Most of us have witnessed great anguish
regarding divorce and remarriage. Over the
years I compiled Bible passages pertaining to
divorce and remarriage. For your convenience I
share with you the outcome of the research to
help you make the right decision regarding
remarriage ... with confidence.
It would be good to
now pray for the Lord's help in this matter: Father in heaven, I pray for discernment of Your biblical
instruction about divorce and remarriage.
have Your Holy Spirit help me understand and apply what You would have me do
in this matter
and refrain from sin. Help me dismiss
any false teaching I may have accepted and
quench any desires contradictory to
Your will. I commit to be obedient to Your
written Word no matter the sacrifice You might
instruct me to make. Jesus is worth it. Amen.
People smarter than us take opposite sides in
this matter. Obviously both cannot be right. It would be
good to study
pertinent Bible verses yourself and make your
own decision. This isn't difficult, these
verses are clearer than you might expect. But
all too often
people’s hearts are swayed by personal preference
and those who profit by telling people what they want to hear. We're instructed to rightly divide the Word of truth, 2 Timothy
2:15. Instead of
letting others influence our decision, let’s let God have the final word on this
it's very important to keep in mind that divorce
and remarriage are two separate issues with
different conditions for each, i.e., a
biblically permitted divorce doesn't automatically deem eligibility for biblical
Let’s take a look at 1 Tim 5:14
want younger widows to get married, bear children,
keep house, and give the enemy no occasion for
reproach;. It's interesting that this permits and
encourages widows to remarry. That's
self-evident and some might say isn't even needed
in the Bible. So if the Bible so clearly tells us
what's self-evident, then surely it must speak
just as clearly about marrying a divorced person
because there's a greater need for clarity on
this issue that's so important for so many people
through the ages. As expected the Bible does just
One of the passages that addresses this topic is Luke
16:18: "Everyone who divorces his wife and marries
another commits adultery, and he who marries one who
is divorced from a husband commits adultery."
Did you catch who the second emphasis is on in
this passage? It's on the one who marries the
innocent victim of a divorce, right? And that
person is guilty of committing the sin of
adultery. Could Jesus be more clear about His
position in the matter of marrying the innocent
victim of a divorce?
about divorce and remarriage can be found in
and Romans 7:2-3: For the married woman
is bound by law to her husband while he is living; but
if her husband dies, she is released from the law
concerning the husband. 3 So then, if while her
husband is living she is joined to another man, she
shall be called an adulteress; but if her husband
dies, she is free from the law, so that she is not an
adulteress though she is joined to another man.
If marriage to a divorcee is a good thing then why is
that not stated here? Or anywhere else in the Bible?
The reason is because that was
already made clear by Jesus in
Luke 16:18 and
These verses tell us God considers a person married even
after a divorce has been finalized in a secular court and He does
not recognize second marriages. If this is not God's
view, then on what basis does He call those involved in
Back to 1 Tim 5:14.
Why is this seemingly unnecessary verse in the
Bible about allowing widows to remarry along with
the legal justification detailed in
Romans 7? I
believe these are there to
demonstrate the Bible speaks abundantly and
clearly about who can marry whom and who cannot
there isn't one similarly clear
Bible passage permitting divorcees to remarry, then
what the Bible states about remarriage being adultery
Can you find any reasonable wiggle room within
these passages or are they reasonably compelling?
a second marriage for divorcees is okay, then
three or more times should also be okay, right?
the Bible would need to set a limit on the
amount of divorces and remarriages. Otherwise life can
become unbearable for innocent victims of divorcers and
their children. As you know divorce
is a devastating tragedy that causes overwhelming
trauma to an incalculable amount of
children and adults.
God hates that (Mal
2:16) and wants that to stop!
Even the world knows divorce and
remarriage is a tragedy and should have restraint. But
everyone thinks they should have special privilege for
their personal situation.
And all too often ministers allow their members to
overcome marital problems with a new spouse
instead of courageously referring them to Luke
16:18 and other verses.
If two marriages are good, how many more are just as
good? That's a serious question that needs to be
answered before someone moves the boundary stone of
one. But there's no way humans can move that boundary
and it remain set there if we are our own authority.
God thought of the need for a limit on the amount of
marriages. He clearly and abundantly conveys it is one, not two or more. One
is rational, more is not.
Matt 5:32 & Matt 19:9
and Amazing Congruency
Some insist there's an exception clause
that Jesus allows for remarriage in
19:9. But if we look at the
19:9 we learn the earlier scrolls read: And I
say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for
fornication, and marries another woman,
makes her commit
adultery and he who
marries a divorced woman commits adultery.”
KJV is similar. Thus Matthew is congruent with
all the other
passages stating marriage to the innocent
victim of divorce is adultery and the strongest
argument for divorcees to remarry is without
Further explanation on this
so-called exception clause: Jesus' main intent
in Matt 19:9 is to convey remarriage is adultery,
not how to get remarried without it being
Rom 7:2-3 explains
that for us in detail. Next, who is the object for
the exception clause? It's the initiator of the
divorce only. Who are the objects listed as
committing adultery? It's the second wife of the
first man and the 4th party who marries the
innocent victim of the divorce, not the first
married couple! This is a succinct way to state
everyone involved in every role of remarriage is
committing adultery. Thus it appears the exception
clause could only be applied for divorce, not
remarriage. And the exception clause
for fornication could be intended for the groom of
a bride who lied to him about her virginity.
Whichever way this passage is interpreted, it must
be congruent with all the other passages on this
subject, otherwise you create a contradiction.
There's amazing congruency
throughout the Bible regarding no remarriage
while a former spouse is alive. But if we twist a verse to
conclude we can marry multiple people, one at a
time, then the clear message conveyed by numerous verses must be explained away to fit that
unbiblical doctrine. And we render the whole Bible unreliable
to ourselves and anyone else. And then every sin
can be justified with the same peculiar
hermeneutics. Then we
are at risk for imposing our own condemnation:
Galatians 1:9 ..., if any man is preaching to you a
gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be
accursed (damned)! (NASB) (Also see
It's ironic that a passage that's intended
remarriage is adultery is being used as
justification for remarriage. The result of
liberal interpretation of this passage brings
unimaginable trauma to children who
adults. And we wonder what the cause is of this
depressed and angry world that's over medicated.
Divorce in the Old Testament
Some say, “Divorce was permitted in the Old
Testament.” Yes Jesus said Moses permitted
Matt 19 Jesus merely
the historical fact that Moses
permitted divorce, not God. You will not find
Moses' provision for divorce anywhere in the Old
Testament! Moreover in
Matt 19 Jesus
makes it clear; one partner for life and remarriage
Some claim God permitted
divorce in the book of Ezra. Let's look at
9-10 where Ezra asks God, “And now, our God, what
shall we say after this ... ?" But God does not
answer! Later, during a shivering rain storm, Ezra
agrees with a mob of Jewish women and their
request to put away the foreign women, even though
not everyone is in agreement about this, v15.
10 merely records a unique historical event without
comment from God.
Deuteronomy 24:1-4 If you
highlight every word "or" and "and"
in this one-sentence passage and note what is
stated after the word "then," you will realize
these verses applied to extremely few people in
the old testament and the conclusion of this long
sentence is remarriage is not allowed.
Exodus 21:10-11 there is a provision for a
woman (not a man) in a polygamous marriage to
leave if she is neglected. But this Old Testament
verse is not applicable today because of the
we are to follow in the New Testament.
So, there is no provision
in the Old Testament for us to divorce or remarry.
And we cannot remarry if there is no God-ordained
provision for divorce and remarriage,
1 Cor 7:15 Yet if the unbelieving one
leaves, let him leave; the brother or the sister
is not under bondage in such cases, but God has
called us to peace.
Many Christians believe this means a
Christian cannot get divorced if a Christian
spouse walks out of a marriage but only if an
"unbelieving one" walks out. And there's
nothing here about remarriage.
Both Opposing Positions
Blessed by God?
Christians often justify
their position that remarriage after a secular divorce is
permissible by citing what respected
or famous Christians say. And those who take the opposite
position, cite Bible verses. It seems some pastors
feel if well-respected theologians take opposite
sides in a matter, then God gives us liberty to
chose either side and He would be pleased with
either decision. That by no means sanctifies both
2 Peter 1:20. That would indicate the Kingdom of God is divided and
that would be absurd
Mark 3:23-26. We are to
be of noble character like the Bereans
17:11 and fear God, not man
The stakes are high in this matter. Why listen to
misguided theologians when we can go to the
source and decide for ourselves? As you know
teachers are under a stricter judgment,
We need to have a King Josiah moment, When the
king heard the words of the Book of the Law, he
tore his clothes.,
2 Kings 22:11. We
all are role models. Others are watching. Our
words and actions influences others.
I fully understand
how unfair this seems to the many divorcees who are innocent and are devastated about their spouse walking
out on them. All our hearts grieve for those
experiencing such utterly tragic injustice! But that does not change
the clear instruction in the Bible about remarriage
that was there long before anyone on Earth got married.
Nor should we allow individual circumstances to
compromise biblical instruction. We need to
develop our biblical convictions prior to
encountering these circumstances and stick with
While many think it's not fair for
innocent victims of divorce to remain unmarried,
it makes perfect sense to children who pray
desperately for their moms and
dads to do whatever it takes to keep their family
together. If your parents divorced, you likely remember
Moreover our Creator wants parents to remain
married and raise children together. And this makes sense to godly singles who
remain single because of all the divorcees who thin
God's flock by taking for themselves two or more
Dr. Erwin Lutzer's autobiography has a
pertinent quote: "If I could shout this advice from
the housetops I would do so. I would repeat for all to
hear: IT IS POSSIBLE TO BE IN LOVE WITH SOMEONE YOU
SHOULD NOT MARRY! " [caps in original text] The full
text is on pages 79-80 of this book.
Questioning God's Word ...
Gen 3:1, "Indeed, has God said, 'You shall not eat
from any tree of the garden'?" Apparently it
did not make sense to Eve that she was allowed so
many options but the one that enticed her was the
one she could not have.
What if the tree with the
fruit of the knowledge of good and evil were still
on earth today? Do you think modern Christians
would not find some justification for partaking of
it with non-Christians? Let this sink into your
soul ... that seemingly innocuous act by Eve set in
motion major irreversible consequences. Be very, very careful of
letting your mind doubt what God has stated, especially if
your heart desires what God states is sin. That is extremely dangerous territory that
Adam and Eve learned with some not-so-minor
consequences. It is far better to stay away from a
gray area than to stray toward a gray area. Nobody
can say with absolute certainty they will not
eventually suffer unbearable consequences for marrying a
divorced person. When in doubt leave it out.
twists the plain text of the Bible like
the serpent in the Garden of Eden or the tempter in
the wilderness with Jesus ... flee and don't look
back. If you give this modern-day tempter enough time,
they will find your weakness and penetrate till you
get to a point of no return.
There are many sins we accept as sin without
question and without Bible verses as direct, plentiful
consistent as those about divorce and
remarriage. Such as slave ownership,
racism, pornography, drunkenness, polygamy and
taking communion in an unworthy manner. So if we are in
agreement that the sins listed here are sin,
then we should be able to agree on scripture that
even more directly and abundantly states marrying
a divorcee is committing adultery. No less than
three times do the Gospels record Jesus Christ as
saying marriage to the innocent victim of a
divorce is adultery:
What is it
about the text, whosoever
marries a divorced
person commits adultery, that is so difficult for us
to understand/accept? But "understanding" really isn't the
issue, is it? It's our hearts' desires and fear of man isn't it?
If you don't classify remarriage as adultery, as
Jesus does, by what authority do you reclassify it
as holy matrimony?
1 John 5:3-5 For this is the love of God, that we
keep His commandments; and His commandments are not
burdensome. 4 For whatever is born of God overcomes
the world; and this is the victory that has overcome
the world—our faith. 5 Who is the one who overcomes
the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son
of God? (NASB)
Unequally Yoked Verse
There is less scripture and it is less clear
to support this popular conviction than there is
for remarriage being adultery. It would be bizarre for a pastor to require a
divorced Christian to marry only a Christian because of
this one vague verse and ignore all the verses clearly
remarriage. Moreover, requiring a divorced person
to only marry a Christian could cause
never-married Christians to be in jeopardy of the
grave consequences in
Heb 10:26-27 and
If we can correctly interpret
2 Cor 6:14, about being unequally yoked to
forbid marriage to an unsaved person, how can we interpret
Rom 7:3 to mean the opposite of what
Marriage Vows are
Unconditional and Life-Long
If you still are not
convinced the Bible does not prohibit remarriage, the marriage vow is a separate issue that
prohibits remarriage. Please realize
vows and covenants are
unconditional commitments and are to be honored as such. Once a person proclaims their marriage vows before God
and family, they of their own free will made an
UNCONDITIONAL LIFE-LONG VOW to not remarry. Well not
totally unconditional, there is one condition, "til
death do us part." And no other conditions, right? Unless
"til death or divorce do us part,"
they made a
Some might say the death part of a
marriage vow is self-evident and needless. But
that is not the case because of the God-ordained
seriousness of vows.
The Bible strongly reinforces the need to keep vows and to not remarry. And I believe the reason the Apostle Paul went
into the (seemingly unnecessary) legal detail in
as to why it is permissible for widows to remarry
after the death of their spouse is because of
the unconditional nature and seriousness of
marital vows. What other reason could there be? So
vows made before God must be kept lifelong and
neither secular courts nor pastors have authority
by God to make provision for breaking the marriage
Covenants are a part of
American law. People who buy a condominium enter into
a covenant with the condo association. If someone stops paying
their assessments to a condominium association, the
association cannot stop providing service to the unit. If the
association does not provide services, the condo owner
cannot stop paying assessments. That's because condo
agreements, like marriages, are covenants and not contracts. "All in" on both sides,
not 50/50. 100% by each party. It is not over
when one party does not meet their obligation. And
each side can enforce the covenant in a court of law.
What we do know about divorcees is that they made a
vow to be committed to their spouse for life. Marriage vows are just that,
irrevocable. Married people need to focus their energy on
winning their spouse’s heart back and pursue that
1 Cor 7:11,39. It is the responsibility of
each marriage partner to do their utmost to make sure their spouse is
satisfied with the marriage.
Statistics clearly indicate that
people who compromise on their first vow, break
the second vow at a higher rate. How can you trust
a divorcee to restore their second marriage when the going
The energy to restore a second marriage
less than for the first one. And is another reason second marriages have a
higher failure rate.
One of the pastors at my previous church told a good friend
of mine that he should divorce his wife. I told my
friend even though this pastor is giving you the
liberty to divorce your wife, that does not mean
you can biblically. My friend now is forever
grateful to me ... very grateful! He has
reconciled with his wife, even after her lies put him in jail twice and ruined
twice! Now they are happily
Do you believe there are God-ordained consequences
for those who do not keep their promises? If God
imposes consequences for violating a vow, are you
comfortable being yoked to someone who may suffer
consequences for breaking their previous marriage
If Christians are not willing to obey
the Bible's instruction for marriage and if we
regularly grant waivers for "special"
circumstances, then we are
hypocrites for telling unbelievers they cannot
Divorce in secular
court is not a
gift from God for remarriage
Does your church approve of divorce and
remarriage? And if your church truly believes God
permits divorce, shouldn't they have
been handing out certificates of divorce long ago
as Moses did?
If not, isn't what they're saying
contradicting their actions? The Church marries people because that
is a God-ordained institution but it does not
grant divorce because God told us He hates divorce,
If the Church does not grant divorces, and
God hates divorce, then
the Church shouldn't recognize divorces in
secular court for the purpose of remarriage. What
therefore God has joined together, let no man
separate, Mark 10:9.
I believe God will not hold only the secular-court
judges accountable for their role in this great tragedy
upon individuals and societies.
1 Cor 6:1-11 tells us to
not take believers to court before
"judges of no account in the church."
More Divorce Court
Years After Divorce is Granted
Often after divorce is granted, divorce
court does not end then. Appeals are filed by X-spouses for circumstances that change
over the years regarding increased or decreased income,
disputes about child custody and
relocating. Even though the outcome of these
follow-up lawsuits have a dramatic effect on
second spouses, they have no say in the matter.
They are bound to whatever the outcome is of
future lawsuits. And that outcome could be
intolerable to you or your spouse.
Communion in Unworthy
Manner & Consequences
If your heart still is set on divorce or
remarriage, do you believe you will be able to partake
in communion with a clear conscience and have no
chance of suffering the consequences described in
1 Cor 11:30 for taking communion in an
Unanswered Prayers ...
Mal 2:13-17 you can find that God
is wearied by tearful prayers that He deliberately
does not answer due to marital infidelity [NASB].
If you think you had dark days with unanswered
prayers before ... you just might walk into a new
dimension of darkness you never thought would
happen to you. And there is no way to make
restitution for adultery. If you lie, you can
confess and tell the truth. If you steal you can
confess and restore what was stolen. And then
there is great relief. But with adultery all you
can do is confess and suffer the consequences. And the shame
often lingers life-long (assuming you repent).
unmarried people were to fully comprehend the severe
consequences for adultery (John 5:14; John 8:32,34;
Rev 21:8), they would have higher standards for their
mate before committing their life to them plus make
extra effort to make the marriage work when the going
gets rough. But we have so
many poor examples and so few churches condemning
divorce, remarriage and adultery that even Christians
go along with the world's standards that God is trying
to keep us from. Part of the problem is many Christians think when the Bible tells us
to fear God we are to respect Him. They feel God is
like an unconditional teddy bear, all loving and
blessing and no consequences. He simply makes us wait
longer than we want to for our "well-deserved"
blessings. Good pastors say we should
genuinely fear God as the Bible states (like
Colin Smith's sermon on
The Fear of God). The respect thing is not working.
See Matt 10:28.
You may know of second marriages that appear to be
blessed of God. While that might be what you see now,
I do not believe that will be their feeling, or yours,
at the Great White Throne Judgment.
The Way to a Hard Heart
Everyone knows the way to a hard heart is to do
what you want in defiance of what the Bible
states. And this is particularly true in regards
to divorce and remarriage.
Matt 19:8-9 Jesus explains “Because of your
hardness of heart Moses permitted you to divorce
your wives; ... "
well, for this can determine if you follow the
will of Christ and His commands or your will and
The Greatest Among Men
If marrying a divorcee is okay with God, then John
the Baptist foolishly gave up his life and ministry
for an unworthy cause (Matt 14:1-11).
Long ago God had a choice in how He would set the
stage for the martyrdom of John the Baptist, whom
Jesus called the greatest among men (Matt 11:11). I believe God feels this
matter is so critical for our well-being that He chose
that scenario to demonstrate how He truly hates
divorce and adultery. If God permits divorce and
remarriage, then why was this such a big deal to John
the Baptist and God?
John was not stupid, he knew telling people that they
are living in adultery causes irrational responses. He
also knew the king had power to assassinate
the greatest among men did not give
up his life and ministry for an unworthy cause.
Standing up for righteousness and monogamous families
is worth it.
If John the Baptist went to a
undoubtedly would be told: you are extreme,
you are not practicing the love of Christ, you
don't know all the facts, pastors say remarriage is okay,
etc. In his time he likely had
friends tell him something like that. If he
listened to his friends, he likely would have missed out on
meeting his destiny and being
called the greatest among men.
No pastor is
great enough to overturn God's instruction
that He had John die for.
pastors consider a secular divorce as
opportunity for another mate, people are viewing
those of the opposite sex as a potential mate,
married or not. Then being flirtatious with
a married person merely
keeping options open in case
opportunity presents itself. In this crazy world
there are plenty of people who do just that and
worse. I do not think God wants this nor do
people who want to remain married to their spouse.
We need to take a stand for righteousness and help
people remain married and reconcile, instead of removing God-ordained
consequences for divorce.
Door on Reconciliation
Have you ever hoped and prayed for
reconciliation of a divorced couple only to later
have that hope crushed once you learned one of
them got remarried? It is at that point all hope for
reconciliation is crushed. If you marry a
divorced person, you forever prevent them
and their spouse from repenting and restoring
their marriage. Even if both spouses now claim
there is no hope or interest for reconciliation,
that does not mean they could not have a change of
heart later. Many couples have reconciled after
they divorced and after
both stated there is no hope! And you could prevent their
children from having the whole family they are
Do you really want to be the wedge that prohibits
Did you hope your parents would
reconcile after they got divorced?
Exception Clause for the Unsaved?
pastors claim if someone got divorced before they
were saved, then that is justification for remarriage
because they did not know what they were doing and now
they are a new creation.
That is conjecture. Nowhere does the Bible state the
unsaved get a pass on consequences and consequences
on the saved.
Yet the same pastors will marry an unsaved
couple never married before. If they feel the unsaved really
do not know what they are doing, then why would
them? And if the unsaved do not know any
better about their sin, then on what basis does God
condemn the unsaved at the great White Throne
Unsaved people certainly
understand what a vow is and they can be held
to keep a vow in a court of law and by God. We do not differentiate the
penalty for criminals on the basis of whether they
were saved, nor
pardon the guilty
if the offense was committed before they were
saved. And the courts in every
country don't release people because they didn't know
better. Consequences are imposed regardless of
ignorance of the law. And that is why every
individual is responsible for learning to do right
and held accountable for doing wrong.
James 3:17 tells us wisdom from above is
No church would knowingly let a man become the church
treasurer, if he failed at his first church
and was caught embezzling money there. The soul of
any man, woman and child is worth far more than
the largest church treasury. Statistics prove that
second marriages have a higher failure rate. If you are
going to err, err on the side of
righteousness. Otherwise you are on shaky ground
and at risk of not meeting the higher standard.
Hermeneutics & Context
If marrying a divorced person is a
good thing, then we should not need complex
hermeneutics to piece together verses, written years
apart from one another, and then assert a conclusion
that contradicts clear and complete Bible passages.
"... and the Scripture cannot be broken,"
John 10:35 This is worth repeating: We have Bible passages
that in one passage gives us all the information we
need for the remarriage of widows (which practically
isn't needed). So if there isn't one similarly clear
Bible passage for divorcees to remarry, then
what the Bible states about remarriage being adultery
is true. See
1 Cor 7:8-16.
passages that clearly and unambiguously direct us
to not do something to the point of saying it is
okay to do, is heresy. Rational people
using proper hermeneutics do not let unclear or
indirect passages overturn passages that are
unambiguous and specific.
Leadership Needed from Pastors
Think of the amount of divorced and
remarried people currently attending church and
serving on the deacon board. What would happen if
the pastor quoted Luke 16:18 and said if you are
divorced, you cannot remarry and those who do are
committing adultery? It is obvious to everyone
that a significant percentage would leave and donations
would plummet immediately. Then salaries would
have to be reduced. Therefore there is so little
preaching against divorce and remarriage. Very
sad, but true all too often.
understand there are many divorced and remarried
people currently attending church and serving on
the deacon board. But we are commanded to fear God, not man.
And senior pastors who avoid
this controversy for themselves by having associate pastors marry
divorcees instead, are not any more righteous.
If a pastor provides
approval for violating this clear teaching he just
be in jeopardy of
Matt 18:6-7 plus
If American pastors fear their own Christian
congregation more than God, how can we trust our
pastors to standup to godless leaders. Pastors all
over the world are not cowards and stand for
Christ and suffer at the hands of godless
calls us to be the salt and light of the earth,
but if we shrink from that responsibility then we
are "no longer good for anything, except to be
thrown out and trampled under foot by men."
Pastors, please be the selfless loving
leader you are called to be for your flock. Please
do not ignore Bible passages about remarriage
being adultery. Eventually the church will be more
Christ-like and more effective. If your pastor
refuses to marry you because of divorce, realize
that it is very hard for him to say no and thank
him and encourage him for upholding the biblical
White people in the south in the 1700s could be slave owners and pastors
in the south said that was okay. That caused a
massive amount of kidnapping, rape and murder ...
crimes punishable by death. It took a
horrific civil war to stop what the church should
have stopped earlier.
Southern Christians in the 1700s got their teeth
kicked in, in part, due to pastors' selfish
tolerance of the hardness of hearts in their
congregations. Even though they back then, and we now are
prone to the influence of the culture, that
does that make it right, especially when Bible verses
clearly direct us otherwise.
Look where we are now due to the decline of the
family: untold millions of divorces and remarriages in church,
untold millions of innocent lives devastated,
thousands of suicides and millions of abortions and
Please think of the overwhelming trauma divorce,
remarriage and re-divorce causes an incalculable
amount of children and adults. America
is no less susceptible to the plagues and foreign
annihilation Israel suffered for their defiance
during Biblical times! Do we really need to
get our teeth kicked in before we will get on our
face before God and repent of our compromises?
[Note: This paragraph was written before anyone
heard of Covid-19]
His Church Should Not
Be Like This
God clearly hates hypocrisy. We cannot profess to
be a Christian or tell people to honor God and His
commandments in the Bible and then live counter to His
commandments. Hypocrisy in the church drives a great
many people away from godliness and the church.
In a world with so many people unable to receive
the blessings of living
biblically because of censorship, it is ironic
that so many in western churches live defiantly. And so
few leaders in the church take a stand for
biblical marriage and against sin. Compromisers
weaken the church and disgrace His message and
One of the greatest hindrances to winning the lost is
hypocrisy in the church of Christ. We say we hate divorce as
a cliché, but we commit divorce and commit remarriage
nearly as much as the world. And it seems like everyone who
wants to commit remarriage is granted it in the
church. Then we wonder why the church is so weak.
The shock value of the divorce
rate in the church near 50% has long worn off and
we are not taking the steps needed to get back to
the rate we had years ago.
As long as
Christians think they can get a better life with
a new spouse and pastors are willing to
marry divorced people, there never will be a
significant reduction in the rate of
divorces that plagues families and the church!
Because of the ease of people getting remarried in
the church, many people give up
on their first spouse. AND when remarried people
are allowed to testify from the pulpit how bad
their life was before divorce and how "God
blessed" them with a second spouse that causes
even more people to divorce their first spouse and
Many so-called "irreconcilable marriages" were
saved when just one spouse went the extra mile for
reconciliation. And a great many more would have
been saved if it were not so easy for people to
get remarried. You must admit that if remarriage
were not an option, that alone would save a lot of
marriages from divorce. And children could be
spared from the huge amount of problems they
suffer. Churches not holding people accountable
for their marriage covenant does incomprehensible
harm to children and society.
Revelation 2-3 Jesus has some very
sobering words for the seven churches of Asia.
Among them is his disdain for immorality in the
church and the church’s tolerance for
God has it right, no divorce and no remarriage except
under the condition listed in the Bible.
one chance at marriage and we gotta make it a good
one and stick with it. Until
the church gets back on track biblically about
this devastating sin, we will not see any
Christian Divorce Rates are
By now you likely
heard the divorce rate among true Christians
is inflated due to including people who are not true Christians
and people who are repeat offenders. So what is the
real statistic for true Christians who married
for the first time? According to statistics reported on Moody Radio
in 2017 it is only 45%! Isn't that
just great? About 5% less than the world
Good ... Very Good!
By now you might think I'm down on
marriage. The contrary is true. Marriage is a very
good God-ordained act. He tells us to procreate and
to fill the Earth, Gen 1:28. He who finds a wife
finds a good thing, Prv 18:22. Children are a
Blessing from the Lord, Ps 127:3-5. We should take
Him up on these promises of His.
You are Royalty--A
Child of the King of Kings
As a Christian
you are royalty,
Gal 3:26. Please do not sell
yourself short. Do not let Satan convince you that you
less valuable than you really are or to lower your
standards. You are a very valuable and precious child of
God. A very special being. Your soul is far more
valuable than any gratification you could get from
marrying a divorced person who has no business trying
to win your heart.
There are vast amounts of people who are in sexual
relationships (marriage and otherwise) who feel
powerless to get out of the relationship, even
they made a serious mistake
getting into it. It is not wise to
consider getting into a relationship that has high
risk of significant consequences.
Consequences of Sin
willingly engage in repetitious long-term sin may
suffer a new level of darkness they might not be
able to withstand. Once you get to the point of no return, goodbye good-old-days. Be careful about getting what you want
instead of what God feels is best for you. Each of us
has great power to do what is right (and wrong). Your
strength to do what is right likely is the
strongest right now. If you meet
again with your boyfriend/girlfriend, your
power to get out of this relationship will
Years ago I met someone who became so
convinced that remarriage is adultery that he
divorced his second wife merely on that basis.
There is potential that at some time one of the parties involved could come under that same
conviction and change the whole dynamic of the
The Children ...
Do you love children? I
mean truly love children. Most people quickly say yes,
but when it comes to the point of great personal
sacrifice, all too many adults are out for themselves.
the verse about God hating divorce as a cliché,
but will not take a strong stand to uphold the
sanctity of marriage. We all
are role models. What parents allow in moderation,
children abuse in excess. People look up to us and God calls
us to take the high road. If not you, who?
Matt 18:6 but
whoever causes one of these little ones who
believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for
him to have a heavy millstone hung around his
neck, and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.
Be very careful about getting the whole truth when
love or money is involved.
All too often I have listened to someone complain
about how terrible their spouse is and how their
spouse is the
cause of a secular divorce. But when I probe for
specific details and verification ... surprise! The
whole story changes. You likely witnessed this also.
The Bible encourages us to not believe one side of a
story: The naive believes everything, But the
sensible man considers his steps. 16 A wise man is
cautious and turns away from evil, But a fool is
arrogant and careless. 17 A quick-tempered man
acts foolishly, ...
Everyone withholds the full truth and shows their good
side. If you get engaged after only a few months of
courtship, then you make it easy for them to hide
issues that might be intolerable to you. Why do that
At least 50% of the people who are divorced
are guilty of causing that. Yet
when we talk with most divorcees they lead us to
believe their mate has the greatest guilt in the
matter. And yes divorcees often admit to some
faults. This admission often
lowers our guard to think they are transparent, providing the whole
story and honest. But that just might not be the case.
Verification is needed.
If you are dating a divorcee, by now they likely
told you some of their faults in their first marriage
and that they learned from their past mistakes. The reason for such a
statement often is to try to comfort any cautions you
may have and lead you to believe they now are able
to be a better spouse. This is another way to win
your heart. Nothing new. This is commonly done.
If you were to ever get divorced, how different would
you be in this regard? You probably still would want
to get remarried and use the same approach with
potential mates. So be very cautious about opening
your heart to a divorcee. You can be assured there is more
beneath the surface than is apparent. True underlying faults reveal
themselves eventually, but rarely during short
Pray for truth to be reveled and for
yourself to have a godly response.
If your spouse were to sleep with their first
spouse, could that be deemed adultery biblically?
Based on which verse(s)? See
I Cor 7:11 and
Rom 7:2. In God's eyes which spouse is the
legitimate one? Not too likely it is the one the Bible
labels as adulterous. This is another point that
reveals an unacceptable risk for remarriages,
especially if there is frequent contact with the
first spouse pertaining to children.
If loving you is wrong I don't wanna
Not only are people singing this verse, more and more
Christians are practicing just that ... and to their
own detriment. What are they thinking? This is not a mantra to live by,
but a temptation to flee. Is 59:2 But your iniquities
have made a separation between you and your God,
And your sins have hidden His face from you so
that He does not hear.
If I truly love someone, I want the best for them,
even if it means loss on my part. I wish restoration
for marriages. I do not feel divorce is an opportunity
for me to take advantage of and become the wedge who
blocks restoration of a divorced couple. I do not want to be
selfish or in sin. That leads to disastrous
consequences that I may not be able to withstand. At
the end of our lives we will realize how the sins of
our past have robbed us of our future.
Justifying Our Actions
When we are angry with
God (about singleness or divorce) we are all the
more prone to yield to temptation and justify it. You might have heard
can handle your anger toward Him. While this is a
self-evident truth, that does not mean long-term
anger with God will go unanswered,
Num 11:1. God is not like
a teddy bear who you can set aside to sin and then pick Him up
when you want and all is good. The
greatest commandment is to love God with all our
Mark 12:28. If we are not right with God we
can expect consequences. Those who do whatever it
takes to get what they want and claim peace from
God about sinful matters, risk separation from God. If you believe God
rewards good behavior, it would be foolish to not
believe He punishes sinful behavior,
Many in evangelical
churches believe in "Eternal Security" (once
saved, always saved and you cannot lose your
salvation no matter what you do after you became a
Christian). I spent much time researching the
Bible on this topic also. I compiled a list of
verses that indicate "Eternal Security" and
a list of verses
that indicate a Christian can reject God's
commandments and walk in sin and get their name
blotted out of the Book of Life. After these verses were compiled, I was very surprised to
learn ... the verses indicating
the later are much greater in number and also in clarity. Just
in case you think you have fire insurance from any sin
you commit for any length of time, I would like to
shed a little light on this topic with these verses: James
5:19-20 My brethren, if any among you strays from
the truth and one turns him back, 20 let him know that
he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will
save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of
For if we go on sinning willfully after
receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer
remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a terrifying
expectation of judgment and the fury of a fire which
will consume the adversaries. Also see:
1 John 3:7-10. To claim these verses do not mean a saved
Christian can reject the Lord's Way and be damned
to hell would take a questionable amount of
theological gymnastics to claim that these verses don't mean
what they say.
In the western
culture we expect stories and sermons to have good
positive endings. And we almost demand it. So much
so that we deceive ourselves into thinking that if
I defy God's commandments and warnings, somehow
God will make it end well. So we proceed with what
we want with the
self-assurance that eventually it will be okay for me and those I
When a mom or dad
justifies remarriage, often the children
against their parent(s) and God. As children
become adults they take out their frustration on others
and the cycle repeats itself generation after
generation and for millions of people. Where's the positive is in that? This is the
well-known result of divorce and remarriage and God hates it. If you want a happy ending,
I encourage you to do as God instructs. With the
Holy Spirit's help, you can do it!
God allows us freedom to
choose what we want and He is recording how we
This is not an off-the-cuff message you can readily
dismiss. This has been bathed in much prayer and
justified with numerous and pertinent Bible verses in
This is not new or unique.
victims of divorce are
These Bible passages are 2000 years old.
not getting remarried in obedience to biblical
in obedience to
1 Tim 3:2 due their partner filing for divorce.
The Bible teaches us foundations are
important. The foundation of a marriage that God
classifies as adultery is a foundation built on
sand at best. Don't expect it to be good for
long. No matter how good the relationship seems now, such
marriages can go bad at any time. And don't blame God when it doesn't
Christians all too often say their
relationship is "so of God!"
Or they say I feel peace in my heart about it. Or the
circumstances are of God. Then they get married
against wise counsel and biblical prohibition. But when expectations are not met and reality sets in,
they're in the pastor's office for counseling, wasting
his time because they never should've gotten married
in the first place or because they will choose divorce
regardless. When Christians publicly profess
before family and friends their relationship is "so of
God," and end up divorced, they make a mockery of
our Christian faith and those of us who are called by
His name. And rarely do divorcees humble themselves
and ask for forgiveness before all those whom they
deceived about their relationship being God-ordained
or for the vow they publically broke.
Trying to Defy
Among my personal friends, I know of 15 marriages of divorcees. Three between
unsaved couples. All of those three marriages seem
good at this time. All of the 12 other marriages are of
Christians. One is recent and I am unaware of any
problems with that one. The 11others have
terrible gut-wrenching stories that go with every
single one. Most of those marriages have ended
already, one by sudden death in his 30s leaving
four small children. This is reasonably close to a 100% failure
rate among Christian remarriages. What if you
were to list all the Christians you know who got
remarried after divorce? What results would you
find? How well did remarriage fair for
them? Are they and their children walking the
straight and narrow path that leads to life? Euphoria before marriage all too often bends
the knee to reality years down the road.
One of my close friends told me she would never marry
a divorced man. But out of desperation she went back
on her own conviction. Shortly after marrying
the divorced man, she had continuous major health
problems of one type or another. To such an extent she
has been unable to work since nearly the time she
married him ... over 15 years ago! And for most of the last
year she has been bed ridden due to depression.
The causes of her ailments and the remedy escapes
everyone even though both are healthcare
can't help but wonder if her chronic health
problems are due to a marriage God deems as
adulterous and if
1 Cor 11:30 is applicable (weakness
and sickness due to taking communion in an
unworthy manner). She has been
such a generous, compassionate, loving and kind woman. Her husband
also is an extraordinarily kind and remarkable man who I like
very much. But ... MANY people
keep praying for
this wonderful woman, and nothing changes! It
seems something spiritual is holding her back.
Counselors & Your Fiancé
For premarital counselors, parents and your fiancé I recommend each person contemplating marriage
provide written answers for their belief for
the conditions that divorce and remarriage are
and cite supporting Bible verses with their
answers. And to answer the
questions at the bottom of this page.
If they do not provide biblical answers, they are
not a good potential mate.
Attending the Wedding
of a Divorced Person?
This can be a gut-wrenching decision. How do
we balance obedience to the Word of God and retain friendship with someone violating Scripture? By
being obedient to what the Bible tells us and
praying for everyone involved. Sure there is a
chance you may lose a friend if you state why you
are not attending their wedding, but don’t take it
A true friend will
respect and be tolerant of your right to not attend a
wedding based on your sincerely held biblical
beliefs. And if they don't, it says more about
them than you.
You are on solid ground when you obey
God’s Word while they are building
their home on sand.
1 Corinthians 5 tells us how to handle
someone who claims to be a believer but is in sin:
I wrote you in my letter not to
associate with immoral people; 10 I did not at all
mean with the immoral people of this world, or
with the covetous and swindlers, or with
idolaters, for then you would have to go out of
the world. 11 But actually, I wrote to you not to
associate with any so-called brother if he is an
immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a
reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler—not even to
eat with such a one. 12 For what have I to do with
judging outsiders? Do you not judge those who are
within the church? 13 But those who are outside,
God judges. Remove the wicked man from among
yourselves. 1 Corinthians 5:9-13 NASB
Sure, we are to extend love and forgiveness
to each other, but the above passage is a specific
command of the Bible to be applied as situations
arise and is not to be ignored by us.
We may feel obligated to offer grace to
everyone all the time. Grace is God's unmerited
favor, and that is God's job. We are not in a
position to offer them grace. Our job is to obey God.
Please chose the high road.
We also need to be careful of our presence
and friendships causing someone else to stumble.
Romans 14:21,23 It is better not to eat meat
or drink wine or to do anything else that will
cause your brother to fall. (23) But the man who
doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating
is not from faith; and everything that does not
come from faith is sin., NIV.
Miscellaneous verses that help us think and live
Gal 6:7-8 Do
not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps
what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh,
from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows
to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap
eternal life. NIV
peace though I walk in the stubbornness of my
heart in order to destroy the watered land with
the dry.’ 20 The Lord shall never be willing to
forgive him, but rather the anger of the Lord and
His jealousy will burn against that man, and every
curse which is written in this book will rest on
him, and the Lord will blot out his name from
under heaven. 21 Then the Lord will single him out
for adversity from all the tribes of Israel,
according to all the curses of the covenant which
are written in this book of the law.
The one who says, “I
have come to know Him,” and does not keep His
commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in
him; 5 but whoever keeps His word, in him the love
of God has truly been perfected.
John 2:4-5 NASB
Blessed is a man who perseveres under
trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive
the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those
who love Him. 13 Let no one say when he is tempted, "I
am being tempted by God"; for God cannot be tempted by
evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone. 14 But
each one is tempted when he is carried away and
enticed by his own lust. 15 Then when lust has
conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is
accomplished, it brings forth death. James 1:12-15 (NASB)
What shall we say then? Are we to continue in
sin so that grace may increase? May it never be!
How shall we who died to sin still live in it? Romans 6:1-2 (NASB)
If you do well, will not your countenance be
lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching
at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must
master it.” Gen 4:7 (NASB)
If anyone advocates a different
doctrine and does not agree with sound words, those of
our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine
conforming to godliness, 4 he is conceited and
understands nothing; ... 6 But godliness
actually is a means of great gain when accompanied by
contentment. ... 8
If we have food and covering, with these we shall be
1 Timothy 6: 3-8 (NASB)
But actually, I wrote to you not to associate
with any so-called brother if he is an immoral
person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler,
or a drunkard, or a swindler—not even to eat with
such a one. ... Remove the wicked man from among
1 Cor 5:11,13b
The Slippery Slope of
Some say blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is about
ignoring the promptings of the Holy Spirit over a long
period of the time. I am told that is plausible, but
We do know blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is an
extremely serious matter. We also know that over time
our conscience becomes dull when we ignore the
promptings of the Holy Spirit and engage in sin. The
promptings may eventually cease when we
biblical principles. How long do we need to ignore the
Holy Spirit before His promptings go away and lose the
blessings of the Holy Spirit? We don't know.
What are the beginning stages of blasphemy of the Holy
Spirit or how
great of a sin do we need to commit before we crossed the line and committed blasphemy of
the Holy Spirit? We
Besides blasphemy, adultery is about the worst sin you
would commit. It is not very likely that you are going
to commit murder or worship a graven image. So
likely is the worst sin you would commit
and should not be trivialized. Even
though it is so common, adultery is a major sin
God clearly hates and warns of severe consequences.
Rev 21:8 states immoral people are thrown in the lake of
fire along with murderers. So why flirt with
that your needs will be provided for in a
Godly manner and be content with what God provides and
does not provide.
A True Friend
If I did not present my concerns to you, I would not
be a true friend
Prv 27:6. I would hate to have you wait all this time for the
love of your life and it ending as the biggest mistake
of your life. We all are one decision away from
ruining our lives and our character. I pray you make
the right decision that will bring you eternal
blessing and joy.
I'm sure you will find friends who
will tell you to go for it if you feel peace in your
heart. But all too often I had friends tell me what I
wanted to hear instead of what I needed to hear. I
suffered needlessly for their selfishness. I am not a
friend like that.
You are an intelligent person and can understand the verses cited here. You do not
need someone to explain what biblical marriage
or is not. I suggest you perform your due diligence and study the Bible and
read all the verses about divorce and remarriage and
comprehend the big picture of what each passage is trying to
convey. Be obedient to biblical instruction and God Himself will help
you through this difficult time. And please do not read books written by
divorcees or those who profit from divorcees wanting
to hear what their itching ears want to hear.
Otherwise I am afraid you may make the worst mistake
of your life.
Is Jesus worth it? Is your soul worth it? Will you
live for Him? As He commands?
In His service,
P.S. If you feel one marriage is too few and want
to discuss this with me, I kindly ask that you
submit answers for the following
Were you able to pray
the prayer in the second paragraph at the top
without reservation and with total sincerity?
On what basis does God call divorced people
who remarry (and their second spouse)
adulterers if He recognizes remarriage?
How confident are you that one can commit remarriage and be able to partake
in communion with a clear conscience and have no
chance of suffering the consequences described in
1 Cor 11:30 for taking communion in an
If marriage to a divorcee is a good thing then
why is that not clearly stated anywhere in the Bible
which clearly, and almost unnecessarily,
states it's good for widows to remarry?
If you do not classify remarriage as adultery,
as Jesus does, by what authority do you
reclassify it as holy matrimony? Which Bible
passage prevails over Jesus' instruction in
If you feel
is not applicable to a current situation you
are thinking about, what is the applicability
of this verse?
If we accept the following as sin:
slave ownership, racism, pornography,
drunkenness, polygamy and taking communion in
an unworthy manner (sins we readily accept
with fewer and less direct verses); why is it
so difficult for us to accept all the
that forbid remarriage?
If God wanted to
communicate to humanity that remarriage is
adultery, how do you suggest He put words together in the Bible so we could understand
that remarriage is adultery? What is it about
the wording in the Bible that makes this
unclear to you?
How can we reject
verses that do not fit our desires without
rendering the whole Bible as unreliable and
create a pathway for anyone to justify any
If we interpret
2 Cor 6:14 about being unequally yoked to
mean what it intends, how can we interpret
Luke 16:18 and
to mean the opposite of what it states?
Do you feel it is okay
for everyone to commit divorce and remarriage
five or more times? If not, at what amount
does God deem remarriage as adultery?
Still unmoved by all
the Bible passages condemning remarriage and
unable to find one verse that clearly permits
remarriage after divorce? Rather than groping
for justification for your desire in the
matter, why not admit at least admit to
yourself that you are unwilling to submit to
the full will of God?
If your spouse were
to sleep with their first spouse, could that
be deemed adultery biblically? By which verse?
I Cor 7:11 and
Which provision in a
marriage vow allows for
divorce or remarriage? If God imposes
consequences for violating a vow, are you
comfortable being yoked to someone who may
suffer consequences for breaking their
Was the greatest among
men (John the Baptist)
foolish to give up his life and ministry for
publically proclaiming remarriage is
What if an angel of
God were to be sent to Earth to help us
interpret the Bible and instruct us in life
application? Assume this angel has no bias in
the matter. He has no possibility of marriage
or divorce, he does not get contributions from
a congregation with divorced people or answer
to a deacon board with a well-liked deacon who
is divorced. Would he use a complex method of
hermeneutics to bend the plain meaning of
verses to conform to modern
society or instruct us to obey verses as written?
If the Bible were to state it is okay for
get married two or more times "I" would
agree with that. What if the Bible states remarriage
adultery, would "you" agree with that
refrain from remarriage?
Do you think if respected theologians take
opposite positions then God will agree with
both positions and sanctify the actions
following either choice?
In light of the
difficulties marriages face today and the need
for divine assistance, do you feel God will
bless a relationship with a divorcee whose
child has been praying for their mommy and daddy to
In His service,