For many Africans, the tradition of the bride price payment became a subject of serious controversy. If God specifically gave this law as a condition for marriage, or is it a man-made tradition? Time to find out the truth!
1. Bride price is not a condition for marriage but only as a penalty for rape.
Exodus 22:16-17: "If a man seduces a virgin who is not pledged to be married and sleeps with her, he must pay the bride-price, and she shall be his wife. If her father absolutely refuses to give her to him, he must still pay the bride-price for virgins."
Deuteronomy 22:28-29: "If a man happens to meet a virgin who is not pledged to be married and rapes her and they are discovered, he shall pay her father fifty shekels[a] of silver. He must marry the young woman,for he has violated her. He can never divorce her as long as he lives."
You can still pay the bride price and still be denied the woman to be your wife by her father.
At the same time, if the man has never slept with the woman, there should be no need to pay money for her.
2. There was never ever a place in the Bible where God commanded the bride's parent to present a price. It is the groom's responsibility to bring whatever for the lady he wants to marry.
For example, in the Bible was Isaac's marriage to Rebekah. There was no monetary exchange or penalty between the two families. Affordable gifts were given to Rebekkah's family by Abraham (but not demanded by Rebekkah's family). Read Genesis 24:52-54.
3. Bride price, according to the Bible, is all about virgins.
Genesis 24:15-16: "Before he had finished praying, Rebekah came out with her jar on her shoulder. She was the daughter of Bethuel son of Milkah, who was the wife of Abraham’s brother Nahor. The woman was very beautiful, a virgin; no man had ever slept with her. She went down to the spring, filled her jar and came up again."
4. Payment of monetary bride price is a tradition and not a direct commandment from God.
In some countries like India, a woman actually pays a dowry for the groom and not the other way round.
5. Presenting list or asking for monetary bride price is man made a rule. Therefore, it becomes a sin because it's better to obey GOD rather than men.
Acts 5:29: "Peter and the other apostles replied: "We must obey God rather than human beings!"