Remarriage Is Not Always A Sin
By David J. Stewart | June 2018
1st Corinthians 7:2 and 9, “Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. ... But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.”
There is a lot of misteaching and misunderstanding in the churches today about divorce and remarriage. We've got a bunch of Pharisees running around, who condemn any divorced person who remarries. Ye do greatly err concerning the Scriptures!
Let's begin with a popular quoted passage by the Pharisees:
Matthew 19:7-9, “They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away? He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so. 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.”
The Pharisees were asking Jesus about the grounds for divorce, and there was only one—uncleanness during the engagement period. Matthew 1:19, “Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily.” Carefully notice that the Holy Bible called Joseph Mary's “husband,” but they weren't living together as husband and wife yet. That was the Jewish custom. They had not yet consummated the marriage act (i.e., carnal knowledge). They had never been intimate together. So when Joseph found out Mary was pregnant, and he knew that he wasn't the biological father, he decided to secretly put her away (divorce her). This is what Jesus is referring to in Matthew 19:7-9.
Now concerning remarriage, the Holy Bible is plain that marriage (or remarriage) is God's way to prevent fornication...
1st Corinthians 7:1-11, “Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband. The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife. Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency. But I speak this by permission, and not of commandment. For I would that all men were even as I myself. But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that. I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, It is good for them if they abide even as I. But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn. And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from her husband: But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried, or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife.”
Did you read that in verse 2? God says that men AND women, to avoid fornication, are to get married. It shows the utter ignorance of some people, when they condemn a divorced person for getting remarried, or wanting to get remarried. Now, we all have our opinions, and then there is God's Word. The Bible says that believers have “the mind of Christ” (1st Corinthians 2:16), which to some might falsely indicate that Christ is schizophrenic, since believers today cannot seem to agree on many things. A believer who walks close to the Lord will think like the Lord. God teaches love, forgiveness, second chances and kindness, which God knows I have exemplified toward my former spouse. After 13 years since she divorced me, neither of us have remarried nor had “a relationship” (as the ungodly sin of fornication is commonly called today). You ought to either be married or not be intimately involved with anyone.
The Bible says that when a man gets married, he leaves his mother and father and “CLEAVES” to his wife. The Greek word for “cleave” means to be “GLUED” together for life! I often hear single women, who are searching for a husband, say that they don't want a divorced man. I don't blame them one bit, because if you marry a divorced person there will always be someone else in the background, even if the other spouse is married. It is as if you are sharing someone! It is an uncomfortable mindset for many people.
Sometimes Remarriage is a Sin
I have heard preachers teach that if you are divorced, then you must remain single or get back with your spouse. But what if your spouse has already remarried? 1st Corinthians 7:2 and 9, “Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. ... But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.” If a person is struggling with sexual temptation, and their spouse has divorced them, and the departed spouse has already remarried, I think that victimized person (the one who didn't want the divorce) has a Scriptural right to remarry. I cannot back that up with the Bible except to quote to you the preceding Scripture, which says it is better to marry than to burn, and to avoid the sin of fornication (having multiple partners), let every person have a spouse! God knows your heart and if you are merely looking for a way out and want to marry someone else. You cannot fool God! It is easy for a preacher to merely say: “Sorry, you can never get remarried!” In the case of someone who filed for divorce, that is absolutely true! But if you are the victim, and your spouse abandoned you, then the situation gets a lot more complicated.
The indwelling Holy Spirit tells me that when there is a divorce, at least several years should pass before seeking remarriage. What I just said is not necessarily Biblical, but it is what I believe is right, as per the mind of Christ. I think it is wrong when a man or woman runs out and remarries before the ink is even dry on their divorce papers. I am not judging singer Amy Grant, God knows my heart, but when she divorced her husband in 1999, she remarried singer Vince Gill immediately, and to me that is horrible. That is so wrong. And then Amy's divorced husband remarried someone else, two months after she did in 1999, and Amy is 100% to blame for putting her former husband into that adulterous situation. It is not my place to condemn anyone, for I am a horrible sinner just like Amy and Vince. Matthew 5:32, “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.” You figure it out!
I wouldn't dare judge another person for their sins, because the Bible warns that if we judge, then we have become a judge of God's law instead of being a doer. James 4:11, “Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge.” I hear so many ungodly people twist the Scriptures and take them out of context. Please notice that the Bible commands us not to speak evil about our Christian brother, not to refrain from speaking out against evil. There is a big difference! Ephesians 5:11, “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.” Titus 1:10-13, “For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision: Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre's sake. One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, The Cretians are alway liars, evil beasts, slow bellies. This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith.” 1st Timothy 5:20, “Them that sin rebuke before all, that others also may fear.” Bible preachers have a solemn duty to preach against sin and evil, without respect of persons!
I have heard some arrogant and ignorant misled pastors claim that only church pastors have the authority to preach against sin, which is insane! Every member of the clergy and laymen as well, have the responsibility as God's children to stand for what is right. So if you go into a place of business, and see or hear sin, and complain to management, are you judging them? Of course not. I went into a bank and stood in line waiting for a teller window to open. The bank was playing music from the creepy movie Halloween, which offended me and I complained, but they didn't care, so I eventually switched to a different name bank. Every Bible teacher, missionary, evangelist and born-again Christian should express their disgust and disapproval of homosexuality today, and all other sins. Obviously, that will make us all hypocrites to some extent, because each of us are imperfect sinners, all deserving of God's wrath. But thanks be to God Who has shown us mercy through the sacrifice of His dear only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, on the cross of Calvary! The world very often accuses godly Christians of “judging others” when they take a stand for what is right! Truthfully, to “judge” in a sinful sense means to condemn someone on a personal level for their sins. I have never done that to anyone on my website ministry. I don't even condemn myself, because Christ paid my sin debt, and according to Romans 8:34 no one can condemn a redeemed child of God.
So having said that, I say that it is awful and a sin, when someone divorces and then remarries while the ink is still wet on their divorce. I have been divorced for 13 years, by my wife's choice alone in 2006. She never remarried, and neither did I. I feel guilty about moving on, because God intended for two people to be together for life. I hear about so many divorces and remarriages, especially in Country music, Hollywood and our ungodly American society today, but that is THE WISDOM OF THE WORLD! I think God wants us to stay by the side of the husband or wife of our youth. I say that with a broken heart, because I hate being alone. I honestly don't think God would be mad at me for remarrying someone else, since it was my wife's decision alone to leave and divorce me, and I have that in writing. Yet, in my heart I still feel connected to her, and have financially helped her out voluntarily for many years. That is God's unconditional love—giving while receiving nothing in return. I and my former spouse have not held hands in 13 years. Will we ever remarry? It is possible, but I am reluctant, not sure if it is wise to do so. If you have never been the victim of ungodly lawyers and judges, and the insane wisdom of this ungodly world, then you have no grasp of the inexplicable emotional trauma, mental anguish and pain of soul caused by being dragged into divorce court by an angry spouse. Divorce is always a sin!
1st Corinthians 7:27 says, “Art thou bound unto a wife? seek not to be loosed. Art thou loosed from a wife? seek not a wife. But and if thou marry, thou hast not sinned; and if a virgin marry, she hath not sinned. Nevertheless such shall have trouble in the flesh: but I spare you.” I just quoted to you the plain teaching of the Scriptures. The Bible says if you are LOOSED (for any reason) from a wife, a man should not seek a wife, but if he does REMARRY, he has NOT SINNED! God said it, not me this time! Granted, we must take into consideration the whole counsel of God, so if we factor in the Lord's Words from Matthew 5:32, then we learn that divorce is never permissible (except for fornication, that is, if the spouse has been proven to be unfaithful during the engagement process). It is the sin of adultery to divorce for any other reason, and it is adultery to get remarried to a divorced person. I sincerely think it is wrong to focus on only one passage of Scripture in an attempt to justify one's position of marriage, divorce and remarriage. If we take all of these Scripture passages into consideration, then a whole different picture is seen, which I think is THE TRUTH. God hates divorce and so do I.
Here are my guidelines as a fundamentalist Baptist Bible preacher for marital troubles:
Don't EVER even consider a divorce! Decide when you get married that the word “DIVORCE” has been removed from your vocabulary. If you talk about it, you are one step closer to doing it, so don't even bring up the word, please.
If someone does file for divorce, try to stop it before it is finalized. In every divorce, couples are legally forbidden to communicate outside the lawyers. This ungodly law promotes and encourages divorce, giving lawyers full control over your marriage. Sadly, 95% of attorneys are ungodly reprobates, greedy and cutthroat, and don't care if your marriage survives. It is in their best financial interest to keep the divorce going, for which “works” God will punish them in eternity (Revelation 20:11-15).
If you cannot stop the divorce, decide that you are going to wait and give your spouse AT LEAST 5 years after the divorce is finalized to repent and come back. Many marriages have been salvaged. I have been divorced for 13 years and have never given up on my former spouse, still hanging in there waiting!
If your departed spouse has remarried to another, then there is nothing you can do, and I personally think you should seek remarriage to someone else, or remain unmarried if you can handle that. According to 1st Corinthians 7:27-28 it is best to stay unmarried, but the Bible says it is not a sin to get married. The departed spouse who filed for divorce is responsible for causing you to commit adultery in remarriage (Matthew 5:32). In the Old Testament, the prophet Hosea waited for many years for his unfaithful wife Gomer to return, and as far as I can tell from the Scripture he never remarried anyone else. Also, Jeremiah did not get married, at all, to my understanding.
If your departed spouse who filed for divorce stays unmarried, as has mine for 13 years, I think it is best to remain single if you can handle it. That is what I have done, and continue to do. It has not been easy for me as a man, and I admittedly have casually sought for a spouse over the years. If I absolutely wanted to, I could find someone, but I don't want to marry just anyone. I singed up for E-harmony but haven't ever found anybody. There aren't many single independent fundamental Baptist women searching for a husband! When I eased up on my preferences for a match, I started getting Mormons and women preachers! Aarrgghh! I am discouraged by the several hundred low-quality, obese, selfish, unrealistic, profiles that I have read online. A lot of people are critical of others who have been divorced and remarried. I judge no one! I fully know the deep pain of soul caused by a divorce, particularly a hostile ugly divorce. Once a wife files for divorce, her ungodly scumbag lawyer goes to town, coming after her husband with all the ungodly hatred and wrath of Satan! Such wickedness and cruelty has compelled many people to commit suicide and even commit murder! Divorce is a dangerous time in a person's life, but to the worldly greedy lawyer and judge it is just another ungodly day at their ungodly job in an ungodly court system in an ungodly nation in America!
If being single because your spouse abandoned and divorced you is causing you to commit the sin of fornication, then you should get remarried to someone else. Many men cannot live without sex, which is why locking men in prison cages compels many of them to become homosexuals. This is also true of women. Women's prisons are known for lesbians. I have heard numerous prison women testify that they did not become a lesbian until they were locked in a prison cage like an animal, so they behave like animals. May God damn our insane American court system! Scam City: Jails, Prisons, and Criminal Checks Exposed (the wisdom of this world is insanity)
A wife may have to leave her husband and get a job, but she ought never divorce. The wife of Mark Chapman, the man who cowardly murdered singer John Lennon in 1980 by shooting him in the back, is still faithfully married to her husband after 39 years! She is a born-again Christian! Gloria Chapman flies from her home in Hawaii to the prison in New York where her husband has spent the past 39 years, to eat pizza and have physical intimacy with him a few times each year. If Gloria can hang in there, so can we all!
I love the biblical story of Hosea and Gomer. God told Hosea to marry a daughter of the land (a heathen), as a picture of Israel's unfaithfulness to the Lord. But I sincerely don't think Hosea had much of an idea of what he was getting into. I'm sure Hosea said, “Hot dog, wow is she beautiful. Gee, I'm a lucky guy!” Unfortunately, shortly after they married, Gomer went whoring after other men, and abandoned Hosea. Many years later, after not seeing his long-departed wife, Hosea finds Gomer for sale in a slave market, and he buys her back for his own. What a beautiful picture of God's love, grace and mercy!
I believe in restitution and reconciliation where it is possible. But sometimes it is not possible, nor even advisable. There are some worse things than not being married, like being married to someone you don't want to be married to! It is easy to judge others from a distance. People who have never been through an ugly divorce (which I unfortunately have)—through the overwhelming feeling of loss, deep sorrow and inexplicable emotional pain—should SHUT UP! Wicked people berate divorced people!!! What you ought to say is, “There but for the grace of God, go I!” Ultimately, we all must give account as INDIVIDUALS before God (Romans 14:10-12). The Lord knows our wicked heart as humans, and the games that people often play, and no one will escape the judgment of God.
Kindly, you cannot remarry a person who blames you for everything! Amos 3:3, “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” Yet, some ignorant religious people still condemn others for even talking about wanting to remarry. They are selfish, foolish and ignorant. I honestly think some married people become envious. They are unhappy in their own marriage, so they resent the idea that someone else is free to remarry, but they are not, so they go around condemning anybody who desires to get remarried. I think you know what I say is true!
If you are divorced, place it all into God's omnipotent and omniscient hands. Every Christian believer should have Job's attitude in Job 13:15, “Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him.” We must discern between what the Holy Bible actually says, and our many differing opinions in the matter. The Scripture is plain that God hates divorce (Jeremiah 3:20). And the Scripture is clear that to divorce someone and marry another is the sin of adultery (Matthew 5:32). The Scripture is abundantly clear that God intended for marriage to endure for A LIFETIME. Matthew 19:8, “He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so.” The Scripture is also clear that God wants people to be married (1st Corinthians 7:1-2). And there are numerous other things that WE KNOW are Biblical. However, as is often the case, people end up in situations that do not fall under a direct teaching in the Word of God. In these situations we must take WHAT WE DO KNOW, and then use those principles of truth to help us know God's will in the areas that WE DON'T KNOW. I think that is the mind of Christ.
After a divorce, there is no Biblical mandate to stay single and be alone the rest of one's life, unless a person CHOOSES to divorce, which is unbiblical. In our preceding text from 1st Corinthians 7:1-11, the Bible says if a saved person is married to an unsaved person, they should remain married; however, if someone CHOOSES to divorce their spouse (for whatever reason), they should remain single, but that is their choice (not the other person's)! It's not okay to just quit your marriage and go find someone else! When a person is the victim of an unwanted divorce, there is no Biblical command to stay unmarried. And anybody who says something different has no Bible basis for their claims! If there is, SHOW IT TO ME! The Holy Bible is very plain that to prevent fornication, a person who desires to be married should get married!!! If you don't like that, then argue with God because He said it... 1st Corinthians 7:2 and 9, “Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. ... But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.”
I think it is best in the Lord to stay single and tough it out, focusing on serving the Lord; but if a man cannot contain his sexual passions, then He should remarry according to 1st Corinthians 7:27-28, rather than to burn. Better yet, don't ever file for divorce dear reader, and this situation won't happen! But if it does, and you are the victim, I have shared with you my Biblical opinion on the subject. You can listen to ten different preachers teach on divorce and remarriage, and you'll get ten different philosophies, and they'll all claim to be teaching the undeniable Words of God. You alone must discern and decide in your heart what God intended in His inspired Words, as you SEARCH THE SCRIPTURES! God bless you. Thank you for reading this. May God give us sound wisdom in this important matter.
Marriage, Divorce, Remarriage | 2 | 3 (plain and simple Bible teaching by Pastor Danny Castle)
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