I wanted to write some articles on the general question “Where are the joys of the gospel?” It seems we are missing so many of the intended joys as the worlds practices press their way more firmly into our midst.
The tragedy of Divorce.
There is something worth noticing in the fact that the primary scriptures we have about divorce don’t come from just
anybody. They are the words of the Savior. He actively took opportunities to condemn divorce.
The best discussion of divorce begins with his words.
Matthew 5:31 It hath been said, Whosever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement
32 But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her her to
commit adultery; and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.
Matthew 19:7 They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away.
8 He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your heartss suffered you to put away your wives but from the beginning it was not so.
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.
Mark 10:2 And the Pharisees came to him and asked him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife? tempting him.
3 And he answered and said unto them, What did Moses command you?
4 And they said, Moses suffered to write a bill of divorcement, and to put her away.
5 And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept
6 But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female.
7 For this cause shall a man leave his father and moter, and cleave to his wife;
8 And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh.
9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
10 and in the house his disciples asked him again of the same matter.
11 And he saith unto them, Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her.
12 And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she commiteth adultery.
Luke 16:18 Whosoever putteth away his wife, and marrieth another committeth adultery; and whosoever marrieth her that is put away from her husband committeth adultery.
Those are very clear statements.
Certainly the church today, as in the days of Christ, allows one to be divorced. But do we believe that if Christ were here today that he would not still say that, while we were allowed to divorce, that it only because of the hardness of our hearts. Would be point out that from the beginning it was not so.
We can’t imagine what that would have been like, to be there in the days of Adam and Eve when, according to Christ, there was no such thing as divorce except in case of fornication. What immediately comes to mind is how restrictive that would have been if someone’s spouse turned out to be horrible. And goodness sake, those were days when you weren’t stuck with a difficult spouse for 50 years, you were stuck with them for 800 years! But if it was not so from the beginning, and if we have faith in God, then that really was a better way. It may be that there was something in the complete inability to divorce a chaste spouse that brought about a greater seriousness in the minds of those making their choices, and probably more importantly, a willingness to, in time, work out differences because there was simply no alternative. If necessity is the mother of invention then it may be that such necessity was also the mother of inventing ways to get along with each other.
Divorce is always tragic, because it began as the creation of something wonderful – two people are forged into a union which can create a family. It has the potential to grow into eternal posterity together and mutual exaltation in one another. And when that which God has put together is sundered asunder, it is always tragic because it could have become something wonderful and eternal.