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I was surprised to learn how much mystery and misunderstanding surrounds this topic.   I always assumed that everyone knew that a person who is a victim of divorce for legitimate biblical reasons is free to remarry.  However, I learned that many people feel a divorcee, regardless of the situation, you can never remarry.  So it is the goal of this thread to answer the simple question, can a "legitimate" divorcee remarry?

 

 

For the purposes of this thread, we will only be discussing the concessions God made for divorcees resulting from adultery and unequally yoked believers as this is the most clearest concession made in scripture.  If you are a divorcee from other circumstances (for ex. domestic abuse), please refrain from incorporating that topic into this thread.  I understand that God will be the final arbiter in those situations,  but this thread is geared towards the most obviously interpretation concerning divorce.

 

I will first start off by looking at what the bible says on divorce and then end with a quote from Ellen White.

BIBLICAL REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD NOT GET DIVORCE

It is clear from God's word that we should refrain from divorce, if at all possible, under all circumstances even in cases of adultery.  Jesus said,

Matthew 19:5-6:

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?

 6Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

Matthew 19:8
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.




So from here we see that Jesus prefers people to stay married, if possible, at all cost save salvation.  Prior to sin, this was the standard held in the Garden and perhaps for many generations after sin entered the world.

In addition Paul says this on divorce:

 

10And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from her husband:

 11But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife.

So there is strong indication from the Bible to abstain from divorce in all cases.  But what if your a victim of divorce in which the spouse is is an unbeliever or an adulterer?  What then?

 

 

The Biblical Concession for divorce

In the most obvious interpretation of scripture, the bible makes concession for divorce in only two instances:

Matthew 19:8 - 9

And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery.”


and

1 Corinthians 7:15:

15But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart. A brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases: but God hath called us to peace.


So from scripture, concessions are made to those who have unbelieving spouses who divorced them, and who divorced spouses who committed adultery.

So now that we know when the bible allows for divorce, can we assume that the divorcee is free to remarry?  Or is remarrying forbidden altogether?  Apparently ,  this is where the confusion begins for some.

 

 

Can a legitimate divorcee remarry?

First we know that illegitimate divorcees, victim or otherwise, are not granted concession to remarry according to scripture. The verses already shown touch on that subject. See Matthew 19:8-9.  I would like us to take a look at the word used in the Bible for divorce:

The word divorce is translated in the KJV as to put away.  According to the Strong Concordance, the greek translation of the word is 

απολυω apoluo ap-ol-oo’-o

The actual translation can be any of the following:

AV-release 17, put away 14, send away 13, let go 13, set at liberty 2, let depart 2, dismiss 2,

The definition is
1) to set free
2) to let go free, release
3) a captive i.e. to loose his bonds and bid him depart, to give him liberty to depart

Free from what? Free from your marriage covenant.  But the question is, what does that freedom grant you?  Does it enable you to remarry?  Lets look at Matthew 19:8-9 again

 

And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery.”

The context of this verse it is discussing remarriage.  To paraphrase, Jesus is saying if you divorce your wife for anything other then sexual immorality, you are not free to marry another.  Or to put it another way, if you divorce your spouse for sexual immorality, then you are free to marry another.


Jesus goes on to say about the person receiving the divorce:

Matthew 19:9 KJV:

...and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.

 

So in the same way, if you are the recipient of the divorce for illegitimate reasons, you cannot remarry.  But if legitimate, then you are free to marry.

 

 

The Unbeliever

In the case of an unbeliever, it is not biblical to divorce an unbeliever.  But if the unbeliever leaves, then scripture tells us you are free of your marriage bonds to him or her. See 1 Cor 7:15

 

 

Where it all began

Now we know the concession  for divorce was made by Moses in the old testament.  All the new testament writers simply are alluding to the verses found in Deuteronomy 24.

 

 

Deuteronomy 24

 1When 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.

 2And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man's wife.

 3And 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.

 

 

So we can see here, even the person who committed the sin of adultery and was divorced is free to remarry.  We pray they would be genuine repentance, but you see that remarriage was not forbidden as some believe.

 

 

I would like to conclude with a quote from the pen of inspiration.  EGW does not contradict scripture in this regard.  BTW , this is not only council from Ellen White, this is a vision of Ellen White.  This is a thus saith the lord.  If she is wrong about this, then she is also a false prophet, which is an entirely separate discussion that I hope we do not need to have:) On to the quote:

Ellen White:

 

 

I saw that Sister _____, as yet, has no right to marry another man; but if she, or any other woman, should obtain a divorce legally on the ground that her husband was guilty of adultery, then she is free to be married to whom she chooses.9 {AH 344.3}

 

 


Conclusion

 

Brethren/singles, I hope you find this helpful in dealing with potential interests coming from divorced situations.  Do be careful in who you choose as your partner and always look for understanding in Gods word and the inspiration provided to us in these last days.  There are many divorcees who are women and men of God, do not disregard them just because of that with out a proper biblical understanding.    God bless you all.

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Replies to This Discussion

No...it is a Biblical directive for a person's character in his/her home and with their family to be above reproach and to be an example for the church.  Based on your interpretation, no one that is not married should ever consider ministry or leadership....There are WAAAAYYYYY too many clear contradictions in scripture that go against that.  Here is one:

 

"But I want you to be without care. He who is unmarried cares for the things of the Lord—how he may please the Lord.  But he who is married cares about the things of the world—how he may please his wife. There is a difference between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman cares about the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit. But she who is married cares about the things of the world—how she may please her husband.  And this I say for your own profit, not that I may put a leash on you, but for what is proper, and that you may serve the Lord without distraction."--1 Corinthians 7:32-37.

HMM WELL NOW this could go  on and on Sarah u could produce scriptures that prove your point and  I myself can do so also but of what good are endless debaates?  I just saying  being  married as u just pointed out  has its drawbacks at times and can draw from us energy we can direct in Gods ministry .

.Marriage  IS  not all about sex either for if it was far too many would drop it like a hot cake for the  sexual factor sure not worth the headaches mm  real and fictional u will recieve in the marriage union . 

 Commitment and loyalty once the words  I do,are spoken is what is needed and if both work  hard at forgiveness and forbearance of eaches faults then it becomes sheer joy.AS it is now in todays world too many marriages  are in name only out of the selfish desire to please oneself. .Anyone that reads what I say here can decide if what is stated is true or a fable.

 Marriages are built on hard work and forgiveness and one does not pull away into their shell when differences between u surface .  . It is genuine care and affection u willingly give to your mate  undeserving or not .  That be All I going to say except this  if U withold affection  physically because you are angry  at your mate  you are doing  Satans work for him  in sepperating your mate from yourself and maybe even God for they must  see Gods love through you too.,

 I a m sorry  but speaking  Gods words and knowing scripture passages are of little use without putting your Love into  practical works that can be  easily seen  . I care not how  sweet and loving your prayers appear  or how  sweet the sound of your singing in the evening or morning worship if u cant show your love by actions  all that  praying and singing  Gods praises is meaningless  rubbish!!.

Angie

You seem to be thinking along the right track.  Far better then learning all you can know about a person, is letting God lead you to the right person for you.  In my case, both of my wives were very beautiful girls.  In the area of appearance, how I could have been so fortunate is beyond me.  However, the big difference was that with my first wife, she never cut her mother's apron strings.  While my second wife most certainly had.  Oh, she still respected and loved her mother, but she realized that she was now an adult and had to live the life of an adult.  Something my first wife never learned. 

Also, next to God, my second wife loved me supremely.  While my first wife knew she was good looking and never gave up on letting others know that she was good looking.  Which proved to be her downfall. 

However, the most important issue in selecting eitehr one's first mate or a subsequent one, it to let the Lord lead and not place our own desires in the way.  After all, God has made us, He will know better then anyone else who will make us the happiest.

Happy Sabbath!
Maranatha :)
Ray

teresa

Yes, and it is also interesting how people can get in trouble with some even when they are agreeable.  Strange world, it is.

Happy Sabbath!

Maranatha :)
Ray

 teresa to say men are into porn and life goes on is not only unfair it is a blanket statement saying it am a man thing only and THis statement is false>  If u listen t o christian radio it states  that today  the pornography veiwers are increasingly  Women now .. Whereas in times past it was  a man thing for men are visually stimulated it is now women also to a much larger degree than ever before  that is caught up in this industry ok? ..

 What ever happened to compassion >>  When  did  womens compassion suddenly seem to change and become selfish an  self centered?  Is this a problem today that the love and respect  wives  used to have for their husbands  has become eroded and has turned cold?   IS it ok for wives  and women today to say they looking for a Godly  Husband but when they say :I do: it really means I wont?  .

Has it become now ok to use a blanket statement and say all men do this and it ok without some sort of evedience being  given to show your point of veiw?    It is not right and it not Godly to include all men in a general statement as if it is a fact and everyone should believe it.. Yes  today the love of many  has gone cold and that is the condition of the church today and if their is no true revival they are guilty of worse sins then Sodum and even  Nivenah!

 HOW  can we know what is right and yet continue in life as if  were blind and do not know or how to put  truth into active service ? WHEN  I  be tested  and confronted with the truth wil Imake excuses for my actions or even my inactions?  Will   I be held guilty for this then in the judgement or is God so merciful he will overlook my sin  that I willfully commit today and will do so tomorrow and the next time also ? .

 If I show no remorse for my actions that cause others to stumble am I fit  to sit in the prense of Holy Angels?. It used to be  that the churches  had more women of faith  but in todays society  could it be said that women have become a stumbling block to the men by their actions and imcompassion?/  ..Just a thought  are u willing to search your own heart  to see if Gods compassion and love is real in your own life?/  Are you willing to be corrected by someone  and let what is said make a change in what u are doing or not doing or will  you just get angry and send off a rebutal and life goes on ? HOW DARE   THAT person tell me I need change.. I been doing this and my parents taught me this aspect so  how can it be wrong/?

 Jesus sure was radical in his time to point out the sins of the religious leaders and yet tell those who had sins ; Go and Sin No More!  That is all I be getting at here .   If u want to resent what I have stated and  be resentful towards me for saying it ; IT all well    ;;   I  not in here t o win a popularity contest anyway nor be labeled as a top contributer ..  OOPS  what in the world is going on?  I was in another forum about love and marriage and started to write and it ends up in here?      I going to leave it here anyway. I spent to much time thinking it through to delete it.

It  is  sad  that  both  parties  are into  porn.  Pornagraphy  is  rampant in  the  church.  The  question  should  be   an alternative to married people  instead  of  porn.

By their fruits you shall know them...the Bible never lies Uncle Murray :-)

 

By your fruits we are learning you.  

To me it is clear as day from The Bible esp in New Testament from Jesus. You cannot re-marry again unless your husband or wife has left you for someone else.

Or if your husband or wife has died.

Please read: Matthew Chapter 19 1-11

only adultery of your husband or wife - can one be allowed to remarry

READ 1 CORINTHIANS CHAPTER 7 VERSES 12-16.  -  It says if you are married to a non christian and your non christian partner wishes to leave you - then you have the right to re-marry

but we cannot remarry if one's husband or wife eg. doesn't love you anymore or was abusive. Its clearly obvious from God's word in any other case other than adultery - we are not permitted to re-marry.

The truth in God's word about this is clearly obvious! no confusion for me at all!

Matthew 19:1-11

"Ironically, this issue is on Facebook in a mixed group of Christians from various denominations...Here is what people need to remember:

"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? And he answered and said unto them, 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. They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away? 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.

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 19:3-9.

This text (and context) is stating that a person's motives should not be to "get rid of their spouse" for stupid and/or petty reasons and get with someone else

Personally speaking, it is always wise to learn a person and why they divorced in the first place.

Here is the balance: The Bible also tells us that when we confess our sins, the Lord forgives us; when we repent and come to Him our sins are cast away and we are new creatures in Christ. This is why "generally" the church allows remarriage regardless, after re-baptism. 

These situations are usually complicated and are more than just telling someone that they can never marry again."

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