Is it ok to divorce an abusive husband?
“And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” —Philippians 2:8
Leaving is one thing, divorcing is another. The Bible teaches in 1st Corinthians 7:10 that if a wife “departs” (not divorces) from her husband, she is to remain unmarried the rest of her life. To remarry is adultery (Matthew 5:32). Jesus Christ was willing to suffer for us. He is our example. In this selfish generation, it is not surprising that lawsuits and the divorce rate are so high. People have become intolerant of each other.
I recently received the following e-mail from a gentleman in July of 2006...
Fear not, it is not for myself! I wanted to ask what you thought about divorce in the Biblical sense.
I have a work colleague; initially she and her husband are Catholic, however I have been in deep discussion with her and whereas she already had lots of Catholic points that she never agreed with, she now really understands the ills of Catholicism. But her family, to my knowledge, are regular Christians.
They are married for 10 years; however, her husband, a Spaniard, is a horrible husband. He constantly puts her down, dishonors her, treats her awfully, keeps strict control over her, and has also had numerous affairs (he hasn't left her, but sleeps around). She is at the stage where she just doesn't want to be married to him anymore, and the marriage is loveless. However, her parents are of the frame of mind that she should rather stay married and be miserable, than be happy and a divorcee! Her parents-in-law are trying to emotionally blackmail her too by saying that her husband emigrated to South Africa to be with her (they also previously lived in Spain together).
I have already told her what Jesus said in Matthew 5:31-32:
 It hath been said, Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement:  But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.
But digging deeper into this, what does this really mean? Jesus is basically saying that God has already seen man and woman unified as one flesh, and that can never be broken; but adultery appears almost to be an opt-out clause. But, another way of interpreting this is, as you wrote on the website, that divorce is still not an option, however the innocent party will not commit adultery by re-marrying, as the guilty adulterer has already done that and thus caused her to divorce and "commit adultery".
(I also showed her your article on divorce)
Does this mean that she could get a divorce? She has tried hard to reconcile and feels guilty because of the children and because of the divorce-stigma, but also loveless - this man is mentally abusing her, has often cheated on her, and she is on anti-depressants as a result of it!
There are also two children involved; I know from my own experience that two hateful parents together badly affects the child, and it is affecting their children too.
Finally - if she does get a divorce, are there any Crisis Centers or missions, and some tips? The wages she gets here are too low to really rent a place and support two children - and the husband is very liable to return to Spain (and thus avoid maintenance payments). With her parents' frame of mind, one wonders if they would allow her to stay with them (in the South Coast) after a divorce; she has nobody else. I would help her out, but am battling to rent a small 1-bedroom apartment, and barely have space for my wife and I!
So, what would the best advice be? I would think she could divorce with a clear conscience, but what would happen cometh Judgment Day?
I'm going to share with you the things I told him and much more. Divorce is an ugly thing. A happy marriage equals happy children, which equals a happy home. Divorce is NEVER the answer. I was in a store the other day and saw big headlines where a famous celebrity publicly said she had “married a monster” to justify filing for divorce. Shame on her for being a self-righteous hypocrite. Like she is so perfect. No, she's a dirty, rotten, sinner like her husband, she just doesn't realize it as most sinners don't. If you think about James 2:10, it should cause you to weep for all sinners, including yourself, and thank God that by His mercy and grace He sent Jesus into the world to SAVE SINNERS!
Here's an article I wrote, showing that there are NO Biblical grounds for divorce...
There are NO Biblical grounds for divorce. Jesus never gave anyone the permission to divorce because of adultery, which is clear from his statement in Matthew 19:6, “Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.” For anyone to claim that Jesus permits divorce because of adultery makes no sense. What if your spouse commits murder? Is God saying that a spouse can divorce for adultery; but not for murder? You don't have to abandon common sense when you read the Bible; in fact, using some common sense will prevent you from becoming a religious nutcase. God is very down-to-earth and practical.
Matthew 5:28 states that the sin of lusting is adultery, which makes every man an adulterer. Can any healthy man honestly claim that he has never lusted upon another woman? If so, he needs to see a doctor or move to San Francisco. Obviously, Jesus wasn't permitting divorce.
Divorce Is Rooted In Self-righteous Hypocrisy And Selfishness
On everyone's wedding day, they all exchange the same vows ... “for better, for WORSE; for richer, for POORER; in SICKNESS, as in health; 'TIL DEATH DO US PART.”
We are living in a world of liars who break their marriage vows by divorcing. Jesus came to this world as a humble servant, willing to be beaten, scourged, mocked, abused, and crucified for us because He loves us. Jesus is our example to follow. The average spouse today has a chip on their shoulder, and a heart filled with sinful pride. Feminism in particular is saturated with sinful stubbornness and selfish pride. Oh that men and women would love the Lord, and allow God's unconditional love to control their marital decisions.
An abused wife who loves her husband WILL not divorce him. She may leave, seek counsel, ask for help from others, pray for him, or even get a job and find another place to live for awhile; but, she doesn't throw in the towel and quit. I don't expect most people to understand this type of commitment, because few people posses God's love.
Feminism teaches women to be intolerant, demanding, hateful, and show no mercy toward a less than perfect husband. One-third of the Bible was written by murderers (Moses, David, and Paul). Remember that the next time you think about divorcing your husband. Even after David had commit adultery and murder, he repented and then God used David to pen most of the Psalms.
I once had a Bible teacher who years later went into horrible sin. Many of his former students said they had burned his notes taken from class. Those self-righteous hypocrites! You might as well burn the first 5-books of the Bible, because a murderer wrote them. And burn the Psalms, because an adulterer and murderer wrote most of them. And burn 14-books of the New Testament, because Paul persecuted the Church day-and-night, hauling Christians out of their homes and stoning them to death. Oh, and you had better not ever mention the story of Noah to children, because he got drunk and naked. And don't mention Samson, because he went with a prostitute (harlot). And don't mention Peter either, because he cursed the Lord and denied even knowing Him. Jonah ran from God. Isaiah was a man of unclean lips. Jacob was a thief and deceiver. Moses had an uncontrollable hot-temper. Jeremiah quit preaching God's Word. Sarah and Abraham doubted God and lied. Rahab was a harlot. The church at Corinth had become a cesspool of iniquity—eating foods offered to idols, fighting amongst each other, suing each other in court, coming drunk to the Lord's Supper, allowing fornication in the church, and speaking in demonic tongues. What a messed up bunch! And you want to divorce your husband because he did what?
Please understand that I am not condoning wrong doing, God forbid; I'm simply saying that no one is perfect and divorce is the absolute worst solution to marriage problems. Do you know what divorce really is? It's a wife bailing out and leaving all the hardships, problems and burdens for her husband to carry alone. What a selfish thing to do. And likewise, the same is true for a rotten husband who divorces his wife. God hates divorce. No man has a right to divorce his wife, I don't care what she does! She is flesh of your flesh and Jesus taught to forgive 70 times 7 (Matthew 18:22). God NEVER forsakes nor abandons us, and neither should one forsake nor leave their spouse.
Different Biases On The Matter
Proverbs 14:1, “Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.”
I know a pastor who is a dear person and a godly man. His position is that an abused wife should obtain a legal separation and get a restraining order. He believes that divorce is acceptable in cases of physical and mental abuse. I certainly agree with him that an abused wife should leave if there is genuine abuse in any relationship; and if truly needed, obtain a restraining order. However, I also know that the aforementioned pastor and his dear wife knew a good woman, who was destroyed by a terrible husband. So they have a bias in the matter, understandably. There are some rotten husbands out there. They are abusive and no wife is expected by God to lose her teeth at the hands of a monster.
HOWEVER, I've seen a completely different situation, where a terrible wife continually shirked off her duties and responsibilities as a wife and a mother. Her husband was a good Christian man, but she continually dragged him down, frustrating him by messing-up the house more than the children. After nearly 20 years of fussing and feuding with his uncaring and irresponsible wife, he got tired and became abusive, so she divorced him. I'm not defending the husband's abuse, but she's a hundred times more guilty than he is of wrong doing.
For years she'd lose his mail and get him in trouble with collection agencies. She was a sneak, going behind his back, gossiping on the phone, lying and deceiving him regularly. Her children often wore no coat in cold weather. They went to school in dirty clothes. They didn't eat nutritious meals. The mother didn't care. The poor man worked midnight shift and had difficulty sleeping during the day. Whereas he was up working all night, she had a good night sleep. He went through a lot of problems at work, then coming home each day to a lazy, emotionally unstable, problematic wife. He hardly ever saw his children because of working midnight shift.
The wife was a so-called “homemaker” and didn't have a job; but she destroyed her home, little-by-little over the years, plucking it down with her hands as Proverbs 14:1 says. She never worked outside the home during their entire marriage. Her husband paid all the bills and provided faithfully for his family. The tired husband came home regularly to a dirty house, moldy pots under the sink, clutter behind all the furniture, squalor in the children's rooms, et cetera. The man's wife didn't do 75% of everything she had agreed to do. Numerous doctors diagnosed her with everything from clinical depression, to hormonal problems, to a chemical imbalance of the brain (everything except the truth, that is, a lack of character and discipline). She pulled her husband down continually until he had just had enough.
When the wife filed for divorce, she convinced everyone involved that her husband was the antichrist, a monster, an evil man and a bad father. Not a word of criticism was ever hurled at the wife. All her acquaintances took her side blindly, including the corrupt New World Order legal system. The husband was crucified in court. The man bore all the reproach of the divorce, while his wife hung everything around his neck and walked away proclaiming his total guilt and her total innocence, abandoning and forsaking him forever. That is so evil on her part! The husband was devastated and didn't want the divorce, but she was cold-hearted and unforgiving. In reality that wife is a hundred times more guilty than her husband. The husband could have quit and filed for divorce umpteen times over the years, but he put up with his lackadaisical, troublesome and uncaring wife because he loved her.
When she divorced her husband, she told him that she didn't love him anymore and blamed him for it. Dr. Jack Hyles (who had counseled tens-of-thousands of couples through his 55-years of pastoring) addressed this exact matter in Marriage-Part 16 ('my husband has destroyed all my love' or 'I don't love her anymore'; Dr. Hyles, Full MP3).
So having explained the preceding situation, now you understand my bias and mindset concerning divorce. Your opinion of the matter is likely going to be biased on the type of abuse that you've seen in life. I realize that there are good wives married to bad husbands; but there are also good men married to bad wives. Furthermore, I don't believe that anyone is 100% bad nor to blame in any failed marriage. All people are sinners. There is darkness in all of us.
Human nature typically tends to take sides very strongly. Most people are either 100% Democrat or 100% Republican. You don't find someone who is both. The same is true in marriage disputes. People naturally tend to determine who is totally at fault (in their opinion), which is unfair and not reality. Reality is that it takes two to tango and even in situations where it APPEARS that one spouse is totally innocent or to blame, that's just not the case. I also don't believe that a situation is ever equally 50/50. That is, I believe that one spouse is usually more to blame than the other, but no one is totally to blame. Since God created a wife to be a help meet to her husband, she has totally failed her purpose in life if her marriage fails. I know that sounds mean, but it's not intended to be. God creates a man and then gives him a work to do, but a wife's work is her husband.
My mindset in this matter is primarily against the flippant, self-righteous and sinful attitude which many people have toward toward the sacred institution of marriage. Marriage is holy, only meant to happen within a lifetime marriage commitment. Sex is intended between a husband and wife, “ 'til death do us part.” A couple should honor their commitment to one another, no matter what. If everyone has a right to divorce a bad marriage, then what's the use of promising to remain faithful through better of for worse? It seems that everyone has a good excuse for quitting their marriage, reneging on their vows and walking away in their own self-righteousness these days. The truth is that people are changing from one generation to the next for worse and evil, but our righteous God hasn't changed and never will (Malachi 3:6; Hebrews 13:8).
As you are about to learn from Hosea and Gomer, divorce is never God's way.
Hosea and Gomer
The Old Testament gives us an example of God's unconditional love in the Book of Hosea. Hosea was one of the minor prophets, sent by God to preach to Israel. Hosea married Gomer, and they had numerous children. Hosea then abandoned Hosea to go live in the sin of adultery.
Hosea was devastated, for he loved Gomer; but she was a whore. At the end of the Book of Hosea, after Gomer had lived a life of sin, Hosea finds her being sold at a slave market. Hosea buys Gomer back, thus expressing his unconditional love and forgiveness. Hosea represents God, and Gomer represents Israel and all sinners. Romans 5:8 states, "But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." God loves mankind with an unconditional love, Who was willing to buy us from the slave market of sin to set us free.
Likewise, a true Christian spouse who loves God, will demonstrate unconditional love for their wayward spouse, and not divorce. The focus of nearly everyone who seeks to justify a divorce is upon “self.” They reason, “Why should I live unhappy, suffer or be miserable, when I can move to greener pastures?” But Jesus was willing to suffer for you and me, being spit upon and beaten because He loves us. He could have called ten thousand angels, but He chose to bleed, suffer and die for our sins. This is not an “evangelical” attitude of men toward women; It is God's Word.
Of course, a wife has every right to leave the home if she is being beaten; but she Biblically never has a right to divorce. Hardships are a part of life and marriage, and only a self-righteous hypocrite would condemn their spouse while overlooking their own sins and faults. People look for every excuse to divorce nowadays.
I have received letters from time-to-time from people who quote various ministers, ministries and religious sources in an attempt to justify their divorce. It's woeful apostasy! If anyone should be protecting the sacredness of marriage, its Christians; but they divorce as much as the unsaved heathens. Divorce is caused by sinful PRIDE.
God hates all divorce and calls it “treacherous” ... Malachi 2:16 (for men); Jeremiah 3:20 (for women)!
There are times in most marriages where a husband and wife feel they don't love each other anymore; but this is when God's unconditional love should override our own selfish personal desires. Unconditional love is God's love; not the shallow conditional love which the world sings about. It's amazing to me how the world can sing... “I'll love you forever and ever”... and then divorce every 5-10 years and move on to greener pastures. Divorce is a sin, and there are no exceptions. On one's wedding day, there were no disclaimers in your marriage vows. No one promises... “'till death do us part, unless you commit adultery.” Yet, these same liars will twist the Bible around to justify their divorce 15-years later on the grounds of adultery. They are equally guilty of breaking their marriage VOWS if they file for divorce.
The problem is that people categorize sin. Adultery is considered much more horrible than a lazy, lying, and lackadaisical wife; but they are equally sinful in God's eyes (James 2:10). Nearly every woman who files for divorce calls off a list of her husband's sins in a wicked attempt to justify her decision to divorce, but she doesn't call off any of her own sins. It's self-righteous hypocrisy in the sight of God. In divorce a wife usurps authority over her husband, using her marriage license as a weapon against him in a court of law. God hates rebellion. There is no honor in quitting one's marriage vows. There is no honor in taking the easy path out and leaving one's spouse to deal with all their hardships and problems alone.
Every believer should settle it in their heart that they are going to have the attitude of Hosea, i.e., I will always love, forgive and take my spouse back no matter what they do. That's genuine Christianity. God's love is unconditional. It is human to get angry and feel hurt when our loved one's betray us, but God's love that the Holy Spirit sheds abroad in our heart should surpass all of that... “because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us” (Romans 5:5). Amen! Jesus Christ is our example, suffering when He didn't have to, even to the point of dying. I'm not saying to let your spouse beat you to death; I am saying that you should never give up on your marriage.
Satan Comes Only to Kill, Steal, and Destroy
I am sick and tired of hearing believers use the “love test” to decide whether or not someone should file for divorce. Their sinful mindset is that if a wife doesn't truly love her husband, then it's probably best to divorce. No Sir! That's heathen advice from the Devil. Love is NOT based upon how you feel; but rather, love is treating your spouse the same way you would want to be treated (Matthew 7:12). Would you want your spouse to file divorce on you, drag you into a heathen court, wipe out your career savings, cause you overwhelming mental anguish, and totally ruin your life? No, I didn't think so.
The Devil comes only to kill, steal, and destroy (John 10:10); which is exactly what American women have been trained by feminism to do... kill their babies by abortion, steal their husband's life in court, and destroy their family by divorce. And you think you're “liberated”? Boy, the Devil saw you coming! You're not liberated, you're retarded. I mean no unkindness, but the Devil is a liar the Bible says (John 8:44), and feminism is a lie of the Devil. The Devil promises liberation and happiness to feminists; but in reality women become childless, frustrated, and full of regret.
God told Adam to RULE OVER Eve (Genesis 3:16). Feminism calls this “spousal abuse.” We are living in perilous times when murderous abortion, vile homosexuality, and rebellious wives are legal; but these evil works are still sins in the eyes of God. Feminism is destroying America, deceiving women to kill, steal, and destroy in the name of liberation and women's rights.
Don't Selfishly Bail Ship
Marriage is as a ship at sea, and it is evil in the sight of God when a wife abandons ship during stormy seas so that she may be comforted by others, leaving her husband lost at sea to battle the raging waves of life by himself. What a selfish and evil thing for a woman to do to her husband. I focus primarily upon the ladies because women file for divorce in the U.S. at more than TWICE the rate of men because of the Communist feminist agenda indoctrinating women today.
There are demonic government-sponsored programs all across America that teach women in shelters that divorce is statistically, economically and personally the best thing they can do for THEMSELVES; and free government-paid-for attorneys are provide to the same women if the wife simply alleges any form of spousal abuse against her husband. If the wife eats the forbidden fruit by divorcing, she is rewarded by the State with free Welfare, Section 8 Housing, and other fringe benefits (not to mention taking her husbands wealth away).
There is NOT one such program in America that targets men. Do you know why? It's because women are more susceptible to false doctrine than men. Don't get angry ladies, it's Biblical. The Bible says that Eve was DECEIVED, not Adam...
1st Timothy 2:12-14, “But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.”
That is not to say that women are inferior to men, or dumb; not at all. There are many brilliant women in this world, such as Phyllis Schlafly whom I adore; but such women are God-fearing and understand the different roles that God has given to men and women. Feminism is destroying America, deceiving women to kill, steal, and destroy in the name of liberation and women's rights. Satan is a deceiver and liar. By appealing to carnally-minded women who desire to be “empowered,” the Devil has deceived women to kill, steal, and destroy their own children, marriages, and families. Do you hear laughing? It is the Devil laughing at your foolishness. Satan led you to destroy your own happiness, thinking that you were doing yourself a favor. Of, how the Devil is a beautiful liar.
In sharp contrast, most women today in America have been indoctrinated by feminism's lies to demand equality with men. They are mental homosexuals. They want to be like men. They act like men, talking with authority and carrying themselves in a rugged fashion like men. This is sinful. God intended for women to be feminine, wear feminine clothing, and have a meek and quiet spirit about them (1st Peter 3:4). This is very different than than impudent, arrogant and feisty feminist women in American society today. Women have become lewd, rude, and crude. This ought not be. I speak this to our nation's shame.
There is a malicious Communist agenda at work in America to undermine and destroy marriages by brainwashing women to kill their babies, steal their husband's authority, and destroy their marriage and family. Judgment Day is coming (Hebrews 9:27).
Please Don't Divorce Your Spouse
If marriage means nothing more to you than living with someone, then you probably won't understand anything I've said. If you can just as easily live with someone new, as with someone you've been with for along time, then you don't know what love is. Most people today don't know how to love because they've never received God's love. God is love and those who believe on the name of Jesus Christ will learn in time to love as God's loves, if they'll let God have His way in their heart. Christ-rejecters reject God's love that sent Jesus to the cross for our sins; and so they remain cold-hearted in sin and unbelief. How can you know God's love if you have not God? I assure you that God's power can save your marriage. If you love God, then you will not divorce your spouse. Divorce is selfish and worldly.
It is extremely cruel for a person to abandon their spouse. Gomer abandoned Hosea, leaving him numerous children to raise. Divorce is a horrible sin that perpetuates for a lifetime. The consequences are devastating, the number one way to destroy a society.
If the Lord tarries His return, parents of the future will become mere incubators, producing servants of the State. Traditional families will become a thing of the past, and already today is is happening to a large extent. China's one-child policy began as a simple tax, and escalated into a crime punishable by forced abortion, sterilization, imprisonment, fines, and infanticide. The insane environmental agenda will be used to tax Americans for having too many children, which will eventually bring China's cruel tyranny and oppression to the United States. Mark my words.
I know my opinions are not very popular in today's apostate world, but they are Biblical. Feminism was spawned by Communism. Do a web search under “Feminism Communism” and see all the articles that come up. Feminism is destroying America, deceiving women to kill, steal, and destroy in the name of liberation and women's rights.
David J. Stewart
“She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.” —Proverb 31:12
"In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ." —2nd Thessalonians 1:8
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