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Stirring The Deep

Divorce (PART I)

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Divorce

(PART I)

The question I’m looking at in this two part blog is: According to the Word of God are you to remarry after you divorce?

A friend and I were talking about this very sensitive issue, which prompted me to look at all these verses – and trying to without any justifications or trying to find loop holes – what is God’s will in this area?

Romans 7:3 So then if, while her husband lives, she marries another man, she will be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from that law, so that she is no adulteress, though she has married another man.

I wondered if it mattered who initiated the divorce in terms of if you are free to remarry. If my husband divorces me – I really don’t have a choice, so do I still commit adultery if I marry another?

1 Corinthians 7:15 But if the unbeliever departs, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases. But God has called us to peace.

Mark 10:11-12 So He said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her. And if a woman divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.”

Matthew 5: 32 But I say to you that whoever divorces his wife for any reason except sexual immorality causes her to commit adultery; and whoever marries a woman who is divorced commits adultery.

Why does God seem to be “tough” on this issue? The problem is the land becomes greatly polluted when people are marrying, divorcing, and remarrying and so on.

Jeremiah 3:1 “They say, ‘If a man divorces his wife, And she goes from him And becomes another man’s, May he return to her again?’ Would not that land be greatly polluted? But you have played the harlot with many lovers; Yet return to Me,” says the Lord.

Malachi 2:16 “For the Lord God of Israel says That He hates divorce, For it covers one’s garment with violence,” Says the Lord of hosts. “Therefore take heed to your spirit, That you do not deal treacherously.”

I want to back up for a moment and talk about divorce. It has struck me lately how marriage is the foundation of society, as our relationship with God is foundational to our lives. If you want to destroy society, which evil does, then destroy marriages, which we see happening on many levels. When marriage is destroyed by divorce (when I speak of divorce – it is all the emotions and actions prior to, during and after – not just the actual legal separation – for these emotions and actions are what are so destructive) the ripple affect is great. Families are broken, which creates broken people, which creates issues on all levels of life– therefore all suffer the ramifications. We don’t live in isolation; all we do influences the whole.

Marriage represents out relationship with God, to teach us about our relationship to Him. The seriousness and impact of a marriage is what it is because of what it represents. The damage created by divorce is great because when we break away from God the damage is horrific in our lives. People’s spirits are torn apart in divorce as they are when they aren’t rightly related to God (though with God obviously the damage is much greater). We are to be filled with love, but divorce fills us with anger, pride, and pain. When our spirits are filled with these emotions, it is very caustic to ourselves and others. Obviously, staying married with these emotions is also extremely harmful. But we aren’t to live with them, but to keep from them or move out of them through the power of the Holy Spirit working in us. Let us never underestimate the power of God’s love in our lives. It isn’t about being miserable in a marriage but putting our trust in God that if we honor His will, He will help us and give us what we are looking for – love.

When we marry something changes on a spiritual level within us. We become united to a person unlike we do in any other relationship, again because of what it illustrates. God created it with a spiritual impact. We can’t change that characteristic regardless if we believe or not. It is what it is. Therefore, when we divorce it tears our spirits apart, but not into two intact pieces as before, but ripped, torn, and damaged.

Marriage doesn’t work without God’s love. A lack of His love is the source of this proliferating problem. We have destroyed true love, the one thing that saves us from ourselves, with our pride, anger, and selfishness. We have destroyed it from a lack of seeking God’s face with diligence and passion. We have lost Him as our first love, therefore have lost love.

Only God’s love enables us to do what He calls us to do in a marriage – truly love. We can’t do it without Him – as we are seeing. The divorce rate and the numerous wrecked marriages testify to the lack of knowing and possessing God’s love. We gain God’s love in our spirits to know and to give when we cultivate a real, deep and intimate relationship with Him, which few are truly taking the time to do. Look at what we have created by going our own way. In the past couple of weeks, I’ve seen so much pain and damage created by divorce. It isn’t the solution. When we don’t seek God’s face, abide in His Word, and draw near to know His love – damage, pain, and pride fill our lives.

Further, our understanding about this topic has been warped by society, which says – just divorce and make it all go away, and start over and make it better. In reality, it doesn’t work that way. We create death in us and others and that is what we have to contend with. On so many issues, we have compromised our beliefs and truth by what society impresses upon us. May we pray to know and live the truth that our lives may honor God’s ways and not man’s. There are few times when divorce is an answer, but that is another blog.

This all being said, I also want to say that God’s mercy is great toward His children; far greater than we ever would be toward one another. We all have all fallen short and do on so many accounts. I’ve seen God’s redemptive work many times in this area. But there still was so much pain and damage done. We are called to seek His truth and His will to live by it in our lives and that is my goal with these posts.

Now that we’ve laid out what divorce really creates in our lives . . . next week we’ll look at the aspect of should we remarry after divorce?

Pray and seek God’s truth on this subject this week and let me know your thoughts.

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Author: Rachel

My passion is cultivating a deep relationship with God and helping others to do the same. I LOVE sharing with others insights that God has taught me and hearing what God has taught them... thus my blog, Stirring the Deep. My focus is on a relationship, not a religion. Life is in the relationship. I believe in a balance and unity of body, mind and spirit. I feel it's important to nurture all three for they all affect each other. I try to live in the present, where the Holy Spirit is. And I try to do all with the motive of love. I've come to believe life is a journey and not a destination. It isn't about perfection, is it about growth.

21 thoughts on “Divorce (PART I)

  1. All,

    Very good questions. John Piper wrote a very good position paper on remarriage that I have read. It counters the common misconceptions and offers more of a biblical understanding of the so-called ‘exception clause’ in matt 19. You should be able to search for it online.

    In Christ
    Michael

  2. I agree that God hates divorce. I hated divorce! But, after 33 years of marriage, being with one man only, having four children together, I had to leave the marriage. It was not because of infidelity, which is usually the cause. It was a result of 33 years of physical abuse, mental and emotional abuse, drugs, sexual addiction, immorality on his part which gave me s.t.d.’s two different times and financial sabotage.
    I did not want to leave. After living in this toxic environment for 33 years, my body started exhibiting signs of rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, p.t.s.d, and many other things. All that has disappeared after leaving.
    I had pleaded with God concerning this marriage, and when one last event occurred, I was standing in my bathroom crying out to God. My words were, “Lord, I’m dying, I’m dead already.”
    It was one of those epiphany moments when I distinctly heard God speak to my heart that He was releasing me from this marriage. I, and only I, know what I experienced and left the next weekend. Was I devastated over leaving? YES! Did I grieve over losing a 33 year marriage? YES!
    Did I watch the fall out among my adult children and grandchildren, even though they had witnessed for themselves what not only I but they had gone through? YES!
    I still love my x-husband, but can not live with him. He shows signs of being bi-polar, but I lived a life of making excuses for his behavior to everyone and couldn’t do it anymore. There comes a time when someone has to be called to accountability. I still hate divorce, and have not remarried after almost seven years. I still talk with my x and we are on good terms. I still watch as he wreaks havoc in his own personal life, but this time it is from a distance, and I pray for him daily. Thanks for your interesting post. Janie

    • Hi Janie – thanks for sharing your story. I’m so so sorry for all the pain you’ve experienced. There is a time that divorce is the answer, though it still causes pain. I think it is too each one to seek God’s will as you did for He is the only One we have to answer to.

  3. Divorce is a serious biblical issue. The Bible is clear regarding such matters. People are divorcing at an alarming rate. We pray for all relationships for all people. We need more prayer on this matter. Families are being destroyed each minute. Thank you for this post. We will continue to pray that people will move closer to God and away from their own self-centered ways.

    • Dr. Lee – thanks for your comment. It is a serious issue one taken much too lightly and we are all suffering for it.

  4. I just had a conversation with someone regarding this issue. She did not have Biblical grounds for divorce, but did so because she was convinced her spouse would never change. She is getting remarried soon and invited me to the wedding. I explained why I wouldn’t be able to attend and why I felt she didn’t have Biblical grounds to remarry, but she is convinced this is God’s will for her. I know she has to make her own choices and live with those consequences. It’s such a hard topic to discuss, but I think it would be harder in the long run to stand by and watch without speaking up when God prompts you to say something. Thanks for posting this!

    • Jennifer – it is a very difficult topic to discuss in my opinion because it is touching on some of people’s deepest drives and emotions. All we can do is share what we feel the Spirit has given us to share and leave the rest to Him. Thanks for sharing your story – I found it encouraging. We need to encourage each other in His truth because so much of this world is counter to it.

  5. Divorce like all works of the flesh is permitted, but they destroyed the truth about marriage. Marriage is to be a type and shadow of our unity in Christ. Marriage is to be between the man the woman and the body of Christ. Mankind not understanding the truth about marriage causes divorce. Many people get married for the wrong reasons most of them fleshly. This is why it is important to have the mentoring of the body of Christ. Without this mentoring many marriages are doomed before they start. With this mentoring many can understand the obligation on which they are entering his temporal, therefore it will have flaws. And by no means should marriage be fair, marriages should be about Christ’s righteousness being displayed in a world of darkness. The benefits we receive in our bodies are not to be relied upon but they are to be the frosting on the cake so to speak. In our society many people rely on these fleshly benefits and the emotionalism related to them. They do this to their failure.
    When Jesus asked about divorce he says God does not permit it. But because of Moses and the hardness of man’s heart is something that he allows. It is not in God’s original intention that man be divorced. It does not display his will for mankind when that that is brought together is separated again. When a man and a woman joined together they become one flesh, we know that all flesh is flawed. Having two people trusting in flesh is like juggling nitroglycerin. Unfortunately many come into marriage trying to be fleshly desires instead of revealing the plan of God . We must understand the original intention God had in marriage, and then only joined with our mate for the primary reason of revealing God’s intention.
    Praise God for grace, for by it divorce is permitted. But if we are to move on to the perfection of the original intention, we should have the understanding of its purpose.
    Condemnation for those who may have been divorced is not the purpose of this post. In fact, God justifies the sinner irreverent of his sin, in this now present truth we have in Christ. If you’ve been divorced and remarried you have no condemnation in Christ. You should Carry-on in your now marriage, with the intention of displaying the truth of God’s original intention that was spoken in the very beginning. This is part of the work of redemption in your current marriage. It should be your primary focus.

    • Apsotle at HIM – thanks so much for your comments. I agree – in Christ there is no condemnation. When we realize where we have gone astray (divorcing, remarrying, other sins)- we learn from it and turn from that thinking, knowing it’s not God’s perfect will. But as you said we are new creations in Christ. He renews all that we are including our marriages even if we married out side His will. We need to embrace the power of His mercy, grace, love and gift of new life and live free in Him – not under guilt or condemnation. And live as He intended marriage to be. His gift of grace is tremendous and flows to all areas of our lives.

      .

  6. Satan is the great destroyer of families as evidenced in the alarming statistics of divorce even among Christians.

    I wonder sometimes, Rachel, as I read the divorced woman above reply, the Scripture says what God has joined together, let no man seperate. Do you have any thoughts on perhaps God did not join some people together when they married? I mean some people find out after marriage that they were led astray by their spouse. I don’t know. This is a hard issue.

    • Marianne – it is interesting that you brought this question up, because I was just thinking about it – what God has joined let no man separate. I admit I don’t fully understand that either. Perhaps it is that God has defined what marriage is and when we enter into it – good or bad- we are entering a unity of His making therefore of His joining. Just a thought. I say that because the other verses about marriage don’t give any kind of “exclusion clause” for situations in which people were led astray or married though it wasn’t God’s will. You are right – this is a tough issue – I find I’m getting more and more questions the more I think about it.

  7. HI Rachel…I have enjoyed reading the blogs on your site! There is a depth of insight here that can come from no other place than from “sitting at the feet of Jesus”. I see ear marks of the Holy Spirit all over them! What a blessing!

    I am new to WordPress. Have written online for 10 years, but this is a new venue for me. Hope you can visit LifestreamsFlow and find His Spirit there, too!

    May the blessings of the Lord overtake you as you continue….

    Looking unto JESUS,
    Sandy

    • Hi Sandy – sorry it took me awhile to reply I’ve been out of town. Blogs are a wonderful venue for sharing insights and encouraging one another. Glad you found me and I look forward to checking out your blog 🙂

  8. Pingback: Divorce & Remarriage PART II « Stirring the Deep

    • I often hear from who are very critical of rcadial feminism and the courts that they were robbed blind by their ex when they got divorced, thanks to the court system bias against and fathers. Their ex wife and mother of their children gets to keep the house, get alimony and a huge chunk of his money, and sometimes he has trouble getting visitation rights supposedly.Is there any truth to there being a systematic bias against , and that perfectly innocent husbands get robbed all the time? Or do the who complain the most neglect to mention that they were abusive to their wife and kids? While some good get taken advantage of by some , especially gold-diggers and foreign , I personally do not know of any cases where the did not have a good reason to divorce their husbands, or they were abusive. Also, some lose big time due to divorce as well. I’ve never been married or divorced(but my parents are divorced), so what gives, what do the statistics say?

  9. Pingback: Divorce & Remarriage PART II « Christianity

  10. interesting thought considering what you posted earlier about sin. Does it matter which sin we commit? aren’t they all called abominations?

    The Word of God says sin is a reproach to any people.

    Yet while you are on the topic consider reading my post: http://wp.me/pzP54-1J

    • Calledsoldiers – all sin is abomination this is true. In Christ we are forgiven of all sin past, present and future. And when we are in Christ, we desire to walk in truth and love and it is a journey of discovering exactly what that means. And thanks for the link – I’ll check out your post.

  11. I often hear from who are very critical of rdciaal feminism and the courts that they were robbed blind by their ex when they got divorced, thanks to the court system bias against and fathers. Their ex wife and mother of their children gets to keep the house, get alimony and a huge chunk of his money, and sometimes he has trouble getting visitation rights supposedly.Is there any truth to there being a systematic bias against , and that perfectly innocent husbands get robbed all the time? Or do the who complain the most neglect to mention that they were abusive to their wife and kids? While some good get taken advantage of by some , especially gold-diggers and foreign , I personally do not know of any cases where the did not have a good reason to divorce their husbands, or they were abusive. Also, some lose big time due to divorce as well. I’ve never been married or divorced(but my parents are divorced), so what gives, what do the statistics say?

  12. Romans 7:3 So then if, while her husband lives, she marries another man, she will be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from that law, so that she is no adulteress, though she has married another man.

    In reading one of these older post about marriage and divorce and this scripture, while it speaks “also” to the natural realm, all scripture speaks to the spiritual realm in reality; for the natural is created to understand the spiritual as the scriptures teach. Marriage both naturally and spiritually is fraught with controversy, struggles and pain but it is a necessary struggle to get through and achieve the goal, the oneness of God in our relationship to “Him”. “We practice the natural to understand the spiritual.”

    Some food for thought on the above verse of Romans 7:3. In the natural this is true, yet as you also share in so many words, “where sin abounds mercy abounds so much the more”. Love trumps in the end. We see by allegory in Genesis, Eve was the wife of Adam but she came to play the harlot by listening to and giving in to another “man” in her life that was not her husband, the serpent, the devil which explained in other scriptures “IS” the carnal mind. So if Eve minded the spirit of her husband (Adam) there was unity, fidelity and oneness. When she began to “reason” with the other man ( the serpent or her own carnal mind) she became (becomes) an adulteress. By giving obedience to another man and adheres to his rule ( carnal mind) Eve, our soul has in effect divorced her first love and married another, the carnal mind. This is what happened to Eve in the fall and to us in our birth, we are subject to the carnality mind and are in effect married to it by Eve’s disobedience. Keep in mind this is all by design.

    In this and the other scriptures which pretty much say the same thing, we being married to the carnal minded man, our soul is be holding to “his” five senses. When we come to our senses and then from this other man of these senses, this husband (carnal mind) dies and we are free to marry another…only in Christ…or the oneness we seek. This is the spiritual interpretation of this verse and the others similar to it, however they do pertain in the natural…but all is forgiven in the natural for the natural is a teacher to get to the spiritual…thus the mistakes we make are the sign post which direct us To a higher calling in Christ Jesus.

    All things, good and evil, right or wrong, will lead us to Christ as His mercy covers and dismisses “all” sin. This is not to say that we should keep on sinning that grace may abound as says the scriptures because if we truly want to grasp the love we “say” we seek we will prove this love by adhering to it and becoming obedient to our “first love”.

    I hope this lends some light on the subject. If we look for the positive in all statements in the bible it is there. There is no negative but in the very present tense, so if we look beyond the lesson the negative is trying to teach, it is “always” positive. This is because God is only positive and His lessons are always for our ultimate good. Nothing is for the detriment of “all” His children but “all” things are for the maturing and perfection of His plan. We “all” are inclusive of His end justifying the means.

    Sonny

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