By Irene Webster
Divorce. A nasty word if you ask me. Why though? I know, and you probably also believe, divorce is horrible from all you have seen and experienced in your life. It destroys lives, families, children, takes one’s peace, health, sleep, joy, finances, creates pain, brings depression, anger, rejection, hopelessness and despair, confusion, loneliness…shall I go on?
I have experienced divorce, and I know it is never God’s will and certainly not even a human beings’ best decision. No question, God knew what is best for mankind. His plan was for husband and wife to remain ONE flesh, united, complimenting each other, each one bringing their own strengths to the relationship, building their combined strengths and talents together to be the best person possible!
Genesis 2:24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 9 Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labor. 10 For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. 11 Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? 12 And if one prevails against him, two shall withstand him;
If you are a Christian you probably understand that people are three part beings: body, mind and spirit. When a spiritual break occurs because a man and woman’s bond is broken through adultery, abuse, apathy their cord is broken. It’s almost as if the one body their union represents is a real body is now torn, bleeding, and experiencing actual pain. The breaking of the covenant in marriage is a very real assault on the person, body, mind, and spirit. Picture a half of a man on one side of a body, and half a woman on the other side. Can you see the cut down the middle? Now, the covenant is broken. The split, right down the middle of the body! I ask you, what do you feel when you cut yourself? You may experience excruciating pain, experience bleeding, your thoughts turn to fear and anxiety. You wonder if you will survive.
Divorce is not merely a cut. It is a very serious wound, severing right down the middle of a body! The act of betrayal and divorce is so painful many may feel as if they could die from it. It is this serious. Now, how does the ½ person help their children? How does a ½ person function in a day-to-day life, earning money, buying the groceries, cleaning the house, paying the bills? How? Can you see a half person walking around? No. How about crawling around? This is almost impossible too. How does the ½ person survive without a blood transfusion, healing, and a body transplant? But somehow most do survive, but not well and certainly not without deep scars which affect every area of their lives, not to mention their children’s lives.
Yet, God did allow man and women to divorce (and remarry) because of the hardness of their heart. People sin, and are selfish, and yes, can be mismatched. Yes, sadly sometimes divorce is allowed by God but it is never His best choice! God wants faithful unions!
Deuteronomy 24:1-2 KJV 24 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 man’s wife.
But why does Jesus say a man or woman shall not put away their mate? Isn’t putting away the same as divorce?
Mark 10:11-12 KJV 11 And he saith unto them, whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her. 12 And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery.
It’s simple. Jesus tells us that God does not want His people to commit adultery! So, why would anyone who remarried after putting away their spouse or being put away be committing adultery? Because putting away is not the same as divorce.
No wonder, so many Christians live in shame, vowing never to remarry! Shame and fear of breaking God’s laws restricts the divorced Christian. This is tragic. False teaching destroys lives, steals one’s joy and hope for a good future. Many Christians never divorce or remarry because of a false teaching. On the other hand, many divorced Christians who believe they are committing adultery, if they remarry, will often leave the church, resentful, living in shame, or never remarry, living with no hope for a good marriage, love, acceptance, isolated, and alone…
Let me say it again: God hates the PUTTING AWAY not DIVORCE.
Malachi 2:14-16 KJV 14 Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because the Lord hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant. 15 And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth. 16 For the Lord, the God of Israel, saith that he hateth putting away: for one covereth violence with his garment, saith the Lord of hosts: therefore take heed to your spirit, that ye deal not treacherously.
Putting away was never divorce. Putting away was pushing one’s mate out of their own home without a legal document, no support, no property, no rights, dumped, destitute, and destroyed. Then, if that one which was pushed out illegally choose to remarries, they are committing adultery because they are not free yet legally. Do you see now?
This version is the most accurate and closest to the original Hebrew translation.
Matthew 19:3-9 KJV 3 The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause? 4 And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, 5 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? 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. 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.
This is not the same as divorce. It is the ‘Putting Away’! God’s best is to stay married or divorce legally, but not to put one’s mate out the door illegally, and put them away!!!
1 Corinthians 7:10-11 KJV 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 departs, let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife.
Several translations are not correct interpretations. God does not hate divorce. He hates “the putting away” of one’s mate. Putting away is failing to give a legal divorce. The man puts away his wife, pushing her out the door giving her nothing, and technically she is still married to him so, she would be committing adultery if she remarried without a legal divorce. Although, divorce is not God’s best but He did allow it.
Malachi 2:13-16 NIV 13 Another thing you do: You flood the Lord’s altar with tears. You weep and wail because he no longer looks with favor on your offerings or accepts them with pleasure from your hands. 14 You ask, “Why?” It is because the Lord is the witness between you and the wife of your youth. You have been unfaithful to her, though she is your partner, the wife of your marriage covenant. 15 Has not the one God made you? You belong to him in body and spirit. And what does the one God seek? Godly offspring. [d] So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful to the wife of your youth. 16 “The man who hates and divorces his wife,” says the Lord, the God of Israel, “does violence to the one he should protect,”[e] says the Lord Almighty. So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful.
Do you see how this translation says divorce instead of putting away? How about the following scriptures? Study and show yourself approved.
Matthew 19:3-9 NIV Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?” 4 “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ 5 and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? 6 So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, let no one separate.” 7 “Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?” 8 Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. 9 I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.”
These are the same scriptures but the focus is wrong!
1 Corinthians 7:10-11 KJV 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.
1 Corinthians 7:10-11 NIV 10 To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband. 11 But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife.
Again, these are the same scriptures but different translations:
Matthew 19:3 KJV And it came to pass, that when Jesus had finished these sayings, he departed from Galilee, and came into the coasts of Judaea beyond Jordan; And great multitudes followed him; and he healed them there. The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause?
Matthew 19:3 NIV When Jesus had finished saying these things; he left Galilee and went into the region of Judea to the other side of the Jordan. Large crowds followed him, and he healed them there. 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?”
From the beginning God intended men and women to live together in harmony but sin entered the world and so did divorce. It was never God’s best, was it? Sin wasn’t either but this appears to be the condition of man at least until we accept the forgiveness and love of God through faith in His son, Jesus Christ.
The truth is, God wants the angry spouse to treat their mate with fairness, not revenge. God allowed the Jews to divorce but expected fair dissolution and a potential happy future, not destruction. God is a God of grace and mercy.
Mark 10:6-9 KJV 6 But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female. 7 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; 8 And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. 9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
Psalm 116:5 KJV 5 Gracious is the Lord, and righteous; yea, our God is merciful.
If you have been divorced, know this fact that it is the blood transfusion of the Son of God which can bring new life to half a person and restore a broken heart from the devastation of divorce; it is the healing power of the Most High God which makes us whole again, gives us joy, and restores our hope for a good future!
God will not fail you. If you don’t know Him as Lord and Savior it is simple. Ask Jesus to forgive you for your sins and come live in your heart and be your Lord and Savior. He loves you. Trust Him. Then ask Him today to heal your broken heart and make you whole once again. He will do it. Just ask. Just do it.
Psalm 147:3 KJV 3 He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.
1 John 1:9 KJV 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Romans 10:9-10 KJV 9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
Jeremiah 29:11 Amplified Version 11 For I know the plans and thoughts that I have for you,’ says the Lord, ‘plans for peace and well-being and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
Isaiah 41:10 – Fear thou not; for I [am] with thee: be not dismayed; for I [am] thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.
So, when you are given no hope in your marriage because of abuse, adultery, lack of support, rejection, continuous disrespect, assault, and have sought God’s help, sought counsel, reflected on personal failures, repented, and changed but with no real change in your mate’s behavior towards you, yes, divorce is an option. That is if you have tried it all and God gives you peace to do so. I say this with fear and trepidation. I believe divorce is only a very last choice which should never be considered or spoken of unless the marriage is so bad lives are suffering with no hope, and it is dangerous for the innocent mate and children.
God knows my heart. I know how serious divorce is and how destructive it is even afterwards. I hurt for years because of the pain of separation, desolation. No one wants that pain, and, I never wish that on anyone. But, the truth is inevitable. To every thing there is a season…
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 KJV 3 To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: 2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; 3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; 7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; 8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
Ask yourself; is there also a time to divorce and to remarry? After all, it is not good that man should be alone….
Genesis 2:18 And the Lord God said, it is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a help meet for him.
AMEN, think on this….