Jesus Teaches about Divorce: 3030 Challenge #Day 5

Divorce 

divorce

So far so good in this 30 days journey on the teachings of Jesus, we’ve talked about salt. Jesus says we are the salt of the earth. As salts, we are to add taste to the world around us. Then we saw that we are not only salts, but also light of the world, lighting up the corners around us.  We’ve already talked about anger. Jesus says it’s not just the external behavior of murder that’s wrong. It’s also wrong to maintain unresolved anger toward another person. In our last post, we saw that Jesus taught that it’s not only against the law to cheat on your spouse. It’s also against the law just to entertain the desire to have an affair with someone else.

Today we’re going to talk about divorce. Just as he did with the previous subjects, Jesus begins with what his followers already knew about divorce from the Old Testament: that God permitted it.

Divorce is Permitted

Matthew 5:31-32 [31] “It has been said, ‘Anyone who divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.’

Deuteronomy 24:1-4 If a man marries a woman who becomes displeasing to him because he finds something indecent about her, and he writes her a certificate of divorce, gives it to her and sends her from his house

[And her second marriage also ends,] [4] then her first husband, who divorced her, is not allowed to marry her again

But Not for Any Reason

[32] But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, causes her to become an adulteress,

and anyone who marries the divorced woman commits adultery. 

External: divorce

Internal: motive, commitment

God’s Design for Our Marriages

Matthew 19:3-9 Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?”

[4] “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’

[5] and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’?

[6] So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.”

  • Life-long Commitment
  • Faithfulness
  • Work out Your Difficulties

God’s Provision for Our Weaknesses

WHEN THINGS WON’T WORK

[7] “Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?”

[8] Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning.

1 Corinthians 7:10-11 A wife must not separate from her husband. [11] But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. …

If there is no sexual sin, but you just can’t stand to be married anyway, the Bible does permit you to divorce, but in that event, you should remain unmarried. Why? Because God is able to put any marriage back together again. To remarry is to close the door on reconciliation and in God’s eyes is adultery—unfaithfulness to the covenant you have made. If your ex remarries or has a sexual relationship, then the bond is broken, and you are likewise free to remarry.

UNFAITHFULNESS

[9] I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, and marries another woman commits adultery.”

Mark 10:12 And if she divorces her husband and marries another man, she commits adultery.”

RELEASE AND RECOVERY

1 Corinthians 7:12-15 If any brother has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to live with him, he must not divorce her.

[13] And if a woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to live with her, she must not divorce him.

… [15] But if the unbeliever leaves, let him do so. A believing man or woman is not bound in such circumstances.

Divorce is as hurtful and destructive today as in Jesus’ day. God intends marriage to be a lifetime commitment (Genesis 2:24).

When entering into marriage, people should never consider divorce an option for solving problems or a way out of a relationship that seems dead. In these verses, Jesus is also attacking those who purposefully abuse the marriage contract, using divorce to satisfy their lustful desire to marry someone else. Are your actions today helping your marriage grow stronger, or are you tearing it apart?

Jesus said that divorce is not permissible except for sexual immorality. This does not mean that divorce should automatically occur when a spouse commits adultery. The word translated ”sexual immorality” implies an immoral lifestyle, not a confessed and repented act of adultery. Those who discover that their partner has been unfaithful should first make every effort to forgive, reconcile and restore their relationship. We are always to look for reasons to restore the marriage relationship rather than for excuses to leave it.

I’d like to close today with some practical advice about divorce I learned from my mentor.

 Forgiveness from God

 Forgiveness for Others

Seek Reconciliation

Seek Restoration of your marriage  

As a Christian, let divorce not be an option at all, or if worst comes to worst and you can’t trust God to help fix things in your relationship, let divorce be your last resort. 

Just as you will study all night to get a degree from the university, just as you will fight to keep your job, just as you will do all you can, put in everything to see your business work, do same and more to make you marriage work. Put in all your energy to fight for your marriage rather than using it to pursue divorce. 

Remember that divorce doesn’t only affect you, think of your kids and all those in your life. As Christians, we are commanded to be selfless, to think of others more than we think of ourselves. If you experienced your parents divorce as a kid, think of the effects it had on you.  

This topic is a very vital and sensitive as it affects both Christians and non Christians.

What are you thoughts on this study?

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