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Divorce

What does God think of Divorce?This is a challenging question, as it is emotionally charged and often times carries with it past experiences and disappointments. God is straightforward in how He stands on divorce when Scripture says, “‘For I hate divorce,’ says the LORD, the God of Israel” (Malachi 2:16). This passage could not be more clear. God’s plan for marriage is one man and one woman joined together to become one, and no one should separate them; this is seen in Scripture, first in Genesis 2:24 and again restated in Matthew 19:6. If Adam and Eve had not sinned then we would not be discussing this issue, but sin does exist and a marriage brings two sinners together. Becasue sin causes divorce, God laid down some laws in order to protect those involved (Deuteronomy 24:1-4).Jesus addresses the issues of divorce, remarriage and the accompanying laws from Deuteronomy when speaking with the Pharisees in Matthew 19. Jesus explains that His Father gave the laws because of the hardness of their hearts. Up to this point the Jews were divorcing for many reasons. Here Jesus declares the law of His kingdom, “And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery” (Matthew 19:9). It is only in the case of sexual immorality that a person is permitted to divorce his or her spouse. It would seem through this passage that remarriage is permitted for the individual that is innocent.A word of clarification needs to be said when we consider the exception clause. This clause is merely an allowance for divorce and should not be considered standard. It is possible and encouraged that forgiveness take place and the marriage be restored. Paul encourages us to forgive one another in the same way as Christ forgave us (Ephesians 4:32). If at all possible, the marriage should be reconciled, as God can bring about new life and energy to any marriage when both persons are fixed on Him. God’s plan always was and always will be one man and one woman for a lifetime.