Original Research

“Do not be yoked together with unbelievers”: New Testament perspectives on how Christians should live and act in a society of diverging convictions

P. M. Theron, G. A. Lotter
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 42, No 2 | a268 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v42i2.268 | © 2008 P. M. Theron, G. A. Lotter | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 27 July 2008 | Published: 27 July 2008

About the author(s)

P. M. Theron, School of Ecclesiastical Sciences, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa
G. A. Lotter, School of Ecclesiastical Sciences, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa

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The exhortation found in 2 Corinthians 6:14 “not to be yoked together with unbelievers” has been interpreted and applied differently by Christians. Some Christians try to hide from the realities of everyday life in a kind of escapism and religious isolation, while others compromise by trying to accommodate the societies’ demands and current trends in all kinds of worldly religious practices. These extreme positions cause Christians to be without any influence in the world. The primary aim of the article is to show how believers in New Testament times handled the situation when they were yoked together with un- believers. In order to propose Scriptural guidelines for contem- porary believers, the focus will be on the example of the apostles while the teaching of Paul to the slaves and of Peter to the aliens in this world will also be discussed. Some other New Testament perspectives are touched upon, inter alia the kind of authority to be obeyed and teaching on the responsibilities and attitude of believers. After the discussion of each part, pointers will be suggested. In conclusion, guidelines towards a Christian lifestyle within a secular context will be proposed.


Basis-Theoretical Guidelines; Responsibilities Believers; Secular Context; Yoked 2 Corinthians 6:14


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