"It Is Written"
MARRIAGE, DIVORCE AND REMARRIAGE
H. E. Robertson
So many of God's people are utterly confused about what the Bible actually teaches on this very important subject because of the many theories being taught throughout the land today.
It is a subject of utmost importance because everyone who has unscripturally divorced and remarried is committing adultery, and "no adulterer can inherit the kingdom of heaven". It thus behooves each one of us to carefully and prayerfully study this subject. Your eternal destiny may hang in the balance. My humble prayer is that you will examine what has been written in this booklet in the light of the Scriptures. If you are convinced it is the truth, believe it, practice it, and teach it to others. If you believe it to be not in harmony with God's word, please "expound unto me the way of the Lord more perfectly".
H. E. Robertson
Route 4, Box 810
The alarming rise of the divorce rate is one of the tragic conditions of today. Corrupted marriages, broken homes, and neglected children are sins for which men and nations have always had to pay. Loose divorce laws, adulterous marriages, and fornication have been the downfall of some of the greatest of nations.
ONE OF EVERY FOUR FAMILIES IS INVOLVED
According to statistics, one out of every four families is affected by divorce in our nation today. The blame for the degraded moral condition of nations must be placed on the lawmakers and courts of the land. The government grants divorce for just about every trivial cause or excuse. Lawmakers and judges make merchandise of things that should be kept sacred and holy.
PREACHERS AND LEADERS ARE TO BLAME
Just as surely as those things corrupt nations, they corrupt the church. The blame for the condition of the church rightfully falls on the preachers and leaders of the churches. Those who condone sin seek to justify almost every thing that brethren want to do. God said in Jeremiah 50:6, "My people hath been lost sheep; their shepherds have caused them to go astray;" Their shepherds (preachers, teachers) were responsible. The church is fast becoming filled with cases of divorce and remarriage. We sincerely doubt that there is a case in the church, regardless of cause of divorce or state in remarriage, but that there could be found a preacher among us who would try to justify them.
We realize as we teach on these things, that some will become offended. It is not our purpose to offend, but to help every one live in such a way as to please God and be saved. Even as the Apostle said in Romans 13:11, "That NOW it is high time to awake out of sleep", we feel that it is HIGH TIME that lovers of Truth cry out against this evil, warning sinners of the error of their ways. God said, Isaiah. 58:1 "Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins".
TRUTH WELCOMES INVESTIGATION
Truth has nothing to lose in an earnest, honest investigation. The truth on every Bible subject should, AND MUST, be taught. Since marriage or marriage and divorce affects every family, surely it is a Bible subject, -- a subject concerning which ALL need to know the truth of God's word. It is not good to try to "brush" the subject aside, and say, "Well, I don't know --- I'm not the judge". Some day we are going to have to face facts. Every husband and wife should search diligently and seek earnestly to know that their marriage is approved of God. They had better know God's will. Preachers have the solemn obligation of being able to TELL earnest inquirers what the truth of God's word is concerning marriage.
Families who are not involved in some divorce entanglement need to know God's will, -- to understand His marriage law, lest they he found involved in an unlawful marriage. The possibility of getting those who are already entangled in unlawful marriage to straighten up their lives is usually very small. Those who are not already entangled, and especially the younger, need to be taught, -- and WARNED. Those who approach marriage should do so with the understanding that it is a holy, sacred union, -- that it is a union for life, -- until death breaks the bond. The sacredness and seriousness of marriage has been so lowered that many enter into it with very little consideration. Their companion means no more to them than some of their friends. They approach marriage with the idea that if they don't get along, they can get a divorce and marry another, -- they can try it again. Thus they do not try to adjust their lives to each other and truly become ONE. No wonder that ONE OUT OF EVERY FOUR MARRIAGES ENDS UP IN THE DIVORCE COURTS.
MARRIAGE — GOD'S ORDINANCE
As we study the marriage question we need to understand that it is God's ordinance, -- that God gave the marriage law in the beginning, and thus ordained the home. God has never delegated to any man the right to change it, nor to any government the right to enact laws that would conflict with His. No preacher who will let fleshly ties, friendship, or the favor of brethren influence him to fail to teach the truth on this subject (or any other subject for that matter), has any right to consider himself a faithful gospel preacher.
God said in the beginning, "It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him an helpmeet for him". That was not only true of Adam, but is true of man in general. From the rib which the Lord took from Adam's side, He made a woman. Adam said, "This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called woman, because she was taken out of man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife; and they shall be one flesh". Jesus said, Matt. 19:6 "Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh".
Founded upon the facts of this holy and sacred union, -- the very fact that they become inseparably ONE, a part one of the other, Paul gives us a beautiful illustration of the relation between Christ and the church. Eph. 5:29-32 "For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church; (30) For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.(31) For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. (32) This is a great mystery; but I speak concerning Christ and the church". Destroy the fact that they are inseparably ONE and you destroy the beauty of the illustration. It no longer fits.
Notice that Christ said, Matt. 19:4-5 "Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, (5) And said, for this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they twain shall be one flesh". From this we learn that the very foundation of marriage is because of the fact that GOD MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE. When God saw that it was not good for man to be alone, He did not make another man that he might have an helpmeet, but He created a woman. "To avoid fornication" was not the reason or the purpose for which God instituted marriage. Avoidance of fornication is, rather, the natural result of a God-ordained marriage.
God gave man a wife before it was possible for him to commit fornication. Even after Adam was formed, and had taken his wife Eve unto himself, there was not another woman with whom he could commit adultery.
God gave man the power of reproduction even as He did to the rest of His creation. In order for the relationship between man and woman to be kept pure in His sight, God instituted marriage, -that which brings about a holy union, -- that which creates a sacred institution, THE HOME. A marriage that has no higher foundation than just the satisfaction of the passions of the flesh has failed MISERABLY to accomplish that which God had intended. God placed man above the lower animal creation that is guided entirely by passion. He gave man a law by which to be governed and controlled. God's law was designed to restrict the sex relations between the male and female, both of the married and the unmarried.
MARRIAGE — THE BED UNDEFILED
Heb. 13:4 "Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled; but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge". Here is another statement that shows that God's marriage law was intended for ALL, -- that it was universal. This statement, of course, could only apply to lawful marriage. Some insist that this teaches that fornication can be committed by married persons, -- that fornication defiles the marriage bed. Paul here simply teaches that lawful marriage is honorable. It is right and good in the sight of God and man. When a man and woman come together as lawful husband and wife, having become one flesh, their bed is undefiled. It is pure in the sight of God. But whoremongers and adulterers God will judge, — that is, condemn. Sexual intercourse engaged in outside of marriage is not honorable in God's sight, and those characters God will judge.
NO DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FORNICATION AND ADULTERY?
When we teach that there is no difference between fornication and adultery we set aside authority on English and the authority of Bible scholars as well. Webster defines ADULTERY: "sexual intercourse between a married person and another not the spouse". FORNICATION: "voluntary sexual intercourse between unmarried persons." To these definitions most Bible scholars agree. W. E. Vine, EXPOSITORY DICTIONARY, page 32, lists "Adultery, MOICHOS, also adulterer and adulteress, denotes one who has unlawful intercourse with the spouse of another. Fornication, fornicator, PORNEIA, ILLICIT sexual intercourse". Even if they are sometimes used without any distinction as to the marriage status, they are also used in contradistinction, denoting a difference. When they are thus used it becomes necessary to so apply them. We find them listed in the same verse as distinctive sins. I Cor. 6:9 "Be not deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolators, nor adulterers…" Gal. 5:19 "Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication…" Mark 7:21 "For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornication, murders…" To say that there is no difference between adultery and fornication makes these statements foolishness. If they are identical sins, there would have been no need for the use of the two words. WHY are both words used?? We also find them used in a distinctive sense in Matt. 19:9 "And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, (evidently that which had been committed in the unmarried state, before marriage, -- that which he found in marriage, Deut. 24:1) and shall marry another, committeth adultery." Why adultery here? Because it was that which was committed after marriage. EVEN IF Matt. 5:32 and Matt. 19:9 apply under the Gospel age, ADULTERY NEVER WAS THAT FOR WHICH GOD ALLOWED DIVORCE. Jesus taught that fornication was that for which it was lawful for a man to put his wife away.
MARRIAGE — TWO BECOME ONE FLESH
In marriage two become one flesh. This is said of the relation between husband and wife. Jesus referred to this union in Matt. 19:4-5 "And he said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, and said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they twain shall be one flesh?" Become ONE? How? In marriage. Verse 6 "Wherefore they are NO MORE TWAIN, but one flesh". We read, Gen. 2:22-24, that when the woman was brought to Adam he said, "This is now bone of my bones; and flesh of my flesh". Jesus said, "Wherefore they are NO MORE TWAIN". They continue to be one. Sexual intercourse does not make them one; they are already one. That which makes them one does not happen again and again… they continue to be one. Sexual intercourse was never referred to as that which makes two ONE FLESH. It is that which is lawful BECAUSE THEY ARE ONE. Neither does intercourse with another besides the spouse inject ANOTHER into that union. That is entirely outside of, separate and apart from, that union. Nowhere do we read of more than two becoming one flesh.
MARRIAGE AND SUPPOSED MARRIAGE CASES UNDER THE OLD COVENANT
The lack of knowledge of what the law of Moses taught on the subject of marriage and divorce is indeed regrettable. The lack of knowledge of the teaching of the Gospel on this subject is more appalling. If we all actually knew the truth of God's word on this subject, there would be no need for all the division and confusion that exists among us. Souls that will live eternally in hell because of this lack of knowledge might be saved. We heartily agree that if we clearly understood God's marriage law given in the law of Moses, it would help much in understanding the New. Rightly dividing the Word is necessary to an understanding of the Truth.
Now to consider a number of cases that are offered from the Old Testament in an effort to prove that God therein authorized divorce and remarriage for many causes.
CASE #1 — THE HEBREW SERVANT
Exodus 21:2-4 "If thou buy a Hebrew servant, six years shall he serve: and in the seventh year he shall go out for nothing. If he came in by himself, he shall go out by himself: if he were married-. then his wife shall go out with him. If his master have given him a wife, and she have born him sons and daughters; the wife and her children shall be her master's and he shall go out by himself".
This deals entirely with the obligations and privileges of servants (slaves), and has nothing whatsoever to do with marriage as ordained by God. It teaches that if one bought a Hebrew servant, he was obligated to serve six years and then would be free (no longer a slave to his master). He would be allowed to leave in the same marital status as when he was bought. If he was single when he was bought, he would leave by himself; but if he came in married, he would leave WITH HIS WIFE. On the other hand, if his master "have given him a wife", he must leave without her and any children born to them. Why is this? Because the woman, without a doubt, was also a slave and belonged to the same master. She was only GIVEN to the man by her master to be used as a wife. There are other cases in the Old Testament where women are referred to as wives even though they WERE NOT MARRIED, -- but because they were used as wives. The master seemed to have this power ((rather, exercised this power) over his servants or slaves. For example, in Gen. 16:3 we read, "And Sarai Abram's wife took Hagar her handmaid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to her husband Abram TO BE HIS WIFE". Surely no one will say that Abram and Hagar were husband and wife, -- that a marriage had taken place. Hagar was a servant and her master or mistress could do with her as he or she pleased; -- she was their slave. The mistress, in this case, chose to give I Hagar to Abram "to be his wife", -- or to use as a wife. Another case is found in Gen. 30:1-4 "And when Rachel saw that she bear Jacob no children, Rachel envied her sister; and said unto Jacob, Give me children, or else I die. And Jacob's anger was kindled against Rachel: and he said, Am I in God's stead, who hath withheld from thee the fruit of thy womb? And she said, behold my maid Bilhah, go in unto her; and she shall bear upon my knees, that I may also have children by her. And she gave him Bilhah her handmaid TO WIFE: and Jacob went in unto her". This, again, is the case of a servant being GIVEN to another to BE HIS WIFE when there was no actual marriage involved. Exodus 21:2-4, the case of the Hebrew servant, IS NOT AN EXAMPLE OF DIVORCE AND REMARRIAGE under the Law.
CASE #2 — WIFE PUT AWAY FOR NOT PLEASING HER HUSBAND
Exodus 21:7-8 "And if a man sell his daughter to be a maidservant, she shall not go out as menservants do. If she please not her master, who hath betrothed her to himself, then shall he let her be redeemed: to sell her unto a strange nation he shall have no power, seeing he hath dealt deceitfully with her".
Again, we have a similar case whereby a man sells his daughter TO BE A SLAVE. If the master hath betrothed (Hebrew word "YAAD" meaning APPOINTED) her to himself, to use her as a wife, and it come to pass that she displease him, then she is to be redeemed . . . Her master may not sell her because he hath dealt "deceitfully" with her. This is another case of a SLAVE being used as a wife, -- NOT an example of divorce and remarriage IN ANY SENSE under the Law.
CASE #3 — SECOND WIFE COULD DEPART IF NOT PROVIDED FOR
Exodus 21:10-11 "If he take him another wife; her food, her raiment, and her duty of marriage, shall he not diminish. And if he do not these three unto her, then shall she go out without money".
This second wife would be "taken" in the same manner as the first (a slave women used as a wife). Even though God permitted the Jew to use more than one woman as a wife, he was obliged to furnish to each three things (food, raiment, and duty of marriage). If he did not fulfill his obligations to the first wife, she could "go out free without money". Again, this is the case of a slave being used as a wife by her master, -- certainly not an example of divorce and remarriage under the Law.
CASE #4 — A WIFE PUT AWAY BECAUSE HER HUSBAND HAD NO DELIGHT IN HER
Deut. 21:10-14 "When thou goest forth to war against thine enemies, and the Lord thy God hath delivered them into thine hands, and thou hast taken them captive, (11) And seest among the captives a beautiful woman, and hast a desire unto her, that thou wouldst have her to thy wife; (12) Then thou shalt bring her home to thine house; and she shall shave her head, and pare her nails; (13) And she shall put the raiment of her captivity from off her, and shall remain in thine house, and bewail her father and mother a full month; and after that thou shalt go in unto her, and be her husband, and she shall be thy wife. (14) And it shall be, if thou have no delight in her, then thou shalt let her go whither she will; but thou shalt not sell her at all for money, thou shalt not make merchandise of her, because thou hast humbled her".
Here we have a case of a woman that was captured and brought into the captor's house because the man "had a desire unto her". He wanted to USE HER AS A WIFE if you please. God put some restrictions on this. She was permitted to mourn her parents for one month and then she, a captive, a SLAVE, could be used as a wife by her captor, her MASTER. He would "be her husband" in the same way that "she would be his wife". Surely none would set this forth as a God-sanctioned MARRIAGE, -- a marriage as you and I would expect of a man and a woman united in HOLY MATRIMONY. God didn't permit his people to MARRY those of other nations. This is just another case of a slave woman being used as a wife by her captor. If the man, her master, "have no delight in her", he must let her go free. He could not sell her because "he has humbled her". This is similar to Case #2.
CASE #5 — TWO WIVES
Deut. 21:15-16 "If a man have two wives, one beloved, and another hated, and they have born him children, both the beloved and the hated; and if the firstborn son be hers that was hated: (16) Then it shall be when he maketh the sons to inherit that which he hath, that he may not make the son of the beloved firstborn before the son of the hated, which is indeed the firstborn".
Even though a man is referred to as having two wives, it certainly has nothing to do with divorce and remarriage under the law of Moses. NOTHING is said about a DIVORCE, much less a REMARRIAGE. Yet this is used by some advocates of divorce and remarriage in an effort to PROVE that God recognized and permitted divorce and remarriage for MANY CAUSES. Why would this be used as one of their "prooftexts"?? There can be no explanation except that they want to CREATE SUCH A SMOKE SCREEN that it will be more difficult for God's people to see the truth. This is deceitful and wicked, and only shows to what end some will go to try to uphold their teaching AND THEIR PRACTICE, regardless of whether it be truth or error.
CASE #6 — HEATHEN WIVES PUT AWAY
Ezra 10:1-16 — The Israelites were instructed to "separate themselves" from the strange wives (heathen) which they had "taken" (verses 2, 10, 17, 24). God had commanded his people not to fraternize with peoples of the heathen nations "lest their heart be turned away from God". God's people had transgressed and "taken unto themselves strange wives".
These Jews were living in a God-condemned state, -- with unlawful wives. Before they could be approved of God, they had to put these wives away. There is no evidence that any divorce was necessary either. I want to insist that the same thing is true today; -all who are living in a God-condemned marriage state MUST straighten up their lives before they can stand approved of God. They MUST get out of that adulterous state. This is NOT an example of lawful divorce; it wasn't a lawful marriage to begin with.
CASE #7 — WIFE DIVORCED BECAUSE SHE FOUND NO FAVOR IN HUSBAND'S EYES
Deut. 24:1-2 "When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favor in his eyes, BECAUSE HE HATH FOUND SOME UNCLEANNESS IN HER: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house".
While all seven of these cases are presented by some in an effort to prove that the Law permitted divorce and remarriage for many causes, ONLY IN THE ABOVE (Case #7) IS MARRIAGE, DIVORCE and REMARRIAGE MENTIONED. Now for a somewhat detailed study of this passage.
V. 1 "When a man hath taken a wife, and married her . . ." This signifies that some wives were not taken by marriage. In all the other cases offered there is no proof of marriage, even though they were spoken of as "wives". W. E. Vine, page 215, defines "wife" as "GUNE -- a woman married or unmarried". In Case #1, we referred to Abram and Jacob using their handmaids as wives. No marriage is indicated in these cases, even though they were spoken of as "wives" -- used as wives. Neither is there a divorce even hinted at in cases of this kind.
Notice further, "and it come to pass that she find no favor in his eyes, because he hath FOUND SOME UNCLEANNESS in her; let him write her a bill of divorcement . ." We readily agree that this "uncleanness" was not something committed AFTER marriage, or IN marriage; it was that which he FOUND IN MARRIAGE that which marriage enabled him to know. This is exactly as we read in Deut. 22:14 "I took this woman, and when I came to her, I FOUND her not a maid". It was not adultery. We read of no case of adultery under the Law but that they were both stoned to death, -there being two or three witnesses. The contention of some, that it could not have been fornication because the fornicator was put to death, is not in harmony with the facts of the Law. It is true that some cases of fornication were punishable by death, -- both cases that were known when committed, and cases that were not known until marriage. We find one such case in Deut. 22:13-21 - V. 14 "I took this woman, and when I came to her, I FOUND her not a maid". If she was proven guilty, she was stoned to death.
Now to some cases of fornication where death was NOT required. Deut. 22:28-29 "If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; (29) Then the man that lay with her shall give unto the damsel's father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall he his wife; because he hath humbled her, he may not put her away all his days". Another case — Lev. 19:20 "And whosoever lieth carnally with a woman, that is a bondmaid, betrothed to an husband, and not at all redeemed, nor her freedom given her; she shall be scourged; they shall not be put to death BECAUSE SHE WAS NOT FREE".
From these cases we can clearly see that those who would claim that the "uncleanness" of Deut. 24 could not have been fornication because the fornicator was always put to death, are not considering ALL the facts of the Law. Thus their contention is without proof. We freely admit that UNCLEANNESS did refer to more than the sex act. It definitely DID refer to that act as per Num. 5:19 "And the priest shall charge her by en oath, and say unto the woman, If no man hath lain with thee, and if thou hest not gone aside to UNCLEANNESS with another instead of thy husband . . ." Even though "uncleanness" refers to more than one thing, "SOME uncleanness" of Deut. 24 does not necessarily refer to any or ALL uncleanness; it could refer to some specific uncleanness.
Deut. 22:13-22 is a case where a man married a woman, and made a public charge against her that he "found her not a maid". Since he had made a public charge against her, it had to be proven. If she was found guilty, she was put to death; if she was found to be innocent, he was fined an hundred shekels of silver, and she was to be his wife… HE COUND NOT PUT HER AWAY ALL HIS DAYS. We have a parallel case in Deut. 22:28-29 "If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; Then the man that lay with her shall give unto the damsel's father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife; because he hath humbled her, he may not put her away all his days".
From these two cases, I believe we can clearly see what the UNCLEANNESS of Deut. 24 was. If these two women were absolved from the guilt of fornication, the ONE sin for which the Law allowed divorce, -- the very thing for which Christ said in Matt. 5:32 and Matt. 19:9 it was LAWFUL to put away, then the men COULD NOT PUT THEM AWAY ALL THEIR DAYS. If the Law had allowed divorce for just ANYTHING, surely they could have found something else for which they could have divorced them. The reason he could not put her away all his days was because the ONLY grounds for divorce under the Law was fornication (Matt. 19:9), committed BEFORE marriage, -- and that had to be FOUND IN MARRIAGE. It doesn't seem that he had the right or privilege of waiting for years and then make the charge against her. If he had the right to divorce her, it had to be when he FOUND the uncleanness in her.
NOT REQUIRED TO MAKE A PUBLIC CHARGE AGAINST HER
There is no evidence that the man (Deut. 22:13-14) had to make a public charge against the woman. According to Deut. 24:1-2, if he found SOME UNCLEANNESS in her (he being the only witness), he could give her a writing of divorcement, put it in her hand, and send her out of his house. This is exactly in harmony with the case of Joseph and Mary (Matt. 1:18-25). When Mary, espoused to Joseph, was found to be with child, Joseph, being a just man and not willing to make a PUBLIC EXAMPLE of her, was minded to put her away PRIVILY. From the record, it seems that he had the right to do either. Adam Clarke says of ESPOUSAL, "though marriage had not been consummated, was considered perfectly legal and binding on both sides". Also "nor could a contract of this kind, though there had been no cohabitation, be broken but by regular divorce".
WAS MOSES INSPIRED?
Yes, God gave Moses the Law. It was God's law given through Moses. The law of Moses was not taken away little by little, or in parts. It was in full force until the death of Christ. Jesus did not set aside one bit of the Law as long as it was in force; he kept it and taught others to do so. REMEMBER, Christ did not only teach of the coming kingdom, -- he taught the law of Moses on occasions, and taught the Jew to keep it. IT SEEMS PASSINGLY STRANGE that men who are considered smart men, -- those who are looked to as Bible scholars, could conclude that God, whose first marriage law allowed NO PUTTING AWAY, NO DIVORCE, would entirely reverse himself in the law of Moses, and allow divorce for just any trivial matter… especially, when we read that God, in that very law, said, Mal. 2:16 "For the Lord, the God of Israel, SAITH THAT HE HATETH PUTTING AWAY".
WHAT CHRIST TAUGHT ON MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE
First, we will notice His teaching in Matt. 5. In verse 17 He begins to discuss the law of Moses. After assuring the Jews that one jot or title would not pass from the Law till all be fulfilled, He told them that it was the duty of all to keep it, and to teach others to do so. This very thing He proceeds to do. He begins to do some contrastive teaching—but not a contrast of the Law and the Gospel. He was here contrasting some of the perversions, misapplications, and additions to the law of Moses with what the Law actually taught, --- teaching the Jews to keep their own law as God gave it. We shall now consider a number of things contrasted, and show that they applied under the Law, and WILL NOT apply under the Gospel.
V. 21 He begins by "Ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time". (When referring to what was actually written in the Law, His usual reference was "It is written"). "Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment,". The Jews, being legalists, thought that just so they were not guilty of the act itself they were guiltless.
V. 22 Now hear His contrast. "But I say unto you, that whosoever shall be angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment; and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council". Bible scholars are agreed that "judgment" and "council" here are derived from that which referred to the Jewish court, and the Sanhedrin, under the Law.
V. 23 "Therefore (in view of the preceding), if thou bring thy gift to the altar . . . (who is to bring a gift to the altar? Those under the Gospel? We do not bring a gift to an altar. That CANNOT apply under the Gospel. The Jews literally did that).
V. 31 "It hath been said, whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement." He was not here quoting the Law; it did not read that way. What the Law actually said is found in Deut. 24:1-4. I here quote the comment of JAMIESON, FAUSSET, BROWN. "The one legitimate ground of divorce allowed by the enactment just quoted was "some uncleanness", in other words conjugal infidelity. But while one school of interpreters (that of Shammai) explained this quite correctly, as prohibiting divorce in every case save that of adultery, another school of interpreters (that of Hillel) stretched the expression so far as to include every thing in the wife offensive or disagreeable to the husband". From this we learn that, "Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement", was said by those of the school of Hillel. We also learn that it was said by the school of Shammai that there was only one cause for which the Law granted divorce. This is in harmony with what Christ said about it. Yet . . . some would insist that the Jews knew their law. They knew it just about like some under the Gospel know THEIR law today. From Deut. 24 we learn that Christ was not here (Matt. 5:31) quoting the Law.
V. 33 "Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths." V. 34 "But I say unto you, Swear not at all, neither by heaven; for it is God's throne; neither by the earth, for it is his footstool; Neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great King." This statement CANNOT apply under the Gospel. Jerusalem IS NOT the city of the great King now. Jerusalem WAS the holy city under the Law.
V. 43 "Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy". This is purely a perversion of the Law. It did not say that. "Hate thine enemy" was only their addition.
Chapter 6:9-10 "After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven". It is generally agreed by those who know the Truth that WE could not scripturally pray this prayer. This teaching could not apply after the kingdom came. Christ is still teaching the Jew here.
From these we should be able to clearly see that the contrastive teaching of Matt. 5 does not apply under the Gospel. Under the Gospel, we do NOT bring a gift to an altar. If this applies today, then we would of necessity have to leave our gift before the altar and go be reconciled to our brother. Under the Gospel, we are not in danger of the Jewish court or Sanhedrin. Under the Gospel, Jerusalem is NOT the city of the great King. Under the Gospel, we cannot pray the prayer He taught here. From this we learn that even though He said, "I say", it was as a teacher of the Law and not as a lawgiver.
I SAY UNTO YOU
Some would insist that all of Christ's teaching, especially when He said, "I say", refers to His own law. We have just noticed a number of His "I says" in Matt. 5 that no one can be consistent and apply them under the Gospel. Hear him in Matt. 23:2-3 "The Scribes and Pharisees sit in Moses' seat: All therefore whatsoever they bid you to observe, that observe and do…" Who was to observe and do those things? Christians? Matt. 23:15 "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves." Proselyte to what?? Matt. 23:23 "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithes of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law . ." "These ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone". Who ought to pay these tithes?? Christians? Now hear his "I say" in John 8:3-7 "And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery, and when they had set her in the midst, They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest THOU?" Now hear his "I say" in verse 7, -- "and said unto them, he that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her". If his "I says" are all his law, then his law requires the adulteress to be stoned.
We must conclude that much of His teaching, -- many of His "I says" apply under the law of Moses. Jesus kept the Law, and taught his disciples to keep it. In fact, Jesus said in Matt. 5:19 "Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven". Jesus lived and died under the Law of Moses. He was obliged to keep the Law even as the other Jews. Surely He would know the true meaning of the various phases of the Law more so than the scribes and Pharisees with their "loose" interpretations, perversions and traditions.
WHAT CHRIST TAUGHT ON MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE IN MATT. 19
Matt. 19:3 "The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause?" Again we say, to insist that the Pharisees knew their law, would be about as far-fetched as to insist that those under the Gospel know their law. We have already pointed out that the Jews were divided into two schools; -- one believing one thing, and the other believing exactly the opposite. Did they BOTH know their law? God said, Hosea 4:6 "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge". Even those who did know the law were confronted with the same condition that some preachers and teachers are today. Notice what God said of them. Isaiah 30:9-10 "That this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the Lord: (10) Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits:"
Some church members today SEEM to think that God made a terrible mistake when he allowed the teaching on the marriage question to be included in His word, – that the teaching of God's word on this subject will divide the church, that teaching the truth on this subject will cause some folks to be lost. SURELY MAN SHOULD UNDERSTAND that a knowledge of God's word and obedience to it will save the soul; and that a lack of knowledge and disobedience to God's word will mean eternal hell to those who thus live.
In considering their question Christ first pointed them to God's first marriage law. V. 4 "And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, (5) And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh. (6) Wherefore they are NO MORE TWAIN, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together let not man put asunder". The contention that God's first marriage law authorized divorce is a plain contradiction of His word. Hear it, V. 6 "Wherefore they are NO MORE TWAIN, but one flesh". NO DIVORCE .. .. NO PUTTING AWAY.
HOW TRUE IT IS THAT WISH IS OFTEN THE FATHER OF THOUGHT
There is no inference in God's' word that he ever authorized divorce before it was given in Deut. 24.
Now back to Matt. 19:7. When Christ informed them that God's first marriage law allowed no putting away, then they asked Him, "Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away?" Their question clearly shows that they understood that the first marriage law allowed no putting away. V. 8 (Hear his answer). "He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: . ." SUFFERED WHAT? "You to put away your wives". The man that can read 'for every cause' in there could just as clearly read instrumental music some place else if he tried just as hard.
Christ DID NOT concede here that it was lawful for a man to put away his wife FOR EVERY CAUSE; in fact, when He answered their question he told them it was lawful for one cause only, — fornication. He seems to correct the statement of the Jews — 'why did Moses COMMAND to give a writing of divorcement'. He answered "Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts SUFFERED you to put away your wives". He only permitted, he did not command.
When the Pharisees came to Christ, they asked him, "IS it lawful?" "IS" is PRESENT tense, --at that time. It is an evident fact that if he answered their question, it had to be according to the law they were under. Christ and those Pharisees were under the law of Moses at that time. THAT law and no other determined what was lawful for them then. Christ first referred them to God's marriage law given in the beginning. That law allowed no divorce, but that wasn't the answer to their question, -- because that was not the law they were under. They show that they understood that by the question they asked, "Why did Moses…" - THAT was the law they were asking about. Hear their reaction and that of his disciples in verse 10. "His disciples say unto him, if the case of a man BE so with his wife, it IS not good to marry". BE and IS - present tense. They do not contemplate the future. It is quite probable that some of them were of the persuasion of the school of Hillel, thus their reaction to his teaching when he told them what the Law really allowed.
Now hear his answer to their question, Matt. 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." Here we learn what the UNCLEANNESS of Deut. 24 was. The Law (Deut. 24) said that they, the Jews, could put away for uncleanness. Christ said (Matt. 19:9) it was LAWFUL to put away for FORNICATION. Thus UNCLEANNESS in Deut. 24 equals FORNICATION.
WHAT PAUL TAUGHT ON MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE
Rom. 7:1-3 "Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth? For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband as 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".
True, Paul is not here dealing directly with marriage, but he uses a principle of the marriage law to teach the Jews of their marriage to God. V. 4 "Wherefore my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another". Paul here uses the state of the woman married to a husband as a parallel to the state of the Jew married to God. So far as anything the woman could do, she could not break that marriage tie, neither could the Jew. Exactly as it took death to break the marriage tie to her husband, it took death to break the marriage tie that bound the Jew to God. When they were freed by death, they were at liberty to be married to another.
It seems evident that Paul did not use the husband here because his status was not parallel with that of the Jew. It was possible for him to put his wife away, -- for ONE REASON he could break the tie. There is not an inference in God's word that he ever gave a law that authorized the wife to put her husband away. It is not even HINTED at in the law of Moses. Some would go to Mark 10:12 "And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery", -- and try to stretch it so far as to teach that a woman could lawfully put away her husband. That scripture just plainly teaches that she CANNOT lawfully do it. Wilson's Diaglott, foot note, page 162, says of Mark 10:12 "Strictly speaking, a Jewish wife could not divorce her husband". Also he says (same foot note), "Perhaps with reference to the custom of the Gentiles rather than the Jews". It is folly to go to Mark 10:12 and claim that we can thereby establish a thing as being lawful if God's word says nothing about it. If it were true today that a man could divorce his wife, no woman could lawfully divorce her husband. Yet some freely teach that the woman has the same right of divorce as the man. She never did have, even when the man had the right. Adam Clarke says of Mark 10:12 "From this it appears that in some cases, the wife ASSUMED the very same right of divorcing her husband that he had of divorcing his wife; and yet this is not recorded anywhere in the Jewish law, as far as I can find".
WHAT PAUL TAUGHT ON MARRIAGE — I Cor. 7
First, I want to say AMEN to the teaching that there is no such thing taught in God's word as a half marriage, -- one being bound and the other not bound. There is no such thing as two being married in one sense, and not married in another sense. There is no such thing taught in God's word as two being married, then later on the marriage being consummated. WHEN they are lawfully MARRIED they are joined together --- become ONE. They are lawfully ONE, both by God's law and man's law.
I Cor. 7:1 "Now concerning the thing whereof ye wrote unto me..." By the teaching that follows we learn that he had been asked concerning marriage under the Gospel. After referring to the mutual need one for the other, and the obligations and responsibilities of each to the other (that which every husband and wife today should recognize), in V. 10 he refers to the marriage tie under the Gospel, "and unto the MARRIED I command, yet not I, but the Lord, LET NOT THE WIFE DEPART FROM HER HUSBAND". Here we have the command of the Lord under the Gospel. "Let not the wife depart from her husband". WHO? The wife, -- any woman that is lawfully a wife. V. 11, "But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried, (don't go marry another) or be reconciled to her husband". She can remain unmarried (she and her husband not living together as husband and wife), or be reconciled to her husband. She has permission of choice between the two. "And let not the husband put away his wife". Some might insist that this was given in view of the exception. I insist that it was not, because there is no exception under the Gospel, but a return to God's original marriage law given in the beginning . . . NO MORE TWAIN.
I Cor. 7:12-13 "If a brother have a wife, that believeth not, and she he pleased to dwell with him, let him not put her away. And the woman which hath an husband that believeth not, and if he be pleased to dwell with her, let her not leave him". This is a question that would naturally come up, especially among the Jews. God forbid his people, the Jews, to marry the heathen, and to dwell with them in the married state. Now . . . how about the Christian under the Gospel? The believer and the unbeliever are to continue to live together. V. 14 "For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband; else were your children unclean; but now are they holy". "Sanctified" is here used in contrast to the Jewish sense. To them the heathen was unclean, not sanctified, -- thus not fit to be touched in marriage. This is not true under the Gospel, -- the believer and the unbeliever are sanctified, set apart, to that union, -- fit to live together. This was only a question concerning a believer and an unbeliever living together. Where both are unbelievers they are both in the same state . . . nothing between them to keep them from living together as husband and wife. Even under the Law, when the Jew and the heathen were not permitted to marry, it was perfectly lawful for two who were not Jews to marry; they did that.
IF THE UNBELIEVING DEPART
I Cor. 7:15 "But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart. A brother or sister is not under bondage in such cases". If, as some insist, this is one of THREE causes in the Scriptures permitting remarriage, Scripture must be arrayed against Scripture. HOW, OH HOW, can anyone go to Matt. 19:9, and say that the teaching of Christ there applies under the Gospel - then in PLAIN CONTRADICTION OF THE STATEMENT OF CHRIST say that I Cor. 7:15 is a Scriptural cause for remarriage? Jesus said in Matt. 19:9 "Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for FORNICATION, and marrieth another, committeth adultery". Now if that applies under the Gospel, fornication is the ONLY cause for which divorce and remarriage is permissible. The expression, "Whosover shall put away his wife", would have to include the unbeliever.
I'm certainly at a loss to know how anyone can go to I Cor. 7:15 and there learn that the unbeliever "initiated the action" and divorced the innocent believer. We read nothing about a divorce there. "If the unbelieving depart, let him depart". DEPART here is derived from CHORIZO, meaning "to put away", ---- the same as in verse 11, "if she depart, let her remain unmarried". This word is also found in Acts 18:1 "Paul departed from Athens." Vs. 2 "Claudius had commanded all Jews to depart from Rome". Thus we can clearly see what "depart" means in these verses.
"A brother or sister is not under bondage in such cases". Bondage here is derived from DOULOO, meaning "to enslave". Goodspeed renders this, "In such cases a brother or sister is not a slave". The marriage state was never spoken of as being in bondage, or enslaved. Paul plainly commands, "But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried, or be reconciled to her husband". Does that sound like departing breaks the marriage tie???
SEEK NOT TO BE LOOSED
I Cor. 7:27 "Art thou bound to a wife? seek not to be loosed. Art thou loosed from a wife? seek not a wife". In studying this we need to understand that Paul is dealing with the thought of verse 20 and restated in verse 24 . . . "Brethren, let every man wherein he is called, therein abide". Some would contend that this has an absolute application, -- that it would apply to any state that a man is in, whether right or wrong. It can ONLY apply to a state or condition that is not wrong in God's sight. Especially do they try to apply this to a man's marriage status when he is baptized? Paul reasons, Rom. 6:1, "Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? (2) God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?" Man CANNOT continue to live in a sinful state. Please note that the things he mentions in this connection are things that are not wrong. (V. 18) "Is any man called being circumcised? let him not become uncircumcised". Circumcision was not wrong. (V. 21) "Art thou called being a servant? Care not for it". Being a servant was not wrong. The same principle applies to marriage. (V. 27) "Art thou bound to a wife? seek not to be loosed". Scriptural marriage is not wrong. It should be remembered that unscriptural marriages are sinful, -- thus a man could not continue in that state. In I Cor. 6:9 Paul mentions a number of sins that they had been guilty of before baptism; among them was fornication and adultery. Christ plainly taught that a man who was living in an unlawful married state was committing adultery. THAT STATE IS WRONG . . . MAN CANNOT CONTINUE TO LIVE IN SIN. Surely no one would believe that if a man is called living with two wives, that he could continue to live in that state.
Now back to the thought of Paul, (V. 27) "Art thou bound to a wife? Seek not to be loosed". It doesn't seem that this instruction was given with the thought of the possibility of being loosed, but, rather, from the viewpoint of teaching him to abide in the state. We have the same thought in verse 18 . . . "Is any man called being circumcised? Let him not become uncircumcised". It doesn't seem that this was given with the thought of a man being able to UNDO circumcision (how could he?), but, rather, teaching him to thus abide. Even IF divorce is here contemplated, (we realize that Thayer, page 384, so states), there would be no evidence that it was a lawful divorce. Jesus said, Matt 19:9 (Goodspeed translation). "I tell you that whoever divorces his wife on any ground but unfaithfulness, and marries another woman, commits adultery". King James Version says, "puts away". Here he clearly shows that there COULD BE an unlawful divorce . . . putting away. Some reason that if death is the only thing that will loose, Paul would be advising "don't seek the death of your wife". This reasoning would apply just as forcefully if adultery allows divorce because he would be advising, "don't get out and commit adultery to get rid of your wife".
ART THOU LOOSED FROM A WIFE?
The contention that "loosed" can only be used in the sense of the breaking of a tie or bind . . . "separation of one thing from another by which the union or fellowship of the two is destroyed" does not agree with authority. Thayer specifically says of this, page 384, "spoken of a single man, whether he has already had a wife or has not yet married" . . . thus evidently denoting the opposite of BOUND . . . NOT BOUND. It does not infer necessarily that a tie has been broken, but to a state of "loosed . . . not bound . . . free".
Now to consider the word "from". The Greek characters which produce ‘APO’ ("from or away from") do not always denote "the separation of one thing from another by which the union or fellowship between the two is destroyed". We note some more passages where ‘APO’, translated "from", is used.
2 Cor. 5:6 "Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from (‘APO’) the Lord". Matt. 3:7 "Who hath warned you to flee from (‘APO’) the wrath to come?" Any union destroyed here? Matt. 8:30 "And there was a good way off from (‘APO’) them a herd of swine feeding". (Young's Analytical Concordance, page 374).
I CORINTHIANS 6:16
"What? Know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? For two, saith he, shall he one flesh". Some take the position that this teaches that the physical joining in sexual intercourse makes one flesh, -- thus is marriage. This is possibly the foundation of one of the most ridiculous and ungodly positions that is being taken today. They go one step further and say, "What makes, breaks". According to this logic, getting married is getting out and committing adultery or fornication. They say that the ungodly, sinful act breaks the marriage tie to ones wife and ties him to the other. They say she becomes his wife. To that, there would be no end. A man could have quite a number of wives in a short period of time. More than that, a woman could be living with a man she had married, thinking he was her husband, when he may have been married to half a dozen other women since he married her. What a terrible marriage entanglement there would be'. WHAT CONFUSION!! There couldn't be any divorce. Surely a man couldn't divorce a woman that wasn't his wife. HOW CAN AN UNGODLY, SINFUL ACT CREATE A HOLY, SACRED UNION BETWEEN A MAN AND WOMAN? Surely man has enough intelligence to know that when he has intercourse with a woman not his spouse, it is SIN. UNGODLY! It is either adultery or fornication. Please excuse the frankness here, but according to that doctrine there couldn't be any adultery or fornication… that would just be folks getting married. Some would say, "Well, the first time it is sin, but after that, it isn't". The inevitable conclusion to that doctrine would be, "If you continue to sin, it becomes right in God's sight". If there is a sin that man can commit, and God not require that he repent of it and turn from it in order to be forgiven, it certainly is not mentioned in God's word.
DOES GOD RECOGNIZE THE MARRIAGE OF ALIENS?
Some would insist that God does not join two sinners in marriage, -- set apart two unbelievers to each other and make their one flesh relationship acceptable. Again, they say, "When people obey the Gospel, becoming citizens of the kingdom, it appears that we should not be interested in their past relationship". I ask the question . . . WAS, AND IS GOD CONCERNED? If so, should we be???? What about those in I Cor. 6:9 who had been guilty of adultery? Again, they say, "It doesn't make any difference what they do out there in the world… they are lost anyway… it won't make them any worse". What reasoning!!
Now we will notice the doctrine that God does not recognize the marriage of aliens. We state again that God's marriage law was given in the beginning. It was given to man as God created him. Gen. 2:24 "Therefore shall a man leave his father and mother…" A MAN… ANY MAN… not just a select few. Why a marriage law? Hear Christ, Matt. 19:4 "Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, (5) And said, FOR THIS CAUSE shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh". God created male and female. He gave to man, as he did the rest of his creation, the power to reproduce. He gave a marriage law so that the relation between the male and female might he kept pure in his sight. He did not leave man to live on the same plane as the beast, which is guided entirely by the passions of the flesh in sex relations. We hear the command of God to man. Gen. 1:23 "Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it". Do Hose who teach that the marriage law includes none but the righteous, believe that God willed that none but the righteous reproduce? . . . That he left the majority of the human race without a law whereby they could lawfully bear children? There can only be one of two conclusions to that doctrine. Either he has excluded the male and female of the majority of the human race from the right of lawful intercourse, the lawful right to bear children, or the right of a lawful home together; OR HE EXPECTS THE MAJORITY OF THE HUMAN RACE TO LIVE ON THE SAME PLANE AS THE BEAST . . . to live without restraint of law. Is it a fact that our young men and young women of today, --- alien boys and girls who have been reared to live honestly, to live an honorable and virtuous life, --- who have fallen in love and thought they were married, only became fornicators?... thus their children illegitimate sons and daughters??
I have never heard of any of my preaching brethren who refused to marry two aliens, -- perform the ceremony by which they thought they became married folks. Into their hands is delivered a Marriage Certificate, entitled, "HOLY BONDS OF MATRIMONY", certifying their marriage… signed by the officiating minister. WILL THOSE WHO BELIEVE THIS DOCTRINE SIGN SUCH A DOCUMENT WHEN THEY DO NOT BELIEVE A WORD OF IT?? We often hear of the fall of Rome offered as an example of the affect of moral corruption, loose divorce laws, etc. But if this doctrine be true, there wouldn't have been anything they could have done about it. They couldn't have had a lawful marriage… no legitimate children.
THE LEGAL TIE AND THE FLESHLY TIE
I am indeed at a loss to be able to understand how man can believe that he can go to God's word and there prove just about ANYTHING he wants to believe. If language means anything… if God's word means anything ... there is a specific time, a certain thing, by which the man and the woman become ONE. They belong to each other, -- a part of each other, -- become one flesh. THAT IS MARRIAGE. Webster defines "marry" (1) To join as husband and (2) to join man to a woman as her husband, or a woman to a man as his wife, (3) to take as husband or wife, (4) to give in marriage. He defines MARRIAGE: the state of being married —wedlock. It is not taught ANYWHERE in God's word that it takes sexual intercourse for those who are married to become one. Intercourse is that which is permissible, right in the sight of God, because they ARE one . . . NOT to make them one. If they are not already married . . . husband and wife . . . joined together, the sex act is SIN. The sex act neither makes nor breaks the one flesh union, nor any part of it. It was that for which God, under the Law, permitted it to be broken by divorce. Christ said of the first marriage law, the one flesh union, (Matt. 19:5-6) "For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they twain shall be one flesh". (6) "Wherefore they are NO MORE TWAIN", (that could not be the physical joining) 'BUT ONE FLESH". Christ here refers to the ONE FLESH union as the joining that GOD did, not the fact that they joined themselves in intercourse. Of that union, Christ said, "NO MORE TWAIN". Could they break it??? More than that, he said of this union, "What therefore God hath joined together, let not MAN put asunder". It is true that God, being the author of this union, had the divine right to authorize the breaking of it . . . by divorce. When God authorized divorce He made provision for it, but we want you to consider this fact. If there is a putting asunder, a putting away, a divorce TODAY, those who put away (divorce) must go to man's court. Man has to do the putting asunder. Jesus said, "LET NOT MAN PUT ASUNDER".
Confusion, CHAOS and DIVISION has been caused by man because he has perverted the teachings of God's word on this very important subject. The homes of our nations are being WRECKED by this "storm" of divorce and remarriage that is SWEEPING ACROSS OUR NATION TODAY. What incalculable harm is suffered' by our children! Are we REALLY giving them the chance they deserve? The divorce evil is as a troubled sea, angry waves tossing to and fro in confusion. MAN IS TO BLAME for this deplorable situation! Our ONLY hope is to call on the great "stiller of tempests" and have him command TEMPESTS AND WATERS BE STILL!