Divorce question...specifics...

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by 3John2, Jul 19, 2004.

  1. 3John2

    3John2
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    I have a serious question because it involves ME. First off I am married, this is my second marriage. I was married for 7 years prior. I was divorced, my ex wife committed adultery & got pregnant. Anyways, I have since remarried. I NEVER wanted to get divorced & it was something we would obviously never have considered but well it happened to us. I was devastated. I was traumatized beyond what mere words can explain. Last November I remarried. My wife was also divorced from her previous husband however to my knowledge or her there was no infidelity on either one of their parts. Her marriage was over like in 1 month. It just did NOT work. The day of the marriage the guy got drunk out of his mind & caused a scene at the wedding & just never "recovered". 3 months late they were divorced.
    Anyways I stated that just for history & specifics as to our situation. Now I don't condone divorce or anything like that nor am I making excuses for our failures. However the thing is we're married. I have had several people REALLY condemn me for it. Some have used some scripture that REALLY bothers me. ONe said it was ok for me to divorce as according to scripture I had "grounds" for divorce as she (my wife) was unfaithful HOWEVER that I could NOT remarry?! Another one said I COULD remarry however my CURRENT wife is living in adultery with ME because she divorced without "grounds" for divorce?!
    Can someone PLEASE explain my situation to me? I believe our sins & failures have been covered by the blood of Jesus & we BOTH have admitted our faults. Can anyone help with this? If not can someone please recommend a book to me regarding this subject?
     
  2. Marcia

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    I actually have thought of posting a question about remarriage. Maybe it will get addressed here, though I was divorced before I was a believer.

    I think the reason why some say your current wife is living in adultery with you is because there seem to be no Biblical grounds for her divorce. I have to agree with that. The fact it did not seem to be working does not make it okay for believers to divorce. Attempts at reconciliation and/or prayer should have gone on for some time, which apparently did not happen since it took only 3 mos. to get divorced.

    Also, the Bible gives grounds for divorce (spouse leaving or comitting adultery -- but even here reconciliation should be attempted) but no grounds for remarriage. Jesus said to marry a divorced woman was adultery -- no conditions given to make it okay.

    Sadly, people in the church now divorce and remarry just like the world. I think the latest poll shows that divorce rates are at least as high in the church as they are outside the church. How can we address the world about Biblical marriage with statistics like that? But I find that believers divorce all the time without Biblical grounds and then remarry (which I am not sure is Biblical once you are divorced).

    I will be interested to see other comments on this.


    Now that you are remarried, however, it would be wrong to divorce.
     
  3. 3John2

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    Thanks for the feedback. I sure hope someone can shed light on this difficult subject. I understand what you mean about my wife's divorce. I agree about that. However it does NOT change the fact that she married ME. I just want peace of mind I guess. ONce again I do NOT condone divorce. If I could go back I would have changed things but such is my life at this point. I hope to NEVER have THIS marriage end in divorce & we are building our WHOLE relationship on the Word of God that is why I am asking this question. We want to do things right this time around but it's very difficult to move on when all you keep hearing is you were wrong to remarry. So what are we supposed to do divorce to "right that wrong"? Obviously that is incorrect. We have no plans of doing that.
     
  4. crazycat

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    I am so glad my Lord and Saviour never divorced me cause it just didn't work, or I was unfaithful.
     
  5. Bible-boy

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    This topic is always one that draws strong opinions from the various sides/interpretations. However, I know that one thing is clear. Regardless of the situation and circumstances involved in your (and your wife's) previous divorce, if you both have asked God to forgive you for any sin (known or unknown) on your part in the previous divorce, then there is no possible way that either of you is continually living in the sin of adultery. No where in the Bible are we told that adultery is some kind of an unforgivable sin and those who espouse such a thing put God in a box, limit His power, and totally discount the sacrifice of Christ on the cross.

    So I would say, based upon your opening statement, that you both have prayed to God asking for forgiveness. As such, it is now time for you to move on and build your marriage on the Word of God, on love, respect, and trust. Stop reliving the past and questioning what transpired. God is faithful to forgive us all our sins when we call on the name Jesus in repentance. When we ask God to forgive us of our sins, in the name of Jesus Christ, we are separated from those sins as far as the east is from the west, and God casts the memory of those sins into the sea of forgetfulness.

    [ July 20, 2004, 02:51 AM: Message edited by: Bible-boy ]
     
  6. Craigbythesea

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    3John2,

    I believe that Marcia’s understanding of the Bible on this matter is largely correct. Here are some notes that I prepared some years ago for others making a similar enquiry.

    Matt. 5:32

    32 but I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except for the cause of unchastity, makes her commit adultery; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery. (NASB)

    Analysis of the text:

    conjunction: but
    declaration: I say to you
    conjunction: that
    statement #1: everyone who divorces his wife makes her commit adultery
    exception: except for the cause of unchastity
    conjunction: and
    statement # 2 Whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

    Comment:

    Everyone who divorces his wife makes her commit adultery--unless she has already done so, hence the exception to statement #1.

    Whoever, without exception, marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

    Note: We have here two classes of divorced women:
    Class #1: those who are innocent
    Class #2: those who are guilty
    To marry those in the first class causes them to commit adultery. To marry those in the second class is to marry an adulteress and to commit adultery with her. The Greek word translated here "unchastity" is the common Greek word for "fornication” (sex with someone other than one's wife).

    Cross references: Matt. 19:9; Mark 10:1-12

    Matt. 19:9

    9 "And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery." (NASB)

    Analysis of the text:
    conjunction: And
    declaration: I say to you
    statement #1: whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery
    exception: except for the cause of immorality

    Comment:

    Whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery--unless he divorced his first wife on the grounds of her having committed adultery.

    Note:

    We have in Matt. 5:32 two classes of men:
    Class #1: those who divorce their wives
    Class #2: Those who marry a divorced woman
    In Matt. 19:9 we have a third class of men:
    Class #3: Those who divorce their wives and marry another. For a divorced man to remarry is to commit adultery unless he divorced his first wife for adultery. This single exception is found only here in the New Testament and is regarded by many to be a scribal gloss (added in error by a scribe from Matt. 5:22) rather than a true teaching of Jesus. If this exception is indeed a scribal gloss, remarriage, while the spouse is still alive, is adultery in every case. The Greek word translated here "immorality" is the same Greek word translated "unchastity" in Matt. 5:32 and is the common Greek word for "fornication” (sex with someone other than one's wife). Compare Mark 10:11-12. Compare also 1 Cor. 7:6-9.
     
  7. Craigbythesea

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    I am afraid that it is not as easy as that. The Bible teaches that God forgives us of our sins when we confess them and repent of them. When individuals or couples find themselves in a second marriage that is contrary to Scripture, they need to both confess their sin and repent of their sin.

    Does repenting of their sin mean to divorce their present spouse? Very view people today favor that solution, but if we are to interpret the Bible literally here, I do not see any other solution. Most people, however, will concentrate on those passages in the Bible that speak of God’s love and forgiveness, and ignore those passages in the Bible that speak of repentance from sin. Homosexual “marriages” and other abominations are founded upon such reasoning.

    Am I telling you that you should get a divorce from the woman that you are now married to? No, I am not, because that would cause you to break your vows to that wife, and probably do all kinds of other damage that would be sins in and of themselves. But do you have a better option? I would not want to be in your place. Sin has consequence, and those consequences can be devastating. Only God knows what you should do now that you are in your situation. I suggest that you very diligently seek the answer from Him, and do accordingly.
     
  8. Bible-boy

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    I am afraid that it is not as easy as that. The Bible teaches that God forgives us of our sins when we confess them and repent of them. When individuals or couples find themselves in a second marriage that is contrary to Scripture, they need to both confess their sin and repent of their sin.

    Does repenting of their sin mean to divorce their present spouse? Very view people today favor that solution, but if we are to interpret the Bible literally here, I do not see any other solution. Most people, however, will concentrate on those passages in the Bible that speak of God’s love and forgiveness, and ignore those passages in the Bible that speak of repentance from sin. Homosexual “marriages” and other abominations are founded upon such reasoning.

    Am I telling you that you should get a divorce from the woman that you are now married to? No, I am not, because that would cause you to break your vows to that wife, and probably do all kinds of other damage that would be sins in and of themselves. But do you have a better option? I would not want to be in your place. Sin has consequence, and those consequences can be devastating. Only God knows what you should do now that you are in your situation. I suggest that you very diligently seek the answer from Him, and do accordingly.
    </font>[/QUOTE]Hello Craigbythesea,

    The opening post says: "I believe our sins & failures have been covered by the blood of Jesus & we BOTH have admitted our faults."

    Therefore, I am assuming that BOTH parties have confessed and repented of any sin involved in their previous divorces and for entering into a second marriage in a state of adultery (if they had not confessed and repented prior to the second marriage). As such, there is no possible way that they are continually living in adultery because they have already been totally forgiven by the only one who could possibly declare them as ever having been guilty in the first place.

    I fully agree that sin carries consequences. However, in this case the consequence surely is not that they must live in continual guilt over their past sins and failures when God does consider them as being guilty. Only God knows the long range consequences in this situation.

    By confessing their sin in the failures of their first marriages and asking God to forgive them, and then confessing their sin for entering into a second marriage in a state of adultery (if they had not already confessed and repented of the previous divorces), and asking God to forgive them there as well, they have demonstrated their willingness to repent and thus purified their marriage. Therefore, the second marriage is no longer contrary to Scripture and there is no biblical demand for a second divorce to occur. In fact to do so would be really be contrary to Scripture.

    If we, as Christians, were to advise them to divorce in order to prove their confession and repentance, we would begin a vicous cycle that would be never ending. Instead, we must simply agree with God that they were forgiven at the very second they confessed and repented.

    BTW... I'm just thinking out loud here, is there a Scripture reference in which God requires a divorce in order to demonstrate repentance on someone's part? I can't think of one.

    I agree with your point about homosexuality. Yet, there is a slight differnce in the two situations under consideration here. If a man is engaed in homosexuality and says to God, "I confess my sin of homosexuality and repent of it" (repent meaning to turn away from the sin), then he can't return to that sexual practice which God has called an abomination. However, if as in the case as outlined by the original poster, both parties confess and repent of their sins they can remain married because God has not declared marriage between one man and one woman to be a sinful act.
     
  9. Craigbythesea

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    Bible-boy,

    You have missed the whole point! A second marriage is an adulterous marriage, and as long as they are in it, they are committing adultery. Confession without repentance (ending the adulterous marriage) will not absolve them from sin. The exact same thing applies to homosexual “marriages.”
     
  10. Craigbythesea

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    1. Or do you not know, brethren (for I am speaking to those who know the law), that the law has jurisdiction over a person as long as he lives?
    2. For the married woman is bound by law to her husband while he is living; but if her husband dies, she is released from the law concerning the husband.
    3. So then, if while her husband is living she is joined to another man, she shall be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from the law, so that she is not an adulteress though she is joined to another man. (NASB, 1995)
     
  11. Bible-boy

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    Nope...

    I fully understood where you were coming from. However, they ARE married and for them to divorce would clearly be contrary to Scripture. There is no sin involved in a marriage between one man and one woman. There is always sin involved in a homosexual relationship because God has declared it to be an abomination.

    I see that you put quote marks around the word marriage when it follows the word homosexual. I assume that is because you agree with me that there is no such thing as marriage between two men or two women? There is only homosexual sin according to the Bible. However, that is not the case when we are considering a marriage between one man and one woman.

    This couple's willingness to confess their sin, ask for God's forgiveness and tell Him that they no longer want to live in an adulterous manner, and then expose themselves publically as they have here, can be considered nothing less than repentance. They surely can not, no must not, divorce a second time. Two wrongs do not make a right. It is we who must simply agree with God that they were forgiven the second they called on the name of Jesus and move on from here.

    [ July 20, 2004, 05:54 AM: Message edited by: Bible-boy ]
     
  12. Bible-boy

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    I agree fully. However, what does the rest of the Bible have to say regarding this adulterous woman if she confesses and repents of her sin? Does she remain an adulteress after God has forgiven her? No. Did the woman at the well in John 4, who according to Jesus, had five husbands and was living with a sixth man who was not her husband remain an adulteress after she believed on Christ and led her village to Him? Jesus did not tell her that before she could place her faith in Him that she had to go and divorce four of her five husbands. He simply offered her the living water of faith in Christ. Again, is there a passage of Scripture that requires someone to divorce in order to prove repentance?
     
  13. Craigbythesea

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    There most certainly is if they are both married to other people—and they are!

    Matthew says so, Mark says so, and Paul says so.

    Matt. 5: 32 but I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except for the cause of unchastity, makes her commit adultery; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery. (NASB)

    Mark 10:11. And He *said to them, "Whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her;
    12. and if she herself divorces her husband and marries another man, she is committing adultery." (NASB)

    Rom. 7:1. Or do you not know, brethren (for I am speaking to those who know the law), that the law has jurisdiction over a person as long as he lives?
    2. For the married woman is bound by law to her husband while he is living; but if her husband dies, she is released from the law concerning the husband.
    3. So then, if while her husband is living she is joined to another man, she shall be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from the law, so that she is not an adulteress though she is joined to another man. (NASB)

    1 Cor. 7:10. But to the married I give instructions, not I, but the Lord, that the wife should not leave her husband
    11. (but if she does leave, she must remain unmarried, or else be reconciled to her husband), and that the husband should not divorce his wife.

    NO WHERE IN THE NEW TESTAMENT IS A SECOND MARRIAGE TO A DIFFERENT SPOUSE ALLOWED WHILE THE FIRST SPOUSE IS STILL ALLIVE. AND NO WHERE IN THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE CHURCH DO WE FIND SUCH ADULTEROUS RELATIONSHIPS SACTIONED BY THE CHURCH. INDEED, THEY WERE ABSOLUTELY PROHIBITED IN ACCORD WITH THE HOLY SCRIPTURES!
     
  14. Bible-boy

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    I beg to differ with you last statement above. However, I have to go now. I would love to continue our conversation. I will not be back on-line until around mid-night on 7-21-04. ... And please don't yell at me with all caps in bold (all caps means that you are yelling).
     
  15. Craigbythesea

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    Oh! I did not know that. Sorry. I never yell at any one.
     
  16. delly

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    I have to agree with Bible Boy on this. I know all the scriptures concerning marriage and remarriage, but what we are talking about here is sin. The rest of you seem to have this idea that God will not forgive this sin. I was not aware that this was the unpardonable sin. John and his wife are truly repentant and have asked God to forgive them and I believe they are forgiven. There is nothing to be gained by divorcing at this stage. In fact, I believe that would be another sin in it'self. All of us have sinned and come short of the glory of God.
    John was completely free to remarry because his wife committed adultery. His choice to marry a woman who previously divorced without cause may have been unfortunate but it is done and should not be undone.
    No, I am not condoning what has been done, but they have brought this before God and sought forgiveness. Af far as God is concerned, it is finished.

    I have been divorced and completely understand what John is going through. I have not remarried but hope to someday. Adultery was not the cause of my divorce, but alcohol, abuse and marriage don't mix. My husband abandoned me for a bottle and God finally gave me the strength to get out while I could.

    There is an old song that says:
    God took the sins of his sons and his daughters and cast them away from you and from me.
    Into the sea of forgetfullness as far as the eye can see.
    Then He put up a sign for you and for me. No fishin' in the deep dark sea.

    Too bad people just have to keep fishin'.
     
  17. 3John2

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    Thanks for the feedback. If you want to here some advice that REALLY is warped that IS scripturaral (if you want to call it that)...I can murder her husband because God CAN & WILL forgive me for THAT however HE can't forgive me for marrying her while he is alive. That just doesn't seem correct.
    The logic & scriptures used here against our marriage were the same ones I encountered with the other person. Divorcing my CURRENT wife was the "solution".
     
  18. Glory Bound

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    I think what Craig was getting at was that Jesus labeled the remarriage as "adultery". Not the single act of getting married, but simply being together on a ongoing basis. So in that sense, the adultery is an ongoing sin repeated daily... and even if confessed the sin is repeated again unless there is separation.

    I've wondered about this for years, but I don't know for sure if this is what Jesus intended.
     
  19. Craigbythesea

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    Some people choose to sin against God to fulfill their own selfish desires, and most of them find a way to distort the clear and explicit truths of God's word to make themselves feel better. Even the 12 disciples, before they were born again, thought that the teachings of Jesus about marriage and divorce were so strict that it was better not to get married in the first place.

    In the last 40 years the Biblical teaching of marriage and divorce has been turned upside-down, and the divorce rate in the United States among evangelicals has increased by 1000% (yes, one thousand percent), while the divorce rate among non-evangelicals has decreased by 1 or 2 percent. And the use of drugs and the frequency of suicide among the children of evangelicals have increased right along with the divorce rate.

    In God’s sight, a marriage remains in effect until one of the parties in the marriage dies. Therefore, every time one of these married persons has sex with another person, that married person is committing adultery. Willful sin, that continues year after year, will surely bring upon those committing the sin the wrath of God. Rationalize and distort the word of God all you like, but that will not change the reality of sin and the wrath of God.

    10. His disciples said to Him, "If such is the case of the man with his wife, it is better not to marry.''

    Marriage is a life-long contract that should not be entered into without much prayer. And once the contract is entered into, it remains in effect until one of the parties to the contract dies. Anyone who murders their spouse to escape the contract is guilty of murder, and the Biblical penalty for murder is death by execution. Therefore, remarriage after murder is not seen in the Bible as a possibility. Anyone who thinks that they can outsmart God is a fool.
     
  20. Craigbythesea

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    That is correct.
     

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