I cannot divorce | Daniel J. Koren's
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I cannot divorce

Posted by danieljkoren on June 4, 2014 in Viewpoints |

Of course, I do not want to divorce my wife, but even if I wanted to, I cannot. When religious leaders asked Jesus about divorce, He told them that in the beginning, God made them male and female (Mark 10:6-7). Where did the man and woman come from? God created them. Where did the first marriage come from? God created it. Did Eve choose whose rib she came from? No. And she could not pick another guy’s rib after Adam got boring or irritating. There was no changing how she was created.
When a man marries a woman, he is accepting her as the one God created for him. Adam said, “She is my bone and my flesh!” There was no changing that. When I married Leanne, I took by faith that this was my rib, my Eve, the one God made to be one with me. There are no do-overs. I cannot have second thoughts now and stuff her back in my side and try another rib. At the same time, she cannot undo what she has done by faith—accepted me as her source, as her Adam. We belong to one another now as much as our children belong to us, sharing our flesh and bone. They cannot undo their DNA.

He and she are one

Does that sound extreme? Jesus said that the husband and wife “are no longer two, but one flesh.” (Mark 10:7). Neither the man nor the woman are stronger than God who has made them both one. No judge, no preacher, no mother-in-law, no one can separate them: “Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.” (Mark 10:8).
Divorced people hurt so badly because they go their separate ways in life with jagged pieces of their spouse’s life fused with their own. You can never really divorce yourself from someone you became one with. This is why divorce hurts so many: not just children but even extended family members. It is as convulsive as if one were to change their own DNA. You cannot undo who you are at the base level. What God has made cannot be unmade.

Exceptions for divorce?

Of course, when it comes to the topic of divorce, everyone wants to throw up the “what ifs.” What if he is abusive, what if she has HIV, what if….?
The disciples tried to buttonhole Jesus after he made these strong statements about divorce. Jesus made sure they understood the seriousness of it when He said, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her. And if a woman divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.” (Mark 10:10-12). Boom.
To divorce is to live in sin. Why do people need to hear this? So they will prayerfully make their choice before they marry. We live in a world where just about every house in your neighborhood has been affected by divorce. Our society is living evidence of the damage of divorce. Do we need any further argument to stop this insanity? Has it solved anything yet?
Jesus was clear on this. You cannot divorce any more than you can uncreate yourself. Marriage is an act of God making two into one. Don’t try to play God by undoing His creation. What is the alternative for divorce? Study and apply Ephesians 5:22-33.

Please post questions or comments on this site for further discussion!

3 Comments

  • You’ve made some excellent points, for which you may catch more than a little heat. I think the main reason divorce is so prevalent among Christians is that just like the audiences Jesus spoke to, we tend to be more interested in what God will PERMIT us to do than what God WANTS us to do. In Matthew 19:1-6, Jesus explained God’s design, God’s intent. For people bent on doing the will of God, that would have been enough. But the Pharisees responded with “Yeah, but…” So Jesus amplified and clarified His point. The disciples were as shocked by the seriousness of His remarks as we often are. They responded, “If it’s like that, it’s better not to marry!” The Lord did not suggest that they were overreacting.

    There is great peace and security in knowing some things are permanent. You can lose your money, your health, and your friends. But if you both honor the vows you took, as long as you both have life, your wife will always be there for you, and you for her. That’s a great comfort, and it’s a comfort that eludes those who contemplate Plan B, do-overs, escape clauses, and what might be legally permissible under what circumstances.

  • Landon says:

    Great post.

    I hope that you will do a follow up discussing those that are already divorced or remarried. When is it okay to remarry? What about those that are divorced on non-biblical grounds? Are those that are remarried on no biblical grounds actually married? If they stay together, is it a lifestyle of unrepentant sin? Does it matter if the divorce occurs before Christ or during a time of back sliding? Basically, I want to hear your take on all of the difficult questions. :)

    • danieljkoren says:

      Landon, if a person lost his arm in an accident, it would be traumatic and life changing. Missing a member of his body will forever change how he does everything. I would not heap more guilt on him through that loss but try to help.
      Divorce is the loss of your own flesh and blood. I think a similar approach is wise.
      The key to emphasizing a correct approach to this life-shaping topic is to prevent the injury and loss people bring on themselves unnecessarily. Just as there is no cure for a lost limb but one can turn to prosthetics to cope with the loss, so remarriage is not a cure and will never resolve all the damage done in a divorce. If part of my flesh and blood was damaged or infected, I would seek every remedy possible before resorting to amputation.

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