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Doctrines concerning marriage and divorce

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Ed

Please read Mark 10:2-12. A husband and his wife become one flesh when they marry one another. Jesus said that it was only Moses who allowed the people of Israel to write a "bill of divorcement "due to the "hardness of heart". "But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female. For this cause......they twain shall be one flesh....." Jesus finally warned, "Therefore, what God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

Pharisees wanted to put away their wives and came to Jesus and asked Him tempting whether it was lawful for a man to put away his wife? Jesus replied that it was Moses who gave this commandment due to the hardness of their hearts. Jesus did not give any commandment to us for putting away our unfaithful spouses. Jesus simply quoted the commandment of Moses. He did not want to overrule the law of Moses but attached a string to the law of Moses. If anyone wants to divorce except on the ground of adultery, he/she should remain unmarried and should not marry during the life time of the other spouse.

If a couple becomes one flesh after marriage, nobody should or can separate each other in flesh, either by divorce or otherwise. Only the death of a spouse separates each other in flesh. No man or judge has any power to separate what God has joined together. To our great surprise, we find many pastors solemnize such unholy and unscriptural marriages. To add salt to the injury, they also encourage their congregations to divorce their spouses and marry again.

Paul said in I Cor.6:16, ""..Know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith He, shall be one flesh". A man who is joined to a harlot is in one flesh with the harlot. "Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her. And if a woman that put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery".

Let us now look into what Paul says about marriage. I Cor.7:1 to 17 may be read. "And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from her husband. But if she depart, let her remain unmarried, or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife". If a wife decides to depart from her husband, she should remain unmarried or should be reconciled to her husband. Then Paul speaks about unbelieving husband or unbelieving wife being sanctified by the believing spouse.

"But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases but God hath called us to peace. " (Vs.15). If an unbelieving husband of a woman wants to depart from her, let him depart. And the sister concerned is not under obligation to serve her husband. She should remain unmarried only. Of course, she can live in peace without being persecuted by her husband. But, she cannot remarry another person during the life time of her husband, in view of the Lord''s commandment in Mark 10th chapter.

"Art thou bound unto a wife? seek not to be loosed. Art thou loosed from a wife? seek not a wife" (Vs.27).

If any man is bound to a wife, he need not seek to be loosed from the marriage bond. If any man is loosed from his wife (through death), he need not seek a wife. A married man who has become one flesh with his wife is freed from her only after she dies in flesh. Secondly, a widower need not seek a wife. If you are loosed from a wife, you need not seek a wife. Please note the next verse which begins with "But and if". "But and if thou (the person who has been loosed from his wife) marry, thou hast not sinned....." Contracting a marriage is not a sin. Here, Paul does not talk about remarriage of divorced spouses at all. A man, who is a widower, or a woman who is a widow can marry another person and he/she does not commit sin at all. Paul says that marriage is not a sin here because he wants to distinguish this marriage i.e. a marriage after the release of one of the spouses due to death, from an unlawful or unscriptural marriage i.e. a marriage by a person whose spouse is alive.

"...If a virgin marry, she hath not sinned. ..." A virgin means a spinster who has vowed to be a virgin throughout her life. She may reconsider her decision at any time for marriage. If she marries, she does not sin at all.

In his epistle to Romans, Paul writes about the status of a married woman after the death of her husband.

"For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband. So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man......" (Rom.7:2-3).

A wife or a husband is loosed from the marriage bond only through death. Paul used the same words "loosed from" in his epistle to Corinthians as mentioned above. This clearly shows that a spouse is loosed from the other spouse or from the marriage bond only through death and not through divorce.

"Marriage is honorable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge"(Heb.13:4)

Questions and Our Answers
Question No.1: After a Christian claims to be born again, can he/she divorce her/his spouse to marry again when the spouse concerned is still alive and had not died? If he/she marries again and remains in this marriage will he/she be judged by hellfire or will he/she be judged on the sin of adultery?
Answer: After one gives his/her heart to Jesus, and they marry another man/woman knowing the truth "not to commit adultery". That means that after rebirth, he/she has fallen into the sin of adultery by marrying another man/woman when their first husband/wife is still alive.
His/her first husband/wife also lives in the sin of adultery if he/she has married another. Both of them have to repent and should forsake their "unlawful" mates immediately. They should take up the cross and follow Christ Jesus only. The same judgment of God meant for adulterers is meant for them also. They will be beaten with more stripes than those who do not know the Lord.

The judgment of God will be severer than those outside the law. They will be judged under the law (Bible). If God''s word says that the adulterers will be in the hellfire , then so will these adulterers, they will also be in the hellfire only (Pro.9:18). In the eyes of God, he/she is an adulterer only and not a child of God.

He/she cannot live in the sin of adultery and profess to be a born again child of God (Rom.1:22). There is no different judgment for those who commit this sin and who claim to have received the Spirit of Christ. They crucify the Son of God afresh. They trample on foot the Blood of the Covenant. Their end will be terrible! A Christian who claims to be born-again will be judged by the Word of God, the Bible, which is also the law for him or her. I am not talking only about the law of Moses. The whole Bible is a law for the born-again children.

God forgives these adulterers if they repent and confess their sin to Him. The Blood of Jesus Christ cleanses them if they confess their sins and forsake their sinful ways. But it will not cleanse or condone anyone who tramples it under foot. They cannot continue to live in this terrible sin which takes them to the hellfire (Pro.9:18). "Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body"(I Cor.6:18).

"And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not".(Rev.2:21)

The words of Jesus judge us and bring to light the hidden things. The Light brings the hidden things to the open. We are naked before the Light. The Word of God spoken by Jesus calls this act of union by a divorcee and another "adultery" so long as they choose to live in it. One must choose whom they serve.

But whoso committeth adultery with a woman lacketh understanding: he that doeth it destroyeth his own soul. (Pr 6:32)

Cursing, lying, murder, stealing, and adultery are rampant; one act of bloodshed follows another. (Ho 4:2)

11 And He said to them, "Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her. 12 Also, if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery. (Mr 10:11,12)

Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,(Ga 5:19)

Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds. (Re 2:22)

Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, (1 Co 6:9)

Question-2: What about King David who committed adultery and lived with many wives?

Answer: David did commit the sin of adultery but repented. He took Bethsheba as his wife only after the death of her husband Uriah and not before that. King David had multiple wives and concubines under the Old Covenant. But his wives were not the wives of other men who lived during the life time of their spouses. A child of God redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus Christ is not under the Old Covenant but under the New Covenant. If anyone is saying that they are like David under the Old Covenant, THE JUDGEMENT UNDER THE OLD COVENANT WILL DEVOUR THEM WITHOUT ANY MERCY. They had better be careful. They will be judged through the mouth of their words.

Commandment:
(Exodus 20:14)
"Thou shalt not commit adultery."
Dear pastor, is this sin of adultery in your camp? If so, you have to tell the truth to your congregation, and you should get rid of this sin from your congregation.

The children of Israel under the leadership of Joshua could not stand before their enemies but turned their backs before them "because they were accursed". The whole house of Israel was accursed just because Achan, the son of Carmi, took an accursed thing and brought the same into their camp. (Joshua 7:11, 12)

"But the children of Israel committed a trespass in the accursed thing: for Achan, the son of Carmi, the son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took of the accursed thing: and the anger of the LORD was kindled against the children of Israel" (Joshua 7: 1).

The Lord then commanded the children of Israel ".... neither will I be with you any more, except ye destroy the accursed thing from among you.." Then Achan was taken out of the camp and all Israel stoned Achan and his children and burned them alongwith all the things and animals that Achan brought into the camp from the cursed city of Jericho built by Ai. The Lord''s anger against the whole house of Isreal was turned away only after the total elimination of the "accursed thing". Today the "accursed thing" is the sin of adultery that the people of God commit, ignoring the commandments of God and His Son.

Until and unless this "accursed thing" is burnt in your camp, you cannot expect God to bless your congregation and your nation.

If anyone lives in the sin of adultery without knowing the truth of the Word, he or she can approach us for our ministry. We will prayerfully guide the person concerned.


Grace and restoration
We have posted some messages on the above subject. Some people argued that the words of Jesus are meant only for those who divorce their spouses on the ground of adultery and then remarry (i.e. divorcers), and not for the victims of such divorces (i.e. the divorcees). According to them, the divorcees are free to re-marry. Please note that it is very crystal clear from Romans 7:2 that a wife is bound by the law to her husband so long as he lives and that if the husband is dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband. It is also applicable to a husband bound by law to her wife.


Here, we talk of adultery i.e. the sexual union of a man and a woman whose spouse is alive. John the Baptist told Herod who had taken his brother's wife, "It is not lawful for thee to have her" (Mat:14:4). No man should marry another man's wife during the life time of her husband. It is an act of adultery in the eyes of God. A wife married to a husband still remains his wife, though the divorce has legally separated them. The same is applicable to a wife who marries another man.

A person who has committed this sin and who continues to live in this sin with his/her mate should repent of this sin and then seek God's grace for forgiveness and restoration through the Blood of Jesus Christ. Some people after reading our messages came to the knowledge of the truth and wanted to know whether they should divorce their present unlawful mates. We will not ask anyone to "divorce" his/her present mate. It is for God to restore them to grace and to ratify and sanctify their present union with their "unlawful" partners. If the former spouse divorced by him/her still remains unmarried, the penitent person should go to the former spouse for restoration of marriage. If the former spouse is not willing to forgive him/her, then the latter may prayerfully seek the Lord's approval on the unlawful marriage that he/she had entered. It is the Lord who ratifies and sanctifies this unlawful marriage.

The repentant person has to confess this sin of adultery to Jesus Christ and to die for this sin once and for all. As he/she dies to this sin for ever, the Lord restores him/her to grace. The person concerned would be born again, being freed from this sin of adultery.
 
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To establish a doctrine concerning marriage and divorce, we should first find out what the definition of divorce is as translated.

The Greek word apoluo: is the equivalent of the Hebrew word: shalach.

* Strong's Greek #630 Apoluo

* The common word Apoluo translated as: " put away" or "putteth away" is (the same as the Hebrew equivalent of the word shalach) which means" to send, separate, send away or leave," NOT divorce.
* Used 94 times in the New Testament.
* 18 times related to a separation in marriage or intimate relationship (not divorce).
* 76 times used in other ways.
* Apoluo NEVER meant divorce, but a "separation."



* Strong's Hebrew #7971 Shalach

* The common word shalach translated as: " put away" or "putteth away" is (the same as the Greek equivalent of the word apoluo) which means" to send, separate, send away or leave," NOT divorce.
* Used 878 times in the Old Testament.
* 13 times related to a separation in marriage or intimate relationship (not divorce).
* 865 times used in other ways.
* Shalach NEVER meant divorce, but a "separation."


Lets look at two key scriptures:
Mal 2:11 ...Judah hath profaned the holiness of the LORD which he loved, and hath married the daughter of a strange god.
Mal 2:16 For the LORD, the God of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away:

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on Malachi:

"Corrupt practices are the fruit of corrupt principles; and he who is false to his God, will not be true to his fellow mortals. In contempt of the marriage covenant, which God instituted, the Jews put away the wives they had of their own nation, probably to make room for strange wives. They made their lives bitter to them; yet, in the sight of others, they pretend to be tender of them. Consider she is thy wife; thy own; the nearest relation thou hast in the world. The wife is to be looked on, not as a servant, but as a companion to the husband. There is an oath of God between them, which is not to be trifled with. Man and wife should continue to their lives' end, in holy love and peace. Did not God make one, one Eve for one Adam? Yet God could have made another Eve. Wherefore did he make but one woman for one man? It was that the children might be made a seed to serve him. Husbands and wives must live in the fear of God, that their seed may be a godly seed. The God of Israel saith that he hateth putting away. Those who would be kept from sin, must take heed to their spirits, for there all sin begins. Men will find that their wrong conduct in their families springs from selfishness, which disregards the welfare and happiness of others, when opposed to their own passions and fancies. It is wearisome to God to hear people justify themselves in wicked practices. Those who think God can be a friend to sin, affront him, and deceive themselves. The scoffers said, Where is the God of judgement? but the day of the Lord will come."

With that in mind lets read Mark 10:9 again:

Mar 10:4 And they said, Moses suffered to write a bill of divorcement, and to put her away.

“The Lord’s holy institution which He loves...the Lord has been witness between you and the wife of your youth ...[and] SHE [STILL] IS YOUR COMPANION AND YOUR WIFE BY COVENANT. For the Lord God of Israel says that He hates divorce [shalach], [separating without a Certificate of Divorce].... He has [illegally] married the daughter of a foreign god. May the Lord cut off ...the man who does this being awake and aware” (Malachi 2:11,12a,14b,c,16a).

Because these men had remarried illegally ― separated from their wives without giving them a Certificate of Divorce, they were in adultery as Jesus stated: “Furthermore it has been said, “Whoever PUTS AWAY [separates from {apoluo}] his wife, LET HIM GIVE HER A CERTIFICATE OF DIVORCE. But I say to you that whoever PUTS AWAY [separates and remarries without being divorced from] his wife for any reason except sexual immorality causes her to commit adultery: and whoever marries a woman who is PUT AWAY [separated without being divorced {apoluo}] commits adultery” (Matthew 5:31-32). (The Lord never forgot about the Malachi incident when He came to earth to redeem lost man). "

I personally think to say God never "allows" divorce suggests little understanding of the nature of God, or the nature of human relationships.



This is an excellent website : (I have not read it entirely)
http://www.divorcehope.com/marriagebeliefsgodandbible.htm
 
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therefore

'But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases but God hath called us to peace. " (Vs.15). If an unbelieving husband of a woman wants to depart from her, let him depart. And the sister concerned is not under obligation to serve her husband. She should remain unmarried only. Of course, she can live in peace without being persecuted by her husband. But, she cannot remarry another person during the life time of her husband, in view of the Lord''s commandment in Mark 10th chapter.'

taking the above scripture, then if a husband no longer wants to live with his wife because she is a Christian, and tells her to go, she is to leave him, is that correct?
 
Member

Ed

therefore

'But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases but God hath called us to peace. " (Vs.15). If an unbelieving husband of a woman wants to depart from her, let him depart. And the sister concerned is not under obligation to serve her husband. She should remain unmarried only. Of course, she can live in peace without being persecuted by her husband. But, she cannot remarry another person during the life time of her husband, in view of the Lord''s commandment in Mark 10th chapter.'

taking the above scripture, then if a husband no longer wants to live with his wife because she is a Christian, and tells her to go, she is to leave him, is that correct?
Maureen, I shared that a while back, and then lost the link to talkjesus, so I'm sorry about my late reply.

If the husband is completely put off by the beliefs of his born again wife, and insists that she leave him, then she must obey him out of Christian love. But first, she must try to do everything to save the marriage, except abandoning her faith.

See 1 Corinthians 7:15,16
 
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Wow. This is thought provoking stuff.

I am divorced and re-married. I have been a Christian for 32 years.

I believe that the Bible is absolutely truth. I do believe, however, that the Lord deals with each of us uniquely in our specific situations.

People that are divorced need love, prayer and friends who will not judge but will gently help them in this time of need, guilt, hurt and sadness. God means for us to be whole. He also knows we are human and will make mistakes.

Just my thoughts on this delicate subject after 'been there, done that'.
 
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Dont worry about being late with reply.

Mark 10 v 11-12
11 And he saith unto them, Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her.

12And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery.

Is this still called adultery then even though divorce has been the path taken?
Or was there no divorce taken out? 'put away' is the actual wording, but surely to remarry and not divorce is bigamy.
 
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For what it's worth, it is wrong to tell a divorced person that they cannot remarry. Do you really want them to burn with desire?

We must remember that Jesus was a Jew, and was resoponding to questions about divorce under the Old Mosiac Law. In the Corinth Church, some were also asking questions about the same topic. In Cor. 7, Paul answered some of them when He said, I not the Lord. He didn't give answers to every situation. That would be impossible. The real answer is that there is no law about divorce and remarriiage. Do we not live by the law of love, which is the God-kind-Love? When Paul mentions circumsion, it symbolizes the Old Mosiac Law. When he mentions uncircumsion, it symbolizes the Law of Love, which for one means forgiveness. When we are forgiven, God doesn't even see that sin. He sees the Blood of Jesus. We see in Heb. 9:12, we cannot be born again and born again. We see that We have been forgiven from past, present, and future sins. We need not to be so sin conscious that it makes us self-righteous to the point where we clobber divorced and remarried people.

Yes, God abhors divorce, but there is always redemption. When we do marry, we should love that person with the God-Kind-of-Love, which will never fail. Of Course, we do have natural love, but that combined with God's kind of Love. This kind of marriage will last forever.

I hope I didn't upset too many with my comments. :groupwave::groupwave:
 
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My husband used to know this man who was married to a Christian lady, he was a drinker and told my husband that it didn't matter what he did his wife would never leave him because she is a Christian.

Now I don't know if his wife had told him this, or it was his own thinking, but I thought it an awful statement to come out with.

Jesus would not want His children to suffer in a wreckless marraige, or be abused in any way.

There is a differance to suffer for the sake of Jesus, but to just let someone abuse you just because they think they can get away with it all because you trust in God and they don't.

Golfjack
I knew some Christians who have remarried from bad marriages, I'm sure our Lord Jesus would not be displeased at them.
 
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Ed

Thanks for the input all of you, : )

For the record, I didn't actually write the original post...I was, at the time of posting, involved in a heavy discussion of what some Christians call the "Marriage/Divorce/Remarriage doctrine.

The doctrine is an old one, and it pretty much states that once your married, you can't remarry until your first spouse is dead.

I agree with many of you, especially if you have "been there and done that". Even if such a doctrine is true, I believe in total forgiveness by God if something should go wrong in the marriage and you have no choice BUT to leave and divorce.

Paul's original intent, other than continuing the Lord's work, was most likely to keep the institute of marriage intact. Even today, we see where so many people marry and divorce multiple times (Hollywoord is notorious for this). I believe that he wrote about marriage so that Christians would read and learn what a serious issue it is. I mean, once we get married we surely don't want to find out that we married the wrong person, or worse yet, we don't want to find out that we, personally, can't handle being married.

I like what Maureen said:

There is a differance to suffer for the sake of Jesus, but to just let someone abuse you just because they think they can get away with it all because you trust in God and they don't.
It's kind of our relationship with God...sometimes a Christian can get off track, and really mess up concerning the faith..but God is always there with outstretched hands, waiting to take us back.

How unfortuante it is that we often, when it comes to a bad marriage, don't have the same thoughts as God.

Of course, we can't stay in an abusive marriage.
 
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Wow Ed
I never realized it mean't just that, that you couldn't re-marry until your spouse was dead.
I know in my case if I was to ever find my self divorced for whatever reason, may God forbid it to ever happen though, but I know in my own heart I would never re-marry, because I make up the bride of Jesus therefore He is my husband, and He is everything I will ever need.

Plus how I am so sure is because when I got saved I expected my husband to leave me because of it, as he'd always told me I was never to become a Christian as he would not live with me, so I was prepared for him to go, and only because I knew Jesus would never leave me nor forsake me, and I had not been churched either, I say to my shame, but still I knew that.

Can I share a little daft thing with you all.

When I first got saved, I could not get my head around sharing Jesus with others, I wanted Him just for myself, and I was really disturbed over this for a short while though, when I look back on it, it seems really strange, I really was jealous, and thats a sin, but I have to be truthful, I was.

did anyone else ever have this happen?
 
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Even today, we see where so many people marry and divorce multiple times (Hollywoord is notorious for this)
I think that many show business people (especially movie actors & actresses) are narcissistic - having very abnormal self love. They can never be attracted to a spouse as much as they are attracted to themselves.

SLE
 
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Ed

Wow Ed
I never realized it mean't just that, that you couldn't re-marry until your spouse was dead.
I know in my case if I was to ever find my self divorced for whatever reason, may God forbid it to ever happen though, but I know in my own heart I would never re-marry, because I make up the bride of Jesus therefore He is my husband, and He is everything I will ever need.

Plus how I am so sure is because when I got saved I expected my husband to leave me because of it, as he'd always told me I was never to become a Christian as he would not live with me, so I was prepared for him to go, and only because I knew Jesus would never leave me nor forsake me, and I had not been churched either, I say to my shame, but still I knew that.

Can I share a little daft thing with you all.

When I first got saved, I could not get my head around sharing Jesus with others, I wanted Him just for myself, and I was really disturbed over this for a short while though, when I look back on it, it seems really strange, I really was jealous, and thats a sin, but I have to be truthful, I was.

did anyone else ever have this happen?
Hi Maureen.
First of all, I'm telling everybody one thing: please don't take my word on the remarriage thing. It's just something that I studied with great concern. Do your own bible study on this.

I mean, if taken literally, then I guess it means that Christians are only to be married once in our lives. That does make it hard on a young couple who gets married before they actually "grow up." What happens if one or two years down the road, after having a child, the relationship just isn't working out for them?

Prayfully, if a Christian is remarried, the grace of God covers them.

Marriage is hard...for everybody.

Hopefully you've conquered your problem with sharing Jesus. I still have a slight problem myself with witnessing myself. But I find that if I just relax I can open up to people about the love of Christ. I also use a little near witnessing tool that I picked up from a kind old gentleman in Louisiana.
 
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Ed

I think that many show business people (especially movie actors & actresses) are narcissistic - having very abnormal self love. They can never be attracted to a spouse as much as they are attracted to themselves.

SLE
Yep. All the plastic surgery that goes on in Hollywood backs up what you say!
 
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I also use a little near witnessing tool that I picked up from a kind old gentleman in Louisiana.
What is this tool, may I enquire Ed please I'm curious if it makes witnessing easier I'm eager to learn.

I just wait now for the Holy Spirit to guide me to situations, and I know I have to do something because I cannot ignore the presence felt.
Then when I have obeyed the peace and tranquility washes over me.

They come up every now and then, but I sure know when I'm in one.
 
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Ed

What is this tool, may I enquire Ed please I'm curious if it makes witnessing easier I'm eager to learn.

I just wait now for the Holy Spirit to guide me to situations, and I know I have to do something because I cannot ignore the presence felt.
Then when I have obeyed the peace and tranquility washes over me.

They come up every now and then, but I sure know when I'm in one.
I'll post a video, or link, in a new thread, as I don't want to stray from the original topic

 

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