Freed to live through the death of another.

Category: Wedding

Christian Wedding Vows

It’s wedding season… which is great! I love thinking about weddings. Their whole point, after all, is to point to my Saviour and his love for his bride–and I like to think about that!

Since staying married is not about staying in love, but about reflecting the covenant-keeping love of Christ, the centrepiece and focal point of a Christian wedding is the vows.

What a couple views marriage as is reflected in what they promise to each other. As I’ve suggested before, I think Christian couples should at least endeavour to memorize their vows, so as to be able to speak them clearly, forthrightly, and meaningfully when the moment comes, looking their partner in the eyes as they speak.

Just for fun I thought I’d post the vows that Stacey and I spoke to each other in the presence of God, family, and friends on June 19, 2004, when we were wed. I keep a copy of mine posted with a wedding picture right beside my desk so that I can regularly reflect on the meaning of what I’ve promised.

Here are our vows.


I, Julian, take you, Stacey, to be my wife.
In the presence of God and these witnesses I pledge my love and devotion to you and to you alone for as long as God grants us both life.
I promise to be faithful, patient, kind, humble, and gentle; to serve you and to give myself up for you, as Christ has given himself up for his bride.
I will love you as my own body; endeavouring to lead you and help you grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus.
As God grants grace, I promise to make our home one where Christ is exalted and God is glorified in our love for each other and in our devotion to him, above and beyond all else. 


I, Stacey, take you, Julian, to be my husband; to share with you God’s will for our lives. As we journey through this life, with both its joys and hardships, I promise to love and be faithful to you.
I will obey, trust and encourage you, Julian, as long as we both shall live.
I promise to follow you as you follow God, believing all things and hoping all things.
I will pursue godliness in all areas of my own life, that together our lives and home may bring glory and honour to our Lord. 

Some Thoughts on How to Make a Wedding Glorifying to God

Several events have conspired of late to turn my mind to the topic at hand. The engagement of one of my best friends, along with my own one year anniversary, the beginning of “wedding season”, and the one upcoming anniversaries of several of my friends (along with the finishing off of the last of our wedding wine tonight at dinner) have all reminded me of what it is like to plan a wedding. Planning a wedding is tough, and there is no shortage of people out there wanting to tell you exactly how each minute detail should be arranged.

With all that in mind, I am writing for my good buddy recently engaged and anyone else who may be involved in weddings in any way in the near future. I am not writing to tell anyone how to do it, but rather, I am simply giving some humble offerings gleaned from experience and observation. Some of the things mentioned we did in our wedding; some things mentioned I wish we had done. Some of the things we did, we did well; others we should/could have done better. Nevertheless, here for starters, I think, is how to make a wedding glorifying to God:

Underlying principles to have in mind as you plan the service:

1. Remember that it is first and foremost a worship service. You are not celebrating something that has happened in your life, but the way that God has graciously and lovingly done something in your life. That perspective makes all the difference in the world. You are not the focus. How God is working and has worked in your lives is the focus.

2. Remember that the true wedding to be celebrated is not your own. Your wedding is an image and representation of the true eternal relationship between Christ and his Bride (the Church). The celebration of your marriage, then, should function as the rest of the marriage should: By acting as a big mirror, pointing others to the goodness of Christ and all that he has done.

3. The gospel must be preached to the unchurched. There are many people present at any wedding who have never and will never set foot in a church outside of this and other weddings and perhaps funerals. Use this opportunity. Make the gospel message free from “Christianese” and easily comprehensible to all.

With those principles in mind (in no particular order):

– Don’t allow any distractions during the ceremony–it is sacred. Plan ahead and make it clear to the guests what should be done with children.

– Memorize your vows to the best of your ability and proclaim them loudly and clearly, while making eye contact; Say it like you mean it!

– Absolutely soak the whole day in Christian music o When you sing, sing like you mean it! Redeem the time for the gospel; whenever music is being played (ie. solos/special music, dinner music, etc.) have it gospel-oriented.

– Preach Christ and him crucified. Keep it biblical and simple.

– Reflect a high view of Christian marriage in the declaration of intent, statement of purpose, giving away of the bride, vows, preaching, etc. Everyone in the world these days has a low view of marriage. Don’t let them think for a second you feel the same as they do.

– Keep the joy to a sober bliss (ie. don’t be goofy). There are times and places (namely, the stag or the night before) for goofiness. Keep a reverance for the day.

– Do not refuse to cry–experience the emotions God has given you for all they are worth.

– Make sure the speeches are all planned and appropriate.

– Entrust the day to the Lord and then relax! o This requires much hard work and even more prayer beforehand.

– Have a godly MC!! Absolutely crucial. We were very blessed by and through ours. In a very real sense, he is the one who sets the mood and the atmosphere for the whole evening. He is (in a way) the “face” of your wedding to a lot of people.

– Suck all the joy you possibly can out of every moment! Take mental pictures and constantly be reminding yourself of what God is giving / has given you this day.


– And for goodness’ sake, have a little wine! (Obviously this calls for wisdom, but when possible, receive and enjoy with thanksgiving!!)

I am very interested in comments and additions. What else can we offer our brother to help him plan this wonderful day?

© 2022 Julian Freeman

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑