What Is Gods Will For Divorce And Remarriage
Does God permit a divorced person to remarry while their former spouse is still alive? If a divorced person has already remarried, should they get divorced again? How does God feel when 2 people who were divorced get back together with each other in again?
God hates divorce and only allows for it in the case of unfaithfulness by one or the other spouse . Even in the case of unfaithfulness, God does not require or desire divorce but merely permits it . When there has been unfaithfulness or other sins that have torn apart the relationship, it is Gods desire that both partners would repent. They have to forgive one another, and reconcile .
What God Is Doing Now
God is purging his people from sin and purifying his Church. Teachings like these are the start. But in these last days, the devil is working even harder to corrupt the people of God through teachers who validate the sin of adultery through remarriage either ignorantly or rebelliously. We have to beware and guard against deception and listen to the Holy Spirit instead of our emotions.
Readers, this is the hardest thing Ive had to write. I dont want to see families broken up again to repent to the Lord. But what does the scripture say? I know people who have divorced and remarried. I feel for them, but I see no room in scripture to continue in a remarriage without violating Gods laws.
While we are under grace, the grace of God teaches us to say No to ungodliness and to live self-controlled, godly lives in this present age .
Theres much more to say about divorce and remarriage, but this is it for now. I advise that you seek his face diligently and ask him what to do in your case.
This article was written by Nealreal, a former Bible teacher Learn more about him. Is God Okay with Remarriage after Divorce? was posted 09/23/19 and updated 06/26/20.
This ministry is no longer in service. I left the Christian faith and no longer agree with some of the content posted here. However, this website will remain available for archive purposes. Read the details in my last post.
But Returning To Your Former Spouse Is Defilement
Ive been getting emails from some who condemn me for telling people to return to their first spouse. The passages they cite are Deuteronomy 24:1-4 which says:
1 When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house.
2 And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another mans wife. 3 And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement, and giveth it in her hand, and sendeth her out of his house or if the latter husband die, which took her to be his wife
4Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled for that is abomination before the Lord: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance .
My responses are these:
The passages mentioned are from the Old Testament under the Old Covenant. The OT also teaches that we should kill a person that defiles the Sabbath . The bottom line is this scripture isnt the whole counsel of God.
Were under the New Covenant of grace, godly love, forgiveness, and the blood of Jesus that can wash away that defilement. Think about that for a minute. Think about how divorce was permitted under the Old Covenant, but now under the New, if you remarry youre committing adultery.
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Common Reasons People Divorce
The reasons people divorced in the Bible arenât explicitly given, but we can look at data in modern times and see why couples âcall it quits.â Here are ten common answers from an article by the Insider:
Granted, these are reasons people breakup and not necessarily the root cause. The real causes will be discussed elsewhere. With a look at these ten reasons, does Jesus support any of these? Letâs see what the Bible says.
Repentance Is Better Than Rebellion
Learn from the example in the Corinthian church. It says in 1 Corinthians 6:11, and such were some of you, referring to those who used to be in illegal remarriagesadulterers they werebut they repented. Jesus even mentions a blessing on these people:
Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospels,30 who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this timeâhouses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutionsâand in the age to come, eternal life
Why would a person leave their wife? One reason would be if they discovered they were in an illegal remarriage. If you love Jesus, you will obey him .
Jesus continues to say:
13 Enter by the narrow gate for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it.14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it .
Jesus said it would be difficult on the road to eternal life. Meaning: most people wont repent of adultery and forsake their unlawful remarriages for Christs sake simply because its too hard to bear. I would argue that the Lake of Fire is much harder to bear.
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The Role Of The Church
Believers who pursue divorce on unbiblical grounds are subject to church discipline because they openly reject the Word of God. The one who obtains an unbiblical divorce and remarries is guilty of adultery since God did not permit the original divorce . That person is subject to the steps of church discipline as outlined in Matthew 18:15-17. If a professing Christian violates the marriage covenant and refuses to repent during the process of church discipline, Scripture instructs that he or she should be put out of the church and treated as an unbeliever . When the discipline results in such a reclassification of the disobedient spouse as an outcast or unbeliever, the faithful partner would be free to divorce according to the provision for divorce as in the case of an unbeliever departing, as stated in 1 Corinthians 7:15. Before such a divorce, however, reasonable time should be allowed for the possibility of the unfaithful spouse returning because of the discipline.
When Remarriage Is Not Biblical
If you were divorced and your reasoning for it was unbiblical, then biblically remarriage is not an option for you.
There are different views on the biblical reasons for divorce. The biblical reasons for divorce are: being unequally yoked, your partner is unfaithful to you, and abuse occurs.
I am not going to discuss these reasons in-depth, but here are some sources that go in more in-depth regarding biblical divorce click here.
God created marriage to be a lifelong covenant between a man and a woman. However, due to the fall, sin became a part of reality causing humans to commit sins like being unfaithful to their spouse and engaging in abuse.
You must dig deeper into these reasons for yourself before getting remarried.
If your reasons for your divorce were unbiblical, then you are still married in the eyes of God. Even if the marriage is dissolved in the eyes of the law.
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What The Bible Actually Says About Divorce
Instone-Brewer argues that Jesus not only defended the true meaning of Deuteronomy 24:1 but also accepted what the rest of the Old Testament taught on divorce. Exodus taught that everyone had three rights within marriage the rights to food, clothing, and love. Paul taught the same thing: married couples owe each other love and material support . If these rights were neglected, the wronged spouse had the right to seek a divorce. Abuse, an extreme form of neglect, also was grounds for divorce. There was debate on whether or not abandonment was grounds for divorce, so Paul dealt with it. He wrote that believers may not abandon their partners and, if they have done so, they should return . If someone is abandoned by an unbeliever, or a spouse who will not obey the command to return, then the abandoned person is “no longer bound.”
The Old Testament allows for, and the New Testament affirms, the following grounds for divorce:
- Emotional and physical neglect
- Abandonment and abuse
Of course, having grounds for divorce does not mean that one should divorce. God hates divorce, and for good reason. It can be devastating for all involved, and the negative effects can last for years. Divorce always should be a last resort. But God does allow for divorce in some cases when marriage vows are broken.-What the Bible Actually Says about Divorce section excerpted from What the Bible Says about Divorce: A Guide for Men by Chris Bolinger on Crosswalk.com.
What Does The Bible Say About Divorce When Is It Allowed
In our culture today many see divorce as a positive solution to a troubled marriage. But Harvard sociologist Armand Nicholi III concluded, Divorce is not a solution, but an exchange of problems. In a more personal way, novelist Pat Conroy said of his own marriage break-up, Each divorce is the death of a small civilization.
One woman wrote after her divorce, Our divorce has been the most painful, horrid, ulcer producing, agonizing event you can imagine. I wish I could put on this piece of paper for all the world to see, a picture of what divorce feels like. Maybe my picture would stop people before its too late.
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Biblical Grounds For Divorce
Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?” “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” “Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?” Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.”
No other grounds for divorce are mentioned in the New Testament. The New Testament teaches strongly that marriage should be a lifelong commitment. Things such as lack of commitment, different values/beliefs, in-law problems, stress, incompatibility, lack of concern/consideration, sexual problems, growing apart, illness, incapacity, boredom, sexual desires, desire for happiness or other reasons are not Biblical grounds for divorce.
The Apostle Paul echoed Jesus’ sentiment:
What The Bible Teaches About Divorce And Remarriage
More By Paul
There are few issues that require more pastoral sensitivity than the issue of divorce and remarriage. Getting it wrong one way can have massive consequences, particularly for women who feel trapped in abusive and unsafe relationships. Getting it wrong the other way can bring shame and infamy upon the name of Christ. Pastors and elders therefore have a responsibility to know what the Bible says and to teach, counsel, lead, correct and discipline their people accordingly.
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Paul Talks About Divorce And Remarriage
This matter continues when Paul is asked about this subject. We get his response in first Corinthians chapter 7:
8 I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, it is good for them if they abide even as I. 9 But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn. 10 And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from her husband: 11 But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife .
Here, Paul is permitting unmarried folks and widows to marry if they are burning with passion and canât exercise self-control. Some will say that an unmarried person could be a person thatâs been previously divorced. But heâs not talking about previously divorced people. Heâs talking to people who have never been married, and to those who have been married, but their spouses are now dead. Look at the scripture again. The following verse supports that.
So God , once again, speaks to the married people and tells them not to divorce their spouses, but if so, they are to remain unmarried or reconcile. Why stay unmarried? Because to remarry is to commit adultery as Jesus already taught. So verse eight has nothing to do with divorcees whose spouses are still livingâthat would be a contradiction in scripture.
Remarriage After Divorce Is It Adultery
Tims AnswerI appreciate the question you raise concerning second marriages following divorces. If, as Jesus states in Matthew 5:31 19:9 Mark 10:11-12 and Luke 16:18, a person who remarries following a divorce is committing adultery, should not the person who seeks to follow Jesus stop committing adultery by breaking off the second marriage?
I believe that the answer from the Scripture is that the adulterous nature of the second marriage never justifies a second divorce. I am led to this answer by the words of Jesus and Paul. But I acknowledge that this is a difficult question theologically. Let me explain my understanding of the relevant texts.
I further note that in the Deuteronomy 24:1-4 passage, the second and subsequent marriages by the person in whom is found some uncleanness , are treated as valid marriages. I find it most instructional that the second marriage breaks the first marriage in ways that are irreparable. God says that once the second marriage has been consummated, the first marriage may never be reconstituted. Such would be an abomination before God. Thus, the second marriage even in the Old Testament was more than adultery it was a covenant that broke the first marriage.
I hope this helps.
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The Three Views On Divorce & Remarriage
With divorce being as common as it is in our day and age, remarriage is also something that is common because of divorce.
With both of these being situations, we will encounter during our lives whether firsthand, by a friend, or a family member due to the high divorce rate.
We must ensure that we are aware of the three different views of divorce and remarriage so that we are appropriately applying what the Bible says regarding divorce and remarriage.
What Does The Bible Say About Divorce And Remarriage
The Bible is explicit about divorce and remarriage. In the Old Testament, Moses permitted a man to obtain a divorce on just about any grounds.
“If a man marries a woman who becomes displeasing to him because he finds something indecent about her, and he writes her a certificate of divorce, gives it to her and sends her from his house, and if after she leaves his house she becomes the wife of another man, and her second husband dislikes her and writes her a certificate of divorce, gives it to her and sends her from his house, or if he dies, then her first husband, who divorced her, is not allowed to marry her again after she has been defiled. That would be detestable in the eyes of the Lord. Do not bring sin upon the land the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance” .
Later on, in the New Testament, when Jesus was asked about divorce, He replied that Moses gave permission to divorce because of the hardness of their hearts. He said that in the beginning it was not this way. Jesus continued:
“Haven’t you read that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh?” So they are no longer two but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate” .
Obviously, when a person who does not have biblical grounds for divorce remarries, he or she is technically committing adultery.
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How Should A Christian View Marriage And Divorce
In This Series:
God, the Creator of humanity and of marriage itself, has laid out His plan for marriage as a lifelong union. God knows this design is the best. When we stray from His plan, as we have seen in the studies mentioned above, the results are damaging on many levels.
Unfortunately, many Christians see nothing wrong with divorce, at least in their own particular situation. But the Bible clearly addresses marriage and divorce.
Through the prophets, God emphasized three principles:
Jesus underscored the importance and sacredness of lifelong marriage in His own teachings.
The apostle Paul further taught that the marital relationship is to be an ongoing demonstration of the sacrificial love that Christ showed His church.
Lets look at this issue more closely. Specifically, what does the Bible tell us about divorce? Malachi 2:13-16 gives us a clear look into Gods heart for marriage:
Jesus Christ reiterated the importance and permanence of marriage. Matthew 19:3-6 says, Some Pharisees came to Him to test Him. They asked, Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?’
Havent you read, He replied, that at the beginning the Creator made them male and female, and said, For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.