However, I can say for certain that continuing down our current path will not lead to more Godhonoring covenant marriages (49).
Parents must raise their children in ways that do not leave them on their own in the search for a life's mate. Voddie's book provides tools for those who want to pursue this course of parental responsibility.


Tom Bryant said...

Sounds like a terrific book. Looking forward to reading it and passing it on to the parents of our church.

refbaptdude said...


When considering Baptist ecclesiology do you not see the conflict and danger of Voddie Baucham defining “the church as a family of families”?


Jim Pemberton said...

I wonder that any have asked why it is traditional for the father to give away the bride at the wedding where it has been largely forgotten that there was a day when the bride's father played a significant role in filtering suitable suitors.

I asked my father-in-law for my wife's hand in marriage. I don't know many husbands who have.

Tom said...


I mean no disrespect but your question strikes me as odd here. What does it have to do with this post? I will be glad to discuss ecclesiology with you in an appropriate venue at an appropriate time. The comment thread on this post is neither.

Thanks for understanding.

Julius Mickel said...

REFBAPTDUDE or anyone lookng for clarity: not knowing if it'll do any good, please come back after reading this link to offer your apologies concerning Voddie;
Here is a recent post where Voddie defines his own words:
grace and peace