What does it mean to be unequally yoked?
“Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness?” 2 Corinthians 6:14
Imagine two oxen yoked together. One larger, more mature, accustomed to the yoke after many years of service in it; the other, younger, new to the yoke with little experience. How well do these two very different oxen work together? Does the young ox yield to the leading of the experienced ox or does it fight the yoke, determined to have its own way?
If we are yoked with the world, then we cannot be yoked up with Christ. Ellen White writes, “All combinations with unbelievers that bind as a yoke must be broken.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 8, 108. These words apply to any association with an unbeliever that gives them a prevailing influence over us.
“When we accepted Christ as our Redeemer, we accepted the condition of becoming laborers together with God. We made a covenant with Him to be wholly for the Lord. … Every follower of Christ stands pledged to dedicate all his powers, of mind and soul and body, to Him who has paid the ransom money for our soul.
“In your connection with worldly societies, are you keeping your covenant with God? …
“Are you serving, honoring, and magnifying God, or are you dishonoring Him and sinning against Him? Are you gathering with Christ or scattering abroad?” Evangelism, 618
If we are yoked with Christ, He will guide and teach us what we need to know to labor with Him. Our experience may be small and we may have much to learn. For our part, we may be weaker, but if we do our best and follow His lead, His strength will augment our weakness until we are able to follow Him wholly and completely.
“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28, 29