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The Law of God discuss Some claim adultery not vaild reason for divorce in the Theological Forum forums; I thought I would post this in it's own thread to see if someone can shed some light on this issue for me. This is ...

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    king of fools's Avatar
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    Some claim adultery not vaild reason for divorce

    I thought I would post this in it's own thread to see if someone can shed some light on this issue for me.

    This is specifically dealing with Matt 19:9 and the term porneia - "fornication" or "sexual immorailty".

    I heard a sermon/lecture by James M. Boice on this issue. He took a different view on this subject than most people, and admitted that he was in the extreme minority. I'm not certain if this is a well-known objection or not. I thought I would ask as I am ignorant to the history of this view.

    Boice claimed that the term porneia dealt primarily in the context with breaking of the vow during the engagement period, where it would be found that one of the two parties had previously been involved in sexual conduct and lied about it. He said this would be before the official "marriage" began, but it would still have been in the legally-bound engagement.

    The big objection he states is this. The punishment for adultery is death. Why have a death penalty and divorce? It would seem that there would be no need for divorce if the person had be dealt capital punishment.

    Anyone have any thoughts on this?
    Steve
    Heritage Baptist Church
    Mansfield, TX

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    Irishcat922 is offline. Inactive User
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    Steve,
    I have thought about this passage and studied on several occasions, I think the key to this passage is verse six were The Lord says that" the two shall become one flesh."I think once a marriage is consummated there is no reason for divorce except in the case of adultry and that if it is immpossible to live with that person any more. I think this is what the Lord means when he says this is "because of the hardness of your hearts." When I studied this passage I read through the book of Hosea several times, it helped me come to my understanding of our relationship with the Lord, as being like a marriage commitment. And if he can show that much mercy towards us, shouldn't we also be merciful even in extreme cases. If there is genuine repentance. Maybe even if there is not.
    The thing that kept sticking with me is the phrase that The Lord uses "because of the hardness of your hearts" is the Christian heart so hard that we can't forgive, it shouldn't be.
    We are commanded to forgive, so in my opinion if the offending person is repentant, we have a resposibility to stand by them if at all possible.

    [Edited on 6-11-2004 by Irishcat922]
    Sean Jones
    Covenant Presbyterian Church OPC
    Fort Worth Texas

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    king of fools's Avatar
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    [quote:1d779e8a06][i:1d779e8a06]Originally posted by Irishcat922[/i:1d779e8a06]
    Steve,
    I have thought about this passage and studied on several occasions, I think the key to this passage is verse six were The Lord says that" the two shall become one flesh."I think once a marriage is consummated there is no reason for divorce except in the case of adultry and that if it is immpossible to live with that person any more. I think this is what the Lord means when he says this is "because of the hardness of your hearts." When I studied this passage I read through the book of Hosea several times, it helped me come to my understanding of our relationship with the Lord, as being like a marriage commitment. And if he can show that much mercy towards us, shouldn't we also be merciful even in extreme cases. If there is genuine repentance. Maybe even if there is not.
    The thing that kept sticking with me is the phrase that The Lord uses "because of the hardness of your hearts" is the Christian heart so hard that we can't forgive, it shouldn't be.
    We are commanded to forgive, so in my opinion if the offending person is repentant, we have a resposibility to stand by them if at all possible.

    [Edited on 6-11-2004 by Irishcat922] [/quote:1d779e8a06]

    Thanks for the reply Sean. But was that a reply to my post? :-) Maybe I should reread it.

    the "...except for adultery..." argument is what I am getting at. What do you think of Boice's argument that adultery is not grounds for divoice, because adultery was punished by death. Maybe I'm making too much of this, becuase no one's jumping in.
    Steve
    Heritage Baptist Church
    Mansfield, TX

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    LadyFlynt is offline. Inactive User
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    Actually there are many of us who believe this way...unfortunately not many of us are reformed (dh and I are though).

    There is a passage where it mentions "fornication and adultery". Now if fornication just means sexual sin in general then there is no need to specify adultery as it would cover that. Otherwise you might as well be saying "adultery and adultery" or "sexual sin a, ss b, ss c, adultery, and adultery". KWIM?

    In the context of the times it took a decree of divorce to break an engagement. (We should take engagements more seriously in this case) Engagement or betrothal basically means you belong to the other person (husband/wife) but without sexual rights as of yet (marriage) since the unification is not "complete". Does that make any sense to you? Fornication is what Joseph was going to divorce Mary for. If a man married and did not find his wife a virgin then #1 there would be fighting between the families if he let it be known immediately as would be expected and wpuld be permitted to divorce her. #2 If he chose to continue with her despite his knowledge of her lack of virtue then he could NOT put her away at a latter date. HOWEVER, If it were adultery...sex outside of marriage during marriage...she/he would be stoned. Nowadays we don't stone people. But neither is it permissable to divorce under such. Marriages HAVE healed...only in the cases of a persons "hardness of heart" (as mentioned above) do they NOT heal. We however are expected to remain in the marriage...

    NOW...do you want to get me started on D&R (divorce and remarriage)??? LOL!!!

    PS...just in case I offended anyone...even though I don't agree with D&R, most of my friends, my parents, and my inlaws are all D&R...and yes, they know my stand on the topic.
    JC - PCA - PA...homesick for SC
    A we n' de Ya, ho; I mak sikker; Deus juvat

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    "Who says you can't go back, been all around the world and as a matter of fact. There's only one place left I want to go, who says you can't go home" Bon Jovi

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    andreas is offline. Inactive User
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    .<<<"I think once a marriage is consummated there is no reason for divorce except in the case of adultry and that if it is immpossible to live with that person any more">>>



    " For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband. So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man." Rom7:2-3

    "The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord".1 Corr.7:39

    In the eyes of the Lord, divorce is not permissible.Only in cases of death is the living partner allowed to re-marry.
    andreas.
    andreas; By the grace of God,a Christian .

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    ChristianTrader is offline. Puritanboard Graduate
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    I have found that a paper by the late Greg Bahnsen has been very helpful in shaping my views of valid reasons for divorce. It can be found here: http://www.cmfnow.com/articles/pe058.htm

    The basic view is that a Christian must always forgive their adulterous spouse, however if the spouse does not wish to stay, they can let them go and remarry.

    Hermonta
    Hermonta Godwin
    Raleigh, NC

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    LadyFlynt is offline. Inactive User
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    They can let them go...BUT...

    NOWHERE in scripture say that they are free to remarry.

    Once divorced you are free from the duties of that marriage (cooking, paying the others bills, intimacies)...but you are not free to remarry...you are divorced...
    JC - PCA - PA...homesick for SC
    A we n' de Ya, ho; I mak sikker; Deus juvat

    Indicabo tibi o homo quid sit bonum, et quid Dominus requirat a te: Utique facere iudicium, et diligere, misericordiam, et sollicitum ambulare cum Deo tuo. Michaeas 6:8

    "Who says you can't go back, been all around the world and as a matter of fact. There's only one place left I want to go, who says you can't go home" Bon Jovi

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    ChristianTrader is offline. Puritanboard Graduate
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    [quote:1c8597e7ed][i:1c8597e7ed]Originally posted by LadyFlynt[/i:1c8597e7ed]
    They can let them go...BUT...

    NOWHERE in scripture say that they are free to remarry.

    Once divorced you are free from the duties of that marriage (cooking, paying the others bills, intimacies)...but you are not free to remarry...you are divorced... [/quote:1c8597e7ed]

    1 Cor. 7:15
    But 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.

    1 Cor. 7:39
    The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord.

    On what basis can you deny a "free" person or a person under no bondage the right to remarry?

    One must also remember under biblical law, the penalty for adultery is death. So the correct punishment for the spouse that refused to repent was death. Is someone forced to remain unmarried because the civil magistrate did not do its job?

    If read together it seems that the same bond is being talked about in both places.

    Hermonta
    Hermonta Godwin
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    ChristianasJourney is offline. Inactive User
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    [quote][i:8c2efa79fd]Originally posted by ChristianTrader[/i:8c2efa79fd]
    [quote:8c2efa79fd][i:8c2efa79fd]Originally posted by LadyFlynt[/i:8c2efa79fd]


    Is someone forced to remain unmarried because the civil magistrate did not do its job?
    [/quote:8c2efa79fd]

    Yes. It is a sad fact but true. Under OT law I believe that dead, meant dead--the not breathing sort of dead. And simply because the civil magistrate was not in obediance to the law, did not work as an excuse for me also to be in disobediance to the law.

    1 Cor. 7:39 also stresses the importance of a spouse being dead. To look at it as anything but a literal death would be to undermine the authority of scripture. If we accept a "death in theory", because he [i:8c2efa79fd]should[/i:8c2efa79fd] be dead opens us up to divorcing our spouse simply because he's a non-christian. We are alive in Christ, and since he is not redeemed he is dead in Christ, which following the same logic would allow for divorce.

    It's important to remember that "God hates divorce", that the only reason he allowed it according to Mark 10:5-6 is because of "the hardness of [our] hearts". God [i:8c2efa79fd]allows[/i:8c2efa79fd] divorce in the case of adultery, but I for one am not so sure that even in the case of adultry, a Christian should seek a divorce, or that a divorce is the wise way to go.


    [Edited on 6-12-2004 by ChristianasJourney]
    Janice
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    LadyFlynt is offline. Inactive User
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    and "under bondage" means bound to the duties of marriage which I listed in the post above.

    And death is a different circumstance...if widowed you may remarry.
    JC - PCA - PA...homesick for SC
    A we n' de Ya, ho; I mak sikker; Deus juvat

    Indicabo tibi o homo quid sit bonum, et quid Dominus requirat a te: Utique facere iudicium, et diligere, misericordiam, et sollicitum ambulare cum Deo tuo. Michaeas 6:8

    "Who says you can't go back, been all around the world and as a matter of fact. There's only one place left I want to go, who says you can't go home" Bon Jovi

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    I agree with Boice (maybe not for the exact same reasons) and have found that my view is indeed the minority. Without giving my view on all the divorce texts, I'll just say that we commit spiritual adultery against our Lord everyday when we sin. Does he ever divorce us?
    Dan
    OPC
    Pennsylvania

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    ChristianTrader is offline. Puritanboard Graduate
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    [quote][i:e81b242446]Originally posted by ChristianasJourney[/i:e81b242446]
    [quote:e81b242446][i:e81b242446]Originally posted by ChristianTrader[/i:e81b242446]
    [quote:e81b242446][i:e81b242446]Originally posted by LadyFlynt[/i:e81b242446]


    Is someone forced to remain unmarried because the civil magistrate did not do its job?
    [/quote:e81b242446]

    Yes. It is a sad fact but true. Under OT law I believe that dead, meant dead--the not breathing sort of dead. And simply because the civil magistrate was not in obediance to the law, did not work as an excuse for me also to be in disobediance to the law.

    1 Cor. 7:39 also stresses the importance of a spouse being dead. To look at it as anything but a literal death would be to undermine the authority of scripture. If we accept a "death in theory", because he [i:e81b242446]should[/i:e81b242446] be dead opens us up to divorcing our spouse simply because he's a non-christian. We are alive in Christ, and since he is not redeemed he is dead in Christ, which following the same logic would allow for divorce.

    It's important to remember that "God hates divorce", that the only reason he allowed it according to Mark 10:5-6 is because of "the hardness of [our] hearts". God [i:e81b242446]allows[/i:e81b242446] divorce in the case of adultery, but I for one am not so sure that even in the case of adultry, a Christian should seek a divorce, or that a divorce is the wise way to go.


    [Edited on 6-12-2004 by ChristianasJourney] [/quote:e81b242446]

    If you take my previous two posts together, then you will see that the only issue under discussion is what to do when the guilty spouse refuses to repent and come back. A Christian is required to take back a adulterous spouse.

    Next, would you accept the death of the covenant instead of death in theory?

    Next, what other covenant agreement in the Bible requires the innocent party to somehow suffer because the guilty party broke the covenant?

    We should also remember that God "divorced" Israel and was not somehow forced to remain "alone".

    Hermonta
    Hermonta Godwin
    Raleigh, NC

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    andreas is offline. Inactive User
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    <<<God allows divorce in the case of adultery, but I for one am not so sure that even in the case of adultry, a Christian should seek a divorce,>>>

    "What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. And in the house his disciples asked him again of the same matter. And he saith unto them, Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her. And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery".Mark 10:9-12

    " 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

    What God has placed together ,no man can separate.Only God can do that.There are no loopholes for divorce and remarriage.Adultery is no such loophole,otherwise the scriptures would contradict themselves ,and that is something that God never does.
    andreas.
    andreas; By the grace of God,a Christian .

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    mjbee is offline. Inactive User
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    When an unbelieving spouse is adulterous (thus breaking the marriage covenant) for years on end, and is unrepentant indefinitely, is the believer bound to forgive and remain unmarried, even if there has been a divorce and the unbeliever has had many other sexual partners? Or perhaps has remarried? Doesn't God call it an abomination to go back to a previous mate if there has been another in between? Did He lie about it being not good for a man to be alone? If you've never been there, don't throw rocks at people who have. We're just trying to balance His love and His holiness. Is it wrong to be blessed with someone who really loves you, many years after your spouse stepped out on you and broke your marriage covenant and broke your home and your family? Is God mean or merciful? Is love out of reach for people like me?

    Just wondering.
    Melissa Brown
    Evansville, Indiana
    Looking for a body of believers to hook up with
    "It is better to be divided by truth than to be united in error. It is better to speak the truth that hurts and heals, than falsehood that comforts and then kills. Let me tell you something, friend, it is not love and it is not friendship if we fail to declare the whole counsel of God. It is better to be hated for telling the truth, than to be loved for telling a lie. It is impossible to find anyone in the Bible who was a power for God who did not have enemies and was not hated. It's better to stand alone with the truth, than to be wrong with a multitude. It is better to ultimately succeed with the truth than to temporarily succeed with a lie. There is only one Gospel and Paul said, 'If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.'"
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    Scott Bushey's Avatar
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    Lev 20:10 And the man that committeth adultery with another man's wife, even he that committeth adultery with his neighbour's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.

    Jer 3:8 And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also.


    Mat 19:9 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.

    To Steve:
    This passage does not imply that the wife (who is the fornicator) is to be killed. The descriptive is "put away". So, I disagree with Boice here (if that is what he proposed...I would have to see the context).

    To Andreas:

    The passage implies that some wives ARE in fact [i:b7bf36954f]put away[/i:b7bf36954f]. The only reason that they ARE put away is for fornication. The verse, in light of the before mentioned Hosea verse, and Gods mercies, show that the operative principle here is if one puts away their spouse [i:b7bf36954f]unjustly[/i:b7bf36954f], i.e. one whom was not unfaithful, this person commits adultery.

    Also, based upon this verse:

    Mat 5:27 Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:
    Mat 5:28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

    Who is not guilty??? Whom should not be stoned. Whom should not be put away? All of us have dealt treacherously w/ our God and spouses.

    Divorce and adultery are not perpetual sins. God does forgive these infractions; maybe you do not, but He does.

    Peace & grace,
    Scott

    [Edited on 6-14-2004 by Scott Bushey]
    Scott Bushey
    Husband to Tina, father to Nicole, Danielle and Zoe
    Attending Holy Trinity Presbyterian Church, Ft. Lauderdale, Fl/OPC
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    ChristianasJourney is offline. Inactive User
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    [quote:e93a115cba][i:e93a115cba]Originally posted by ChristianTrader[/i:e93a115cba]
    If you take my previous two posts together, then you will see that the only issue under discussion is what to do when the guilty spouse refuses to repent and come back. A Christian is required to take back a adulterous spouse. [/quote:e93a115cba]

    I don't see where the Bible says or indicates that a person is "required" to take back an adulterous spouse. In OT covenant God says that if your wife remarries another you're are not to take her back. (This, however, seems to be exclusive to the woman--if I committed adultery according to OT law I could not go back to my husband, but if he committed adultery there is no indication that I couldn't accept him back.)

    Also, when you look at God's example, both in His relationship with Israel and Judah as described in Ezekiel or/and Isaiah, and when you look at Hosea's relationship with his adulterous wife God told Hosea to take her back.

    It seems to be allowed, but not an order.

    Forgiving an adulterous spouse is not synonymous with accepting them back. As Christians we must forgive, I don't think the Bible says that we must accept them back.


    [quote:e93a115cba]Next, would you accept the death of the covenant instead of death in theory?[/quote:e93a115cba]

    It doesn't appear to me as if the Bible is talking about the death of the covenant, but rather the death of individual. As long as the individual is very much alive than I believe re-marriage is out.

    [quote:e93a115cba]Next, what other covenant agreement in the Bible requires the innocent party to somehow suffer because the guilty party broke the covenant?[/quote:e93a115cba]

    When a covenant is broken EVERYBODY suffers. Why should children suffer because their parents can't abide by their wedding vows? Because life isn't fair. But as for Biblical examples..."For I am a jealous God visiting the inquities[i:e93a115cba] unto the children of the third and fourth generation [/i:e93a115cba]", and the most famous example, "Father, why hast though forsaken me." Here are examples of innocent parties suffering because of a broken covenant.

    [quote:e93a115cba]We should also remember that God "divorced" Israel and was not somehow forced to remain "alone". [/quote:e93a115cba]

    But look at what it cost Him...His only begotten son.

    Simply because we don't like the answer (that we can't remarry) doesn't mean the answer is wrong. Even if we have sinned, we shouldn't excuse our sin, but confess and ask forgiveness, and go on.

    In a situation where adultery has occured divorce seems to be the easy answer. In a divorce you can still hang on to your own righteousness, and I've known many who do. You can blame it all on the other person, I know many who do. You don't have to accept the responsibilty for your failing, because the failing of your spouse are so great, and that's what many do.

    However, after much thought, if it were me I would try to swallow my pride, my self-righteousness, my offended spirit, I would cling to the parable "forgive, as ye have been forgiven" and I would grasp hold of everything I know about agape love, forgiveness and mercy and try to salvage my marriage, and save my family and children from the inevitable downfall that I see happening in divorced families. God has granted us mercy, love and forgiveness, and through Him we are able to share those same attributes. There is no one that we should be more willing to show that to than our spouse--and no place where we have so much to lose if we fail. And if I do fail than I would turn my face toward God and recognize his promise in James where he says that he is a husband to the widow, and I wouldn't remarry. Yes, it would hurt, but life isn't fair, and my comfort would be in God, just as is now, as a single person.



    [Edited on 6-14-2004 by ChristianasJourney]
    Janice
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    andreas is offline. Inactive User
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    <<<Divorce and adultery are not perpetual sins. God does forgive these infractions; maybe you do not, but He does.>>>

    For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband. So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.rom.7:2-3

    The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord.1 corr.7:39

    the only biblical method of being loosed from a wife is through death and the principle works both ways.

    Art thou bound unto a wife? seek not to be loosed. Art thou loosed from a wife? seek not a wife. But and if thou marry, thou hast not sinned; and if a virgin marry, she hath not sinned. Nevertheless such shall have trouble in the flesh: but I spare you.1 Corr.7:27-28

    "Seek not to be loosed," we are not to seek a divorce since what God joined together, man shall not put asunder. "Art thou loosed from a wife?" , death intervening, since this is the only way a marriage bond can broken ,Romans 7:2-3 and 1 Corinthians 7:39,then you can marry.Should you marry a divorced person, then you have to ask for forgiveness as the blood of Christ will cleanse you,and carry on with your new marriage.
    It is not important whether i forgive or not ,what is important is God's forgiveness.Also what saith the scriptures?not man's interpretations.

    [Edited on 6-14-2004 by andreas]
    andreas; By the grace of God,a Christian .

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    ChristianTrader is offline. Puritanboard Graduate
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    [quote:2f77e817df][i:2f77e817df]Originally posted by Scott Bushey[/i:2f77e817df]

    Also, based upon this verse:

    Mat 5:27 Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:
    Mat 5:28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

    Who is not guilty??? Whom should not be stoned. Whom should not be put away? All of us have dealt treacherously w/ our God and spouses.

    Divorce and adultery are not perpetual sins. God does forgive these infractions; maybe you do not, but He does.

    Peace & grace,
    Scott

    [Edited on 6-14-2004 by Scott Bushey] [/quote:2f77e817df]

    When God tells us how to identify "adultery of the heart" where they should be stoned (like he does about the number of witnesses etc.) then we can proceed about saying it is right to stone someone. Now all adulterers deserved to be stoned but God never told us that we can use any standard to reach a conclusion.

    CT
    Hermonta Godwin
    Raleigh, NC

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    ChristianTrader is offline. Puritanboard Graduate
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    Excerpt from Second Chance by Ray Sutton

    Covenantal Death in Marriage

    Paul says, "The woman who has a husband is bound by the law to her husband as long as he lives. But if that husband dies, she is released from the law of her husband" (Romans 7:2). See what Paul is saying? He says that the marriage covenant is dead if the spouse is dead; and that the death of the spouse terminates the previous covenant. But given the full meaning of the word death, as I have explained above, should not Paul's use of death include more than physical death? Couldn't Paul also be saying that it is possible for a spouse to die covenantally, that is, ethically to break the terms of the covenant and thereby sever the marriage relation ship? It seems very likely, when the context is considered.

    First, at the end of the chapter immediately preceding our passage under consideration, Paul says, "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus" (Romans 6:23). The death here is unquestionably covenantal death, an eternal death of separation from God because of moral unfaithfulness. And this death subject provokes the Apostle Paul to discuss how death affects a previous covenant arrangement.

    Second, Paul begins Romans 7 with, "Or do you not know, brethren (for I speak to those who know the law) that the law [Old Covenant] has dominion over a man as long as he lives" (Romans 7:1). His point is that when man dies to the Old Covenant, he is no longer obligated to submit to the terms of that covenant; he is dead to them. His death nullifies a previous covenant.

    Third, after the verses on the marriage covenant, which illustrate his point about death abolishing the previous covenant (the Old Covenant), Paul says, "Therefore, my brethren, you also have become dead to the law through the body of Christ, that you may be married to another, even to Him who was raised from the dead, that we should bear fruit to God" (Romans 7:4). Again, Paul emphasizes that they are dead to one covenant, even though the people he is talking to are physically alive.

    Therefore, Paul very definitely has a covenantal view of death in mind. He refers to covenantal death when he talks about the
    wages of sin (Romans 6:23). He speaks about covenantal death when he discusses death to the Old Covenant (Romans 7:1, 4).

    And in the middle of both of these points, Paul makes this comment about marriage, "For the woman who has a husband is bound by the law to her husband as long as he lives. But if the husband dies, she is released from the law of her husband* (Romans 7:2). His view of death in the marriage passage that is sandwiched between the other verses must be consistent with the context* Death is covenantal in the other cases, and it at least must include the covenantal, along with the physical, view of death in regard to marriage.

    Covenantal death in marriage definitely encompasses physical death. But, it also means that if the spouse breaks the moral terms of the covenant, he will die to the relationship, and the marriage would be dissolved.3 How can this be? Marriage is a covenant (Malachi 2:14). Its members are "alive* to one another as long as they live according to the laws of the marriage covenant. If they break those laws, then they covenantally die to one another; and according to the Apostle Paul, the "law [covenant] of the spouse* is no longer binding. They do not have to die physically to die covenantally. But if they die covenantally they are just as dead to one another as if they had died physically. The only exception is that covenantal death means they still have physical time to resurrect their marriage.
    Hermonta Godwin
    Raleigh, NC

  20. #20
    Reena Wilms is offline. Inactive User
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    considers this : a marrriage between husband and wife is a picture of Jesus Christ and His Church. Our marriage must reflect something of that wonderfull loving and uncondtional relationship between Christ and His Church. Now in relationship with divorce ; if it would be possible to say easly that if one commits aldultry, that the other partner has the right to divorce, than it would not at reflect all the relationship of Jesus and his Church. Because we commit daily in our sin and sinfull actions "spiritual adultry" towards our Lord Jesus Christ. But thanks God that, when i commit sin towards my Lord, that i can ask for foregivenes, and iam thankfull that he does not divorce me. That his love towards his Bride (Church) is unconditional. That Bible tell me, that i as a husband of my wife, i must love my wife as Christ love His Church and gave himself fot her, now how can this be, that if i take that right to divorce my wife if she commits aldultry ?

    Ralph
    A paedo-baptism believer in a cedo-baptist church.

  21. #21
    welby51 is offline. Inactive User
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    what about couple divorce for adultry on both parties. both remarry . one comes to what he believes is a saving faith in christ. ? have you jay e adams book on marriage divorce, and remarriage? is that a good source?
    william j. welborn layperson 78 belleville rd parsippany nj

  22. #22
    LadyFlynt is offline. Inactive User
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    Then that person is remarried and should stay in that current marriage. If the other comes to Christ and is unmarried, then they should stay unmarried, if remarried then they should also stay in that marriage.

    Some of the more extreme groups would have them separate (not divorce).
    JC - PCA - PA...homesick for SC
    A we n' de Ya, ho; I mak sikker; Deus juvat

    Indicabo tibi o homo quid sit bonum, et quid Dominus requirat a te: Utique facere iudicium, et diligere, misericordiam, et sollicitum ambulare cum Deo tuo. Michaeas 6:8

    "Who says you can't go back, been all around the world and as a matter of fact. There's only one place left I want to go, who says you can't go home" Bon Jovi

  23. #23
    BrianBowman is offline. Posting Priviledges Revoked
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    LadyFlynt,

    I've observed your strong stance on D&R Issues and I respect you for having such convictions, although I don't agree with you on every point. If you read my Bio you will certianly see why. It seems that the bottom line here is pretty simple.

    Marriage is either a conditional covenant (as I believe ChristianTrader has expressed) or it is unconditional. Now I have read many of the exegetical writings on D&R by a wide variety of qualified scholars from many theological traditions (non-Reformed Baptist, Pentecostal, Reformed/Presbyterian, Theonomist, Anglican, etc.). After all of the "dust settles" from appeals to Hebrew Roots, Greek Verb tenses, manners&customs of the Jews from the Second Temple to the Time of Christ, etc. the bottom line is still "Is marriage an unconditional covenant or is it conditional"?

    I am not an advocate of divorce, believe me, over half of my nearly 45 years have been painfully and profoundly affected by its bitter fruit (again please read my Bio). So, even after 100's of hours of study on the topic, I'll confess that I cannot be as objective as many possibly can be. However, when luminary Conservative Christian scholars the likes of Sproul, Gertsner, Banhsen, Murray, Adams, and Instone-Brewer _all_ surmise that the Scriptures teach that certain violations break the Marriage Covenant, it gives me great solace that Marriage is a conditional covenant - and therefore (to Quote Westminster):

    24.6. Although the corruption of man be such as is apt to study arguments unduly to put asunder those whom God has joined together in marriage: yet, nothing but adultery, or such wilful desertion as can no way be remedied by the Church, or civil magistrate, is cause sufficient of dissolving the bond of marriage:14 wherein, a public and orderly course of proceeding is to be observed; and the persons concerned in it not left to their own wills, and discretion, in their own case.15

    14 Matthew 19:8-9; 1 Corinthians 7:15; Matthew 19:6
    15 Deuteronomy 24:1-4

    Having said all of this, let all us press on to maturity in Christ that we might strengthen our marriages in true Holiness and help to provide a real foundational example for coming generations to build their lives and marriages on!

    Much Tenderness & Peace in Christ Jesus

    [Edited on 7-4-2005 by BrianBowman]
    Brian Bowman
    St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church
    Apex, NC

  24. #24
    LadyFlynt is offline. Inactive User
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    My first thought was---who and why did THIS thread get dragged back up again...sigh.

    Second thought...thank you for the respect, I'm fine with others who believe differently on the issue (I'm not one to snub you for it...most of my friends have been D&R), and I'm glad to see someone who can admit that they aren't the most objective person on the subject. I can understand this due to circumstances in your life...I haven't been in your shoes, but I have had ppl around me that have...some of which has greatly affected my life.

    My mother left my father due to adultery. Years later, my step-father has cheated on my mother several times...she has chosen to stay with him. My feelings want me to scream to dump him...I respect her for staying though. I however wanted to scream "why couldn't you have stayed with MY dad?" as he only cheated once, wasn't planning on leaving her, and even nearly killed himself trying to hold the marriage together. So I have seen both sides. I also try to leave my "feelings" out of it and attempt to be objective. However, I will admit my failings at times also.

    Welcome to the board, Brian! I hope this board will challenge you as it has challenged the rest of us.
    JC - PCA - PA...homesick for SC
    A we n' de Ya, ho; I mak sikker; Deus juvat

    Indicabo tibi o homo quid sit bonum, et quid Dominus requirat a te: Utique facere iudicium, et diligere, misericordiam, et sollicitum ambulare cum Deo tuo. Michaeas 6:8

    "Who says you can't go back, been all around the world and as a matter of fact. There's only one place left I want to go, who says you can't go home" Bon Jovi

  25. #25
    BrianBowman is offline. Posting Priviledges Revoked
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    Colleen,

    Wow, it's sounds like that you have really suffered from the end of being a child-of-divorce. I'm just thankful that God prevented my failed marriage from producing any children that would have had to suffer this "generational curse". Marriage and family are so primary to God's order in the lives of all people, especially His elect children. Isn't it wonderful that we can endure the pain of bitter and negative emotions from divorce (no matter what "angle" these come from) because of Christ's sovereign work in our lives? I could not deal with life on any other terms - that is knowing that I had been party to a broken Covenant (I've purposed to not share unncessary details but I will say that it involved infidelty and abandonment of the cruelest kind by the other party). I was spiritually immmature at the time and not part of a Covenant Community that could have guided me through the process. However, my conscience would now allow me remarry without the conviction that the first marriage Covenant was over from God's perspective. To know that my suffering has been part of the process of "being a son brought to glory" (as in Hebrews 2:10) is also great comfort. I was "single again" for over 6 years. My seond marriage is so wonderful in Christ (going strong for almost 8 years nows) - a true testimony to God's restorative love.

    Thank you for listening and caring
    Brian Bowman
    St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church
    Apex, NC

  26. #26
    biblelighthouse is offline. Inactive User
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    Coleen,

    I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate your comments above . . . and I back you 100%.

    The Bible teaches that divorce is NEVER required.

    The Bible teaches that divorce is RARELY permitted.

    And the Bible makes NO provision for remarriage, unless a person's spouse is dead.


    The elders at my church agree with this stance as well.


    For those who want to read up on this subject, I recommend these two books:

    Jesus and Divorce --- by Gordon Wenham and William Heth

    Divorce and Remarriage - Four Christian Views - edited by Wayne House

    (One of the essays in the second book is by William Heth.)
    [b]Joseph M. Gleason[/b]
    * Husband of Amy --- Father of Katie, Kimberly, Andrea, and Julie
    * UNIX Administrator at Experian
    * McKinney Bible Church parishoner for 5 years and counting
    * Student at Westminster Theological Seminary --- Dallas, TX
    * Manager of Covenant Theology section at Monergism.com


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  27. #27
    BrianBowman is offline. Posting Priviledges Revoked
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    Joseph,

    Thank you for making your convictions plain. I'm in hearty agreement with your first two points but clearly not on the third. I do pray you'll continue to fellowship with me on this board because the logical conclusion of the viewpoint you express is that I'm both polygamist and perpetual adulterer.

    Also, I think it would be short-sighted to assume that the books you reference are the ulitmate authority on this subject - which I recognize is volatile, and that is why I'll not post an alternative reading list which includes some great scholars in the reformed tradition.

    [Edited on 7-4-2005 by BrianBowman]
    Brian Bowman
    St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church
    Apex, NC

  28. #28
    BrianBowman is offline. Posting Priviledges Revoked
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    Originally posted by ChristianTrader
    I have found that a paper by the late Greg Bahnsen has been very helpful in shaping my views of valid reasons for divorce. It can be found here: http://www.cmfnow.com/articles/pe058.htm

    The basic view is that a Christian must always forgive their adulterous spouse, however if the spouse does not wish to stay, they can let them go and remarry.

    Hermonta
    Ok,

    After looking back over this tread and reading the above quote, I'll "jump in" one more time . This paper was a great encouragement to me as I read it many months ago. I dare say that if Dr. Bahnsen were alive today, there are few in the world who would want to debate him on this - or any other subject for that matter. What Bahnsen expresses is excactly the ground that I stand on - that is what is the whole counsel of Scripture on this matter? Does God contradict Himself on such a fundamental thing?

    Sproul and Gertsner also recognize that _even the quilty party_ can remarry after a broken marriage covenant - because the covenant is BROKEN. By this, they are not recommending the action of divorce "pell mell", but it is their Scriptural conclusion that breaking the stipulations of the covenant is grounds to annul the covenant.

    OK, I'm getting dangerously close to violating my word about not posting an alternative reading list>
    Brian Bowman
    St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church
    Apex, NC

  29. #29
    biblelighthouse is offline. Inactive User
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    Originally posted by BrianBowman
    Joseph,

    Thank you for making your convictions plain. I'm in hearty agreement with your first two points but clearly not on the third. I do pray you'll continue to fellowship with me on this board because the logical conclusion of the viewpoint you express is that I'm both polygamist and perpetual adulterer.
    Brian,

    I don't think views on remarriage should affect fellowship. You are my brother in Christ, and will hopefully be a close friend as we get to know one another better.

    I am certainly compassionate . . . if my parents had followed my current convictions, I never would have been born in the first place.

    (Of course, if David and Bathsheba had followed God's laws, Solomon never would have been born, and so he wouldn't have been around to write a couple books of the Bible. Nevertheless, it was still wrong for David to sleep with Bathsheba.)

    Compassion is not antithetical to strict convictions. I believe remarriage is wrong. Nevertheless, once a remarriage has occurred, I believe it is a valid marriage, and I strongly want God to bless it. One of my best friends in the world married a divorced woman. And they have a beautiful marriage. God is truly gracious, and fully able to bring good even out of bad situations. But God's goodness still does not mean that the remarriage itself was moral.

    Brian, I do not think that you are a "polygamist and perpetual adulterer". I just think it was wrong to remarry. But now that you are married again, I believe it is a valid marriage. You should do all that you can to glorify God by patterning your current marriage after the relationship between Christ and the Church.

    May the Lord bless your marriage richly!!!

    Originally posted by BrianBowman
    Also, I think it would be short-sighted to assume that the books you reference are the ulitmate authority on this subject - which I recognize is volatile, and that is why I'll not post an alternative reading list which includes some great scholars in the reformed tradition.
    I do not think those two books are the "ultimate authority" on the subject. But I do think the Bible is the ultimate authority on this subject, and I do think that Wenham and Heth happen to make a really good case for demonstrating that they understand the truly Biblical view.

    Besides, the second book I recommended actually contains arguments for 4 different views on divorce and remarriage . . . including your view. So that book is useful for comparative research. I was not trying to be "short sighted".


    Again, I pray that the Lord richly blesses your marriage.


    Your brother in Christ,
    Joseph
    [b]Joseph M. Gleason[/b]
    * Husband of Amy --- Father of Katie, Kimberly, Andrea, and Julie
    * UNIX Administrator at Experian
    * McKinney Bible Church parishoner for 5 years and counting
    * Student at Westminster Theological Seminary --- Dallas, TX
    * Manager of Covenant Theology section at Monergism.com


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  30. #30
    LadyFlynt is offline. Inactive User
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    A couple of things....

    I am so thankful for the graciousness shown by the members of this board with eachother, even in the face of delicate issues (or what is known as sacred cows in the church...issues that are there but everyone ignores them so as not to step on toes in either direction).

    Brian...on the issue of "polygamist and perpetual adulterer". These are the terms that would be held by the extreme fundamentalists and the radical fundamentalist (and by radical...I mean radical beyond what you normally see). Neither of us fall into either of those two camps.
    JC - PCA - PA...homesick for SC
    A we n' de Ya, ho; I mak sikker; Deus juvat

    Indicabo tibi o homo quid sit bonum, et quid Dominus requirat a te: Utique facere iudicium, et diligere, misericordiam, et sollicitum ambulare cum Deo tuo. Michaeas 6:8

    "Who says you can't go back, been all around the world and as a matter of fact. There's only one place left I want to go, who says you can't go home" Bon Jovi

  31. #31
    BrianBowman is offline. Posting Priviledges Revoked
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    Brian, I do not think that you are a "polygamist and perpetual adulterer". I just think it was wrong to remarry.
    Thank you Joesph. The first sentence is very edifying. The second is clearly based in an understaning that divorce never allows remarriage. J Carl Laney and many others hold this view based in principle on making the Synoptic references to D&R the Greatest Common Factor in their deliberation. The Westminster Confession certainly does not agree with the rigidity of their viewpoint.

    The great moral delima here is how a young divorcee can Biblically avoid fornication (i.e. 1 Cor 7:2) for the rest of their life (which could include as many as 50+ years of "divorcee-hood" with no Church-sanctioned remarriage). How does this viewpoint see the divorce - as some formality that simply recognizes two people who no longer reside at the same address? If the divorce is not the "death certificate" of the marriage, what is it? I understand that most of these folks will make the "manners&customs" appeal that in the Hebrew culture "divorce" was only allowed in the betrothal period upon discovery of unchasity. This is a very common appeal amoung conservative Baptists and along with what is mentioned below concerning Greek verb morphology in Matt 19:9 is what led Bahnsen to say (in section 8 of the document linked in ChristianTraders's above post):

    8. Therefore, in order to understand properly the teaching of Scripture on the grounds for divorce, we will of necessity need to engage in more than lexical studies. What will be needed is a broader, theological understanding of the nature of marriage and the rationale which lies behind whatever grounds for divorce are set forth. We need to approach the question in such a way that we can account for (a) the narrowness of grounds for divorce, (b) the harmony of Paul and Jesus in giving grounds for divorce, (c) the full Biblical evidence on the subject of divorce, and (d) the reason why certain offenses are legitimate grounds for divorce, while others are not. A simple appeal to the word "fornication" cannot accomplish these ends.

    I'll add that while Bahnsen makes no specific reference to remarriage in his treatise, he was a duly ordained minister of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church - which holds to the Westminster Standard on these matters and allows remarriage between believers when a case for Biblical divorce (... and even in some cases when true repentence after a failed marriaged has occurred) can be demonstrated.

    LadyFlint. Thank you for your kind words and for pointing these extremes out. I'm aware of the extremist-to-radical Fundamentalist views on this topic - it's usually centered on a very rigid exegesis of the Present Passive Indicative "moichatai" in Matthew 19:9). To the extent that I understand applications of Greek Grammar in exegesis, it is not clear this rigid view would pass muster with experts in Biblical Greek. FWIW, when I first encounted this view, I was such a "weak brother" (i.e. Romans 14:1) that it sent me into "soul shock" for about 3 months (no kidding) - and at the time I had not yet remarried, or even met my wife.

    [Edited on 7-5-2005 by BrianBowman]
    Brian Bowman
    St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church
    Apex, NC

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