Scripture is clear that one may divorce for only two possible cases: infidelity (adultery) and in the case where a believer is married to a non-believer and the non-believer wants a divorce. That is it! It doesn’t say you can divorce if you think your husband doesn’t fulfill your emotional needs, it doesn’t say you can divorce if you argue too much, it doesn’t say you can divorce if you no longer love each other, etc.. Scripture is very clear on this matter, yet divorce is RAMPANT in the Church. How can this be?
“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; see also Matthew 5:31, 32).
Yet even in that case it is better (assuming the transgressor is repentant) if the marriage can be saved:
“Whosoever putteth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery: and whosoever marrieth her that is put away from her husband committeth adultery” (Luke 16:18).
“And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery” (Mark 10:12).
“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 shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Matthew 19:4-6).
So clearly God takes marriage very seriously and so should we. I read that according to polling Christians actually now have a higher divorce rate than non-Christians! This is truly shameful and appalling. I’ve heard of couple getting divorced for the most flimsy of reasons. Why are so many entering marriage with such immaturity? Could pastors do more to prepare couples for marriage? Could parents do more in raising up their children to have a Biblical view of marriage? I have even seen some Christians arrogantly assert that getting divorced is their right. If you point out that there is only two acceptable cases for divorce they will literally become enraged and rant about how dare you tell them how to live their life, etc. Clearly they have a very low view of God’s Word even though they claim to be Christians.
Another problem I have noticed is Christians marrying non-Christians. Once again Scripture is crystal clear on this matter:
“Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers” (II Corinthians 6:14).
The other case for divorce is if a Christian is married to a non-Christian and the non-Christian wants a divorce. Paul writes:
“If the unbelieving depart, let him depart. A brother or sister is not under bondage in such cases: but God hath called us to peace” (I Corinthians 7:15).
I hate to say it, but I suspect not enough preachers are saying what Scripture clearly teaches on divorce because they fear alienating a good portion of their congregation who have already divorced and remarried for unbiblical reasons! We must teach pastors to be bold when proclaiming Biblical truths and not to act cowardly. This is such a sad thing to witness. The destruction done to society is massive and when children are involved the negative repercussions can last a lifetime. Yet, I feel as if almost no one in the Church truly seems to care about it. We need to life up our voices and speak out on this issue, even if it makes people uncomfortable, even if our pastor doesn’t want to speak about it, even if we lose friends in the process.