Forgotten principles in divorcing someone...

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Daniel David, Jan 23, 2003.

  1. Daniel David

    Daniel David
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    It is an absolute shame that the divorce rate is so high in today's culture. What is even sadder is that many say the rate is comparable to what goes on in the church. Of course, we cannot expect that everyone that says they are a believer actually is one. Even so, the rate would still be too high. Here is a list of forgotten principles that those seeking a divorce either disregard or are ignorant of. Neither option is acceptable. This is not meant to condemn anyone. However, someone might be thinking about the issue and it might be enough to persuade him or her to rethink and resubmit to God's order and not man's.

    1. Suffering for righteousness sake – suffering is part of every believer's life. We must seek to learn whatever it is God is teaching us.

    I Peter 3:14
    But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you are blessed.

    2. Judging the other spouse – since all people are fallen, how is it we judge the other person unworthy to continue to be a spouse?

    Matthew 7:1
    Judge not, that you be not judged.

    3. Lying (braking of vows) – "for better or for worse" really does mean that. Unfortunately, too many disregard what they vowed before both God and men.

    Proverbs 20:25
    It is a snare for a man to devote rashly something as holy, And afterward to reconsider his vows.

    4. Hard heart – "Be kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another even as God in Christ has forgiven you."

    Matthew 19:8
    Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, permitted you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so.

    5. Taking someone before court – this is forbidden between believers. What are we saying to the lost spouse when he/she is expected to act like a Christian? The law made bad Jews and even worse Christians. All it does is condemn the lost.

    I Corinthians 6:7
    Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated?

    6. Denial of the picture of Christ and the church – Christ can never be separated from his bride. Our marriage is to picture that. Keep in mind, believers are not merely divorced from the law, we are dead to it. That is how we can be joined to Christ. Does it?

    Romans 7:2-3
    For the woman who has a husband is bound by the law to her husband as long as he lives. But if the husband dies, she is released from the law of her husband. 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.

    7. Vengeance – I am reminded of what Stephen, who pictured Christ, did said when he was being stoned. It was a far cry from vengeance. Not coincidentally, who is the one who executes vengeance?

    Romans 12:19
    Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord.

    8. Lack of submission (wife) – how much submission is involved in going over your husband and the God-ordained order?

    Ephesians 5:24
    Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.

    9. Not giving of your own life (husband) – how much dying to yourself is involved when you file for divorce?

    Ephesians 5:29
    For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church

    (editted #8 & #9 to make more sense - hopefully)

    [ January 23, 2003, 04:04 PM: Message edited by: Kal-El ]
     
  2. Johnv

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    Lying (braking of vows); "for better or for worse" really does mean that. Unfortunately, too many disregard what they vowed before both God and men.

    Proverbs 20:25
    It is a snare for a man to devote rashly something as holy, And afterward to reconsider his vows.


    Sorry, but it almost sounds like when one partner breaks their vow, it's not enough reason to divorce. I think you miss the mark on this one. When one partner breaks a vow, and shows no desire to mend the break or repent for the actions which broke the vow in the first place, then the other person has every reason to seek divorce.

    Taking someone before court; this is forbidden between believers. What are we saying to the lost spouse when he/she is expected to act like a Christian? The law made bad Jews and even worse Christians. All it does is condemn the lost.

    I disagree. When the unrepentant actions of the lost spouse violated the marriage, for a Christian to put with those actions is equivalent to condoning those actions. The Christian, by divorcing in court, does not condemn the lost. Lost spouses condemn themselves. Christian spouses that accept the behaviors of their spouses that violate the covenant of marriage are at risk of becoming lost themselves.

    Lack of submission (wife); how much submission is involved in going over your husband and dictating how things are done?
    Neither should dictate, since a marriage is not a dictatorship.

    Not giving of your own life (husband); how much dying to yourself is involved in sending a messenger to deliver the papers?
    This one makes no sense. Divorce papers may not be served by a party to the action.
     
  3. TheOliveBranch

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    Johnv,
    I don't think Kal is giving reasons to divorce. He is giving the excuses people use for divorce.
     
  4. Daniel David

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    1. It isn't. Many of the passages found in my original post on this overlap.

    2. No. The promise is "for better or for worse, till death do us part". Unconditional love is promised by both parties. If one side does not keep the promise, the other side still must. Otherwise, those words should not be said. It should be "in good times only till I decide to divorce".

    3. All actions of a lost person are unrepentant (Acts 17:30-31). What, are we surprised when lost people act lost?

    4. The Christian judges the other person unworthy. Not exactly the most effective way of demonstrating the love of Christ (Rom. 5:8).

    5. ???

    6. I didn't mean to imply as such. The wife is not in authority (or the head) of the man, ever.

    7. All I meant was that the husband who files for divorce is not exactly dying to himself and for his bride.
     
  5. Wisdom Seeker

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    I really wasn't going to wade in on another topic on divorce, not after my last experience with the divorce topic here...but I just wanted to add something funny...I don't remember what vows I made at the alter...the whole thing is a complete whirring in my ears blur...I was so nervous...I really don't remember the vows I made. Nope...nothing...complete blank.
     
  6. C.S. Murphy

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  7. Johnv

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    Jesus told the Jews that because of the hardness of their hearts Moses gave them the right to divorce, you make it sound like they should seek divorce.
    If you juxtapose Jesus' teachings of cutting off a part of the body which offends you, I think it's inline with what I'm saying. In my situation, I had a wife who was caught in adultery, and continued it after it was discovered. After two years, I finally sought divorce. Why? Because now I was in a situation of accepting the behavior which clearly violated the covenant. My wife didn't want a divorce, but she wanted to continue her extramarital relationship freely. I therefore chose to cut off the part of the body that offended me. Also, it was not I who broke the covenant, it was she. For me to NOT seek divorce would ave been an affront to God.

    Kal made a great point in that divorce between two believers is unbiblical.
    I do agree with that and I regret not affirming his point. Sorry, brother, my bad.

    As to your point about them risking becoming lost themselves, what do you mean by that? Again, using my own situation as an example, I was in danger of compomising my own faith by staying in the situation. I ultimately had to choose between my relationship with my wife, and my relationship with God. Hard as it was to do, it ws not hard to decide. Had I stayed, I may very well have stopped going to church, reading the Word, and communed with other believers. I likely would have turned my back on the God who saved me.
     
  8. PraiseHim

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    Someone mentioned not remembering their vows at their wedding. I dont remember mine either. I even asked my husband about an hour or so after we got married if we said "for better or for worse" he said we did. I just have no clue!

    I would have to say I think people shouldn't divorce for some of the things they do. like falling out of love, or they fight to much etc. but if my husband cheated on me I would seriously consider divorce unless the Lord did something in me to get me through that. That is something I don't think I could get over. Also if my husband backslid for some reason and decided to leave me. There would be no way of stopping the divorce.
    Just my thoughts! [​IMG]
    Heather
     
  9. Wisdom Seeker

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    Glad you said that Heather. Nice to know I'm not the only one.

    As far as the other thing you said...I've been through that...and all I can say...is you never know what you will be able to take, or how you will recover...until it happens. Just pray...that you never have to find out...it's more painful than having surgery without anesthesia. ;)
     
  10. Daniel David

    Daniel David
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    I am moving this to the theology forum to open it up further.
     
  11. I Am Blessed 24

    I Am Blessed 24
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  12. Lorelei

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    To stay in an abusive relationship in order to keep from divorcing is not suffering for righteousness sake, it is stupidity. I was stupid for 14 years because of the legalistic teaching that it was wrong for me to leave him.

    Being persecuted because you believe in Christ is not the same as being persecuted because you looked at someone the wrong way.

    Even Paul, who gloried in his persecution, avoided it when possible.

    Please, I realize it is God's will to for a marriage to stay in tact, but don't portray God out to be so merciless as to expect you to remain in an abusive situation for HIS blessing. This is not the persecution he was talking about. Even if you don't agree they should divorce, please help them get out of that house, don't encourage their continued beatings!

    This is only necessary because the marriage has a state license. Why is ok to bring in the goverment to approve the marraige, but not disolve it?

    My divorce wasn't taken to court, an agreement was made and signed and taken to the courthouse for approval, but there was no dispute or trial. It was the same courthouse we had to attend to get married.

    I think there is much that we as the body of Christ should do to encourage couples to take their vows seriously, but in all honesty that needs to be taught before the marriage is ever entered into.

    I appreciate the motive for which you made this post, but I fear the legalistic aspect of it is more harmful than helpful.

    Christ's love is never ending, he forgives and He alone can help us to forgive. We must read His Word through the Spirit's leading and we will learn to do what is right.

    ~Lorelei
     
  13. Dr. Bob

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    Bible uses two very clear examples of "grounds" for divorce.</font>
    • Sexual Sin - pornea in Greek, Fornication in some translations, immorality in others. If a spouse is involved in some aspect of sexual sin, you have biblical grounds for possibly divorcing. This is NOT a "mandate" that you MUST divorce.</font>
    • Abandonment - if the spouse leaves, separates from you and is not content to live with you, you also have biblical grounds for a divorce. This may entail abuse, as they have "abandoned" you in a very real sense when they being attacking you.</font>
    Hope this helps clarify things. :cool:
     
  14. Walls

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    PreachtheWord, good post. I understand your meaning and the reason for the post. I may have to change my opinion of you if you keep it up.
     
  15. I Am Blessed 24

    I Am Blessed 24
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    Thanks for clarifying, Dr. Bob;
    This actually happened in a church I attended and I knew both families well. There were two couples (both with several children) who worked very hard for the Lord and fellowshipped with each other all the time.

    HUSBAND #1 left home (leaving his children with his wife) to run away with WIFE #2 (who left her children with her husband).

    They moved out of state and made it quite clear they were never coming back.

    The Pastor told WIFE #1 (the one left behind) that she could not file for divorce, but must wait for her husband to file or SHE would be guilty in the eyes of God.

    What do you think of this philosophy? :confused:

    Sue
     
  16. Thankful

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    I agree with Lorelei [​IMG]

    I thank the Lord each day that I have not had to experience abuse,unfaithfulness, and abandonment from a spouse.

    I pray for those that are in these situations. Many of them, for some reason, cannot leave their spouse, but I do not believe that being beaten by a spouse is suffering for Jesus sake. And further, I think that if at all possible, they should get out of the situation for their sake and the sake of their children.

    Should these people divorce and remarry? That is not for me to say. It is between them and God. We are to please God not man.
     
  17. David A Bayliss

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    May I suggest that there is a key verse on this subject that most people miss the meaning of:

    Mt 5:32 But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.

    And within this verse people miss the key word: causeth.

    People ask the question: "Is divorce ok" and when the obvious answer "no" arises we come up with 101 special circumstances when we think it has to be ok because otherwise it is unfair.

    What the Lord is doing in this verse is seperating out three things :-
    a) Is something ok
    b) Who is performing the non-ok action
    c) Who is -responsible- for the non-ok action.

    In this particular verse he is saying that if a man divorce his wife and she has not (already) fornicated then at the point she remarries :-

    a) This is not ok. It is adultery
    b) The person performing the action is the woman
    c) The person -blamed- for the action is the man that divorced her

    If she had already fornicated then answer c) becomes that she carries her own guilt.

    IMO if we seperated these three ideas out then we could be far more strident (and correct) in our asservation that divorce is -not- ok whilst making it clear that the person getting the divorce may be in no way the 'guilty' party in performing this sinful action.

    HTH

    DAB
     
  18. Johnv

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    Bible uses two very clear examples of "grounds" for divorce.

    Sexual Sin - pornea in Greek, Fornication in some translations, immorality in others. If a spouse is involved in some aspect of sexual sin, you have biblical grounds for possibly divorcing. This is NOT a "mandate" that you MUST divorce.

    Abandonment - if the spouse leaves, separates from you and is not content to live with you, you also have biblical grounds for a divorce. This may entail abuse, as they have "abandoned" you in a very real sense when they being attacking you.


    Since my wife did BOTH, and did them continually for an extended period of time (several years), it's clear to me that my divorce was completely biblically appropriate. Still, it is my wish that no one ever have to go through what I had to go through. Even though enough time has passed that I've mostly healed from the damage, the scars stay with you your entire life.
     
  19. I Am Blessed 24

    I Am Blessed 24
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    I agree John. I, too, went through a divorce for both of the biblical reasons cited. You may walk out of the court house without a spouse; but you lose a part of your heart and you carry the scars forever.

    Sue
     
  20. Dr. Bob

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    John and Sue - I appreciate you "putting a real face" on the tragedy called divorce. My heart goes out to you (and thanks for opening up and sharing) and everyone who has been on the other side of a marriage breaking up.

    It is easy to be "theoretical" and often a different story when we see the people involved.
     

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