Close Friends of the Opposite Sex

Discussion in 'Parents & Couples' started by Chad, Nov 19, 2009.

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  1. Chad

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    Should a married person have a close friend of the opposite sex?

    The Bible does not forbid close friendships between men and women. As Christians, however, there are some principles that we would be wise to heed. Married people especially need to be wary of friendships with members of the opposite sex because temptations are more likely to arise when there are marital problems. If a man's best friend is a woman who is not his wife, he is likely to share these problems with her, which can lead to an unhealthy emotional attachment.

    Most married men (or women) who have affairs purposely go out to find a romantic interest outside of their marriage. So many people say, "I didn't mean for it to happen; it just happened." These things "just happen" when we put ourselves in situations that are difficult to control. When a man has a wife who is not necessarily very attentive to his needs, he could easily feel that he has fallen in love with another woman who does give him this attention he craves.

    Even a marriage that is built on a foundation of faith in Christ and has relatively few problems is not immune to extra-marital temptations. This is why the Bible does not tell us to stick around and try to fight temptation, but to flee from it like we do from all "youthful lusts" (2 Timothy 2:22). Trying to fight temptation seems to become especially difficult when it comes to matters of the heart or the lusts of the flesh. First Corinthians 6:18 tells us that we need to run away from sexual sin, because it is much easier to run away from temptation than to stay and fight it.

    Married men and women should carefully avoid putting themselves in compromising situations when it comes to the opposite sex. If they are seen together in public, it will give the wrong impression. If they are alone on the phone or in person, they will subject themselves to the temptation of an emotional or physical affair. The Bible tells us that everything we do should be for the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31), so the wise thing would be to stick to visiting as couples or "double dating" with other married couples, as opposed to risking the complications associated with close friendships with the opposite sex.

    source: gotquestions.org
     
  2. MelechYisrael

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    Wise counsel.

    Even those who are not looking for an external relationship, will find it. The heart is deceitful and Satan is no fool.
     
  3. Boanerges

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    More marriages are broken up by "best friends" than most other causes.
    Personally, I do not see myself wanting to be in this type of situation and I agree with Chad's post 100%, flee temptation. Avoid even the appearance of evil.
     
  4. myredeemer

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    Run like you've never run before..

    Well Chad, a terrific posting you put up indeed. Personally, I don't bother maintaining relationships myself - with those of the other gender ? why ? well before I got married I enjoyed a vast variety of relationships with members of the opposite sex. While it's healthy, brings immense perspective - biblically - I'm weak. I can't and I won't and the worst is to bear the pain of caving in - especially knowing the power and influence I can have on a woman (not being boastful but self-awareness is key). I'm happily married now and God has been merciful and gracious and has blessed me with a wonderful, kind and loving wife. I couldn't ask for more !
    I read somewhere that when you do feel like you wanna cave in - you keep saying in your mind and heart that this person is like a sister to me and I therefore need to carry myself and relate accordingly. This helps !

    best,

    matt.
     
  5. seekingchrist

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    Very true, am sure many ppl will find it helpful
     
  6. aristotle

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    here i go sticking my two cents worth in here:D

    let me first say that i absolutely agree with being wise in all things and, most importantly, walking holy in all things. may we bring honor and blessing to He Who is above all things! Amen!

    that said, however, i am one of those whose best friend is indeed one of the opposite gender. she is an awesome sister in the Lord and walks with all integrity before Him. and, yes, i am married AND she and my wife get along quite nicely:) through my life most of my closest friends have been women. i'm not sure i can explain this well enough but, frankly, i find they help me to stay connected. i am very heavily introverted and struggle with emotional connections. so for me it has been necessary to a degree to maintain HOLY feminine connections. otherwise i would withdraw into severe isolation. this particular sister and friend has tremendously helped me remember that people actually do have emotions and maybe i ought to consider them.

    now i know that nobody is telling me that i shouldn't have any female friends and i'm not drawing that conclusion. what i am saying is that it is very do-able if kept withing the confines of GODLY character. i would never dishonor nor demean this lady in so base a manner as to try and seduce her. her love and trust mean far more to me than any momentary orgasm, to be blunt. i surely hope to retain her fellowship for the rest of my natural life.

    so don't be afraid of opposite gendered friendships. be wise in them. be holy in them. treat them as precious treasures from the Father. i testify to you that they are and i do not regret the fact that my best friend (outside my wife) is a woman. just a little something to think about.
     
  7. Giggles4God

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    It is wise to step carefully when having relationships of the opposite sex...not counting family.

    Personally, my husband is my best friend. If I had a male friend, I would have my husband come with me and I would let my husband know everything we talked about...because my male friend would have to know that was the way my relationship with my husband is.

    When a friend knows you tell your spouse everything and then they want you not to, that is a red flag.

    I don't really have any male friends...not really. That probably has to do with the abuses I suffered at the hands of men...male family members.

    so yeah...
     
  8. shipwrecksoul

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    Wise counsel should be taken to heart. Especially to all the unmarried and married people reading this thread. On the wise counsel written above and on what I am going to write..
    For us two Mr. and Mrs. shipwrecksoul we know there are invisible lines not to cross. Why because sin lieth at the door. Another words I have no real close woman friends other than my wife. And she has no real close men friends other than me :). This constitutes a pledge for all others to see. A union thats to be admired and copied. An example how Jesus Christ is to the church and the church to Jesus Christ. A relationship thats not open for others because of the intimacy of our pledge one to another before God. An example that the devil hates because it shows faithfulness of the husband to the wife and the wife to the husband. A union that the children can have security because of the faithfulness which shows stability.
    No one in their right mind wants a broken marriage but to practice against wise counsel above the door is left open for abuse and temptation to happen.
    I hope I wrote this right.:shock:
     
  9. Ama

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    Yes, God knows us and he wants us to flee from tempetation. I have some Christian friends including the opposite sex friend, my husband knows them as well as I know them, and his family knows me as well as he knows me, we are like two family friends, we care each other, we cooperate with each other in business, it's a nice healthy relationship, the most important is we share the love of God together.
     
  10. Ed

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    aristotle, you have explained how you feel, but how does your wife really feel? Your wife should be your closest friend and your only confident besides God.

    If you can't confide in your wife, but you can confide in your best female friend then......?
     
  11. Ed

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    I fell into a friendship with a married woman about six years ago. Her husband was very supportive, and him and I got along well together. But there was always something inside of me that told me it was wrong.

    Although she also pursued our friendship, it eventually came down to it being all about her family. Even more so after her first granddaughter was born. Eventually she started seeing nothing more as an extension of the family...willing and able to be used as a way to get a ride, and housekeep everytime she felt like traveling to see her daughter.

    IF a man or woman has to, or does, look outside of their marraige for friendship then that is a warning sign. As Chad quoted the Bible..RUN from such a woman, lest you become emotionally and spiritually tangled.
     
  12. shipwrecksoul

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    #12 shipwrecksoul, Dec 5, 2009
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2009
    I Do Untill Death Does Us Part

    In scripture does anyone know if God has ordained another helpmate woman for man other than the wife he has as a helpmate, just wondering if there was?
    Because as far as I know the man working with the wife through problems, even in relational problems of indifference or communication, helps build the marriage once the problem is solved through Christ, an example of Christ to his church, laying down one’s life. Any close outlet of another woman outside the home, as what I know, closes the door of more blessing for the both the man and the wife in front of God. The other way, having an outlet emotionally outside the home, leaves the wife’s emotions as not having been met by the husband, and the husband getting emotional input from others out of noncommittal for the pledge that he should have with his wife with her being the helpmate.
    I hope this makes sense. Im not saying you can’t have woman friends but I am saying closer woman friends other than the closeness of ones wife or the same as should be addressed and considered very carefully. Remember we live in a fallen world with Christ’s help. And God has certain lines drawn in the sand that we should take as our guidelines.
    I treasure all the responses here from everyone who posted. May God bless everyone who wants his will for their marriage to be an example of Jesus Christ’s love to the church.
     
  13. Ed

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    shipwrecksoul there are no scripture that backs up the idea that God has ordained a helpmate for a husband or wife other than their spouses. You make some very good points in your post.
     
  14. aristotle

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    dear bro. ed,

    i don't appreciate being both misquoted and misrepresented. i'm not sure how you missed it but if you will take your time this time and re-read my post you will find that i said best friend outside my wife. perhaps my logic fails me but i do believe that puts my wife as actually my #1 confidant and friend.

    secondly, i think i made it clear in my post that my wife was aware of the friendship and in fact gets along very nicely with her. what is about that statement that makes you think that my wife is ignorant of the friendship?

    thirdly, i made it abundantly clear throughout my post that relationships with the opposite sex must be maintained in GODLY character. is it really necessary to define for you what GODLY means?

    fourthly, i absolutely will not subscribe to the general theme that friendships with the opposite sex must somehow be always at arms length. perhaps, ed, you struggle with immoral thoughts but there are those of us who do not have your problem so please do not saddle me with what might be your issues. read that again so you understand i said 'perhaps' and 'might'. if you wish to dismiss half the population and basically make them nothing more than acquaintances then i say fine for you. eat vegetables if you wish but i choose meat!

    lastly, as long as our friendship remains within the confines of GODLY and HOLY character then it is beyond your right to place any judgment upon it whatsoever. in point of fact there is no scripture anywhere that declares that men and women are forbidden to have friendships nor can you produce any. my point in this thread is that it is perfectly possible to have a great friendship with someone of the opposite sex as long as you conduct yourselves in a righteous and holy manner. i have not read one single post on this thread to the contrary that doesn't sound like fear to me. trouble is, boys, i ain't afraid because i have a holy discipline on myself and so does my friend. so don't go around saddling my friendship with your fears, troubles, and anecdotal experiences. perhaps you need to learn to walk in a higher discipline. end of story, though, for this post is simply don't misquote nor misrepresent me. i will fight back! :secret:
     
  15. shipwrecksoul

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    aristotle please help me to understand who is your helpmate?
     
  16. Ed

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    :coocoo: Sorry aristotle, I repent...please forgive me :cry-animated::cry-animated::cry-animated:
     
  17. aristotle

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    sir, i refuse your premise! i think you very well know the difference between friend and helpmate. i also think that you know well the difference between friendship and marriage. however, just so you can feel somewhat satisfied i will answer your question.

    i am a married man. my wife is my helpmate. no one else. BUT my closest friend outside my wife, who is my very best friend, is a woman. she is not my helpmate (that would be my wife) but she is my friend which is not synonymous with mistress. perhaps that helps you with my situation and helps clear up certain definitions which some seem to have troubles with.

    it is amazing to me that most seem to think that the only measure of a relationship between the sexes must be only in the course of finding a spouse! do you really think that a woman's only usefulness to a man, not counting biological mother or sister, is to be his wife? do you mean to say that there is no way that you can have a friendship with a woman except to court her? that every other woman, particularly those who are people of the Way, ceases to have anything at all to offer by measure of encouragement or trust in the Lord? are you really so weak in your walk or just that afraid?

    in all the posts on this thread to answer the question originally posited, not one single person has offered the first scripture to support their point of separation. even chad agrees with me that such thing is not explicitly forbidden in scripture. that the main thing is to walk in a HOLY manner. the apostle paul said that if i would fulfill the law of love then i would not sin against the brethren.

    how sad it is for any christian woman to think that the only way a christian brother would have any interest in her is to date her. we are told to love one another as Christ loved us (which is of course a HOLY love). come on guys, the sisters are a part of the brethren. they are a part of the one body of whom Christ is the Head. how about we treat them as such? how about we not judge a friendship between sexes as somehow wrong unless they actually do something wrong? how about we actually give them the benefit of the doubt until they give us reason not to? my friend is a wonderful lady of God and walks circumspect before Him. her character and walk are filled with integrity and our conduct towards one another is careful appropriateness. our conversations are held openly not secretly. we don't have anything to hide. why should we since we aren't doing anything wrong?

    end point here: listen, if you don't want to have friendships with the opposite sex beyond your spouse, i'm fine with that. if you don't feel that you can honor God properly under such situations then don't! but i forbid you to make what is a choice for you to become law to me. you can not tell me what should be a sabbath for me, a diet for me, a holy day for me, and you will not decide my friends for me. God allows me those choices. And as long as i walk in that relationship as my Lord walks then i am guilty of no sin, no transgression.

    Rom 12:10 In love of the brethren be tenderly affectioned one to another; in honor preferring one another;
    Rom 13:10 Love worketh no ill to his neighbor: love therefore is the fulfilment of the law.
    Php 2:1 If there is therefore any exhortation in Christ, if any consolation of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any tender mercies and compassions,
    Php 2:2 make full my joy, that ye be of the same mind, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind;
    Php 2:3 doing nothing through faction or through vainglory, but in lowliness of mind each counting other better than himself;
    Php 2:4 not looking each of you to his own things, but each of you also to the things of others.
    Php 2:5 Have this mind in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
    1Pe 2:15 For so is the will of God, that by well-doing ye should put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:
    1Pe 2:16 as free, and not using your freedom for a cloak of wickedness, but as bondservants of God.
    1Pe 2:17 Honor all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.

    forgive my bluntness, please love you all!
     
  18. Chad

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    How is that Christ-like?

    There is no fighting allowed in this forums, and please don't misunderstand the forum rules about that.
     
  19. shipwrecksoul

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    #19 shipwrecksoul, Dec 7, 2009
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2009
    Aristotle, No one here as far as I can see is judging you or condemning you. If that is what you think I am doing I apologize, really. But I thought this was to be a chat that was for opened communication not hostility just because people share what God has shown them to be true in their lives. If you have read what I stated without taking it personally you would have seen I said I see no problem with a married man having women friends. So when I asked you who is your helpmate it was only seeing what your focus is on the word helpmate. I am not your God to judge you, you have to allow your own conscious that liberty in seeking him. Please that was a positive sentence I had just written not a negative sentence. We all have to do this. Its called our conscious before God. I say this not out of saying you dont know it but that you can walk besides me in my relating to you things as well.

    When I got married, I had more friends who were girls and my wife had had more friends who were guys. What we shared and talked and prayed about was how to balance our responses to these past relationships out. Even though there were never any physical part to any of these relationships, of course there were emotional, mental psychological and spiritual connections; and then we had to learn how to transfer these connections to each other. Because of our willingness to learn to obey God in this area for God and for each other, the girls that had been in my life were now my wifes friends and the guys who had been in my wife's life were now my friends. I hug the guys and my wife hugs the girls. This does not mean we worked out every other area of our life, financial, In-laws etc. I hope this last sentence brightens your day.
     
  20. MelechYisrael

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    Scripture is good. Scripture is always good. But sometimes in this relationship we have we our God, spiritual common sense becomes a factor. An understanding of how He thinks; of how He "feels" about certain issues.

    Scripture gives us the basis of Who God is. What God is. His character and His personality. What he stands for; acceptable behaviour and what is not.

    I myself, cannot understand how a married man would have a woman for a best friend. To me, it's simply leaving the door wide open for Satan to come in. Maybe not now. Maybe not in a few years. Maybe not even with the woman who is the current best friend. But scripture also tells us that the heart of a man is deceitful.

    We are told to guard our hearts and our minds - we are told to be wise in Him; scripture tells us that Satan seeks to kill and destroy - scripture tells us that he goes about like a roaring lion - looking for opportunities to drag us down and back into sin. Why would anyone willingly offer him that chance? Why would any Christian willingly invite him in?

    A married man's disallowance of a female best friend other than his wife is not a choice made in fear...rather a decision based on righteousness and wisdom.

    We are established in righteousness - we should walk and live in that righteousness.

    Simply my thoughts:teeth:
     

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