Divorce & Remarriage Question

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Hawaiiski, Feb 26, 2007.

  1. Hawaiiski

    Hawaiiski
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    I have a relative who was recently divorced, & is wondering if he has biblical grounds to remarry. Both he & his ex-wife are professing Christians. Here's his side of the story: While married, he committed adultery. He confessed it to his wife who decided not to leave him. About a year later, they separated due to marital problems. While separated, the wife committed adultery. He tried to reconcile the marriage, but she refused. She contended that she had biblical grounds for divorce due to his initial unfaithfulness. Do either of them have biblical grounds to remarry? If a spouse commits adultery, how long can the other spouse cling to Mt. 19:9 as grounds for divorce & remarriage? What if they both commit adultery, as in this case?
     
  2. Disgruntled UK Baptist

    Disgruntled UK Baptist
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    I'd say they both have grounds to remarry. That does not mean they SHOULD remarry, reconiliation would be far better and it is a pity that two professing Christians cannot be reconciled.

    D.
     
  3. Shiloh

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    How many wrongs = one right?
     
  4. Martin

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    ==I don't know the particulars of the situation but I do believe that the Apostle Paul would advise both of them not to remarry (see 1Cor 7).
     
  5. donnA

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    The bible gives permission to divorce if the spouse cheats, but does it give permission to remarry?
     
  6. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    Well I will go ahead and jump in on this one.

    I don’t believe either one of them had grounds to divorce. I do not believe the Bible gives permission to divorce if your spouse cheats on you.

    What Jesus said in Matthew 5:32 was:
    To me what Jesus said was that if you divorce for any reason other than adultery then you are causing your spouse to commit adultery. Of course in cases where your spouse has already cheated on you then you are not causing them to commit adultery because they already have. Notice that he said anyone who marries a divorced person commits adultery.


    Matthew 19:9, and Mark 10 say the same thing. I do not believe that Jesus ever indicated that divorce is ok. Matthew 19:4-6 makes this quite clear. So I don’t believe either party can be held blameless in the divorce. Divorce is always a sin and they need to seek forgiveness and reconciliation if that is possible.

    Ok, that bad news being said here is the good news. If reconciliation is not possible then either party does have freedom to remarry. I believe I Cor 15:7 gives us that option. They should try to reconcile but if one spouse refuses then the other one should not be held under bondage. I know there are many Christians who disagree with this based on I Cor 7:11 but I believe that is a special case of an unblieving spouse where reconciliation after the spouses salvation is still possible.

    To summarize – Divorce is bad, confess and receive God’s forgiveness. Then move on. If God can forgive you he can also free you. We don’t live under the law, remember?

    Anyway, that’s my opinion. I know I am in the minority here. I believe my views are biblical but still respect your other views on the outside chance that I might be wrong (I think that happened once before but I can’t remember for sure).
     
  7. menageriekeeper

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    Actually Tentmaker, I like your explaination of things. Far to many take issue of divorce lightly and are ready to throw down their marriage vows at the first sign of a problem. Reconcillation first!
     
  8. donnA

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    I agree, a person needs to learn to live with their spouse, learn to liv with those little things they don't like. And alays forgive.
     
  9. mcdirector

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    IMHO, once one of them remarries, there is no more chance for reconciliation. While I agree with my fellow North Carolinian that we confess, are forgiven and move on, I sure do hate to cut off that chance for reconciliation.
     
  10. ituttut

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    First we will pray for them.

    The damage has been done, and by both parties. They must endeavor to salvage what they have left. It could be better than ever. I've gone to a nice clean restaurant known for its "good tender, juicy steaks", and afterwards said; "I get better than that at home." We live and learn.

    They should stay together for I don't believe either one will be able to contain themselves, being apart for any length of time, and they will continue in their own fornication/s. The deeds each did may open their eyes for better understanding of how they are to live as Christians, and realize they were meant for each other.

    So many avenues to close in trying to come up with the right action to take. Was she his virgin when they married? Had he preformed the marriage act with someone else before they were married? If he took his virgin in purity himself, then this is what marriage is meant to be. Otherwise they have problems from the very first. But we are to remember we are sinners saved by grace through His faith. All our sins were taken care of at the cross.

    Assuming this is so (neither contaminated at marriage) when he committed adultery if he was sorry for this act of unfaithfulness and turned again to God, asking his wife for forgiveness, there should be no problem if she forgave him. If she did not (she will never forget) forgive him then she was living in sin. As a Christian, God had already forgiven him of his sin, and something is wrong in her Christian life if she cannot forgive a sinner, just like herself. She being a saved sinner will be more harshly judged (I believe) than he as she stands before Jesus in our judgment of deeds done while in the body.

    I'm not trying to let the man off the hook. He is to love and honor his wife. He broke that honor by going to another. The wife has another role to play in this marriage. She is to reverence her husband. Did she venerate her husband in their marriage before he "wandered"? The wife does not have to love her husband, but just as the woman desired the forbidden fruit even to death, so the wife is to desire that husband of hers. I know a number of men that have strayed, and in many of the cases could be seen the wife did not desire her husband.

    A wife should be lusting after her man, just as she did the proverbial apple. I'm not speaking in a continual state of "sexual lust", but the woman saw the fruit delighted her eyes, for with this "fruit/now man" she would be made strong, secure, and she would be as a "god", know good and evil. She ate and when she did, she determined it would be good to give to her other Adam half for now in her new knowledge she knew she was equipped to "tempt and offer what Adam the man wanted, and together they could be as "gods" and take on the world. A man has to continue to Love His woman, and the woman has to continue to Desire her man, but they should both understand the man is the head, and the woman is part of his body. If we could only understand the man SHOULD produce, and the woman SHOULD deliver. Many women today believe they can produce, and deliver. By themselves they can do nothing, but together "life goes on". A man produces at an alarming rate in a loving and desirable setting. The woman in the desire for her husband will take what he offers and will deliver for him. She is then fulfilled and can see the fruit of their labor in love. Too often we she the woman will wish to cling to that fruit, she and her husband produced. Here is another "excuse" for the man to look for that "strange" flesh, for there is no desire for him where he wishes to be.

    But here again, this may not have been the case, when she lost her desire for him as he dishonored her. So let's say He had no cause but lust for strange flesh. But he came back and she let him back in. He "fluked in this temptation", but looks as if he overcame in Christ. She at first does what a wife should do, and take him back (she hadn't lost him for he just was "wandering around"), but a separation comes. From the text she did not get a divorce. I would say she is the one that left and I would say for a purpose. I believe she would have gone after strange flesh while they lived together, but she wouldn’t feel right about that so she separates in order to feel safe in paying him back.

    A good question here to ask is who has done the greatest sin, and is there sin still remaining in one or the other. If they both really are Christians, I believe they must forgive, and try to forget acknowledging they are saved sinners and either come together again, or both remain single. If saved, they have been forgiven. I believe if anything else happens, one or both need to consider they never went back to the Cross to have their sins taken care of in the first place. That blood is still available to them to take away their every sin.
     
    #10 ituttut, Mar 1, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 1, 2007
  11. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    I would agree with that. Once one has remarried that opportunity is gone and at that point the other spouse should move on and possibly remarry. As long as there is a chance for reconciliation they should keep that hope going.

    But what about cases where reconciliation is not an option due to other sins besides adultery. What if there is an abusive relationship or if the children are abused. If a wife leaves an abusive husband who was beating her or her children does she need to remain celebate in the hope that he will repent of his sin and seek reconciliation. Would she believe him if he tries?

    I agree with the basic idea that many people give up on their marriages too quickly. We all said something like "for better or worse" and some days are just plain worse. That does not mean we quit. On the other hand there are times when a marriage is over and both parties know it.
     
  12. Salamander

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    Sure, to the former part of the question, we are given the ministry of reconciliation.

    To the first part, NO, God has never honoured a hardheart, He only hardens the impenetent heart further.
     
  13. DavidH

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    I read this board regularly but seldom post.
    This caught my eye.
    Jesus was very clear when He said "What God hath joined together let no man put asunder."
    The thing that flies over our heads most of the time is "what God joins together.
    Unless you have a true marriage--one that God has approved of--then you can't have a divorce.
    Having a piece of paper issued by the government doesn't make you married, just as a piece of paper can't give you a divorce.
    Most people who end up divorced by the laws of the land were out of God's will when they started their union. . When that happens, God never recognizes them as being married. Paul was pretty clear when he said the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the believing man and vice versa. God protects children produced in a godless union, but He never sees someone as married just because they live together and have kids.
    Marriage is only "in Christ." God compares marriage and the church because both are intertwined. Would you expect God to bless you if you were part of the wrong church?
    I've advised several couples to end it when it was obvious they were not right for each other and that God was never going to bless their relationship and that if they stayed together life would continue to be hell for them. They weren't divorcing because they were never married in God's eyes to begin with.

    I don't have all the answers.
     
  14. ituttut

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    You should post more often. You make valid points.
    I agree, but what we see at the beginning is what God joined together. Adam and the woman to join together had to be brought together again, to accomplish His Will. They were named Adam, and from the head came the body. In the physical body they then had to come together again. There is only one possible way this can be done, and this is by doing the marriage act. Paul tell's us this in I Corinthians 6:15-16.
    Truth not seen by many.
    Hear Hear, as could be true.
    Can't agree if they are made one by doing the marriage act.
    I see differently for the two became one.
    Marriage was before Christ shed His Blood
    Agree, but God does.
     
  15. convicted1

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    RE: Divorcing and Remarrying

    Well, the problem with reconciliation is this....if a spouse cheats on you, the trust is gone. I do believe you have a right to remarry, but only in the Lord. If my wife cheated on me, I wouldn't want anything to do with her, nor would she me if I cheated on her. There are so many STD's nowadays that they could possibly bring something home to you, that could, in the long run, kill you. But, I understand reconciliation, but I wouldn't trust my wife again......without trust, you have no marriage.
     

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