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Author Topic: Marriage: What does Paul really teach?  (Read 3484 times)
Sower
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Romans 8:31-39


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« on: January 09, 2004, 02:46:01 PM »

Today there is a great deal of confusion about marriage, divorce, re-marriage because Christians often do not take God's Word to heart, or do not even understand what God has provided for us in marriage.

To understand Paul's teaching on marriage we have to study 1 Corinthians 6:9 to 7:40. At the same time, we need to sift and sort the various teachings and re-group them so that we have a clearer understanding, since Paul goes back and forth between different subjects.

FORNICATION
1. Fornication is unrighteousness -- SIN (6:9)
2. Unrepentant sinners will not enter the kingdom of God (6:10)
3. Believers have been washed from their sins, sancitified by the Holy Spirit, and justified through faith in Christ (6:11)
4. All things are lawful, but not all things are expedient (6:12)
5. The body is NOT for fornication, but for the Lord (6:13)
6. The body is a "member" of Christ, therefore fornication is forbidden, and the believer myst "flee fornication" (6:15-18)
7. The body is the "temple" of the Holy Spirit, therefore we must glorify God with our bodies (6:6:19) -- THIS IS THE KEY TEACHING
8. Our bodies have been bought with a price -- the blood of Christ. Therefore they do not belong us to but to God (6:19-20).

MARRIAGE
1.  The unmarried state is "good" (7:1-2; 29-35) and singleness is encouraged for the unmarried and widows who are able to remain single without lust in their hearts (7:8-9)
2. God's standard for marriage is monogamous, heterosexual marriage, with every man having his "own" wife and every woman her "own" husband (7:2)
3. The husband has a moral obligation to meet his wife's sexual needs, and vice versa (7:3-4)
4. Abstinence (from gotcha146 within marriage) should be limited with mutual consent when the couple is fasting and praying, but should not be extended (7:5-6)
5. Every person has their "proper gift of God" -- whether the single state or the married.  Paul would personally recommend singleness (7:7).

DIVORCE [To be supplemented by the Lord's teaching]
1. Wives must not divorce their husbands (and vice versa) (7:10,11)
2.  Those who divorce for any reason [other than the exception stated by the Lord, but not mentioned specifically by Paul] must remain unmarried or be reconciled to their spouses (7:11)
3. Unsaved spouses must not be divorced simply because they are not saved (7:12-14)
4. God has a special regard for such situations, and "sanctifies" the marriage through the believing spouse (7:14)
5. If unbelieving spouses "depart" -- leave the marriage -- they are not to be compelled to remain, neither is the beliving spouse bound any longer, therefore re-marriage is permissible (7:15;28)
6. Believing spouses can have a tremendous influence on the salvation of unbelieving spouses (7:16)
7. When we are saved, we must not seek to change our marital status or other outward circumstances, but must become "salt" and "light" (7:17-24).

VIRGIN DAUGHTERS
1. Virgin singleness is better than marriage [in relationship to serving the Lord "without distraction] (7:26; 34-38)
2. Virgins do not sin by getting married (7:28) and fathers who give their virgin daughters in marriage do not sin (7:38)

WIDOWS
1. Widows are free to re-marry believers only (7:39)
2. Widows are encouraged to remain single and serve the Lord (7:40)
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Reba
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« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2004, 06:32:05 PM »

Sower,

 This is really pickie,... Pauls teaching or scriptural teaching?

 I am of the understanding that the bible is Gods teaching, yet at times i say Paul said etc presuming others understand. Because we dont know all the posters here and have only the written words please explane thanks.


 Marriage is a very deeply a scriptural subject. The ideal marriage is Christ's relationship to the church. The oneness of the union. The trust... the faith ....  
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Petro
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« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2004, 08:14:46 PM »

Today there is a great deal of confusion about marriage, divorce, re-marriage because Christians often do not take God's Word to heart, or do not even understand what God has provided for us in marriage.

To understand Paul's teaching on marriage we have to study 1 Corinthians 6:9 to 7:40. At the same time, we need to sift and sort the various teachings and re-group them so that we have a clearer understanding, since Paul goes back and forth between different subjects.

FORNICATION
1. Fornication is unrighteousness -- SIN (6:9)
2. Unrepentant sinners will not enter the kingdom of God (6:10)
3. Believers have been washed from their sins, sancitified by the Holy Spirit, and justified through faith in Christ (6:11)
4. All things are lawful, but not all things are expedient (6:12)
5. The body is NOT for fornication, but for the Lord (6:13)
6. The body is a "member" of Christ, therefore fornication is forbidden, and the believer myst "flee fornication" (6:15-18)
7. The body is the "temple" of the Holy Spirit, therefore we must glorify God with our bodies (6:6:19) -- THIS IS THE KEY TEACHING
8. Our bodies have been bought with a price -- the blood of Christ. Therefore they do not belong us to but to God (6:19-20).


sower,

This is a good beginning.

Quote:


3. Believers have been washed from their sins, sanctified by the Holy Spirit, and justified through faith in Christ (6:11)


Believers, should understand, that they have been saved from the sin of unbelief, and should not live unto themselves which is sin, but unto Him that saved them from their sin.

Quote:


4. All things are lawful, but not all things are expedient (6:12)


When Christians come along preaching one must keep the commandments to stay saved, I have always made an effort to correct this deception, it is plain, that Christians that are saved, will always remain saved, thought they sin, because the blood of Jesus covers all manner of sin, for His people, since this is why He came died and was resurrected by the Spirit of God. This freedom should never be used as an opportunity to sin.

On the other hand when some come out claiming, and insisting Jesus never set marriage in concrete, except for the offense of fornication, I stand against this deceptive teaching also. Marriage is an institution that was intended from the beginning to be for life.

Sin is a transgression of God's law.

Quote:


5. The body is NOT for fornication, but for the Lord (6:13) 6. The body is a "member" of Christ, therefore fornication is forbidden, and the believer myst "flee fornication" (6:15-18) 7. The body is the "temple" of the Holy Spirit, therefore we must glorify God with our bodies (6:6:19) -- THIS IS THE KEY TEACHING 8. Our bodies have been bought with a price -- the blood of Christ. Therefore they do not belong us to but to God (6:19-20).


Everyone who is saved, and regenerated by the Holy Spirit is a member of the Body of Christ. (1 Cor 12:27)

Please note whom the passage of the verses which you posted above, is addressed to, it does not end at verse 20, but includes verses 1 and 2 of 1 Cor 7.

I think you understand that the church is the bride of Christ, and supposedly a "Virgin", all believers who are members of the church should also consider themselves to be betrothed to Him, even now the scriptures likens Christians to members in particular of His Body because of this very fact, that the church belongs to Him, note:

Rom 7
1 Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?
2 For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband.
3 So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.
4 Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.

Fornication is the act of sexual immorality committed by an unmarried individual before marriage

The church of Christ should not be involved in fornication, FORNICATION is SPIRITUAL idolatry.

It is the only exception allowed for divorce, according to the Lord.


And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery. Mat 5:32; 19:9

Adultery is not in view in the verse speaking of fornication ..every Christian Man is to be the Husband of one Wife, and Christians Women should be the wives of one Husband.

Gentiles who divorced while in unbelief, were never under the law to begin with, (This is why they were in unbelief) but in case you argue that they were, they died to the law, when they received Faith to believe, and were sealed by the Spirit of Grace becoming alive in newness of life to the law written in their hearts and were betrothed to Christ.

Rom 7, makes it clear Christians died to the Law, and now live unto God, this was death to that old life when we followed after the spirit that presently rules this earth, not a physical death, the physical death was the one that Jesus died for us, in our place.

1 Cor 7, makes it clear that one who dies physically is loosed from the law of marriage, because all marriages are joined together by God, whether one is a believer or no.

The word says;

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. Mat 19:4-6



Even when Christians insist they are free to marry and divorce for whatever reason, their sins are covered and forgiven, even that of divorce for all other causes. Inspite of many offenses, they will be saved, but clearly Christians should know divorce and remarriage is not Gods Will, Reconciliation is.

If any divorce for any reason other the FORNICATION, and they have living ex spouses, they not only are committing adultery but causing their living re married ex mates to commit adultery.

To teach anything other than this, is to teach contrary to what has been written, for our own admonishment and edification.

But by all means you teach what suits your fancy, brother..

You and others can feel free to call me an unloving Christian, because I am pointing out to you the truth of this matter.

That's fine with me, I am not going to continue, debating against this teaching, it has been explained plainly to you and others,

This teaching, which makes for divorce and remarriage, has become another cancer in the church, it needs to be dealt with, its not good to teach what Gods Word does not teach.

Divorce is allowed only for Fornication, Remarriage is not allowed.

To teach anything other than this is an offense, to the what Gods word teaches.

This is why self made teachers, will have to answer before the Lord.

Blessings,
Petro

« Last Edit: January 10, 2004, 11:26:35 AM by Petro » Logged

Sower
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« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2004, 07:00:04 PM »

Sower,
 This is really pickie,... Pauls teaching or scriptural teaching?
 

Would you prefer "the Holy Spirit's teaching through the apostle Paul, and therefore God's words?" That is obvious.

What is not obvious is that the Lord refrained from teaching everything concerning marriage and left it to be brought out in Paul's epistles [as well as those of the other apostles].
Therefore the total teaching on marriage should be the sum of all that is taught in the New Testament, including the higher and mystical significance of marriage as symbolic of the believer's eternal union to Christ.

The Church is indeed the "Bride" of Christ, the Divine Bridegroom, and there will be a "marriage" and a "marriage supper".  These things cannot necessarily be fully grasped with our limitations, but what is quite clear from Scripture is that believers should marry believers and remain united until death. Divorce is AN EXCEPTION for an exceptional reason, and it is by permission, not recommendation.
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« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2004, 07:21:28 PM »

Quote
Petro - If any divorce for any reason other the FORNICATION, and they have living ex spouses, they not only are committing adultery but causing their living re married ex mates to commit adultery.

To teach anything other than this, is to teach contrary to what has been written, for our own admonishment and edification.


Petro:

Had you taken some time to digest what I have posted here and in the thread about divorce, you would have discovered that I (and others who agree with me) have said the very same thing as you:

1. Marriage is a lifelong commitment, and divorce and re-marriage for reasons other adultery cause both parties to commit adultery
2. The Lord made only one exception -- "fornication" [adultery] -- by one of the spouses
3. Divorce in that circumstance is by permission, not compulsion
4. Re-marriage of the injured or innocent party is not offensive to God, since God is just and will not punish the guiltless for the sins of the guilty.  In fact the words of Christ imply re-marriage when you read the text carefully.

The only real differences between us are:

1. You are insisting that "fornication" is not a general term which includes adultery, and we are insisting that fornication is any illicit intercourse, including adultery (as do authorities such as Vine's Expository Dictionary)

2. You are insisting that the Lord is teaching about "betrothal" and "espousal" prior to marriage, while the text makes it plain that the Lord is speaking to those who had "wives" already married to them, and who wanted to know what Christ had to say about divorce.  The Lord's teachings are universal and timeless, therefore your narrow interpretation flies in the face of how Scripture is given and why the Lord teaches as He does. It also flies in the face of clear Scripture in which the Lord allows re-marriage without it being considered sinful.

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« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2004, 09:43:56 PM »


This is all entirely too rabbinical.   Sower, you are like the rabbinical scribes, lost in the eternal hair-splitting of long-winded traditions.  Roll Eyes

Reba has encapsulated the whole thing:

Marriage is a very deeply a scriptural subject. The ideal marriage is Christ's relationship to the church. The oneness of the union. The trust... the faith ....  


We're not talking rocket science.

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« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2004, 12:23:19 AM »

Quote
Sower's reply #4

Petro:

Had you taken some time to digest what I have posted here and in the thread about divorce, you would have discovered that I (and others who agree with me) have said the very same thing as you:

1. Marriage is a lifelong commitment, and divorce and remarriage for reasons other adultery cause both parties to commit adultery
2. The Lord made only one exception -- "fornication" [adultery] -- by one of the spouses
3. Divorce in that circumstance is by permission, not compulsion
4. Remarriage of the injured or innocent party is not offensive to God, since God is just and will not punish the guiltless for the sins of the guilty. In fact the words of Christ imply remarriage when you read the text carefully.

I don't know which soap you are reading, but we hardly agree on this matter at all, as I see it our disagreement centers around your interpretation of the word FORNICATION, by defining it broadly to include adultery, you then can teach what you desire, this is clearly in error since you rely heavily on 1 Cor 7, to prove your point, but 1 Cor 7, will not support your doctrine, at all.

Your, Item #2 above, does not describe at all what is written at Mat 19:8-9. You have added, your own ideas and words to the scriptures.

Quote
The only real differences between us are:

1. You are insisting that "fornication" is not a general term which includes adultery, and we are insisting that fornication is any illicit intercourse, including adultery (as do authorities such as Vine's Expository Dictionary)

Vine's expository, is not inspired, so I would hardly give it a second glance on such a difficult bible teaching.
If there is no difference between Fornication and Adultery, why is it used separately at 1 Cor 6:9; Gal 5:19,   both are listed as a sin, I will tell you why, because the word Fornication is a word unlike Adultery, in as much as it also is used to describe spiritual idolatry,  referring to the church of Jesus, a chaste virgin.


Quote
2. You are insisting that the Lord is teaching about "betrothal" and "espousal" prior to marriage, while the text makes it plain that the Lord is speaking to those who had "wives" already married to them, and who wanted to know what Christ had to say about divorce. The Lord's teachings are universal and timeless, therefore your narrow interpretation flies in the face of how Scripture is given and why the Lord teaches as He does. It also flies in the face of clear Scripture in which the Lord allows remarriage without it being considered sinful.

The Lord spoke at Matthew 19:9; here is the verse.......

And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.


You cannot grasp this because you ignore the historical manners and customs of  the day ..In your haste to prove your preconceived notion of the teaching you desire to espouse, you overlook, factual historical evidence which illuminate the matter.

Allinall, gave a perfect expose of what is described as the manners and customs of betrothed individuals in the times when Jesus walked the earth, couples that were betrothed were for all practical purposes considered married, except that they lived separately for one year, with there own parents or relatives,  and it was during this time the Joseph found Mary the mother of Jesus with child,  And it was for the reason of Fornication, that He would have put her away, since the scriptures tell us she was a virgin, and she was found pregnant "before they came together" (Mat 1:18-19)

When Jesus spoke what is set in concrete concerning this teaching at Mat 19:18-10, He said, "except it be for fornication", not adultery, if a man, was betrothed to a woman, and then after the one year of living they came together and he found out three years later that his wife had committed fornication (the sexual act committed by an unmarried individual) , then this individual could put away his wife, period.  Not for adultery, because she never committed adultery.

Your teaching at item # 4 above, of  "remarriage of the offended party", is your addition to what is written, and it contradicts what the Lord has said at Mark 10:11.

Sower,.

Since you make yourself a teacher of the word on this point, allow me to direct you to what Paul says, to teachers at 1 Cor 4:6 ; allow me to give you this verse in modern English;

"Now these considerations, brethren, I have specially applied to Apollos and myself, for your sakes, in order to teach you by our example the maxim not to exceed what is written: so that you may not be arrogant champions of one teacher against another."  New Testament in Modern Speech, WEYMOUTH

I say beware...of teaching what is not written..

PS BTW, I agree with your take, that there is alot of confusion on this teaching of divorce and remarriage, and it is because of teachers that add words to that which is written, in order to accomodate their false teachings.


Blessings,
Petro
« Last Edit: January 11, 2004, 12:37:30 AM by Petro » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2004, 10:36:33 AM »

I have a question I think few have considered.  As a born again believer, and with the basis that my salvation rests in the completed work of Christ on the cross of calvary, not my adherence/obedience to the sanctified life He has called me to (hence, I don't lose that salvation), how then am I to relate the concept of divorce into the picture of Christ's relationship to me?
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« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2004, 03:06:32 PM »

Quote from: Petro
You cannot grasp this because you ignore the historical manners and customs of  the day ..[quote

Petro:

I am not going to take a lot of time to respond to your post, except to say that you just shot yourself in the foot.  

You are misrepresenting the teaching of Christ by SUPERIMPOSING "the historical manners and customs of the day" on teaching which is TIMELESS AND UNIVERSAL. So if you are indeed correct, we Christians of the 21st century should ignore this teaching, since it applies exclusively to Jewsih manners and customs of the first century. In other words, by applying this criterion, you just nullified the teaching of Christ, since a modern believer will respond to you and say "THAT'S NOT RELEVANT! IT WAS FOR JEWS OF JESUS' DAY!"

Because I am insisting on the timelessness and universality of Christ's teaching, it does not matter what manners or customs or cultures we address. THe teaching never changes. And that is why your interpretation is FALSE.

So you can't have it both ways.  By the same criterion, we can dimiss the enitre NT because it was primarily addressed to first century Christians living in a totally different culture.  Is that what you want, since that is the logical conclusion?
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« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2004, 03:41:19 PM »

I have a question I think few have considered.  As a born again believer, and with the basis that my salvation rests in the completed work of Christ on the cross of calvary, not my adherence/obedience to the sanctified life He has called me to (hence, I don't lose that salvation), how then am I to relate the concept of divorce into the picture of Christ's relationship to me?

Allinall:

I believe this issue has been addressed, but the short answer is that for believers, DIVORCE IS NOT AN OPTION. If there are two Christians who are seriously contemplating divorce, they should seek spiritual counsel from their pastor or an elder.  

Divorce arises from conflict. Conflict arises from the "flesh", not the spirit.  So either both partners are walking in the flesh, or one of them is, and therefore they must address their inner spiritual condition before any talk about divorce or separation.  Those who are controlled by the Spirit will manifest the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-24) and if both partners are Spirit-controlled, the last thing they will consider is divorce.
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« Reply #10 on: January 13, 2004, 08:41:45 AM »

Sower,

I believe you are missing the point of my question.  I agree.  Divorce is not an option.  However, I do not agree that it is permissable.  Again, my question is, how, if marriage is the picture of Christ's relationship with the church, does divorce factor in?  Christ has said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you."  Why then would He give a permissable out thereby reducing the effect of that image?
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« Reply #11 on: January 13, 2004, 10:54:34 AM »

[quote author=Petro
You cannot grasp this because you ignore the historical manners and customs of  the day ..

Petro:

I am not going to take a lot of time to respond to your post, except to say that you just shot yourself in the foot.  

You are misrepresenting the teaching of Christ by SUPERIMPOSING "the historical manners and customs of the day" on teaching which is TIMELESS AND UNIVERSAL. So if you are indeed correct, we Christians of the 21st century should ignore this teaching, since it applies exclusively to Jewsih manners and customs of the first century. In other words, by applying this criterion, you just nullified the teaching of Christ, since a modern believer will respond to you and say "THAT'S NOT RELEVANT! IT WAS FOR JEWS OF JESUS' DAY!"

Sower,

This is where you are wrong, it is important to consider the manners and customs of the people since what they observed and how they lived there life, in observance to the Law (afterall isn't this whom Rom7:1-3 is written to?, this is why you and others cannot see it) would be a good indication as to what was the correct biblical teaching of the law of  Moses concerning divorce and remarriage, this would determine how we are to understand the teaching of the law concerning divorce and remarriage.
First of all, one passage of scipture which has been ignored in this discussion is;

"Lev 20
10 And the man that committeth adultery with another man's wife, even he that committeth adultery with his neighbour's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.

(If you have ever wondered what Jesus scribbled in the dirt, when the scribes and Pharisee's  brought a woman taken in adultery to tempt Him, it could very well have been this command, and since she was taken in the very act, no doubt one of them or all of them were guilty, and since they didn't bring the adulterer, it is clear they were really not interested in justice. Jhn 8:1-11)
S o we can see from the above that the man who is intimate with another man's wife is guilty of adultery and the woman who is married commits adultery if she is intimate with another man. The woman must be married before intimacy constitutes the sin of adultery. Both the man and woman are guilty together.

Christ restated the Law in Matthew.

Matthew 19:9 And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.

Notice here that the man only put away his wife. He did not give her a writ of divorce and so they were still married. According to the Law a man who divorced his wife had to give her a writ of divorce and put her away (send her) out of his house.   (Deut 24:1-4)
Both of these actions were required for a divorce. If a woman was guilty of adultery then a man was only required to put her away. No writ of divorce was required.

Malachi 2:14-16 and Matthew 5:31-32 were dealing with men who were putting away their wives without the cause of adultery and not giving them a writ of divorce. These verses do not even deal with divorce. Men were dealing treacherously or vindictively with their wives. Unless the wife could go to her parents and not remarry she was relegated to living in the streets without food or housing. If she married then she and her new husband would be stoned as adulterers for she and her first husband were actually still married. This is evil in the sight of God and a violation of Yahweh's Law for the original husband. The first husband shared in the guilt.

Let me quickly cover Matthew 5:31and 32. There is much confusion there because of a mistranslation. Here is the verse in the King James version which is copied in most translations.

31 It hath been said, Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement:
32 But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.

Now here is what the verse should say based on the Greek.

31 It hath been said, Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement:
32 But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is put away committeth adultery.

Let me show you how Matthew 5:32 might look in today's standard English based on what the Greek actually says:

32 But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is not divorced, but only separated committeth adultery.

That makes quite a difference doesn't it? One mistranslated word has made countless numbers of people misunderstand what God was saying and that he was not changing his law, instead he was just restating it.

Quote
Because I am insisting on the timelessness and universality of Christ's teaching, it does not matter what manners or customs or cultures we address. THe teaching never changes. And that is why your interpretation is FALSE.

Precisely for the very reason that you have not considered, the manners and customs of what the people lived and practiced, (which is a good indicator of how they understood the Mosaic Law) you have missed the spiritual teaching of MARRIAGE which is a solemn ceremony instituted by God Himself at Gen 2:24.


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So you can't have it both ways.  By the same criterion, we can dimiss the enitre NT because it was primarily addressed to first century Christians living in a totally different culture.  Is that what you want, since that is the logical conclusion?

I am afraid in your haste to make your point you have missed the point, allinall is right.

It is best for you to yeach and preach against divorce, and not mention remarriage, why cause others to stumble who do not understand the teaching either, thruly the Lord did not speak in vain, when HE asked;

 Can the blind lead the blind? shall they not both fall into the ditch?

I know you are not blind, but there is no reason why you should be teaching something like this to those that are.

Blessings,


Petro
« Last Edit: January 13, 2004, 11:30:16 AM by Petro » Logged

loverofgod
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« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2004, 11:47:55 AM »

Allinall

It has been a long time since you posted your question about Christ and divorce: "Again, my question is, how, if marriage is the picture of Christ's relationship with the church, does divorce factor in?"  Even though it has been long since you posted this, I thought I would reply and see if anyone would reply back.  Smiley  Obviously, this issue is very controversial and highly debateable and I'm not sure if you're ever going to find the REAL reason for why Christ made exceptions for divorce, but here is my thought: Christ knows just as well as we do that we are sinful beings.  And even though many Christians head into marriage with loving hearts and are willing to go through anything to keep their marriage together...we are still human.  We can fail.  We can change.  Our decisions, as well as our hearts, can falter.  God knows all, and I believe when Christ made these exceptions, He KNEW there were going to be instances in which marriages were going to fail because of our sinful flesh.  For this reason, I believe He prepared us for those times and gave us a heads up.

Adding to that, it's so hard to know what to do in situations in which we feel a "double bind", if you will.  For instance, your spouse commits adultry.  God gives you the "permission" to divorce, right?  So do you divorce and abandon your spouse who is obviously in need of spiritual, unwavering care?  (as you said in your earlier post..."Christ has said, 'I will never leave you nor forsake you.'  Why then would He give a permissable out thereby reducing the effect of that image?")  Or, do you stay in the marriage and allow yourself, a temple of God, to be trampled upon by an unfaithful spouse and allow your children to see this as well?  Same thing with abuse in a marriage.  There are double-binded situations we face every day, where it feels like we will sin no matter what way we go.  And that's just life- that's the consequence of our sinful nature.  And I believe, just as you do, that God gave us a very high expectation by commanding our marriages to be like Jesus' relationship to the church.  However, God knows all.  He knows we fail, He knows we can not always keep the commandments He sets out for us- the same commandments we DESIRE to adhere to, but fall short of.  This is why I believe he gave us very specific exceptions.

So...yeah.  That's my take on that; take it or leave it.  Smiley  If you would like to write back, I would love to know your view on this.  It's always good to discuss with fellow Christians!  However, I think it's important to remember too, that we are thirsty for knowledge- we WANT to know the answers to our questions.  And sometimes, that turns into a prideful war, which is NOT what God desires for us.  Some things we just won't know until we get to heaven.  Until then, we can talk about it, but who knows if we will ever be able to understand that which God has set into motion on this temporary earth.  Peace out, allinall.  God's blessings on your day!
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« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2004, 01:12:35 PM »

  LoverofGOD, ALLINALL:

The reason why Christ made exceptions for divorce, is found in Matthew, because of the hardness of your hearts

Matthew 19
6   Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
7   They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away?
8   He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so.
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« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2004, 01:40:04 PM »

Forrest~

Thanks for the scripture reference- that helps!  I have more questions: what does "...because of the hardness of your hearts..." mean exactly?  Was God speaking only of the people Moses led at that specific time, or is He speaking of all of us?  And what does he mean by "...suffered you to put away your wives"?  Thanks.  Smiley
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