Marriage and Divorce The Challenge Before Us • Divorce continues to be rampant in America. • Doctrinal disagreement on the issue has resulted in more divorces and more church divisions. • We must stand for truth! (1 Corinthians 1:27; Proverbs 23:23) • The status quo is unacceptable. • We must renew our minds! (Ephesians 4:23, 2). • We must seek and speak the truth in a spirit of humility, gentleness and longsuffering. Areas of General Agreement • Marriage is a life-long commitment (Romans 7:2; 1 Corinthians 7:39; Matthew 19:6; Malachi 2:16) • God allows only one exception to His no divorce law (Matt. 19:1-12; 5:31-32; Mark 10:1-12) • The alien sinner is subject to Christ’s marriage law. (Matthew 19:1-12; 5:31-32; Mark 10:1-12; Luke 16:18) • Baptism does not wash away unrepentant adultery (Acts 2:38). • Repentance demands that sinful relationships cease (Ezra 10; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11). • The believer whose mate departs is not obligated to fulfill marital obligations (1 Cor. 7:15). Areas Of Fundamental Disagreement What Constitutes Marriage? • A covenant (Malachi 2:14) • A public proclamation or ceremony which accords with civil law and societal norms (Matt. 22:1-10; 25:1-10; Luke 14:8; John 2:1-2) • A joining of husband and wife (Genesis 2:24; Matthew 19:5; Ephesians 5:31) • Becoming one flesh (Genesis 2:24; 1 Cor. 6:16; Malachi 2:15) Areas Of Fundamental Disagreement What Constitutes Divorce (putting away)? • Putting away is an undoing of that which constituted the marriage (Matthew 19:4-6, 9, cf. 1 Corinthians 7:27 ) • Putting away is an action, not merely a decision • Putting away is a unilateral action • Putting away involves legal action • The one who is put away commits adultery when he or she remarries Solid Foundations • God's desire is that marriage be a life-long commitment. • The general rule is that to divorce and remarry is to commit the sin of adultery (Luke 16:18). • God has provided one exception to this rule, and it must be regarded as just that -- AN EXCEPTION!!! (Matthew 19:9).