Jesus, divorce and remarriage.


In my last two posts I have set out the way someone who is divorced might “remarry” (make Christian promises to another believing Christian) at Holy Trinity. In this post I’ll set out the teaching of Jesus from Mark’s gospel chapters 9:42 – 10:34 which underlies this practice. In these chapters the over-riding concern of Jesus is the kingdom of God and how sinners (those who break God’s law) get there.

In Mark 9:42 -10:34, Jesus teaches different groups of people in five different settings. These settings all work together like scenes in a film. Each scene adds to the plot and we only make sense of all five when we get to the last scene.

Jesus starts by teaching his disciples about the seriousness of sin and the reality of hell. His teaching here is quite disturbing. It is meant to be. Jesus says “it would be better to cut off your hand, foot or gouge out your eyes, if they caused you to sin” because if you sin you cannot enter the Kingdom of God. And, if you can’t enter the Kingdom of God then the alternative is hell and no one wants to go there.

In the next scene, the religious teachers of Jesus’ day try to trick him. They ask if divorce is allowed by the law. Jesus replies with a question, asking the religious teachers what Moses taught. Now, Moses taught two things. When the people of Israel first escaped from Egypt by God’s power and might, God gave Moses the ten commandments where God says clearly, “do not commit adultery”. But, God’s people made an instant mess of things by disobeying the first and second commandments “I am the Lord your God you shall not worship any other gods or make idols”. So, God disciplined them by making them spend 40 years in the wilderness. At the end of their 40 years of wandering, Moses taught them second law, and in Deuteronomy 24.1, he said that a man is allowed to divorce his wife. This was a relaxation of God’s commandments.

In answer to Jesus’ question, the religious leaders quoted the second law. In practice, at that time, they supported a liberal attitude to marriage and divorce. But Jesus gave the religious leaders an answer to their question that they did not want to hear; “Moses allowed you to divorce because your hearts are hard.” According to Jesus, people divorce because they are hard hearted. Hard hearts lead to uncaring, sinful behaviour, which leads to marriage breakdown.

Jesus then reminded the religious leaders that God’s standard for marriage which is one man and one woman for life, quoted from Genesis 2. And then, when he was alone with his disciples, Jesus told them that anyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her. Adultery is breaking God’s first law, and breaking the law is sin. Anyone who has had more than one marriage partner is an adulterer in God’s eyes according to the law and Jesus says that they cannot enter the kingdom of God, he or she will end up in hell. The answer to the Pharisees question, “is it lawful”, is “no it is not lawful.”

At this point, church tradition has held that remarriage is sinful, a breach of God’s law, and therefore no-one should remarry. The problem with this ruling is that we need to go on reading Mark’s gospel. We’ve not reached the end of the film. What Jesus teaches his disciples after his discussion with the religious leaders was not really about divorce per se, but about the law and how people get into the Kingdom of God. The religious leaders were strict on religious laws, like having clean hands and following religious traditions, as they thought that by doing these circus tricks that God would accept them into his kingdom. But the religious teachers were relaxed about some moral laws, because they couldn’t keep them. As Jesus said, their hearts were hard. They thought they would get into God’s kingdom, but they couldn’t get there by keeping the law, as Jesus goes onto teach on the next few scenes.

In this next scene, Jesus gives his disciples a furious telling off. He was indignant because his disciples were stopping kids from coming to him. Jesus said “to such as these belongs the Kingdom of God” and “you must receive the Kingdom of God like a child or you will not enter it.”

Here’s the contrast between the religious teachers and Jesus. For the Pharisees, life is all about laws. Do this and you’ll get into the Kingdom of God, don’t to that or you’ll go to hell. Jesus says the kingdom of God is a gift which is received with soft, child-like hearts full of the grace of God and love for Jesus, trust in him and obedience to him.

Jesus makes a second point in this scene; Christian ministers, who are disciples of Christ, or any other disciple of Christ for that matter, must never stop people from coming to Jesus by making up rules. Telling people that their past sin stops them from remarrying because it their past makes them adulterer in the present, is legalistic and so puts obstacles in the way of people coming to Jesus.

And, this is still not the end of the story. Christians are not to condone sin but resist it. A divorcee, or anyone with a second sexual partner, is committing adultery and therefore cannot enter the kingdom of God and will go to hell. So, what are we to do?

In the next scene, a rich young man runs up to Jesus, desperate to know what he must do to inherit eternal life. He knows Jesus has the answer.

Jesus tells him that the 10 commandments still stand. The law of God given in Exodus is the way God wants us to live. The man says he has kept all these laws. So Jesus loves him and says, “good going Son, now, go and do some more good; sell all your stuff and give the money to the poor.”

The point Jesus is making here is that it is not possible to do anything to enter the Kingdom of God, because God’s standards are unattainable. God is so holy, so righteous, so self-less, so loving, so kind, that we can never match his standards and so it is impossible to get into the kingdom of God by doing good. It is easier for a camel (the biggest animal in the middle east to go through the eye of a needle (the smallest physical hole in the middle east), than it is for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. The disciples can’t take this in, “how can anyone be saved from hell, Jesus? Tell us!”

Jesus’ reply is amazing. It is truly good news. He says it is not possible to enter the kingdom of God by keeping the law, but it is possible for God to get people to heaven. And we get there by following Jesus. His disciples were following him and he said, “you’ll get to the kingdom by following me.”

How do people follow Jesus? How does God make it possible for people to receive eternal life like little children? The answer is in verses 32-34. Jesus said: Mark 10:33-34

“See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death and deliver him over to the Gentiles. And they will mock him and spit on him, and flog him and kill him. And after three days he will rise.”

Jesus knew what his mission was. The final scene of our film reveals the plot. He was going to die for our sin, which is breaking the law, including the law on adultery, and rise again. He is the way to the Kingdom of God. He died to take away the sins of the world. And following Jesus means looking at him as Saviour, just believing that he is the one who saves us from hell, the one who opens the kingdom of God for all sinners. And following him means listening to his teaching, living for the sake of others not for ourselves. It means keeping God’s ten commandments and doing much more, not in order to get to heaven but because we’re going the way of Jesus, to the cross.

The great news of the death of Jesus for sin is that anyone who comes to him for the first time has all his or her sin cleansed, forgiven, washed away, nailed to the cross. The law is not an obstacle to salvation.  Those who turn to Christ like a child cannot be adulterers because he has made them brand new. Each new believer has a new status before God.  Justified.  God makes people new, gives us a fresh start, wipes the slate clean when we turn to him. And that is why I will “marry” some divorcees after a divorce if they have received the Kingdom of God like a child and now follow Christ with their heart.

2 Corinthians 5:17-21 if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

For anyone who divorced as a believer please read this other post.

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70 Responses to Jesus, divorce and remarriage.

  1. Johnny Douglas says:

    Would you remarry two divorced Christians?
    With thanks and anticipation,

    • Daniel Jones says:

      I know of a lot of pastors that now days have no problem remarring 2 people that have divorced for reasons other then adultry

  2. neilrobbie says:

    Hi Johnny, welcome to TG.

    It’s a good question. The apostle Paul addresses this issue for Christian believers in 1 Corinthians 7:10-11, where sexual ethics in the Christian community were clearly wanting:

    To the married I give this charge (not I, but the Lord): the wife should not separate from her husband (but if she does, she should remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband), and the husband should not divorce his wife.

    This command reflects the Christian’s ministry of reconciliation 2 Cor 5:18-19 and puts a stop to easy divorce and quick remarriage, Jordan and Pete Andre style.

    The question you asked, as I understand it, is: does this command prohibit all remarriage of Christians who believed before their divorce? The Roman Catholic church has taken this line. Do you have a view on this?

    Neil

  3. Yngvar says:

    What about those who were deserted by their spouses who later remarried? Does it mean that if they marry they will be “committing adultery and therefore cannot enter the kingdom of God and will go to hell”? Is forced celibacy and burning with passion the only option for divorcees? No reconciliation is possible if your ex is remarried, isn’t it?
    Thank you.

    • neilrobbie says:

      Hi Yngvar, welcome to TG and thank you for your question. I had hoped that the post made it clear that Jesus’ own answer to hell and remarriage at this point in Mark’s gospel is that it is that it is not possible for anyone to get to heaven by what we do. The remarriage question in Mark 9 and 10 is essentially a question about the function of the law. Does the law permit remarriage or not? Jesus says “yes, because of your hard hearts and no because God designed men and women for fidelity” so remarriage breaks the law. Divorce, like all other sin, which is law breaking happens, condemns us and so the law cannot save us. The question a deserted spouse should ask is not “will remarriage condemn me to hell” but “am I trusting in Christ and following him on the road to the cross.” We are not judged by our ability to keep the law but our attitude to Christ as Saviour and Lord.

  4. Yngvar says:

    Neil, thank you. Good point indeed. I have read hundreds of articles on the subject, but they mostly deal with theology and, of course, disagree with each other. And this is a totally different perspective. Now let me try to make my question more clear then.
    Suppose a trully born-again Christian (a minister), who trusts Jesus for his salvation, but divorced years ago and unable either to reconcile to his ex (she got married) or to control himself, enters another marriage with a Christian woman who, actually, is exactly in the same situation. Will they put their eternal salvation at stake since their marriage might be “continuous adultery” (the Bible, unfortunately, is not very clear on the issue – that is why there are so many contradicting opinions)? We are unable to keep the law, that’s true, but we also know that “nor adulterers… shall inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Cor. 6:9-10), believers or not. What would be your opinion on that? It’s a very important question for me. Thank you.

    • pogoskids says:

      I would just like to point out that in the words of Christ, we are ALL adulterers… whoever even looks with lust at another person has committed adultery already in their heart with that person.. therefore.. I do not see where Christ separates the two – physical vs mental. Also, whoever breaks just one law is guilty of breaking them ALL. In that case, if we believe that NO adulterer will enter the kingdom of God…then we are ALL hopeless.. however, I believe that the blood of Jesus is more powerful and if we have truly repented of our sin and put our faith and trust in HIM alone to save us, then there is NOTHING that can separate us from the LOVE OF GOD!

      • LAStreetPreacher says:

        The same can be said of murder. If a person hates another without cause he or she is guilty of murder without actual shedding of blood and so no murderer will inherit the kingdom of God and so is hopeless by the same measure as the adulterer in heart.
        Christ does separate the physical vs mental because there is the letter of the law which the Pharisees thought to keep by external conformance to the law only and there is the spirit of the law which only a true believer in Christ can keep howbeit not perfectly. God looks on the heart and Christianity is a heart religion unlike Judaism or Islam. God will judge and condemn sinners by all their external and internal (sins of the heart) unless they’ve been born again by the Holy Spirit and have had their heart purified by faith. (Acts 15:9; 1 Peter 1:22) After a person is born again he can not continue living in sinful rebellion for he that sinneth is of the Devil. (1 John 3:8-9) but if he does he has an advocate in Christ who intercedes for him (1 John 2:1)
        When a person is born from above into the kingdom of God all their sins are washed away and so Psalm 32:1-2 takes effect “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven and whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man unto whom the LORD imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile.”

  5. neilrobbie says:

    Hi Yngvar, I understand the question is what if a born again believer who was married after being born again is divorced, can she remarry?

    I’ve done some thinking on this and will reply as soon as I can (I’ve been on my day off today and my kids were off school because of the snow so I’ve been spending time with them).

    Until later

    Neil

  6. neilrobbie says:

    Hi Yngvar, thanks for the link. I’ll have a read of Engelsma and let you know.

    The answer to remarriage of those who were Christians at the time of their marriage is much more complex than those who have come to faith since their divorce. I am sure that what we do cannot condemn us, as we are justification by faith in Christ without works. The question of remarriage must therefore be; “what leads to my sanctification on earth and therefore glorifies God?” That’s a hard question. I might not have even a tentative answer before the end of the week.

    Neil

  7. Randy says:

    Neil–I may have missed it but I am not sure I see a response to the question of “continuous adultery.” God will forgive past sins but will not condone a lifestyle of sin. Correct? So the question is: Is divorce remarriage a state of continuous adultery? I am interested in this topic because I (with a heart of stone) divorced my wife, remarried, and was then drawn to the saving grace of Christ. I fear my lifestyle is one of sin. –Randy

    • neilrobbie says:

      Hi Randy, welcome to transforming grace. I’ve been working on 1 Corinthians 6 and 7 since Yngvcr asked the question last week.

      However, as you were drawn to the saving work of Christ after your divorce and remarriage, I cannot see how your case is “continuous adultery”. You are now a new creation, the old has gone the new has come. At the time you put your faith in Christ for the forgiveness of all sins, you were declared righteous in God’s eyes. You cannot be an adulterer if you are a new creation.

      The question I am still thinking through is whether the person who was regenerate, born again, before his divorce, commits adultery by remarrying.

      I’m still reading and thinking and will post in the near future.

      Neil

    • Luke says:

      What is Significant about Adultery in Remarriage?

      When Jesus said, “whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery” He said something significant…

      When Jesus made that statement, He was stating that divorce does not end the first marriage. Some people have assumed that divorce ends the first marriage, but Jesus said that it is not true.

      The sin of adultery can only occur if one or both of the persons involved is married. If neither of the persons are married the term adultery cannot be used.

      When Jesus said that “whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery”, He was stating that when a man marries a divorced woman he is living with another man’s wife and therefore is guilty of adultery.

      God states that the sexual intercourse of a divorced and remarried couple is adultery. Therefore each time they have sexual intercourse they commit an act of adultery. As they continue to have sexual relations and there is no repentance, it becomes a state of adultery. Therefore, adultery in remarriage is both an act each time it occurs, and a continuing state of sinning.

      Divorce does not make a man or a woman single again. Divorce does not end a person’s first marriage. That is why a person commits adultery when they marry and live with a divorced person.

      Do we get the significance of Jesus’ use of the word adultery? Adultery could not occur in remarriage if divorce ended the first marriage.

      Adultery can only occur in remarriage because the divorced spouse is still married to their first marriage partner in Jesus’ judgment.

      Jesus is the Judge we will stand before, for our hearing on Judgment Day and it is important that we understand our Judge’s reasoning and logic if we want to enter Heaven.

      The significance of the sin of adultery in remarriage is that divorce does not end a person’s first marriage!

      God has joined the husband and wife together as one. “And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.’”.

      Man’s civil action of divorce in the court system of this earth, does not end the “one flesh” aspect of the marriage that God has joined together.

  8. Randy says:

    Thanks, Neil. I believe you addressed my question through a sub-question I have wondered about and which is “Can a person who is regenerated be held accountable for his present situation that was entered into prior to regeneration. I have had one person tell me my current situation is an indication that I am not regenerated and that I should divorce my current wife immediately. But this seems to throw the discussion back to works which you so effectively countered in your answer. Many thanks! –Randy

    • SB says:

      Please do not let this author deceive you. You are living in a continuous state of adultery, and moreover, he never answered you. If you were committing any other act of sexual immorality -and continued to do it -being a new creation in Christ would not absolve you of your need to stop and repent. Thus, if the point is that your new wife isn’t your wife in God’s eyes and you have no right to have sex with each other, then you have no right to that. Think of this way, if you were living with any other “non wife” say, a girlfriend before you came to Christ, becoming new wouldn’t mean you get to keep living together.

      • SH says:

        Just a quick response to SB – I found John Piper’s sermons on divorce & re-marriage (at desiringgod.org) helpful on this issue. Piper does not believe remarriage should occur unless a spouse has dies, but he points out (to all in his congregation who have been divorced & remarried) the immense importance, in God’s eyes, of the marriage vow – any vow, in fact, that is made before God (this concept is strongly upheld in scripture). He calls for repentence of adultery that may have led to the remarriage, and then a consecration of that marriage to God. They are definitely sermons worth listening to.

        And Randy – I agree that it is ESSENTIAL to know you’re washed clean of all past sin. I also think of Paul’s words regarding marriage in 1 Cor 7:20: “Each one should remain in the situation which he was in when God called him” and tend to think this is an important point for you.

      • neilrobbie says:

        Dear SH, thank you for your helpful comment. I think we must put this subject in the context of mission and glorifying Christ. We too easily make the decision one between being remarried or not, being with someone or not, thinking about our own happiness. Paul is urging all Christians to urgent mission and so this is a choice about not wasting life but doing all things for the glory of God in self-denying sacrifce. Neil

      • Yvonne says:

        Shawna,

        you need to work this out with God for yourself, but I believe that God’s word teaches that we should remain as we are when we come to Christ. If you are still legally married and there is any hope of reconciliation, then you would have to decide whether this was appropriate, using the guidance of 1 Corinthians 7, which says that the believer should stay with the unbeliever if the unbeliever is happy to do so. Being single is not a bad thing, but I do believe the word of God allows for a new start if you are single at the time of conversion, whether divorced, never married, or widowed, based on verses 8 and 9 which say that the unmarried should marry if it helps them to serve God with less of a temptation to impurity.
        My email is vonny63@googlemail.com and I have a blog, too. I would like to email you also.

        God bless,

        Yvonne

      • Luke says:

        My friend was disturbed that John Piper spent pages and pages, of his Position Paper, proving from Scripture, that only DEATH dissolves the union joined by God, but then at the very end he states this…

        Those who are already remarried:

        1. Should acknowledge that the choice to remarry and the act of entering a second marriage was sin, and confess it as such and seek forgiveness

        2. Should not attempt to return to the first partner after entering a second union.

        3. Should not separate and live as single people thinking that this would result in less sin because all their sexual relations are acts of adultery. The Bible does not give prescriptions for this particular case, but it does treat second marriages as having significant standing in God’s eyes. That is, there were promises made and there has been a union formed. It should not have been formed, but it was. It is not to be taken lightly. Promises are to be kept, and the union is to be sanctified to God. While not the ideal state, staying in a second marriage is God’s will for a couple and their ongoing relations should not be looked on as adulterous.

        Because this is such a contradiction, my friend actually contacted John Piper’s Ministry and this is what she said…

        “John Piper teaches the one who is forsaken who has not remarried, but their spouse has–must remain unmarried, honoring the vows they took before the Lord. In other words, THEY (the ones who are left behind) are still bound to their covenant spouse.

        I dialogued with his ministry for quite some time about this and the man I dialogued with, Dan, told me at the end of the conversation–the 2nd marriage probably IS adultery, but God’s Grace allows for it to continue.

        I was astounded to hear such a thing. A relationship IS sin and one can remain in it? Where do we find such a thing in scripture?”

    • Luke says:

      How Grace Does Not Stop Remarriage from Being Sin by Myron Horst

      The topic of the church granting a remarried couple grace often comes up with the subject of divorce and remarriage.

      The argument that the church can grant a remarried couple grace to continue in their remarriage relationship has become a stumbling block for many.

      To understand grace better, I did an in-depth study of grace in the Bible. I found some interesting facts.

      The main fact is that grace is from God. Most of the verses in the New Testament that use the word grace also state that it is from God or Jesus. Nowhere is there any verse that the church has any authority to grant another grace for their sins. We can bless another with God’s grace, but not from us.

      When the church grants another person grace in a sin area so that the sin is no longer viewed as sin, the church is setting themselves up as God and making the church equal with God.

      This line of thinking has occurred before in Jeremiah 7:9-10: “Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other gods whom ye know not; And come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, We are delivered to do all these abominations?”

      They thought they had received grace to continue in their sins but they had not.

      Grace is not an allowance to sin a little more than what the Bible says.

      Grace is not a license from God or the church for one to continue in sin as many would lead us to believe.

      Grace is not God overlooking our sin as we continue to sin after we know better.

      Romans 6:1-2 “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?”

      Romans 6:15 “What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.”

      There is no grace for those who willfully continue to sin and don’t want to stop or change because it would be “too difficult”.

      God’s grace is not a license to do what is right in one’s own eyes, and follow one’s own beliefs, even if it is contrary to Scripture.

      Who forgives sin? Can Christians grant forgiveness for sin against God? No. We can only grant forgiveness for offences to us.

      We cannot grant a person grace for offences that they are committing against God when they have not repented to God and stopped their sin.

      When Jesus through grace forgave the woman caught in adultery, He also told her to do something. He said “go and sin no more!” Jesus did not give the woman grace so that she could continue to commit adultery. Jesus told her she had to stop committing adultery.

      When a divorced and remarried couple repents and receives forgiveness from God for the adultery that they have committed, they must change so that they can also obey Jesus’ command to go and sin no more.

      If they go on sinning and committing adultery they will not receive God’s grace but rather incur His judgment. There cannot be grace and mercy without justice.

      When a person realizes that they have sinned by divorcing their spouse and remarrying another, and they go to God and confess their sin and FORSAKE their sin of remarriage (get out of the remarriage / which is an adulterous relationship in God’s sight), God forgives them.

      It is only through the grace of God that they receive forgiveness. Without God’s grace none of us would be saved because we have all sinned and come short of the glory of God.

      “A wife is married to her husband as long as he lives.”
      1 Corinthians 7:39

  9. Gilly says:

    This is a very emotive issue divorce and re-marriage for believers. The word is clear that if a person is divorced before they are born again into the Kingdom of God the ‘slate’ is wiped clean, they are forgiven however there are several issues in the body of Christ. It used to be a consisitent teaching that if a born again believer was having major marital problems divorce was not the easy option it is today and so numerous steps would be taken to restore the marriage and clear teaching happened on this topic. Now if my friend told me her husband was beating her I would advise her to leave the house ( come and stay with me if necessry!!!!) but even then reconciling would not be impossible if he then took steps to deal with the root of his behaviour and they went through restoration etc. If this was not possible and the marriage ended my understanding of scripture would be that my friend should remain single… that is hard to accept but this is scriptural a major problem is that we the church have been ‘modernised’ by secular society so that we have watered down the word. Divorce will not send my friend to hell but divorce is a sin according to scripture and we must repent if we commit this sin. to repent is to turn away from so if as a born again believer I should know the word of God…. If I decide I want to be married again I have to consider God’s word before I take this step… many do not do this they feel this will make them happy and they have a right to be happy so don’t use the word to guide them and marry without considering if God says divorce is wrong then what does he say about remarriage… will it cause me to live in adultery. We have neglected to keep God’s word as primary in our daily walk and this has led by what feels good rather than living to please God… if what I am doing does not agree with the word of God I am wrong

    • neilrobbie says:

      Hi Gillian (if I may), welcome to TG and thank you for your comment. I am with you on the “no easy divorce” and “separated believing couples should seek to reconcile”, both of which run contra to the secular model of easy divorce and a fight in court for possession of children and assets. The Apostle Paul’s underlying motive for all Christian behaviour is to bring glory to God (1 Cor 10:31) and secular divorce does neither.

      I have not posted anything yet on what happens to divorced believers because I am still reading about it. I agree that if what I do is not in agreement with the word of God I am wrong. I want to think about how all the texts on marriage fit together before making any comment.

      With respect to secular culture, one of the aspects of secular life which makes the command not to remarry so difficult is the atomisation of community. If the law of God means “you cannot remarry so you are condemned to live in lonely isolation in your own house without any companionship” which is the cultural context in which secularised Christians hear the command it is harsh and people ask “Is God good or cruel?” But if the law of God means “you cannot remarry but the church is your family and you can live in some kind of extended community with your brothers and sisters in Christ” then the church still has lots of work to do to overcome secularisation.

  10. chantelle says:

    hi there
    I am very upset and confused…I have been living with my boyfriend and he is a divorced man…and I know that we are commiting adultery.I would like to get married
    and put the past behind us…my sinfull life and his,start a new life and concentrate completely on God,but now I am scared for his x-wife is still alive and now I know that we cannot remarry,It is way to much complicated,cause he made a mistake and is just human we both pray for forgiveness and now?Does that mean we must seperate or we will go to hell? Why is that? For we are repenting and just want to get things right…

    It is very heart breaking to think that I will go to hell and that God wont tolerate or forgive us? No matter what we do as long as we together,even if remarried and then living life according to the word we will be doomed to hell?
    If we had to stay together and not have any sex would that also mean we will be going to hell?

    It is very difficult and to me complicated.

    Kind regards
    Chantelle

  11. neilrobbie says:

    Hi Chantelle

    Thank you for your post and your honesty. You’ve put yourself in a difficult situation by living with a divorced man and the guilt you feel is right and good because you know that something needs to change. I’m going to send you an email rather than reply in public.

    Neil

    • Help, Lord says:

      Neil,

      Will you email this reply to me? I am divorced and commited adultery. The marriages seem to be irretrievably broken, and even though we are both believers, do not feel led to reenter the marriages. We have repented of the sexual sin and the idolatry. We are not living together, nor having relations, nor feel that scripture allows remarriage,(although I desire that) but we do see him. We have a companionship, where we do recreational activities, have dinner, go to movies. At times, it feels legalistic. Do you view our relationship as sin? How is you answer backed by scripture?

  12. Gary says:

    Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. …Matthew 7:21. Why would Jesus tell someone not to remarry, then contradict himself by making it okay.
    I find that your answers regarding divorce and remarriage are weak in relation to what Scripture actually says, and that you are cheapening grace, then blaming it on ‘legalistic’ Christians. I refer you to the book ‘Transforming Grace’ by Jerry Bridges. The ditches on each side of the roadbed of grace are “legalism” and “licentiousness”. You seemed to have gone from one ditch into the other one.
    Consider the following: Luke 16:15-18 Jesus charges the Pharisees with idolatry. It give Jesus a base from which to demonstrate that his ministry is not a contravention of God’s will as this is expressed in the Scriptures. It also sets up the need for Jesus to elucidate in what way the Pharisees are idolatrous.
    Jesus proclaims ‘the good news of the kingdom’ which will displace other world systems. This includes the rule of Wealth (v.13), where the wealthy are separated from those in need. Everyone is urged to enter into the new kingdom, and the Pharisees are opposed to it. For Luke, it’s not that ‘the law and prophets’ belong to an old, now by-gone era, but that the Scriptures of Israel must be understood in light of the manifestation of God’s purpose within the ministry of Jesus.
    In verses 17-18 Jesus not only insists on the enduring validity of the law, but, with respect to the one example of divorce and adultery, he offers a very vigorous interpretation. Jesus places a man and woman on the same level with regard to adultery, and censures the practice wherby a husband divorces his wife in order to marry another. Especially in prohibiting remarriage and ruling out serial monogamy, Jesus’ statement distinguishes itself from contemporary teaching by its severity. on this issue he offers a different interpretation that at once assumes the ongoing authority of the law (Deut. 24:1-4), makes the Mosaic regulations more stringent than they appear in Deuteronomy, and challenges the relaxation of the law among his contemporaries. What is striking about this example is Jesus’ affirmation of the authority of the law is qualified by his implicit insistence that the law does not speakfor itself and is susceptible to erroneous appropriation. The Scriptures are not set aside, but they must be interpreted appropriately, in relation to the inbreaking kingdom of God in Jesus’ ministry.
    How does this relate to Jesus’ criticism of the Pharisees? The language of abomination (v.15) is key. In Israel’s Scriptures, the term ‘abomination’ can be used to denote, among other things, idolatrous activity in general, but also immoral financial dealings, and the act of remarrying a woman who has been divorced. Similarly, the Qumranic text, the Damascus Rule, observes that there are ‘three nets’ with which Israel is snared, with each parading as a kind of righteousness or justice: ‘The first is fornication, the second is riches, and the third is profanation of the Temple.’ In the ensuing discussion, ‘fornication’ is interpreted with reference to a lax interpretation of the Mosaic legislation on divorce (Deut. 24:1-4), while ‘profanation of the Temple’ is correlated with, among other things, false prophecy and lack of insight into and commitment toward God’s covenant. As in the Damascus Rule, so in Jesus’ invective, idolatry, weath, and divorce arecollocated as manifestations of pseudo-righteousness. Taken together, they are means by which the Pharisees have distanced themselves from the very law they thought to uphold. they seekto advocate and preserve the law’s relevance, but they are unable to do so because they lack insight into God’s design. ~ Joel Green, New International Commentary on the New Testament
    I believe that you and others are wrong who insist on calling ‘legalistic’ those who do not adhere to the current culturally correct thinking that divorce and remarriage is okay. I believe that your thinking is one reason that the divorce rate in the church is around 50%. And that what you are doing by failing to understand Jesus’ stand on this issue, is to promote serial marriage, and to cheapen grace. Jesus clearly warns against remarriage in Luke 16:18, so why would he contradict himself. Perhaps, real GRACE is Jesus moving people towards a relationship where he is both LORD and Savior. Yet, the current cultural thinking is all about Jesus being sympathetic with one who is divorced. I find that what you promote is IDOLATRY.
    Jesus had the best interest of people at heart,not their earthly desires. Perhaps what his idea of grace is in the situation of divorce, is for a person to devote themselves to Him. Yet, you take the view that a person’s desire for fulfillment in the temporal realm is more important that being filled with the desires that Christ puts in one’s heart. A married person, according to the Apostle Paul, is more interested in pleasing their spouse that they are in serving God. This becomes more accute in remarriages where people are trying to overcome their previous mistakes (or not), or their psychological dysfunction.
    I find that your answers also support ‘serial marriage’ where if one doesn’t work out, a person just goes on to the next one. Oh yes, if they repent, after all, Jesus will forgive indefinitely. I believe that is an abomination and a total warping of Scripture, a cheapening of God’s grace.
    Jesus did not die for us out of sympathy. He died for us out of obedience to God. He bore our sins out of identification, not sympathy. “He made Him to be sin for us…that we might be made the righteousness of God…” 2 Corinthians 5:21. We are acceptable to God, not because of our obedience, but because of Christ’s death. Jesus came as a stumbling block; John 15:22-24; John 14:9 was spoken to his disciples.
    That Christ died for me, therefore I go scot-free, is never taught in theNew Testament. What is taught is that Jesus died for all, and that by identificatin with his death I can be freed from sin, and have His righteousness imparted to me. The substitution taught in the New Testament is twofold: “He made Him to be sin for us,who knew no sin;THAT WE MIGHT BE MADE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD IN HIM.” Christ only died for me in the sense that I am determined to have Jesus Christ formed in me. Christ did not die so that I could be free to continue my temporat dysfunction. I believe that you are misleading people by telling them that it is okay to remarry when the Scripture clearly indicates that it is not (in all situations but one), rather than encouraging them to find their life in Christ, with him as LORD. I am sure that you would not be as popular, but you may be closer to the truth. You apparently are succumbing to the world’s view.
    In Christ,
    Gary

    • neilrobbie says:

      Dear Gary, welcome to Transforming Grace and thank you for your long comment. Did you read all of my post or did you stop at the paragraph on the children coming to Christ? The reason I ask is your comment does not engage with all of what I wrote. Your accusations of serial marriage and not encouraging people to find Christ are inconsistent with my original post.
      In Christ. Neil

  13. Adam says:

    Hi, I have been doing a lot of research and was wondering what you thought about my situation.

    I have recently become engaged to a woman who was married and divorced prior to her conversion. She left him due to psychological problems that he failed to mention and she found out only after the marriage. The ceremony was performed by a Justice of the Peace, and only lasted about a year. Is she free to remarry? Her previous spouse has remarried. I have never been divorced before but understand that if she wasn’t free I would be committing adultery as well. Wondering about this seems very legalistic, but at the same time I know it is important to interpret the Scriptures carefully. While I don’t agree with positions such as John Piper, who asserts that marriage is an indissoluble union, I do believe that it SHOULD be. God’s plan from the beginning was much more than how it is today. I have found in my research only condemnation for people that “twist the Bible to say whatever they want” even though many are willing to say “Jesus said so” without looking at context and understanding why Jesus said what he did.

    Thank you for your time. I look forward to your comments.

    • neilrobbie says:

      Hi Adam, when I posted on Jesus and remarriage I didn’t expect to be offering counsel on individual cases! I’ll email you a separate answer rather than conduct a discussion about private matters in public. Neil

    • Caroline says:

      I would say that the fact of your wife’s first marriage was a civil union (a marriage) as opposed to a service of Holy Matrimony is the key to your remarriage. There are those who are legally to qualified to marry (a civil union) & then there are those who are Biblically qualified to marry (which has a much higher standard than the state does). I think you will find that due to your wife’s ex-husband having psychological problems which she was not aware of prior to their marriage (assuming that they were present PRIOR to their marriage) would not qualify him for the high Biblical standards of marriage. I have been in this same situation myself & have done a lot of research about it. I know a divorce is still a divorce but it is important to look at the circumstances which led to the divorce & not be legalistic about it. My ex husband was very narcissistic & whilst legally qualified to marry according to the laws of the land (due to civil liberties most people would qualify as the requirements are not high). I have even researched a couple of cases where a psychiatrist tried to stop a mentally ill impatient marrying, but due to their civil liberties was unable to do so.

      • Ronnie says:

        I don’t believe Adam and Eve had any kind of a ceremony to wed them. In fact, I don’t believe they knew what was taking place until God told them. God told them to multiply. The verses, tho inspired by God, are Moses’ words;”They shall leave father and mother and become one” and were written after the flood. Adam and Eve consumated their union sexually and became one. A blood covenant was entered into by them when Adam took Eves virginity. Remember, from Genesis to Revelation, the Bible teaches that the lifew is in the blood and blood was shed or flowed forth as a sign of a covenant. Ceremonies are strictly for outward show of a union.
        Let me pose two scenerios: 1) A couple has a wedding. They invite all the guest, a Minister,or a Priest, or Rabbi, maybe even a judge, to officiate. On their way to the honeymoon dstination they are killed in some kind of accident. Are they married? 2) A couple are marroned on a deserted island for 40 years. During that time they, both being
        virgins, come together sexually and the blood flows forth. Are they married?
        Before we worry about what is divorce, let us understand what constitutes marriage.

  14. Malls says:

    I have experienced many types of churches.

    I also know that the bible says you can divorce if the other person committs adultery.

    I am single and never been married, but if i did get married, would marry for life and if it didnt work out wouldnt marry again, this out of personal choice not out of any docterine.

  15. Yvonne says:

    Hi there,

    I can udnerstand ministers not wanting to perform marriages of divorcees based on conscience, but what I do not feel is Scriptural is the view that the adultery that Jesus has in view is a perpetual, sexual adultery. In context, he is dealing with issues of the heart, not legalities, and he may simply be saying that covenant breaking amounts to adultery. He is saying that the two acts (concurrent, especially if one is divorcing in order to marry another) of divorce and marrying another (not having sex with them for 20+ years later) constitute breaking the law against adultery, because they are treachery.

    I’ve asked God to give clarity on this because the logical consequences of holding that those remarried are living in perpetual adultery are going to be absurd in many cases, and will also lead to more sin if the doctrine is correct. Paul does not say that those remarried ought to divorce and I’m sure he would deal with this in such an important part of his letter.

    Lets think about this for a second:

    A man and woman marry, one having been divorced before. The divorcee was also married to a divorcee, who had been married a couple of times, also once to a divorcee. Assuming that if a person has been married once before and then divorces, if they ‘repent’ from their remarriage by divorcing again, if a single person had married that divorcee they would not really have been married to that person(because it is allegedly an adulterous affair with illegitimate children, perhaps).

    This gets convoluted, but imagine you can’t trace your former divorcee spouse and you don’t know whether they were divorced wrongly or ‘rightly’ (as repentance divorce from an unlawful divorcee)…ought you now to divorce your current spouse because they might not be your lawful spouse (non adulterous)? What if, in fact, they ARE? Here you have a situation where, if Paul’s counsel to abide where you are is ignored, you could destroy a legitimate marriage (non adulterous) and cause that other person to commit adultery when and if they remarry (especially if you divorce an unbeliever as repentance)…see how this gets impossibly absurd?

    What if you cannot trace a former spouse and they may have died, but you don’t know and have no way of knowing? Ought you to divorce your current spouse and leave your children, just in case your former spouse is still alive? Even if it is 30 or more years later? What if the former spouse HAS died unbeknownst to you, and you destroy a marriage which could have been validated by a renewal of vows following repentance, according to the perpetual adultery theory?

    I’m troubled by these things, and the seeming willingness of some to discard the clear prohibition of Deuteronomy 24 of returning to a former spouse, as though that relationship were still intact in actuality. Some even try to assert that Jesus disowned Deuteronomy 24:1-4 as God’s word, claiming that Moses ‘made it up’ to appease those who were sinning, without the express approval of God. However, Moses would have no right to call such an act an ‘abomination’ without authority from God, and Jesus was certainly not calling this part of the law wrong.

    Any thoughts?

  16. John says:

    Hi I am a Christian man, I have been a committed christian all my life, however my marriage fell apart. I did not honour my wife, and being tempted, someone gave me oral sex, I did not have sexual intercourse. I confessed to my wife, and despite repenting and begging her forgiveness, she divorced me. I tried for 6 years to see the marriage restored, especially as we had a young son together. I was in ministry at the time, the whole experience totally destoryed me. I have picked myself up now, and have re-married and have 3 other children.
    1) I suppose I am the guilty party, even though I sincerely sought reconciliation and I wasn’t the one to divorce her, right?
    2) The fact that I am now remarried does that mean that I am living in continuious sin and are an adulterer for eternity and going to hell?

    • neilrobbie says:

      Hi John

      Welcome to TG. I don’t think I can possibly comment on your relationship, especially in public. The fact that yo are asking me at all suggests that you have not fully bottomed the theology of this. I preached on Jesus’ teaching in the sermon on the mount recently and will email you a copy. I hope it helps.

      God bless

      Neil

  17. Kevin says:

    Hello Neilrobbie, can you send me that sermon you are sending John? I am in a similar situation
    Thanks
    Kevin

  18. Shawna says:

    Hi
    I am researching this topic as well and it goes back and forths as there is so many opinions. I would like for you to email me if you could and hopefully help me answer this. I had a child with someone when I turned 18, I was not married to the babies dad. I then met a man who was 10 yrs older than me and we married and had 2 boys. he adopted my daughter legally. We both committed sin, we also committed adultery. We was together for about 13 years. I told him I wanted a divorce. I have went to divorce attorneys and havent officially got a divorce because of the high costs. I found out that he was also sexually abusing my daughter over several years. Anyhow I want to divorce there is no reconciliation. I have been seperated for over 2 years. We are not legally divorced but he has moved on and has been dating someone as well as myself. I know that we are commiting adultery by not being legally divorced and seing other people. I want a divorce and have found someone that i love and care about. I would like to divorce my husband, repent and turn my life around and remarry. From what I have read I am heartbroken as if I can or not since I want to turn my life around? I am afraid that if I remarry that I am hellbound and doomed forever. any advice on divorcing, since we both was guilty, repenting and remarrying? Some places I have read that it can be forgiven, some places states that if i remarry that I will forever be commiting adultry and go to hell unless I divorce the 2nd person if I marry him and live single for the rest of my life. I am really confused and and heartbroken and need advice if this is possible and can be forgiven if remarried and all sins wiped clean if I repent and turn my life around or even if i do repent and remarry that I am still damned to hell because I remarried regardless of repenting and turning my life around and devoting myself to my new love and Jesus? Please advise
    thanks
    Shawna

    • Jessica says:

      Shawna, please email me so we can talk. Our stories are similar but there is something missing from your story that needs to be clarified. Jessiperez10 at gmail. Com is my email. I didn’t want my email blocked so I didn’t put it in proper format. Sorry. I really would like to help you find true repentance, peace, and joy in your life by sharing my own personal journey with you.God bless you Shawna, I hope to hear from you soon. – Jessica

  19. Christianah says:

    Nice comments,<<<<<<<< I believe The bible is accurate, the bible even teaches us to bless our enemies. God is Love from the beginning of the Bible to the End of the Bible………………. So because of that I believe””””Love is possible even in the worst relationship”. We need a break sometimes to think straight, Calm down, Do not get lost in what the society has to offer……….. which is pure Lust! All man are created equal. I forgive my husband right now…..(Wow this man did me so wrong< but Christ died for me, what is more)….. he has been pleading and begging me to come back. I will go back…….. I am sure there are many here with similar situation. if your partner is willing::::::::: Forgive him/her like christ forgive us and let go, Stop looking for the answers that are not there. The bad heart or the harden heart is enough stop one from entering the Kingdom of God. The world will pass, but nothing in the Word will go without coming to accomplishment. The word of God is powerful>> do it for christ>>>>Forgive her! Work with her to make things better! Be patient! Pray! I believe God answer! God will touch her heart! She will become a woman of God.>>>>>>>>>>>Forgive him! Work with HIm to make things better! Be patient! Pray! I believe God answer! God will change touch his heart! He will become a Man of God………..Many perish because the lack of knowledge……..Even if she/he has wronged you ( Apologize and see God hands in your house…turn that left chick….. u apologise and faith will pull you through.)……….. For the remarry & fully divorcee presently! Hell is not a joke!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Pray hard and let God guide your footstep…….. be faithful to God not man. No embelishment or patchment in the Kingdom of God. God is Holy, meaning “nothing unholy will enter or inherit the kingdom of God, Tiny or Big. Love you all………….May God almighty minister to everyone heart, God give all the heart to forgive, also to let Go the deeper pain, Help them to love you more and cling the cross………..In Jesus name I pray Amen…….

  20. Christianah says:

    All be Bless

  21. Paul says:

    Professor David Engelsma:

    Holy Scripture forbids remarriage after a divorce.

    What we witness today is simply the logical, inevitable outcome of the approval of adulterous remarriages. The evil tree now bears its evil fruit. And the fruit is exceedingly bitter, both in the dishonoring of God and in the destruction of marriage, family, husbands, wives, children, grandparents, grandchildren, and others.

    To be sure, this approval of remarriage adultery is a nasty, disgusting business. A fellow church member may well tempt my wife to leave our marriage, then, after he divorces his wife, he may remarry mine. If he confesses his sin of adultery and my wife does the same, he may then be allowed membership with me in the same church, while living with my wife.

    What happens to all the children involved, only the devil, who is behind this whole evil business knows. And this grim, damnable state of affairs actually continues on in “evangelical” and “conservative” churches today.

    This is what the churches are approving…even though the Word of God teaches…in language that a child can understand…

    “A wife is married to her husband as long as he lives.” 1 Corinthians 7:39

    When a man obtains a divorce and marries another, he is committing adultery. The relationship is an adulterous relationship and he goes on committing adultery as long as he maintains it.

    Jesus Christ forbids remarriage for the divorced. The churches approval of remarriage has brought the church into open war with Jesus Christ.

    It is unbiblical to view marriage as a contract that man can dissolve by his own hands and at his will. Scripture teaches that marriage is a lifelong bond established by God and that God makes the two one flesh.

    Only the death of one of them dissolves the bond, so that the other has the liberty to marry again. 1 Corinthians 7:39

    Let it be shouted from the housetops:

    Divorce does not dissolve marriage.

    Only God puts asunder what He has joined together and He puts asunder by death.

    http://www.cadz.net/mdr.html

    http://www.marriagedivorce.com/

  22. Paul says:

    Origen:
    A.D. 248

    “The marriage covenant between a man and a woman is permanent, as long as both husband and wife are alive.

    No matter what the legal circumstances may appear to be to the contrary, a remarriage relationship when either or both parties are divorced, while a former partner lives, is adultery.

    The intimate relations between the man and the woman remarried while former spouses still live are adulterous, and considered sin.

    A remarriage is not an actual marriage whatsoever, but disguised adultery.”

    http://www.cadz.net/mdr.html

    http://www.marriagedivorce.com/

  23. Paul says:

    Take a look at our church’s history and present practice concerning divorce and remarriage.

    Once the church started to ignore God’s Word on that, they are now trying to ignore His Word on homosexuality.

    Twenty-five years ago, the clergy was not allowed to perform weddings for people who were divorced.

    While there are many scriptural references “forbidding the remarriage of divorced persons,” the clearest is found in the gospel of Luke;

    “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another, commits adultery.”

    What’s more, in Luke’s gospel, these are not Luke’s words, they are not Moses’ words, or Peter’s or Paul’s. These words are attributed straight from the mouth of Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God.

    Hence, the Church did not perform remarriages, because it believed that to do so, would be to bless a union that Jesus Himself describes as adulterous.

    In the gospel of Luke, Jesus makes it clear that the new marriage is viewed by Him to be adultery. So what happened?

    Our culture changed. While divorce was rare 50 years ago, it is no longer rare anywhere.

    The result is; now our pews are being populated by couples in second, third and fourth marriages. We stopped seeing these marriages as Jesus Himself sees them, as adulterous unions.

    How can the Church join unions that Jesus Himself, according to Luke, defined as adulterous, I ask you? The Word of God will not change, even if the Church does!

    http://www.cadz.net/mdr.html

    http://www.marriagedivorce.com/

  24. JJ says:

    Ok, say an unbeliever Married, was separated for ages, had a baby to someone else and they didn’t marry b’coz no divorce was made and they separated and then the person found Christ and was saved and met a Christian, and yet still not divorced, could the person Marry as a complete new creation in Christ??

  25. Aaron says:

    Paul – Amen brother. As a child of divorce and well in my thirties you never get over it. The selfishness of divorce is one of the most heinous crimes you can commit in the eyes of the Lord and I doubt very seriously that he would allow you to just say Im sorry and just move on to the next woman/man. People who believe this is so are believing a lie from the devil. If you are remarried you have no choice but to seprate from your current partner and live alone. Thus is your punishment for breaking the commandment in the first place. Whoever wrote this article seems to be trying to justify thier behavior and manipulate the Word. It is very straightforward.

    God hates divorce. And it is Godly of me to hate it as well. And to hate the sin that people continuously find acceptable.

    • LAStreetPreacher says:

      Yes God hates divorce so why will you encourage a person who remarried to divorce again or as you say: “If you are remarried you have no choice but to separate from your current partner and live alone.” Is this a Biblical thing and if the couple have children and you say you are a child of divorce then why would you wish this evil upon those children of this remarriage? There needs to be repentance and acknowledgment that the first divorce was a sin in God’s eyes but to say there should be a second divorce after remarriage I find no warrant in the Bible. This is to compound the problem isn’t it?

      • EM says:

        Yes, the remarried couple must break up their adulterous union no matter the costs. God make the rules, not us. We have to obey Him even if it break our hearts and goes against all we ‘want’ to believe.

        Let me explain. Suppose two gay guys get ‘married’. Then both of them become born again. They are now new creations in God/Jesus. The slate has been wiped clean. Can they continue to be ‘married’? Must they continue in the state Jesus called them? Or does Jesus expects them to break this sinful union? Of course, God does! Jesus died to save people from their sin and to give them the strength to live godly. He want people to be holy, not just happy – or holy rather than happy. Refusal to divorce will prove that these guys were not truly born again and were simply self-deceived and still on their way to hell. Likewise, hard as it may be, those who are in adulterous remarried unions must divorce if they are truly born again. Grace does not give them license to live a life of sin and rebellion against God.

        Another scenario. Suppose a guy stole a Ferrari. Then he becomes born again. Does the fact that he’s now a new creation and that his slate has been wiped clean mean that he can now keep the Ferrari since God has forgiven him for stealing It? Of course not! God wants him to return the Ferrari to the rightful owner and ask him/her for forgiveness. Likewise, a person who marries a divorced person must divorce so that the ‘stolen’ spouse can return to his/her God-given spouse.

        All our efforts to rationalize this sin will not change God’s word and mind concerning this. Remarriage is continuous adultery which will doom people to hell. Telling the truth about it is the most loving thing a Christian can do. We do not want to hurt people and break up happy ‘marriages’ but the eternal consequences are too high.

        Though it may not seem so, I speak from deep compassion and conviction. My only family is in such a delicate and heartbreaking situation. My sister is remarried while her husband still lives. Her church ‘endorses’ remarriage and so she is comfortable in her sin. She is happy with her new ‘Christian husband’. Knowing how she suffered under her real spouse, I (for one) would have hoped that her new ‘marriage’ was acceptable in God’s sight but it is not. So, now matter how much pain it will cause her and her ‘husband’, I pray that God will open her eyes and give her the strength to divorce and go back to her real husband. I would rather see her be unhappy and holy so that she go to heaven, than happy and unholy and be doomed to hell.

        And what is this ‘fuss’ about burning with passion all about? It seems as if some people think that that give us permission to remarry. When the apostle Paul talked about it, he was referring to those who were free to marry, not divorcées who want to remarry. If you think I am insensitive, let me confess that my wife left me for another man two years ago. Since then I have been celibate. Granted, it was and still is not easy but that is what God expect me to do. And He gives me the strength to keep on doing it. And the fruit of the Spirit include self-control. In the mean time I pray that God will grant my wife repentance so that we can be reconciled. I have no hardness in my heart towards her. I have already forgiven her and am just waiting for her to return. If she never does, then I am willing to live a life of singleness without complaint for the rest of my life in honour of my God and Jesus my Saviour.

        Sometimes I think we behave too much like spoiled brats (no insult intended). We (and by that I mean true born-again believers) do not realize what a great mercy and grace God has shown in forgiving us our sins and what a great honour it is to be part of His household (to be called a child/son of God). Instead of focusing our thoughts and passions on God/Jesus/heaven and finding our joy and happiness in knowing that after this fleeting life we will be forever in His glorious presence where none of this life will matter anymore, we keep on complaining. This is just one ploy of satan. If can instead focus on God, He will use our singleness to win souls. Have we considered this fact: While we complain in selfishness, we forget that millions are dying every day without Christ and are doomed to hell. So instead of complaining, let us become joyful fishers of men.

  26. Paul says:

    “The selfishness of divorce is one of the most heinous crimes you can commit in the eyes of the Lord.”—Aaron

    I AGREE!

    No-Fault Divorce is Institutionalized Evil

    America’s divorce rate is the world’s highest because the law permits one partner to unilaterally leave a marriage with no allegations whatsoever! What was begun by two people willingly is terminated by one person against the will of the other spouse in 80% of cases!

    Constitutional and family law attorney J. Shelby Sharpe says, “No-fault divorce is a national catastrophe. Anything which overturns the order or systems of things whereby families are destroyed and the whole of society adversely affected is by definition a catastrophe.”

    No-fault divorce is much more than just divorce; it is a legal tyranny that denies the fundamental right of due process to a defendant. Prior to no-fault divorce, the party seeking divorce (plaintiff) was required, by law, to demonstrate cause on the part of the other party (defendant) prior to dissolving the marriage, dividing the family’s assets, and destroying the two-parent structure essential for children.

    These measures provided strong legal protections—primarily to women and children who might otherwise find themselves abandoned by husbands and fathers who simply sought “their own desires.”

    Under the system prior to no-fault divorce, the state was limited in its actions and intrusion into the private affairs of the family except in those cases in which one of the parties committed a legally recognized offense against the other. In the wake of no-fault divorce, the state has been given unprecedented access into and unconstitutional authority over what was previously sacrosanct: the family.

    Historically, the law regarded the family as a preserve of privacy that was largely off-limits to the government. It was what Supreme Court Justice Byron White (1962–1993) called the “realm of family life, which the state cannot enter.”

    What is most shocking about no-fault divorce is the inherent unconstitutionality of it all, a direct violation of human rights. A retired circuit court judge writes, “To the characterization of no-fault divorce laws as both ungodly and inhumane I would add unconstitutional as well.” Attorney J. Shelby Sharpe said he was confident that if a case involving no-fault divorce were ever brought before the U.S. Supreme Court it would no doubt be ruled unconstitutional and no-fault divorce abolished!

    http://www.cadz.net/mdr.html

    http://www.marriagedivorce.com/

  27. Paul says:

    It is called “No Fault Divorce,” because no fault need be alleged to get the divorce. No-fault divorce is a social and legal atrocity that needs to be abolished both for the sake of families and their children.

    One of our most fundamental protections secured by the U.S. Constitution is the right to due process, which secures the right of an individual to be heard regarding issues of life, liberty, or property. This means that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty, property, or of any right granted him by statute, unless the matter involved is first adjudicated or ruled against him at trial.

    No-fault divorce completely usurps the defendant’s constitutional right to due process. In the case of Judith Brumbaugh–author of “Judge, Please Don’t Strike That Gavel on My Marriage”–her husband of twenty years decided that he no longer wanted to be married and under the no-fault procedure he was able to file for divorce claiming that their marriage was “irretrievably broken.” Judith contested this claim, however the no-fault procedure ultimately gave her husband and the court the right to deny her due process. She was, in essence, charged with a crime, found guilty, and sentenced without ever being heard. The marriage was unilaterally dissolved.

    Judith lost her home, her children, and her husband; she was left nearly destitute from legal expenses and utterly without recourse—which is legally impossible in every other contractual obligation in this country! And yet in the most important contractual obligation in society, under no-fault divorce the plaintiff is able to break his or her contractual obligation without the right of due process being given to the other party in the contract. The defendant’s life can be ruined, her liberty restrained in countless ways, and her property taken away by the courts.

    This is a travesty of justice that affects more than a million families each and every year, with an annual related cost to taxpayers of more than $48 billion! This cost doesn’t even begin to consider the secondary societal effects of family dissolution upon crime rates, welfare rolls, and the emotional and psychological effects upon the children of divorce.

    No-fault divorce has created an easy divorce culture, which, according to Maggie Gallagher, an affiliate scholar at the Institute for American Values and a nationally syndicated columnist, “demotes marriage from a binding relation into something best described as cohabitation with insurance benefits.”

    http://www.cadz.net/mdr.html

    http://www.marriagedivorce.com/

  28. Paul says:

    Do people even know what is happening in the churches today?

    “My husband was a church elder and business leader. We have 12 children together. Amazingly, I discovered how many adulterers were in our church as a result of his betrayal of me and our children. He gave communion, counsel and prayer during his 4 year affair with his secretary.

    My husband has now married this woman and the people who profess Christ are the LOUDEST voices that cheer them on. My husband divorced me to marry this promiscuous woman and the assistant pastor has also done the same.

    Both men divorced their wives of 20 and 35 years in the fall of 2008 and remarried their other women in the spring and early summer of 2009. The senior pastor even stood as best man for the assistant pastor in his European wedding!”–Anonymous/ Washington State

    Didn’t Sandi Patty, Amy Grant, Wayne Watson, Jaci Velasquez, etc., etc., etc., do the same thing? This is what’s happening in our churches.

    Over and over the world is appalled by people who have dishonored their marriage covenant (John Edwards). But not in the church, they are not appalled—they are the greatest defenders of such actions.

    http://www.cadz.net/mdr.html

    http://www.marriagedivorce.com/

  29. Paul says:

    Jesus said:
    “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery and the man who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.”

    Do we understand this today?

    Step 1: Divorce Your Spouse
    Step 2: Remarry Another Person
    Step 3: Commit Adultery

    Notice AFTER the wedding they are committing adultery with each other. Notice AFTER the wedding the adultery STARTS.

    Are they husband and wife?

    Answer: No

    God did not join them at the altar if they are committing adultery that night AFTER they had their wedding ceremony.

    Remember–it is impossible for a husband and his wife to commit adultery–WITH EACH OTHER.

    If they were really joined as a husband and wife at their remarriage–Jesus would never have called their sexual relationship AFTER this wedding–adultery.

    People go to the courthouse to get divorce papers to get them out of their marriage but the papers obviously don’t work because they are still committing adultery AFTER they’ve done all that. And to commit adultery you need a spouse. Divorce does not make them single if the charge of adultery is still on them AFTER a divorce.

    “A wife is married to her husband as long as he lives.”
    1 Corinthians 7:39

    Divorce + Remarriage = Adultery (Not a legal marriage in the sight of God)

    Remarriage is a DECEPTION. You may be married in the eyes of the state government but you are not married in the eyes of God.

    When you walk back down the aisle thinking this is your wife, Jesus says you’re committing adultery tonight with this woman.

    If Jesus is saying you’re committing adultery with this woman after your wedding ceremony, how can this woman be your wife?

    When you look at His words closely you understand what He is saying, obviously this is not the man’s wife if after such a wedding he is committing adultery with her.

    It is God who joins people together in a legitimate marriage and there are some people He won’t join together as a husband and wife. If you leave your spouse to join yourself to another person, God will NOT join you to that person, His Word calls that ADULTERY.

    Many people have fallen into this deception. You have to go back 60 years to see the truth being spoken.

    Do pastors today care enough about the spiritual well-being of their people to address the biggest DECEPTION in the professing church today? Remarriage–which is Adultery–as defined by God.

    Do pastors tell their people that if they do decide to divorce their original mate, they cannot marry again without entering into adultery? Read…Matthew 5:32, Matthew 19:9-10, Mark 10:2-12, Luke 16:16-18, Romans 7:2-3, 1 Corinthians 7:39, 1 Corinthians 7:10-12.

    Do they teach single people that it is a sin to marry a divorced person who is STILL another person’s spouse in the eyes of God?

    Remarriage puts people in an unlawful/adulterous/not recognized by God marriage according to the words of Jesus Christ.

    God states that the sexual intercourse of a divorced and remarried couple is adultery. Therefore each time they have sexual intercourse they commit an act of adultery. As they continue to have sexual relations and there is no repentance, it becomes a state of adultery. Therefore, adultery in remarriage is both an act each time it occurs, and a continuing state of sinning.

    People are deceived and only a few people are telling them the truth.

    http://www.cadz.net/mdr.html

    http://www.marriagedivorce.com/

  30. Someoneyoudon'tneedtoknow says:

    So my only options in life are to either remain with an extremely cruel, abusive, substance abusing, neglectful, cheating, nonbeliever (actually downright states he hates anyone who is a christian) husband or be single and lonely for the rest of my life? Suicide seems like a very good option for me then…..thanks for letting me know that is my only escape from this jerk….

  31. Edward says:

    I was an elder in a Baptist church. I thought I had a very strong marriage. I also had very strong “opinions” about biblical marriage (very legalistic right straight out of the bible). Several years ago my wife left. I did everything I possibly could to reconcile, Christian counseling, I spent much time on my knees praying in tears and agony for reconciliation, praying for God to change my behavior and on and on. (Please understand that I accept that I too have partial responsibility for the breaking up of my marriage. I did not nurture my spouse enough or for whatever reasons was unable to meet her needs. There were issues related to childhood sexual abuse that I was unable to understand and she was unwilling to seek help.)
    I am a kind, gentle, giving man to the point that I gave everything that I possibly could to save our marriage to the point of complete physical, emotional and spiritual exhaustion. I truly trusted God to heal and restore each of us and the marriage. However, God has given each person a free will and my now ex chose not to even attempt reconciliation. In order to provide for my children (who were still with me and to meet other responsibilities (I own my own business) I had to accept that after three years she would never reconcile and in fact there was more damage being done to both of us and the marriage than any type of healing. I filed for divorce because it was the best option for everyone involved.
    At this point I felt like I had completely failed God and that He couldn’t possibly continue to love me. I have always had a fairly close walk with Jesus Christ since I was seven years old and so my failure was overwhelming to the point of complete despair. (So to anyone who will criticize me for not sticking with it longer, in fact prior to this I would have also criticized myself and anyone else whose marriage had failed, my response is I’m sorry but you are not the one I am most concerned about disappointing).
    However, God’s love has overwhelmed me and He has let me know that while it is true that He hates divorce just like He hates any other sin that keeps us from Him, He unconditionally loves me (and each one of us) more than He hates the sin. He loves me so much that He died for my sins and failures, for all of my past, present and future sins and failures. There is nothing I can do, no law I can keep, no opinion that I can hold no service that I can perform that can even touch the sacrifice He became for me or even begin to make me right before Him. Further, because I have completely and truly accepted this free gift from Him, He has sealed me in Him with the Holy Spirit and has promised me that there is nothing that I can do that will separate me from His love.
    I pray that anyone who reads this would find this same love and grace, it is a treasure more valuable that anything on earth, it is peace in my soul, it is joy in my heart beyond what I have ever know before. I also pray that anyone who reads this would never have to go through this, but I praise God for using this experience to teach me, humble me and make me more like Him. I do not wish to judge other by the nature of their sin, but always try to see them through God’s eyes and love them as He would, I am a long way away from this but I am closer than I was. God’s love and Jesus Christ’s sacrifice is more powerful than any sin, except the freewill choice to not accept it.
    Now will God ever allow me to remarry, I don’t know. What I do know is that He created me with a strong desire for companionship and the desire to love and nurture a spouse. If I do remarry, it will be because He allows it and it will also bring Him honor and glory.

    • Luke says:

      “I had to accept that after three years she would never reconcile.”
      “I filed for divorce because it was the best option for everyone involved.” — Edward

      “A woman is bound to her husband as long as he lives.” 1 Corinthians 7:39

      There are thousands of people who know God’s truth about marriage and divorce and are waiting and praying for their spouses to come home and out of their adulterous remarriages.

      “My husband left me for another woman back in 1991. It was a first marriage for both of us. He quickly divorced me and “married” her.

      During the first few months of the separation, the Lord spoke to me and asked me to stand for the healing and restoration of our marriage.

      He led me to people that taught me how to pray for my husband and our marriage. I stood for many years, but saw nothing happen in the natural.

      My testimony is very long, but to make a long story short…10 years after the divorce was granted, my husband contacted me and we have reconciled back to each other.

      God’s Word about divorce and remarriage is very clear. It is man who tries to twist it to their convenience.

      I knew God’s Word said I was either to remain single or be reconciled to my husband. I chose to reconcile and God made a way where there seemed to be no way.

      He changed my husband’s heart from a heart of stone to a heart of flesh. He resurrected our love for each other and taught me to be a Proverbs 31 wife.

      There are thousands of women and men like me, standing on our covenant, believing God for marriage restoration and our Lord Jesus is moving on our behalf.

      The church is filled with people teaching “false compassion” to divorced and remarried people. God calls it sin and the wages of sin is death.” –Lourdes

      For More Information See:
      http://www.cadz.net/mdr.html

    • Luke says:

      “I had to accept that after three years she would never reconcile.”
      “I filed for divorce because it was the best option for everyone involved.” – Edward

      Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels’ Marital History:

      He and his wife, Cheri, divorced in 1994, and she moved away and married someone else. When Cheri, divorced Daniels, she left him and their four children behind in Indiana, and moved to southern California to marry a surgeon.

      Her conduct was not that of a sensible person, it was that of a wayward spouse who believed she had found her soulmate. She had no regard for the impact her leaving would have on her family.

      Daniels soldiered on, raising his four daughters, who at the time ranged in age from 8 to 14. One day a few years later, his wife came back. He was waiting for her.

      They remarried in 1997 and have lived happily ever since.

      When the Indianapolis Star asked about the episode, he replied, “If you like happy endings, you’ll love our story.”

      Mitch Daniels did it right…he waited for his wife to come out of her adulterous remarriage.

      • LAStreetPreacher says:

        What this woman did appears to violate Deuteronomy 24:4 “Her former husband,… may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before the LORD…” This was was defiled with another man and then went back to her first husband. If she had remained single after the divorce there was hope of reconciliation but not after her second marriage. She only made things worse because now the surgeon is an adulterer having married a woman who was already married in God’s eyes.

    • Luke says:

      “I had to accept that after three years she would never reconcile.”
      “I filed for divorce because it was the best option for everyone involved.” – Edward

      “My husband and I worked with Marriage Ministries International for many years as a way to bring marriage healing to several nations in the South Pacific.

      We taught the course with them from 1983 to 2000. We grew in our own marriage and learned so much revelation about marriage in the Word.

      Thirteen years ago our eldest son was married but it fell apart after 5 years. Although we tried to counsel them, we were too close and found it impossible. So even after some attempts at Christian counsel, our daughter-in-law divorced our son. It was devastating for him.

      After a few years, he decided to just live his own life. We wanted him to follow God and pray to restore his marriage but it never worked. Many confrontations and talks did nothing to help him see where he was headed.

      Our son was very “happy.” He finally ended up with a girlfriend, a new job and a car which was paid off. All seemed great to him, but not so in his heart.

      Throughout the years we had been praying for them but last October God clearly told us to start praying fervently, daily and aggressively. So we did. It quickly resulted in God talking to our son in dreams and him telling his girlfriend, they could have no future together.

      Then our son wanted to know if our daughter-in-law was still alive and flippantly asked God to tell him what to do…it took 2 days for an answer.

      Through a very amazing supernatural story including dreams, visions, and open encounters with God…after 8 years of no contact… our daughter-in-law contacted our son’s sister-in-law via Facebook.

      From that contact, she eventually talked to our son, us, and each member of the family….to ask for forgiveness. They ended up with a $900 phone bill that month, then she came to visit. They went for their first restoration “date” and decided that they needed to obey God and get back together. They have been working on many heart issues. That was February.

      Tomorrow is July 4th–our son was a US Marine and they chose that day to reaffirm their marriage covenant. We are awed. The day belongs to God!!!

      Throughout the last 6 months, it has been surreal… yet naturally supernatural watching God restore them. What an amazing miracle! However, they as individuals were both prodigals.

      She had been in an adulterous remarriage and subsequent divorce. He had dated and was drinking heavily to numb the pain. Neither of them was looking for restoration. Yet–God in His mercy… WOW!

      We believe that we had the prayer clout because we had witnessed the marriage covenant ceremony and would not let it go. God had not let it go. He knew when to move and allowed us to be a part of His plan for them. Wow!

      What an awesome God we serve! God wants marriage to reflect Him and His Love and desire for intimacy.”
      –Anonymous/Australia

  32. I really like what you guys are usually up too. This kind of clever work
    and exposure! Keep up the amazing works guys I’ve added you guys to my own blogroll.

  33. Anita says:

    John 4.17 “I have no husband she replied” Jesus said to her you are right when you say you have no husband. 18 The fact is you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. ********** Here in this passage, Jesus acknowledges that each of the five as being a husband to her, he does not say you were married five times, but only the first marrage was your husband, NO he counts them each as having been her previous husbands, and then goes on to say the man you now have is not your husband, meaning they have not married and are just living together. Now this is the way I had an elder explain this to me, as I had two previous marrages and am in my third marrage. It was also explained to me that that since neither time was I or my two husbands born again believes, that the verse of divorce and re-marring only applied to believers. It would stand to reason, ICorinth.7.But if the unbeliever leves, let it be so. The brother or sister is not bound in such circumstances; God as called us to live in peace. In my situation neither me nor my two husbands were believers, but rather nonbelievers. According to this verse neither of us were bound to the that law that was stated in ICorinth. 7.10 A wife must not seperate from her husband.11 But if she does she must remain single or reconcile to her husband. Now it is not at all my intent to mislead anybody but I am explaining this as it was explained to me by a man of God. I have givin my life to Jesus in 2008 and married another Believer in 2012, I was terrified to marry as I did not want to loose my salvation, I made my fears known to the pastor and to my fiance. The pastor and assistant pastor gave us much scripture and assured us that we were ok to get married. My fiance and me prayed much on the matter and ask God if it were not his will to show that to us and to even stop the marrage from happening. Even to this day I from time to time get a bit fearful and pray to The Heavenly Father to help me know his will in this matter. I know the Lord knows my heart and will direct me in the right direction so as to not loose my salvation.Romans7.1 The law has authority over someone only as long as that person lives? 2. For example by law a married woman is bound to her husband as long as he lives, but if he dies she is released from that law that binds her to him. 3 If she marries another man while her husband is alive she is an adulterous, but if her husband dies she is released from that law and is not an adulteress if she marries another man. 4. So my brother and sisters you also died to the law through the body of Christ that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit fot God. IN this verse it appears that we died to the law and are alive in Christ. Romans7.6 But by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code. Even in Deuteronomy 24.1-4it says, he writes her a certificate of divorce and gives it to her in her hand and sends her away, she leaves his house and becomes the wife of another man. THIS verse gives the impression that remarrage is ok. Why is it that Jacob had 2 wives who were even sisters? he blessed them and Jacob with cildren and even the Bilhah the servant had a child by Jacob. God blessed Jacob with alot of livestock and other blessings. Genesis 32.22 Jacob got up and took his two wives. This whole concept confuses me even more. Anyway I cry out to the Lord on this issue constantly and I trust he will show me his will in this matter. I am not a youngster and sex is not that inportant to me, I have heard ome say that it is not the act of remarrying that is the sin but the act of sex with a man who is supposedly not ones husband, I can go without the sex. Would I still be considered an adulteress? I just hate being alone without companionship.

  34. BAYISSE says:

    Can we conclude the divorced & remarried man/women not enter into the kingdom of God?

  35. BAYISSE says:

    IS THE DIVORCED/REMARRIAGE PERSONS GO TO THE HELL?

    • Erin says:

      Any person who remarries for ANY reason other than the death of his/her first and original spouse lives in a continuous, nonstop STATE of ADULTERY, which will NOT be forgiven until and unless the second marriage is TERMINATED.

      Christians study this for yourselves…http://www.cadz.net/mdr.html

      Marriage is a Covenant for LIFE!

      “A wife is married to her husband as long as he lives.” 1 Corinthians 7:39

      “A husband must not divorce his wife.” 1 Corinthians 7:11

      “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.” –Jesus Christ

      Remarriage is adultery because the first marriage still stands after a divorce.

      Divorce + Remarriage = A Permanent Adulterous Relationship (unless you leave it)

      The Church needs to repent of their adulterous remarriages.

  36. karikoehn says:

    I got married when I was really young. I remember the day of our little wedding ceremony. Something inside told me “no, don’t do this” but I did it anyway. I was so confused at the time. My family was constantly down my back about all the wrong I was doing and my parents were never supportive. My stepmother didn’t like me and verbally abused me everyday. I was messed up. I had been born again but lost the way. Five years later my marriage fell apart. My spouse cheated on me then I cheated on him . We tried to make it work a second time after that but he just didn’t care to put his all into it. I finally divorced him after much heartache. I prayed to God that he wouldn’t let me fall in love unless it was right. Before my divorce was final I met someone and fell in love. We are living together now (I know that’s wrong but I plan to change the circumstance ASAP) and we talk of marriage, etc.
    From the moment I got to know my current boyfriend it felt as if it was from God. We’ve had our problems but we still hold on because we truly love each other.
    Now I’m confused again. What if it isn’t from God and I’m wrong and we both end up in hell? I want my boyfriend to go to heaven too and if that means me leaving him I would do it. But it devastates me to think of leaving at the same time.. And going back to my ex husband while still loving this other man.
    I don’t know what to do. I need answers. I ask for your prayers.

    • neilrobbie says:

      Hello karikoehn, welcome to TG. It is a good thing that you are wrestling with this issue and are seeking answers. I’ll email you some further suggestions for reading and your actions. Neil

  37. karikoehn says:

    I divorced my husband of almost 6 years just this last year. He was a liar, cheater and didn’t care about my health at all… We didn’t have money but he spent what we did have on crap instead of what supplies I needed (I’m type 1 diabetic). After I left him I prayed to God that he wouldn’t let me fall in love again unless it was right. Well before my divorce was final I met someone and grew to truly love him. I don’t want either of us to go to hell for me remarrying. I love him too much so I would leave if that was true (us going to hell for my remarriage). What do I do? After I got to know this man it felt like a gift from God. How could I feel that way and it be wrong? I’ve been praying and searching desperately and need answers.

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