The Age Gap in Christian Relationships: Statistics & Scripture

Here's a breakdown of the age gap in Christian relationships from statistics and scripture. 

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Statistics of The Age Gap In Christian Relationships

The average global age in Christian relationships is 3.8 years.

On Average, Women in Christian Relationships Are 3.8 Years Younger Than Their Male Partners Graphic

When considering age gaps across all religions, Christians (3.8 years) are midway between Muslims (6.6 years) and Jews (2.1 years). [1]

Average Age Gap By Religion Graphic by

These age gaps, alongside women's 5-year longer life expectancy, mean older Christian women are more likely to live alone than their male counterparts. [2]

Specifically, 30% of Christian women aged 60 and above live alone, which is twice the rate among Christian men of the same age group, at 14%.

Older Christian Women Are Almost Twice as Likely to Live Alone Than Older Men Graphic

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Examples of Age Gap in Christian Relationships from Scripture

The Bible does not provide guidance on age differences in relationships. However, it emphasizes mutual spiritual harmony and faith in Christ as the foundation for relationships.

2 Corinthians 6:14: Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?

And upholds the importance of sexual intimacy within marriage, advocating for mutual fulfillment and responsibility:

1 Corinthians 7:3-5: 3 The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. 4 The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband. In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body but yields it to his wife. 5 Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.

However, despite the lack of direct guidance on age gaps, the Scriptures contain numerous instances where significant age gaps in relationships are clearly stated or inferred.


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1. Abraham and Sarah

Abraham and Sarah are the only explicit examples of an age-gap relationship.

Genesis 17:17: Abraham fell facedown; he laughed and said to himself, “Will a son be born to a man a hundred years old? Will Sarah bear a child at the age of ninety?”

A clear ten-year gap. 

2. Isaac and Rebekah

The exact ages of Isaac and Rebekah are not specified in the scripture.

However, it does mention that Rebekah was a "very beautiful, a virgin" (Genesis 24:16) and that "Isaac was forty years old when he married Rebekah" (Genesis 25:20), suggesting that there may have been an age gap of over 20 years between them.

3. Jacob, Leah, and Rachel

By calculating Jacobs's time in Egypt, we know Jacob was 84 years old when he married Leah and Rachel.

Given their ability to conceive children naturally, without the kind of divine intervention Sarah experienced, Leah and Rachel were likely significantly younger than Jacob. Jewish tradition suggests they were around 21 or 22 years old at the time of their marriage.

This indicates a potential age gap of approximately 62 to 63 years between Jacob and his wives, factoring in the seven additional years Jacob worked to marry Rachel, the younger of the two sisters. [3, 4]

4. Boaz and Ruth

We need to examine various biblical passages to determine the age difference between Boaz and Ruth.

Ruth 2:1: Now there was a wealthy and influential man in Bethlehem named Boaz, who was a relative of Naomi’s husband, Elimelech.

This description of Boaz indicates not only his financial stability but also a significant level of maturity and life experience, suggesting he was older.

On the other hand, Ruth's age is indirectly mentioned.

She was a widow who had been married for about ten years before her husband died, indicating she was likely in her late twenties or early thirties when she met Boaz.

Ruth 1:3-5: 3 Now Elimelek, Naomi’s husband, died, and she was left with her two sons. 4 They married Moabite women, one named Orpah and the other Ruth. After they had lived there about ten years, 5 both Mahlon and Kilion also died, and Naomi was left without her two sons and her husband.

Additionally, Boaz’s recognition of Ruth for not chasing after 'younger men' subtly points to her relatively younger age, with Ruth being younger but not as young as biblical figures like Rebekah, Leah, and Rachel during their childbearing years and not as old as Sarah when she had her child with Abraham. 

Ruth 3:10 “The Lord bless you, my daughter,” he replied. “This kindness is greater than that which you showed earlier: You have not run after the younger men, whether rich or poor.

5. Joseph and Mary

The Protoevangelium of James describes Joseph not wanting to marry Mary as he’s too old for her:

IX. 2: And Joseph refused, saying: I have sons, and I am an old man, but she is a girl: lest I became a laughing-stock to the children of Israel.

And then we learn that Mary was 16 when she gave birth to Jesus:

XII. 8: And she abode three months with Elizabeth, and day by day her womb grew: and Mary was afraid and departed unto her house and hid herself from the children of Israel. Now she was sixteen years old when these mysteries came to pass.

Now we know that Mary was at least 16 years old when she gave birth to Jesus, at most 15 when she married Joseph, and that their age gap was literally laughable to the children of Israel. [5, 6]


[1] “Globally, Women Are Younger than Their Male Partners, More Likely to Age Alone.” Pew Research Center, 3 Jan. 2020, Accessed 29 Jan. 2024.

[2] “Life Expectancy by Sex.” Our World in Data, 2024, Accessed 29 Jan. 2024.

[3] Blum, Julia. “Three plus Four: Rachel.” Biblical Hebrew and Holy Land Studies Blog -, 13 Feb. 2023, Accessed 29 Jan. 2024.

[4] Bible. “Bible Errors - Jacob’s Old Age at Marriage.”, 2024, Accessed 29 Jan. 2024.

[5] “Infancy Gospel of James, or Protevangelium (M.R. James Translation).”, 2024, Accessed 29 Jan. 2024.

[6] “What Does the Bible Say about Age Differences in Relationships? |”, 27 June 2008, Accessed 29 Jan. 2024.

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About the author 

Coach Colt here, the founder of Dating Armory, your go-to source for no-nonsense, practical relationship advice. I'm a bisexual male in a same-sex open relationship and a researcher in sex, love, and relationships with 7+ years of experience. I specialize in helping both men and women navigate the crazy world of dating.

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