I’m Divorced – What Are My Options?
By John Isaac Edwards
It is not uncommon for this question to be asked as divorce is common these days–about half of marriages end in divorce, we are told. One has to set his emotions aside, let the Lord answer the question, through a careful and prayerful reading of His word, and be satisfied with His answer, whatever it is.
The Rule: No Divorce. We must realize that God’s rule is, No divorce! God hates divorce (Mal. 2:14). God’s marriage law, in the beginning, made no provision for divorce (Gen. 2:18-24). Jesus said, “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Matt. 19:6) “...from the beginning it [divorce] was not so” (Matt. 19:8).
One Exception: Fornication. The Lord gave only one exception to the no-divorce rule, when He said, “saving for the cause of fornication” (Matt. 5:32) and “except it be for fornication” (Matt. 19:9).
If You Did The Putting away. If the marriage was Scriptural to start with, and you divorced your spouse for some reason other than fornication, then you have an unscriptural divorce. You need to repent of putting asunder what God joined together and “be reconciled” to your spouse (1 Cor. 7:11). If reconciliation is not possible, then you have no choice but to “remain unmarried” (1 Cor. 7:11). If you put away your spouse for the sin of fornication, then, according to Matthew 5:32 and 19:9, you have the right to either remain unmarried or marry another, provided you marry one who has a Scriptural right to marry: one never before married (1 Cor. 7:1-2), one whose spouse has died (Rom. 7:2-3), or one who put away a fornicating mate (Matt. 19:9).
If You Were Put Away. If you were put away by your spouse, then you cannot marry another. Jesus never gave the put away person the right to marry. If so, where is the passage? Jesus taught, “...and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery” (Matt. 5:32; 19:9).
Marriage is a life-long contract and we need to think very seriously before entering it. “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. 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” (Rom. 7:2-3). – Back to Basics, January 2008.
Bound For Life
By Joe R. Price
“A wife is bound by law as long as her husband lives; but if her husband dies, she is at liberty to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord” (1 Cor. 7:39, NKJV).
The divinely mandated permanency of marriage is reiterated here. The word “bound” signifies to be obligated to – it describes a tie with obligations. While “friends with benefits” popularizes fornication and diminishes marriage, “marriage with obligations” is God’s directive (Rom. 7:2; 1 Cor. 7:27). Marriage is not “until we fall out of love” – it is “until death we do part.” This is why marrying another person while one’s original spouse is alive is adultery (Rom. 7:2-3). Marriage cannot be ended on a whim, or on differences we deem to be “irreconcilable.” Only fornication gives the other party in marriage the freedom to put away the offender and marry another (Matt. 19:9). According to Jesus, all other remarriages constitute adultery (Matt. 5:32; 19:9; Mk. 10:11-12; Lk. 16:18). Death of the spouse to whom God joined you ends marriage’s obligation, freeing one to marry again in harmony with God’s will. We must return to honoring the serious, lifelong obligation one accepts when entering marriage. Otherwise, people will continue dishonoring marriage by putting asunder what God has joined together (Matt. 19:6). Be assured, this sin does not escape the attention of the One to whom we will give account (2 Cor. 5:10; Heb. 13:4). – Sword Tips, October 5, 2018.
By Carl Allen
“6 If we say that we have fellowship with him and walk in the darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: 7 but if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanseth us from all sin” (1 Jn. 1:6-7).
W. E. Vine designates “fellowship” as a “sharing in common.” There can be a fellowship with God and a fellowship with one another. We shall develop this as this article unfolds ideas concerning “fellowship.” Our intentions are to develop a fellowship with God and a fellowship one with another as children of God.
From the passage in 1 John 1:6 we learn: “If we say that we have fellowship with him and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth.” Here is introduced “fellowship with God.” What does it mean to “walk in darkness?” In verse 6 and verse 7 there is a contrast between the word “darkness” and “light.” To walk in “darkness” is to walk in sin! “and have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them” (Eph. 5:11). To be in “darkness” is to be associated with sinful acts and to be associated with the Devil. To walk in “light” is to walk according to “truth” and is, one who is following the word of the Lord – he walks in light. When one walks in light he has fellowship with God. So, having fellowship with God is dependent upon one walking in “light.” We have to read and study and obey the word of the Lord and that causes us to have “a sharing in common,” with God. This relationship cannot be gleaned in any other way.
When we have fellowship with God, it is because we “walk in the light” (1 Jn. 1:7). When we “walk in the light,” the fellowship is automatic. So is it, with all Christians when they “walk in the light.” If you walk in the light and I walk in the light we both have fellowship with God and at the same time have fellowship one with the other – it is automatic. When one has fellowship with God he has fellowship with all others who “walk in the light.” There may be a brother on the other side of the world that “walks in the light,” though we may be thousands of miles apart, we have fellowship – “sharing in common.”
Many have been the times I have heard argued: “How can we know when we have fellowship with someone else?” The key to this question is to learn if they are “walking in the light.” If they are walking in the light they have fellowship with God and with one another. The discussion of that subject is just that simple.
If a brother is “walking in darkness,” I have no fellowship with him. If a brother accepts sodomy (men with men) and lesbianism (women with women) in general, all of this is homosexuality. In all of this I do not have fellowship with them because they do not “walk in the light.” And so with all other things that are wrong. I cannot be wrong and have fellowship with God. I must “walk in the light!”
God has provided the standard, the word of God, (2 Jn. 9-11). I must walk in the light and my brother must walk in the light – when this happens, we have fellowship with God and with one another. – Ed’s Sermon and Things, March 23, 2019.