March 3, 2013
Answering Questions About Divorce and Remarriage
The issue of marriage, divorce, and remarriage is definitely relevant in our day. Some people have even described it as a “hot button topic.” A lot of emotions are attached to the subject, and whenever this is the case, it is difficult to get people to reason on a rational basis.
Human emotions will cause a person to disregard the teaching of the Bible.
It will also cause a person to excuse things that God will not overlook on the day of judgment. (Hebrews 13:4) Knowing how serious the subject is, let us consider the following questions and answers.
1. What is the reason or ground that God gives, that allows a person to divorce their mate and marry another person? In order to answer the question in a manner that pleases God, we must appeal to the sacred scriptures. Jesus said, “It was also said, ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’ But I say to you that every one who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality, causes her to commit adultery; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.” (Matthew 5:31-32) He also said, “And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery.” (Matthew 19:9) Therefore, we must conclude that the only reason God gives for a person to divorce his mate and marry another is sexual immorality. Sexual immorality refers to an illicit sex act.
2. May two people who are married to each other divorce or separate when there is no sexual immorality, as long as they do not marry anyone else? No. God’s word does not allow separating or divorcing at will. Jesus said, “What therefore God has joined together, let no one separate.” (Matthew 19:6) Paul said, “To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband. But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife.” (1 Corinthians 7:10-11) Someone may ask, “Doesn’t Paul say, ‘But if she does … ‘ showing that she has permission to separate from her husband?” Do you really believe Paul would say, “A wife must not separate,” (verse 10), then say as some allege “She may separate?” So, what does Paul mean by the phrase “But if she does … ?” It could be that some would separate anyway, and if they do so, they must remain unmarried or be reconciled!
3. If two unbelievers are married to one another, and if their marriage is “adulterous” because they have no right to be married; if they are immersed may they remain married since a person’s sins are forgiven when they are immersed into Christ? No. If they are in a marriage that constitutes adultery before they are immersed, they are in adultery after they are immersed because the adulterous relationship has not changed. A person must repent before they obey the gospel of Christ. (Acts 2:38)
Obeying the gospel does not remove a person from an unacceptable marriage; they must remove themselves from such!
Two men who are married to one another cannot remain in that relationship; neither can a man and a woman remain married when God says they have no right to each other. (Mark 6:17-18; Luke 16:18; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11; Revelation 21:8)
The questions I am seeking to answer are serious, and the consequences of rejecting Yahweh’s word on this important subject are eternal. (John 12:48-50) I have several more questions to answer and I beg you to believe and accept the truth regarding this issue.