Written by: Jennifer Dennis
Article source: Supplied

81% of the South African population is Christian, government statistics reveal, making Christian wedding ceremonies the norm here. For Christians, marriage symbolises the lifelong love and commitment between two people and God. By incorporating Christian traditions into your wedding ceremony, you can better and more meaningfully celebrate your love and faith.

Choosing rings
Exchanging rings serves as a symbolic gesture of the promises made between the couple and God. It recognises marriage as a lifelong commitment, full of joys and difficulties, which require asking God for support. The type of wedding rings chosen also carries important symbolism, and they needn’t be extravagant to be meaningful (several Bible verses even condemn showy jewellery as a sign of vanity and materialism). For example, unembellished silver or gold bands can help reinforce the spiritual nature of your union. You could also opt for significant Christian designs, such as having a crown of thorns inscribed on the ring. However, not everyone wants a metal ring. If you or your partner spend a lot of time working with your hands, metal rings can even be a safety hazard. In this case, silicone rings are a hypoallergenic, comfortable, practical, and convenient alternative to metal rings. Silicone rings let you enjoy the symbolism of the wedding ring, while being scratch, chip, and damage-resistant. 

The bride’s entrance
The bride’s entrance is the same in most weddings: she walks down the aisle to meet the groom, who, along with the groomsmen, is already waiting for her at the altar. However, even just including this simple yet age old tradition in your ceremony can add Christian flair. Although it may not be commonly realised, this widespread tradition was probably formed to recognise a Biblical narrative regarding marriage. In Ephesians 5:23-32, the apostle Paul encourages husbands to love their wives just as Christ loved the Church, and “present her to himself as… without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish.” This description accounts for why the bride is the one to walk down the aisle. She is being “presented” to her husband.

The core of three strands
The core of three strands is referenced in Ecclesiastes 4:12: “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” It’s a ritual that can be incorporated into your wedding in the same way that a sand pour or unity candle will symbolise you, your partner and God coming together as one. During the core of three strands ritual, the couple will typically braid together three separate ropes (one representing each member of the couple, and one representing God) while someone sings a song or recites a prayer. The finished braided ropes are then usually displayed in the couple’s home to remind you of the strength of your union.

Marriage is an important sacred step for all Christians. By incorporating Christian traditions into your ceremony, you can strengthen your commitment to each other as a couple, as well as your devotion to God.

Feature image: unsplash.com

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