Recently My wife and I got an opportunity to take a couple through a Christian pre-marriage counseling. We knew as pastors we needed to be equipped with the right question to ask once we started the session.
We had gone through premarital counseling when we were preparing for our marriage, however, at this point, we had not yet taken someone through the program. So we decided to do some research online and come up with these 78 Premarital Counseling Questions For Pastors to ask in their session.
First, we found the process to be so refreshing and inspiring just going through Bible verses, reading pre-marriage books, and going through several blogs online. We used the opportunity not just to equip ourselves for ministry but also for our own marriage. We are aware that as Christian premarital counselors, our goal is not just to advise but also to model in our own marriage.
After several days and many hours of research, we compiled this list as a resource for pastors who are running a premarital counseling program in their church.
Premarital Counseling Questions For Pastors
Christian marriage counseling questions should bring hope and point the participant to christ by revealing what God’s design for marriage is. If we honestly equip people with the right information they have a better chance of saving their marriages.
As Counselors, we need to do our very best in preparing the couple for a better marriage. These questions will give you an opportunity to prepare better for impact.
These are questions that help you know the couple and understand their personal history and their relationship background.
- Why do you want to get married, what’s the purpose?
- How did you meet?
- What attracted you to your partner?
- Had you been in a relationship before?
- Why did you leave the other relationship?
- What lessons did you learn that is helping you now?
- How did you know that this is it for you?
- What makes your partner special?
- Would you wish you met earlier? If yes why and if no why not?
- Do you understand each other’s personalities?
- What boundaries have you put in place?
These are questions that help you understand where the individual is coming from. We said in our previous post on premarital counseling questions that background and family history forms a lot of our worldviews.
As you take the couple through this question let them understand that their background will help their partner understand better how to handle them in marriage. Some people have been raised in broken or abusive families and they might be getting into marriage with wounds and scars.
- What’s your best memory about family?
- Describe your family using [ L- who do you say is the leader, Q- who do you say was the quieter- LL-Who was the loudest-]
- What have you learned from observing your own parents?
- Do you consider your family a perfect family?
- Did you grow up alone or with siblings?
- Are there things you hate about your part home experience?
- What triggers those bad memories now?
- How can your spouse help you navigate those dark moments?
- Is there past experience that you might still be struggling with?
- How is your relationship with your family members?
Being on the same page as far as faith and religion are concerned is a very important space and you as the pastor should be able to discuss this information with the couple.
You should be careful to let them know that it’s a personal decision and they should take time, however you must be firm in giving them the reality of being in different spaces.
- Do you both go to church?
- What do you do in church?
- How are you going to help each other grow in your faith?
- How serious is your relationship with Jesus?
- Did you grow up going to church or at what point did you start?
- Is faith a deal-breaker for you?
- How does putting God first look like for you?
Now we need to address some questions that affect your future together that either of you has or have not yet thought about. Getting married is one thing staying married is an intentional decision.
As Christian we need to be aware of the choice we make here now will not only affect us today or tomorrow but some will affect us for eternity so make the right choice.
- What makes a godly marriage?
- What do you think is God’s design for marriage?
- What comes first you or your partner?
- Who meets your needs?
- What does the Bible say about husbands?
- What does the bible say about wives?
- For how long should you be married according to the Bible?
- Do you think God understands your situation?
- Is submission only for women?
- Is there something that is unforgivable in marriage?
- At what point should you leave your partner if things are not working?
- Does God really heal marriages?
- IS getting married a must for Christians?
- How will I know if my partner will be faithful?
- What makes love so powerful?
- Why is it important to have the same faith?
- If God tells you to wait will you wait?
- How long would you wait for your partner to be ready if right now they figure that they are not?
Sex and intimacy questions
Most couples who have gone through a Christian premarital counseling session have shared that church folks are afraid to ask direct and open questions in regards to sex.
The premarital counseling session should be the most honest and open space to discuss anything and everything regarding marriage. Not being able to have this conversation might result in partners who have unrealistic expectations which might hurt their future life together.
- How active are you sexually?
- Is sex a big thing for you?
- As an engaged couple, how are you preventing sexual activities?
- Is there “wrong sex”?
- What sexual expectations do you have?
- Should you wait until you get married to have sex?
- As a Christian what do you think God expects you to do in this area before you say I do?
- Is this topic uncomfortable for you?
- What soul ties do you have?
- Do you think flirting is a sin?
- Do you consider yourself faithful?
- Do you masturbate?
- Have you or are you watching pornography material?
Finances are a big thing in marriage and knowing how to manage it might be the thing that saves you marriage. Make sure as a pastor you help the couple discuss these questions and address everything genuinely without fear.
- Who do you think should provide for the family?
- Is money a big deal for you?
- Is financial stability a deal-breaker?
- What lifestyle are we going to have?
- How much do you earn and how are you spending it?
- Is there someone you are supporting and how will that change once we start our marriage life/
- Are you in debt?
- What’s your money personality?
- How can we engage our money together?
- Are we going to have one account or separate accounts?
- What does the Bible say about money?
- Is the way I handle my money bother you?
- What financial state do you want before you say I do?
Marriage is a combination of two people with said or unsaid ones. As a Christian couple, you must be able to communicate what your expectation are so that your partner will be aware of them.
- What duties do you expect me to do?
- Is there a way you want your things in the house?
- Are there things you want me to do that am not doing?
- What marriage expectations are you coming with?
- Has your parents model something that you expect me to be?
- As your spouse what is the one thing you might want me to do that will make you happy in the marriage?
The Goal of the premarital counseling pastor
Christian pre-marital counseling questions should not be taken casually and the pastor in charge should understand his role in the program. People have said to us before that most Christian marriage counseling is not professional.
Your role as a pastor or as a pre-marriage counselor is to help the couple not only process the questions but also point them to Christ through God’s word.
Your role as a counselor is to act as a guide, a friend, a leader, a father/mother, and an advisor.
How to be effective as a premarital counseling pastor
- Prepare way in advance
- Don’t just advice but be a model
- Ask open-ended questions [ questions that spark a discussion rather than a yes or no]
- Do the counseling with your spouse as it gives you credibility
- Learn from other pre-marriage counselors in your neighborhood.
- Take time to understand before you respond.
- Don’t try to force a verse where it doesn’t apply.
- Read wide on the area of premarital, you can find premarital counseling books online.
How to prepare for the session
- Take time to pray for the couple
- Take time to interact with the couple
- Find relevant scripture to use.
- Ask the couple to send in question they might have way in advance
What does the Bible say about premarital counseling
The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”
God gave Adam an opportunity to find someone suitable for Him, but He couldn’t find it until God saw his loneliness and gave him a partner.
He who finds a wife finds a good thing And obtains favor from the Lord.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
21 Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord.
23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.
24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.
26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word,
27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body.
31 “For this reason, a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”
32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
18 But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your ancestors, as it is today.
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
……..for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”
23 Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.
24 See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.