So Cerbie is apparently obsessed with the happy marriage between Muhammad (peace be upon him) and Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her). This is despite the fact that he has presented no proof to the contrary, and keeps harping about the age difference, even though it has been proven time and again that this was very common in the pre-industrial world, and ALL cultures, including Jewish and Christian ones, practiced it and saw nothing wrong with it. But what does the Bible actually say on what is the proper age of marriage? Does it correspond to Cerbie’s secular ideals? Of course, the answer is no (and Cerbie definitely knows this). So let’s see what the Bible actually says on the subject. According to the Christian website “Got Questions“:
Both the language and culture of the Bible strongly support the idea that puberty, at bare minimum, is a condition that must be met before becoming someone’s spouse. This fits with the historical purpose of marriage, which has always been about conceiving and rearing children. Scriptural evidence indicates that those too young for childbearing are not candidates for marriage, though there is no explicit age given in the Bible.
So, the Bible states that the minimum requirement for marriage is puberty, which can occur (depending on various factors), from as early as age 8 in girls.
The website also says that in Jewish tradition, girls were typically considered of marriageable age at age 12 (of course historically, the age could be more or less):
According to tradition, boys were not considered “men,” and therefore not marriageable, until the age of 13. Girls were not considered “women” until age 12. These ages more or less correspond to the onset of puberty. While those ages might seem too young to us, they are not unusual ages for getting married, historically. It has only been within the last century or so that the average age of getting married has drifted into the late twenties and early thirties.
It also points out, quite reasonably, that “maturity” depends of culture. For most of human history, maturity was expected at a much earlier age:
It’s also important to recall that maturity—often used as a benchmark for allowing sexuality and marriage—is highly cultural. In modern Western countries, people are not generally expected to be self-sufficient until they are nearly in their twenties, or even later. For most of human history, however, people were expected to “grow up” much sooner. The age of getting married was normally young, as everyone was expected to mature socially and emotionally more quickly than today.
But here is where it gets interesting. In the book of Ezekiel (which I have always said is probably one book that Christians wish was NOT in their canon!), describes a rather strange statement by God, but one that confirms the significance of puberty as the main requirement for marriage:
Ezekiel 16 contains a metaphor for God’s relationship to Israel. In this passage, God cares for Israel, pictured as an orphaned girl in various stages of development. The Lord first sees her birth, then watches her grow up: “You grew and developed and entered puberty. Your breasts had formed and your hair had grown. . . . Later I passed by, and when I looked at you and saw that you were old enough for love, I spread the corner of my garment over you” (verses 7–8).
Notice how “God” in this passage is describing a pubescent girl (the nation of Israel) as having “breasts” and long hair. In the modern context, such a statement would be seen as highly offensive. But the fact that the book of Ezekiel says this proves that puberty was the minimum requirement for marriage.