Sunday, April 28, 2024

No justification for divorce 1

Broadcast 4016
Click here for the audio version:
Matthew 5:32 (KJV), “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.”
There has been an ongoing debate on the topic of divorce among God's people. Even in Jesus’ day, there were two views by two notable Rabbis, Hillel and Shammai who both agreed that divorce was lawful, but differed on the acceptable justification for it. It was this argument that was used to tempt Jesus by the Pharisees who asked, “Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause?” (see Matthew 19:3).

Jesus responded, “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Matthew 19:6-7 KJV). Not satisfied, they again asked, “Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away?” (Matthew 19:7-8 KJV). To this Jesus answered, “Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so”. (Matthew 19:8-9 KJV).

Jesus however continued and said, “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.” Matthew 19:9 KJV.

This last response of Jesus Christ, “except it be for fornication” has been the reason advanced by many as the justification for divorce. Others however consider abuse in marriage and abandonment as other reasons. But, are these reasons justifiable biblically?

Go into today determined to pattern your marriage according to God’s Word and original intent.

Prayer: Commit your marriage to God and ask Him to help you build your home according to His will.
—Dr. Emmanuel James

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