Do We Have Differeing Standards regarding Divorce IF laity/Clergy?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by JesusFan, Sep 19, 2011.

  1. JesusFan

    JesusFan
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    As I know pastor Stanley was divorced, but found out that Dr Charles Ryrie was also?

    Not saying that either men would be disqualified from their service unto the Lord, but wouldn't a higher biblical standard apply to those in "officiasl ministry" positions?

    Wasn't there a situation with believe Focus on family, where co host with Dr Dobsen had to resign due to his divorce?
     
  2. sag38

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    It all depends on how one interprets the scripture. Is it referring to divorce or is Paul speaking of "a one woman man?" As to who is right or wrong, I'll just let all the dogmatic experts pontificate. It can get as ugly as the Calvinism vs Non-Calvinism debates.
     
  3. annsni

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    To me it's so much depends on what happened and when. If he was divorced before he was saved, it would be a much different story than if he was being divorced this week.
     
  4. JesusFan

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    Agree with you on that!

    My understanding on this topic is that IF fits the category of "scriptually divorce", that would NOT disqualify the person from ministry, but suggest a down time to 'regroup!"


    Think though that we do see that there is a lack of being willing to apply biblcal mandates in case of "not lawful' as that would disqulaify onw from service IMHO!

    Also mindful of when Jimmy Swaagert had his 'problem", and the official AG policy is to have a year 'down time" and have counseling, but local church only wanted 3 Months...

    Different standards for different folks, it seems!
     
  5. Jim1999

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    Marriage, in Canada, must be looked at from two different angles. First, we, as ministers, look at divorce from the biblical angle. Divorcement did happen in biblical times and there are rules for that divorcement. The marriage vows call for a life together forever regardless of circumstances. Then, we have the laws of the land. Marriage and divorce come under the laws of the land. A minister is accepted under the laws of the land. My ordination is registered with the government and my approval to do weddings comes under provincial laws and regulations. In this sense, I am a civil servant. I can refuse to perform a wedding, but I must obey the law when I do. I do not know how it works in the USA, but I believe we differ. We had to have a licence for each province, and turn in our licence when we moved from one province to another.

    Personally, I required the couple to be twice-born. I also required them to attend counselling sessions. Their banns were also read from the pulpit for 3 successive Sundays. Anyone objecting to the marriage could submit their argument to me, and the dispute would be settled before the wedding took place.

    Another vital point is that I personally kept in touch with the couple at least once a year by letter after the wedding. Most problems crop up within 5 years and they can be dealt with from the beginning.

    Do ministers have a greater responsibility in their own marriage? Indeed they do. We are not exempt from personal problems. Matter of fact, we are prone to problems if we are serving the people as we should. This is why there are so many problems with "preacher's kids". Sadly, the wife almost plays both roles. This is hard on her and it takes the preacher some time to realize this and act responsibly.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  6. Jeremiah2911

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    Well, as you may well know, the divorced pastor debate has caused much disagreement among Christian circles, and it does depend on how you interpret Scripture. I have only ever conversed on one other forum, a KJVO website, and the people on there put Peter Ruckman slightly below Jesus but definately above John the Baptist :)--and Peter Ruckman was married 3 times, so, of course, they all thought it was ok [on that forum] for a divorced man to be a pastor. I personally have a hard time with that--I think Pastors should be held to a higher standard--I also think there is a difference between pastors, evangelists and teachers.

    1 Timothy 3:1-5 This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. 2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; 3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; 4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; 5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)

    A man needs to be an example as a pastor, and know how to give counsel. My question for a divorced pastor is: If a young couple [or old for that matter] is having marital problems [and they all do], and they come to you for advice, what would you tell them? Don't do as I do, do as I say? I counsel couples before they are married, and one of the points I make to them is to take the world divorce out of their vocabulary.....If their pastor is divorced, that's kind of hard to do I would think.....I personally think you make yourself a stumblingblock, but I know [remembering the Peter Ruckman crowd] I'm probably very much in the minority.....Again, pastoring and teaching and evangelism to me are different areas of service, so if a man feels the calling, there are areas to work!
    God bless
     
  7. annsni

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    Or can it be that a pastor can say, "Here is what I did wrong in my marriage. But God was merciful and he saved me and forgave me. Do not make the same mistake that I did. It happens easily unless you work against it. In my marriage now, I protect our marriage by __________."

    Now, if a pastor has recently been divorced, I really think that there is a bigger issue but one of our pastors was divorced before he was saved. He had a very rough life before he was saved and even in his early years of salvation, he was not good. But God was merciful and worked hard on him and he now runs our recovery ministries. He can identify with these men because he's been there. :)
     
  8. revmwc

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    First many would say Dr. Stanley is still married in God's eyes and he has not remarried so he is still the husband of one wife. They don't recognize the divorce. I said some see it that way. The law of the land recognizes the divorce as the dissolving of the marriage contract.
    The greek term used in the qualifications means a one woman man, meaning the pastor is to be dedicated to one woman as her husband. Paul was writing to folks who belived in having multiple wives and his point to them was that a pastor should be dedicated to one woman.
    Nothing is even mentioned about divorce and remarriage in the passage. What Paul did say, 1 Corinthians 7:7 For I would that all men were even as I myself. But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that.
    Paul says by permission he says this that all men should be as he and Paul was unmarried. Notice He says all men, so that would include the pastor.

    1 Corinthians 7:32 But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord:
    33 But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife.

    The unmarried man cares for the things of God where as the man who is married cares for God and his wife. If a man is married to multiple woman he would really have less and less time to dedicate to the Lord and so Paul said the pastor should have only one wife if he was married. It is clear Paul saw it as a pastor without a wife would dedicate more time to the Lord, but he also knew that many men couldn't be as he was so they should marry.
     
  9. JesusFan

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    I agree with you on this...

    Think that we need to stay from both extremes on this issue, and follow the Bible!

    Extreme on one side is IF divorced, for ANY reason, than disqualified from ministry work
    other one is Grace covers it.period, so still can pastor/teach others etc!

    Think biblical moder is IF divorced due to adultry and not willing to have other repent/forsake, than still qualified to be a minister/taecher etc

    just seems that the Church either punished punitively, or else acts like 'no problem!"
     
  10. Salty

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    When Dr Stanley first separated c-1993, I was the GM of a Christian Radio Station (WAMN). We received a form letter from Dr. Stanley briefly explaining the situation. Initially, he stated he was accepting of a separation, but would never divorce. After his divorce, he offered to resign as pastor, but the church insisted he stay. At that time his son, left for another church. It seems as though, I recall some of the specifics of why Dr. Stanley went thur with the divorce, but since I am not positive, I rather not mention it on an open board.

    Apparently it was Dr Dobsons son, Ryan who was divorced


    In the States, each State or Commonwealth has their own laws regarding who may preform a wedding ceremony. In New York, any (head) minister of a congregation, even if not ordained may officiate.


    Counseling should be required by all Bible believing pastors. But I would require at least 6 sessions - and only one per week. aka not rushing!

    I think your other two statements are excellent! :thumbs:



    How often has a pastor said "I know what you are going thru", whether it is a death, or divorce. But really how can he know, unless he has went thru it. I believe a divorced pastor may possibly actually be a better counselor than a never divorced man. Please, I do not condone divorce, but the Lord take anyone and make them a blessing.

    I agree. This makes me think of a pastor who is on his 4th wife:tonofbricks:
     
  11. freeatlast

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    [SIZE=+0]What is your definition of Laity/Clergy and what standards are you refering to?[/SIZE]
     
  12. DiamondLady

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    For me it's not IF, it's WHY. If a pastor is divorced because of no fault of his own and has not remarried, then in my mind he is still the husband of one wife. A good example of this is Charles Stanley. His wife left him for another man, he has not remarried, so in my mind he is still the husband of one wife and I see no reason why he should not still serve as a pastor.

    If his wife had left him because he'd been having an affair with his secretary, then I would say he is no longer qualified.

    your mileage may vary.
     
  13. Jim1999

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    an affair with his secretary would have nothing to do with marriage,,it would be a sin anyway, wouldn't it?

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  14. Jerome

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    I would say he is no longer qualified regardless whether his wife left or not.

    Isn't it odd how so many divorced pastors were such cherubs while their wives were invariably shrewish jezebels.
     
    #14 Jerome, Sep 19, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2011
  15. Jim1999

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    The husband pastor can drive his wife away just by doing his pastoral duties. I can understand that. Thus it is very important to mind family first and church second. No one ever said the ministry was easy.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  16. Salty

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    Are you sure she left Dr Stanley for another man? Is there a credible source for that.

    I did see this link (mind you it it written from an extremely fundamentalist position), and it states nothing about another man.
     
  17. Jeremiah2911

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    I understand your point, and I'm glad the Lord has changed the life of someone in your Church, and I also understand I am going to be in the minority on this. I'll again say there are other jobs besides "Pastor" of a Church, and, I might add, just being a marriage counselor doesn't have any Scriptural requirements [that I know of :)].
    My thoughts again in a different light: A Pastor in front of his congregation is divorced, and a young couple is having marital problems [they all do], is this not a seed [thought] to the husband/wife: well, the pastor made a mistake [by marrying the wrong person] and everything turned out ok for him?
    I personally think it is a stumbling block--again, I was taught in training when you counsel young couples before they marry, they are to take the word divorce out of their vocabulary--because it's easy to give up, give in--it would be difficult for a divorced Pastor to give that counsel.
    Peace
     
  18. Jeremiah2911

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    Brother, we can agree to disagree :); I do agree however, that he may make a good marriage counselor, but as a Pastor, I still think he's a stumblingblock......again, I know I'm in the minority on this....

    God bless
     
  19. annsni

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    Why would it be difficult for the divorced pastor to give that counsel? Is it difficult for a recovered alcoholic to say "Never touch it in the first place"? I don't think so. They are speaking from experience.

    Does it matter that the pastor I spoke of was divorced over 25 years ago and has been married to his current wife for 22 years and they have 2 grown sons, one of whom is married? We're not talking recent history here.
     
  20. matt wade

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    That's not a good analogy. The divorced pastor failed in his marriage, that's why is is not able to give good council on how to succeed in marriage. The "recovered alcoholic" succeeded and is thus able to give good advice.
     

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