This is going to be a very har subject for some. The basis of this conversation is based on discovery of popular preachers across the TV that call themselves women and men of God.

Jesus taught in the scriptures that when a man or woman is married, except for fornication, or death they cannot remarry as long as the spouse is still alive. Paul, along with Jesus, goes on to say that if that person remarries while the spouse is still alive, is an adultery and is in a continued state of adultery as long as they remain married. Many professed Christians, such as Randy and Paula White, we in such a condition, yet they are before people trying to tell others of the Love of Christ. This is wrong on so many levels until it is ridiculus. It violates the word of God on so many degrees until the devil is getting such a big laugh in deceiving people. How can a man or woman that has been divorced and remarried, calling themselves Christians, preach or teach others about the Love of God, when their lives do not demonstrate it? How can a man or woman preach or teach about thous shall not commit adultery when they are in an adulterous relationship after being divorced and remarried? Christ did not leave room in his word for a man to divorce his wife and remarry another while she is still alive. How can u call yourself a Christian, when u are in disobedience to God's word?

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Fornication is sex without marriage
The bible says that you become one not married
Nevertheless to avoid fornication let every man have his own wife and every woman her own husband.

Yes we can judge matters by the Word of God. We cannot judge who is going to heaven or hell.

John the baptist told herod it was not lawful for him to have his brothers wife. That was not a judgement that was rebuke for sinning.

In the scriptures the bible fully declares that only fornication is the basis for divorcing. And yes you can marry if that be the case. If, however, it was not because of fornication you have to remain unmarried or be reconciled.

In looking in the old testament a man had as many wives as he could afford that was not considered sin.
David got in trouble with God when he took another man's wife.

David committed adultery against his wives when he fornicated with bathsheba.

Under the law David was supposed to die but the child died instead. God made an exception. We can't assume God will do the same for us if we don't keep his word.

Under the law there was no question of remarriage because under the law you and your partner died. Except for certain circumstances like rape.

If a brother or sister is overtaken in a fault ye who are spiritual restore such an one in the spirit of meekness, fearing lest thou also be tempted.
Very well said Evangelist Sybil Ann Wiltz!
I have a question: it is obvious that the scriptures classify remarriage (except under one set of circumstances) is adultery. So is this an unforgivable sin? While the Scriptures do not specifically say so, should we beleive that should a man and woman ask for, and receive, forgiveness from God and be allowed to marry. I suppose I am confused as to how we can have FORMER murderers, rapist, dealers, addicts, prostitutes and every other manner of sinner be forgiven and allowed to preach and teach, yet we hang on divorce and remarriage as if this sin is unforgivable.
The situation that is being dealt with is that if one remarries while the spouse is still alive, it the act and condition of continuing to commit adultery. If one commits an act of sin and repents and doesnt go back to it, there is room forgiveness as the bible teaches. When one is in a continual state of adultery, this is not just an act of sin. The bible speaks of those holding office as well, that they must be the husband of one wife. There are rules and guidelines that the bible gives. If we are ignorant to the ways of God, it is still no excuse for us to violate the word of God. When it is pointed out that our lives are in error/violation, dont continue to wallow and make excuses to sin. Get it right and align ourselves with the word of God.

Now I will tell u there is a difference of what we do before we come to Christ. He is able to forgive us of all sin, but there are times we still have to deal with the consequences of our actions. God is able to forgive us of all sin, when we come to him. What we did out in the world is not held against us, when we come to salvation in him. Dont confuse this with after coming to him.

Thanks Kenon
Do not let this false teaching enter your hearts, nor your minds. For Jesus teaches in Mark the 3rd chapter 28-29
Verily I say unto you, all sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they blaspheme:
But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation.
So too say that one does not have forgiveness for whatever sin is just a strait lie. some of us need to stop and let God be true, and every man a liar.
Who would want to serve a God that after you came for forgiveness ,stopped forgiving? That would be lunacy, God is faithful and just too forgive all who ask.
I wanted to post the following teaching in it's is a bit long, but I wanted to post it all. The writer is Dr. Stephen E. Jones of God's Kingdom Ministries. Here is his contact info:

Church opinion has long favored the teaching that remarriage after divorce is adultery, based upon what we believe to be a single mistranslated word in Matthew 5:32 and a few incorrect assumptions. The result? A great many people today who are divorced and remarried are being expelled from their churches. Others are being refused leadership positions or are being plied with a load of guilt for “living in constant adultery." It is tragic, and so very unnecessary. Many times it turns people away from God altogether, either in rebellion against what they feel is an injustice in Scripture, or else through discouragement over their own inability to remain single for the rest of their lives.

In order for us to gain a better understanding of the entire question, we must go back to the beginning, to the days before God gave His holy law to Israel. We shall look first at the ancient Babylonian law Code of Hammurabi and then compare it with God's law in this matter of divorce and remarriage.

But first we must make it clear that this is not intended to be a book on marriage counseling. We have limited our focus to the question of whether or not God forbids remarriage after divorce. This book should not be used to encourage divorce, for the Bible makes it clear that God intended from the beginning for married people to make a life-long commitment to each other. On the other hand, it takes two to make a marriage, and it is often the case that only one marriage partner really wants to make the marriage work.

The fact is, in today’s world there are many, many people who are divorced, and many of them are now happily remarried. Some counselors have actually suggested that these should be divorced and seek to remarry their former spouse. We will show from the divine law that such counsel is not of God, for God defines such remarriage to a former spouse as a sin. Such counsel only underlines the importance of our present book.

Hammurabi is the Biblical Nimrod
The oldest known law code from Mesopotamia is the Code of Hammurabi. Historians date this king of Babylon between 2400 and 2100 B.C. The book of Jasher 27:2 identifies him with Nimrod “the rebel” and dates him from 1908-2123 years from Adam, which is 1987-1772. B.C. According to Prof. A.H. Sayce, Hammurabi was mentioned in Genesis 14:1 under the name of Amraphel, one of the kings who helped the king of Elam conquer Sodom and capture Lot. In his book, Monument Facts and Higher Critical Fancies, page 60, we read:

“Khammu-rabi, like others of his dynasty, claimed divine honours, and was addressed by his subjects as a god. In Babylonian ilu is ‘god,’ the Hebrew el, and Ammu-rapi would be ‘Khammu-rabi the god.’ Now Ammu-rapi ilu is letter for letter the Amraphel of Genesis.”

The war with Sodom took place during a time when Babylonia had been conquered by Chedorlaomer, the Elamite king of Gen. 14:1. Nimrod, or Amraphel (Hammurabi), was subject to Elam for many years. When Nimrod finally overthrew the Elamite yoke, he drew up his famous law code. Sayce tells us in Monument Facts, p. 67, 68:

“The compilation of the code marked the overthrow of the Elamite domination, the recovery of Babylonian independence, and the establishment once more of a Babylonian empire.”

Hammurabi’s Law on Divorce
According to Hammurabi's Code, a marriage was a simple contract, valid only if it was written, sealed (signed), and witnessed (Par. 128). Divorce was allowed, but treated in various ways, depending on which party broke the contract. If the wife were guilty, he could divorce her with the words, "I put her away," and he could send her away empty-handed (Par. 141). In the book by Stanley a. Cook, M.A. entitled, The Laws of Moses and the Code of Hammurabi, page 120, he quotes from paragraph 141 of the Hammurabi Code:

“If the wife of a man who is living in his house has set her face to go out, and has acted extravagantly, ‘has wasted her house’ (bit-za u-za-ap-pa-ah), and has neglected her husband, one can bring her to justice, and if her husband formally divorces her, with the words ‘I repudiate her’ (e-si-ib-sa), she goes her own way and receives no uzubu. If the husband does not pronounce this formula, and takes another woman (zinnistu), she remains in his house as a maid-servant.”

The wife too had the right to divorce her husband, if her husband had violated the marriage contract. However, this was a risky thing to attempt to do, because if the court should find HER to be the guilty party, she was thrown into the water and drowned (Par. 142, 143). Thus, another serious consideration for her was whether or not she could obtain justice in the court.

When the husband was at fault, the law was quite generous with her and took pains to provide for her support. If she had no children, her husband was to give her her dowry and the equivalent of her bride-price as she left the house (Par. 138). The dowry was the portion of her father's wealth given to her when she was married. Although she brought the dowry with her into her husband's house, it was tied to her for life and was never considered to be the property of her husband. It was her security in case of disaster or divorce. After her death, it was to be divided among her children, but never to go to her husband, even if he outlived her.

The bride-price was usually a lesser amount, which the suitor gave to the bride's father to secure the marriage. It was usually one mina of silver (60 shekels, or the equivalent of 120 days' work at common labor).

The dowry and the bride-price was her means of support after her divorce. If her husband had given her father no bride-price when he married her, he still had to give her one mina if he were rich and 1/3 mina if he were poor (Par. 139, 140).

On the other hand, if the divorced wife had children, and if the husband were the guilty party, it was handled differently. She received her dowry, of course, but in place of the bride-price, she was instead to have use of his property and food from his field or garden. This provision served as alimony and child support. Further, if he should decide to give any inheritance to the children, she was to receive a share equal to one son (Par. 137).

If a man should be captivated and deported, his wife could only remarry if she had lost her means of support. However, if he returned from captivity, she had to return to him, leaving any children of her second marriage with their father (Par. 133, 135.) If a man simply deserted his wife, she had the right to remarry, and if her former husband returned, he had no claim on her (Par. 136).

The only prohibition on divorce, other than when no one had violated the marriage contract, was when the wife was incurably sick and in need of care. In such a case, the husband may not divorce her, although he could take a second wife (Par. 148).

God Corrects the Law of Hammurabi
God's law had been in existence since the creation and was thus much older than the Code of Hammurabi. Adam had been given dominion over the earth at the time of creation (Genesis 1:26-28), and this right to rule the earth under God was one of the foremost features of the Birthright that was passed to succeeding generations. Just as Adam was the lawful King of the earth while he lived, so also were Methuselah and Noah.

However, during the days of Noah, Nimrod (Hammurabi) usurped the throne with the support of his army. For this reason the Bible calls him Nimrod, “the rebel.” Shem and his son Eber then migrated to Canaan and built the city of Jerusalem. Here Shem appears under the title of Melchizedek, the "King of Righteousness." The book of Jasher calls him Adonizedek, “Lord of Righteousness” in Jasher 16:11, 12.

11 And Adonizedek king of Jerusalem, the same was Shem, went out with his men to meet Abram and his people, with bread and wine, and they remained together in the valley of Melech. 12 And Adonizedek blessed Abram, and Abram gave him a tenth from all that he had brought from the spoil of his enemies, for Adonizedek was a priest before God.

This title was continued in Jerusalem (Salem) even after the line of Shem was overthrown by the Canaanites some time prior to the Israelite invasion under Joshua. In Joshua’s day we read that the king of Jerusalem was still called Adonizedek (Joshua 10:1), though by now the rule was in the hands of Canaanite usurpers. The true Kingship over the earth, the legitimate Birthright, belonged to the Biblical Patriarchs, who continued to observe the laws of God and rule the people by its system of justice.

Long before Hammurabi (Nimrod) the people and judges had altered God's law to suit their own understanding of right and wrong. Hammurabi himself seems only to have codified it to set the legal standard for Babylonia. Once again, Prof. Sayce writes on page 68 of his book,

“The individual laws [of the Hammurabi Code] had been in existence before. They embody for the most part the decisions of the judges in the special cases brought before them, Babylonian law being, like English law, ‘judge-made’ and based upon precedent.”

The divine law—insofar as it had been revealed to Adam and his descendants—was centered around Shem, the priest-king in Jerusalem. Because he lived 600 years, Shem actually outlived Abraham by 35 years. In fact, both Abraham and Nimrod died the same year, according to the book of Jasher. (Abraham was 175, and Nimrod was 215.) Shem apparently had some sort of educational facility to teach the laws and ways of God, for Jasher 24:17 tells us that Isaac went there after his mother died.

17 And when the days of their mourning passed by, Abraham went away his son Isaac, and he went to the house of Shem and Eber, to learn the ways of the Lord and his instructions, and Abraham remained there three years.

Both laws existed side by side during the days of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, but Hammurabi's Code was the common law of most of the world, including Canaan. During Israel's sojourn in Egypt, God's law was largely forgotten. Thus, it became necessary for God to teach the people His law once again. If God had given lawful judgments on every different situation that was to arise in the course of history, the law books could not have been borne by the entire nation of Israel. So we must realize that to some extent, rather than being an exhaustive law code, God's law gives the basic moral principles in the Ten Commandments and then continues with only a few hundred specific statutes to define those principles. Often, God merely corrects the errors of the Hammurabi Code, and where there was nothing to correct, God did not elaborate, since custom already dictated that which was right. It is our lob now to study the principles given to us and apply them to every situation that we face today.

God's Law on Divorce and Remarriage
A conditional contract (covenant) is one that specifies conditions that both parties must fulfill; and if one party breaks the contract, the wronged party may sue at law for damages or annulment of the contract. By definition marriage contracts are conditional contracts. It was always so in ancient times, and in this respect the Code of Hammurabi is in total agreement with the law of God.

Divorce that is, a complete break in the marriage contract is lawful, because virtually all marriage contracts involve vows made by two parties. In God's marriage to Israel at Mt. Sinai, Israel (the bride) agreed to submit to His authority and obey His laws (Ex. 19:3-8). God, on the other hand, agreed to give them the Kingdom and the blessings of the Birthright. These included honor, protection, sustenance, and children (Gen. 12:1-3).

Israel violated this contract, being incapable of full obedience, and refused to repent; and thus, her Husband divorced her and sent her out of His house. Jeremiah 3:8 says,

8 And I saw that for all the adulteries of faithless Israel, I had sent her away and given her a writ of divorce, yet her treacherous sister Judah did not fear; but she went and was a harlot also.

Note that God not only sent her away, but only did so after giving her a written bill of divorce. This was in accordance with the law in Deut. 24 that we will quote shortly. Hosea 2:2 also shows that God’s divorce meant Israel was no longer God’s wife, saying to her,

2 Contend with your mother [Israel], contend, for she is not my wife, and I am not her husband;

Because God Himself is a divorcee, we can safely say that divorce itself is not necessarily a sin. It can be a sin, of course, if the one demanding a divorce does so with evil motives that are not in the will of God. But the fact that God divorced Israel shows that lawful divorce is the result of sin, or violation of the contract. It is the final solution to the problem when all else fails, and when reconciliation is impossible. God's law on divorce and remarriage is given in Deut. 24:1-4.

1 When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house. 2 And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man's wife. 3 And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement, and giveth it in her hand, and sendeth her out of his house; or if the latter husband die, which took her to be his wife; 4 Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before the LORD: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.

From verse 1 we see immediately that God recognizes there must be a cause of divorcement. It is not specified in any detail, other than finding something unclean in her. Some insist that means divorce is only lawful in case of adultery. But the penalty for adultery is death—not divorce.

Others say it means divorce is only lawful if the husband discovers that his wife had had illicit sexual relations with someone else before they were married. However, such a situation also calls for the death penalty, and this is elaborated upon in detail in Deut. 22:13-21.

Thus, the grounds for divorce in the 24th chapter must be something else. Since the grounds are not specified, it would appear that the common law needed no modifying here. Thus, it is helpful to look at the Code of Hammurabi for a list of the grounds for divorce.

The Code specifies cruelty, slander, waste of family assets, and running up needless debts as being grounds for a man to divorce his wife. This is in addition to any other violation that may have been written into the contract.

The wife, too, could divorce her husband for those same offenses, but in addition to them, she could divorce him for lack of support (i.e., food, clothing, and conjugal relations; compare with Exodus 21:10,11.)

We may conclude, then, that these basic grounds for divorce were similar in both law codes, as God's law passes over the question without modification. The primary difference between Hammurabi and Moses is that God takes an interest in the matters of the heart. Hence, even if the outward grounds for divorce appear to exist, there may well be hidden motives and sinful attitudes are against the spirit of the divine law. Such things, in the eyes of God, would make that divorce unlawful.

The divorce PROCEDURE differs in one very important area. Whereas the Code of Hammurabi allows either the man or the woman to divorce the spouse with a verbal statement, God's law demands a written document, the "bill of divorcement." Hammurabi was careful to mandate that the marriage contract be written (Par. 128), but divorces were purely verbal. This was bound to cause problems in some cases, so God solved the problem by making divorces written as well. One could easily imagine a situation where a man divorced his wife verbally, whereupon she remarries-only to have her former spouse fly into a fit of jealous rage. He might then deny his verbal divorce and accuse her and her new husband of adultery. Since adultery called for the death penalty, this was a very serious charge.

Justice is safeguarded by the written bill of divorcement, which a divorced wife may produce to prove that her former husband no longer has any claim upon her. It is her security and her license to remarry. For this reason, Deut. 24:2 follows on the heels of verse 1, stating that once she has those divorce papers, she is free to remarry. It is common knowledge among Bible scholars that this was how all the rabbis of ancient times interpreted this divorce law. There was never any question of the lawfulness of divorce. The only problem was their abuse of the divorce law, and this was what Jesus addressed in Matthew 5, as we will see shortly. Divorce and remarriage was lawful, but if she were to remarry without those divorce papers, she would be committing adultery.

Hammurabi's Code had allowed women to remarry if their husbands had been taken captive, so long as the wives had no means of support. Then, if and when he should return from captivity, his wife had to leave the latter husband and any children by him, returning to the former husband. This law attempted to solve a social problem of the day, but just as often, it created further difficulty and heartache.

The system of welfare built into the laws of God provided for the support of a wife whose husband was captivated, so she was not to remarry while her husband was still alive. Thus, his possible homecoming would be a joyous affair, rather than a cause for further grief.

Since the Code did allow remarriage to a former husband in this case, God's law pursues the subject a bit further in Deut. 24:3,4. There, He forbids marriage to a former spouse, at least after she has remarried. This law also shows that God recognizes the validity of the second marriage, as well as the binding nature of the bill of divorcement. "Put away" does not mean "divorce." The term "put away" generally comes from the Hebrew words shalach ("to send away") or garash ("to drive away").

The words differ only in intensity. In reference to a husband and wife, it refers to the act of separation, where a man sends his wife out of the house. The term "divorce" is from the Hebrew word kerithuth. This word refers to the procedure by which the marriage relationship is lawfully terminated. It is used only 4 times in the Old Testament, and each time it is used in the full phrase, "bill of divorcement" (Deut. 24:1, 3; Isaiah 50:1; Jer. 3:8).

In the New Testament the Greek word for "divorce" is apostasion. Apo means "away from;" stasis means "standing; established (by law)" referring in this case to the written marriage contract. We can see then that the Greek word apostasion signifies more than a mere separation, or "putting away." It is the lawful disestablishment of the marriage contract, accomplished by the written bill of divorcement.

There are those who teach that a true divorce is unlawful in the eyes of God, and therefore what we term "divorce" is realty only a SEPARATION in His eyes. Thus, remarriage would be adultery against the separated spouse. However, as we have seen, the phrase "put away" refers to lawful separation, while the word "divorce" refers to the actual lawful termination of the marriage contract. The fact that God allows not only a "putting away," but divorce as well shows that it is not a sin to get a divorce, so long as there is just cause to cancel the marriage contract.

God's law states that a bill of divorcement (kerithuth) must always accompany the act of separation, or "putting away" (shalach or garash). Without such a written document, the act of putting away does NOT constitute a lawful divorce in the eyes of God, and she is not free to remarry.

Thus we see that the two terms are not synonymous, although by law they always were to go together. If the two words meant the same thing, it would not have made sense to talk about putting away and divorcing in the same sentence in Deut. 24:1. This may seem like nitpicking, but this point will take on great importance when we attempt to understand Jesus' words in Matthew 5:32.

Did Jesus Outlaw Divorce?

In Mark 10:2-9 the Pharisees asked Jesus if it were lawful to put away one's wife. Jesus asked them in turn what Moses had said. They answered that Moses had commanded them to write a bill of divorcement and to put her away. Jesus then replied, "For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept." He went on to explain that divorce did not follow the perfect order of creation that was set up at the beginning. In other words, divorce is not a good thing, but because men's hearts are hard, it is necessary that provision be made for handling broken marriage contracts. For the same reason, God instituted the death penalty for first-degree murder. From the beginning it was not so, for God created us to live together in harmony. But for the hardness of men's hearts, it became a very necessary judgment to curb such violent crime.

The fact is, ALL LAWS exist only because of the hard-ness of men's hearts. If all men were perfect, there would be no need for laws, for the laws would be written in our hearts. We would be totally incorruptible. Paul wrote in 1 Timothy 1:9, "the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient." Thus, so long as there are unrighteous men on the earth, the law must remain in effect, in order that we may have some restraint on men's lusts and wickedness. We conclude, then, that in order to govern men justly in the present state of affairs, God's laws on divorce are absolutely necessary prior to the time that men come fully under the New Covenant and are no longer lawless. Divorce, therefore, should not be necessary among Christians. However, Christians, too, are often lawless and disobedient to the perfect will of God. For this reason divorce provisions are necessary even for Christians.

When a marriage contract has been broken, and especially if one or both parties refuse to repent and restore the lawful order, divorce may well be the only solution. God does not expect the innocent party to honor the contract when the guilty party refuses to do so. The contract is always conditional. Thus, Jesus' statement, "For the hardness of your heart," should not be construed to mean that divorce itself is a sin. Remember that God Himself is a divorcee, according to Jer. 3:8, yet He did not sin in divorcing Israel.

Nor must we believe that the people twisted God's arm and forced Him to allow divorce. If divorce were a sin, and God allowed it, then God was legalizing sin. This would be a serious accusation for mortals to make, especially in view of the testimony of David in Psalm 19:7 that "The law of the Lord is PERFECT, converting the soul."

Did Jesus Outlaw Remarriage After Divorce?

Matthew 5:31, 32 is by far the most important passage used by most people to prove that remarriage after divorce is adultery. It reads:

31 It hath been said, Whosoever 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 to commit adultery; and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.

As interpreted by the King James translation, it would appear that Jesus positively condemned divorce and remarriage, thus showing God's law to be inferior to divine moral standards. If divorce indeed causes one to commit adultery, then divorce itself would be a sin, according to God's law of liability. Remarriage, too, would constitute adultery. However, as we will show, neither is a sin.

First of all, this passage is a part of His "Sermon on the Mount," which is for the most part a commentary on Bible law. In verses 17-19 He disclaimed the idea that He was trying to destroy or undermine the law. Further, He positively condemned those who would break the shortest commandment and teach others to do so. From this alone it should be clear that Jesus did not abolish God's laws on divorce and remarriage.

Then in verse 20 Jesus said that our righteousness must EXCEED that of the Scribes and Pharisees. With that in mind, He began to give us examples of Bible law to show how they fell short of the law's righteous standard. They did not keep the true spirit of the law and misinterpreted it in many ways.

1.Thou shalt not kill (vs. 21-26)

2.Thou shalt not commit adultery (vs. 27-32)

3.Thou shalt not bear false witness (vs. 33-37)

4.An eye for an eye (vs. 38-42)

5.Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself (vs. 43-48)

In each case the law in question is introduced with the following format: "It has been said (interpreted in the synagogue). . . but I say unto you. . ." This is not to be construed to mean that Jesus is putting away all of these divine laws, or that He is replacing each of them with something different or better. It is not the law of God He is discrediting; it is the Pharisaical interpretation of the law and a legalistic spirit that He is disagreeing with. In other words, Jesus did NOT put away the law on murder when He said, "Thou shalt not kill. . . but I say unto you. . . ." Nor did He make it lawful to commit adultery, so long as you don't look upon another woman with lust while you do it.

In a nutshell, then, the purpose of the "Sermon on the Mount" was to improve upon the law's interpretation and application. The true spirit of the law had been lost through the traditions of the elders.

With that context in mind, and knowing that Jesus did not destroy the law, let us look at Matthew 5:31, 32 in greater detail. These two verses are a part of His comment on "Thou shalt not commit adultery," so the final thrust of His comment is to define adultery in relation to the laws of divorce and remarriage. Verse 31 simply refers to Deut. 24:1, where God demanded that men give their wives a WRITTEN bill of divorcement before they could lawfully put away their wives. Verse 2, of course, allowed divorced wives to remarry after a lawful divorce. So let us take another look at Matthew 5:31, 32, inserting a few key words in the original Greek, so that we get a proper translation of the passage.

31 It hath been said, Whosoever shall put away (apoluo) his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement (apostasion). 32 But I say unto you, that whosoever shall put away (apoluo) his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery; and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced (apoluo, lit. "put away") committeth adultery.

To paraphrase this: The law says that she commits adultery if she remarries without a written bill of divorcement. BUT I SAY UNTO YOU that whoever puts her away (without divorce papers; that is, unlawfully) causes her to commit adultery (if she remarries under such conditions). Thus, he who simply put her out of his house without divorcing her properly is JUST AS LIABLE AS SHE IS. And whosoever marries her that has been put away (without divorce papers) also commits adultery, because he is marrying another man's wife.

Jesus is here condemning men who put away their wives Babylonian style (verbally), instead of putting them away in the manner prescribed by God's law. Under the laws of liability, this would make him guilty of adultery if she were to remarry. So we see that the whole point of this commentary is to bring out a point of law that had not been covered by the Pharisees in their interpretations.

But what of the phrase, "saving for the cause of fornication?" What does this mean? Most people assume it means that if a wife commits adultery, then it is lawful to divorce her. However, it does NOT say, "except for the cause of ADULTERY." Further, the penalty for adultery was death-not divorce. So what is meant by "fornication?" Why is it alright to put away one's spouse without divorce papers in a case of fornication?

The Meaning of Fornication

The most common type of fornication is prostitution (Ex. 22:16). This is where a man has sexual relations with an unmarried woman. The solution is either to get married (Ex. 22:16, 17) or separate (repent and stop doing it). However, the word also covers other forms of unlawful sexual relations. In Hebrews 12:16 Esau is called a fornicator; yet there is no record in Scripture of his buying the services of a prostitute. But Genesis 26:34 does say that he married Hittite wives. From the account in Scripture, this obviously went against God's command not to take a wife from among the Canaanites. Thus, it may be classified as an unlawful marriage.

We find the term "fornication" used again in 1 Cor. 5:1. 1 It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the gentiles, that one should have his father's wife. Thus we see that Paul uses the term "fornication" to describe another unlawful marriage or sexual relationship that had been forbidden in Leviticus 18:7, 8, namely, incest.

In Jude 7 we read of the people of Sodom and Gomorrha who had given themselves over to "fornication," going after "strange flesh." This, too, is obviously a sexual sin, and yet the only thing we have on record of their sexual tendencies is homosexuality, or "sodomy" (Gen. 19:4-8). Each of these examples have one thing in common: they are unlawful sexual relationships, and therefore, there is no LAWFUL marriage contract to bind the two parties together. In other words God does not recognize the "marriage" in the first place. It is void from the start.

Thus, when Jesus says it is alright to "put away" (separate without divorce papers) one's spouse in the case of fornication, the reason is quite obvious. There was no lawfully-binding marriage contract in the first place, so how can one appeal to the law of God to have it voided? God requires no such divorce papers. However, if the couple had obtained a marriage license from a humanist government such as those of this world order, then they would have to petition it for a divorce as well, because humanist governments recognize many marriage relationships that God's law does not. God does not recognize relationships which are homosexual, incestual, or otherwise forbidden as in the case of Esau, even if the parties sign a marriage contract. Another case where divorce papers are unnecessary is in the case of prostitution. Since prostitutes do not enter marriage contracts with a client, the solution is separation, not divorce.

Did Paul Ban Remarriage After Divorce?

Since some have been taught that Paul banned remarriage in 1 Cor. 7:10,11, we shall study this passage to show that Paul actually wrote that remarriage is NOT a sin.

10 And unto the married. . . let not the wife depart (chorizo) from her husband; 11 But and if she depart (chorizo), let her remain unmarried (agamos), or let her be reconciled to her husband; and let not the husband put away (aphiemi, "to dismiss") his wife. 12 But to the rest speak I, not the Lord; if any brother hath a wife that believeth not, and she be pleased to dwell with him, let him not put her away.

At first glance it might appear that Paul is speaking of divorce and remarriage. However, the word apostasion does not appear here, since he is not discussing divorce, but rather the problem of separation, as we see from verse 1.

1 Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.

Thus, the subject of this discussion is whether or not to abstain from sexual relations and marriage itself. Apparently, Paul had previously taught them that "it is good for a man not to touch a woman," but the Corinthian church had misinterpreted it to mean that sexual relations prevented Christians from attaining to a truly spiritual life. Thus, the young people were being discouraged from marrying, and some of the married couples were even separating.

So here, Paul corrects their error. He had told them that it was good not to marry, it is true, but NOT because marriage itself was a sin or a hindrance to one's personal relationship to God. Rather, it was because of two things: (1) the "present distress" discussed in verse 26; and (2) to be able to devote more time and energy to spreading the Gospel (vs. 32-35). In those days a man never knew if he were going to be imprisoned or executed and his family with him. So because of the dangerous political climate, it may have been a good idea not to marry, if a person could bear the incontinence. And, of course, it is quite certain that Paul himself could not have traveled as he did, if he had been married and had had to support a family. Thus, it was an advantage to him and to others like him to remain unmarried so long as they had the gift of continence.

In verse 5 Paul makes it clear that it was not right for married couples to separate, or even to abstain from normal sexual relations, except during times of prayer and fasting. (People lose most sexual desire during fasts anyway.) In verses 7-9 he tells unmarried people that if they can take a life of celibacy, they may do so; but if they do NOT have that gift, "it is better to marry than to burn" (with lust).

Regarding the same subject, Paul then turns his attention to married couples and especially to those couples who had already separated, thinking this was the spiritual thing to do. Paul's verdict is, "Let not the wife separate (chorizo) from her husband" in verse 10. But if she does not heed his advice here, Paul says she must remain agamos, or be reconciled to her husband. Most people are taught this means the wife should not divorce her husband, but if she does, she must remain single for the rest of her life, or else come back and remarry her former husband. However, as the context shows, this passage is referring to the problem of separation, rather than to divorce. The Greek word apostasion is not used here. The word translated "unmarried" is agamos, the negative form of gamos. Gamos sometimes refers to the STATE of being married, but it usually refers to the occasion when the marriage contract is put into effect that is, the ACT OF GETTING MARRIED.

Agamos, then, being the negative form of the word gamos, can mean either: (1) the unmarried STATE, or (2) the ACT of not drawing up a marriage contract with someone. The way it is translated in the King James version, verse 11 is assumed to mean, "let her remain in the unmarried STATE." However, it is more likely to mean, "Let her not get married to anyone else," since she is only separated from her husband. So if we were to paraphrase this passage, we would see that Paul is saying, "let not the wife separate from her husband, thinking that this is pleasing to God. But if she does, she should not get married to anyone else, because she is still under contract with her original husband. Later in this same chapter, Paul does deal with the question of divorce and remarriage.

He does not use the technical words for divorce and remarriage, but rather the descriptive terms, "bound" and "loosed." To be bound by law means to be married by contract; to be loosed means to be loosed from that contract (i.e., divorced or widowed). 1 Cor. 7:27, 28 reads:

27 Art thou bound (by law) unto a wife? Seek not to be loosed (from the bonds of marriage). Art thou loosed from a wife? Seek not a wife. 28 But and if thou marry, thou hast not sinned; and if a virgin marry, she hath not sinned.

Few verses are plainer than these. If you are married, do not seek a divorce. If you are divorced or widowed, do not seek a wife (because of the "present distress" mentioned in verse 26). But if you do marry, YOU HAVE NOT SINNED; and if a virgin marry, she has not sinned either. In other words, Paul says, remarriage after a divorce is NOT a sin. Thus, divorce and remarriage is NOT adultery.

The Three Premises of This Study

For those who honestly dispute this conclusion, I offer some suggestions here. All logical conclusions are only as true as their premises. This particular study rests upon the following three premises:

1. Marriage is a conditional contract. We showed that God married Israel at Mt. Sinai and treated Israel as a married wife, until He divorced her (Jeremiah 3:8) for insubordination and disobedience. If marriage were unconditional, then God could not have divorced her without tainting Himself with sin. Therefore, it must have been conditional.

2. "Put away" is distinct from "divorce." We showed how the law mandates that a man must give his wife divorce papers before putting her away. One is the legal act of terminating the marriage; the other is the act of sending her away. This law was set up to correct the historical injustice left by the loophole in the Hammurabi Code.

3. God's law was not abolished. Jesus said this in Matthew 5:17-19, Paul said this in Romans 3:31, and John defines sin in terms of violation of God's law in 1 John 3:4.

You may disagree with some minor parts of this study, and that is your privilege. But if you find these three premises to be true, then you must agree that remarriage after divorce is not adultery.


We have seen, then, that not only did the Code of Hammurabi permit divorce and remarriage, but so did God's law. The main difference was the legal procedure of obtaining a proper divorce, in order to protect the women involved. We have also seen how Jesus added teeth to God's law by proclaiming that he who puts away his wife without a written bill of divorce causes her to commit adultery, and thus he is fully liable for her sin before God. Finally, we have seen how the Apostle Paul also understood that a remarriage after divorce is not sin. Common belief on this subject has put many people into bondage, either by forcing divorced people to remain single when they are unsuited to such a life, or else by placing on their shoulders a load of guilt for remarrying. I hope that this brief study will release many from the hard bondage of church tradition into the glorious liberty of God's law.
Rom 7:1-3
7:1 Do you not know, brothers-for I am speaking to men who know the law-that the law has authority over a man only as long as he lives? 2 For example, by law a married woman is bound to her husband as long as he is alive, but if her husband dies, she is released from the law of marriage. 3 So then, if she marries another man while her husband is still alive, she is called an adulteress. But if her husband dies, she is released from that law and is not an adulteress, even though she marries another man.
(from New International Version)

We can't live by the world standards we must live by Gods. he honors marriage inside the church and outside the church. If we say that I got married before I came into the church so that scripture does not apply to me we would have a mess and do have a mess in the church. God is not like man where there is favoriatism or special circumstances for certian people. His word is his word and it is very clear in the old and new testament. Where do we see that men and women in the Bible divorced and then got remarried. There were only illustration or examples. you do not read while the husband was alive the woman or man remarried. Again I say this is espically true for Pastors because the bible says he must be the husband of one wife.

Let me give you an example. I was at a funeral repass and an elder was sitting at the table he was in the middle and on each side of him was a wife one he was married to and one he was divorced from. Now somebody tell me how crazy was that. try to visualize that and then go back and look at the scriptures. This man had two wives.

James 3:1
3:1 Not many of you should presume to be teachers, my brothers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly .
(from New International Version)
Again, is there not forgiveness for our sins. Stop being so judgemental, yes the Bible does say that this is sin.
It also clearly says, that ( His name shall be called JESUS, for he shall save his people from their sins). How about restoring a brother or sister who has been caught in their faults. Instead of condemning them to hell, Their shall be many who claim to know, and that have so eloquently quoted the scriptures, and shall lift up their eyes from hell, while the one's they have so quickly judged as reproaches, and hell bound, shall sit in the heavenlies.
And as I have said before 1st John 1:8-10. Clearly tells us who is a sinner.
Judge not lest ye be judged, For with what measure ye mete it shall be measured unto you again.
Do you really know God's standards, do you think as God does, do you love as he, do you give as he has given. Learn to do do your part and save yourself, and you shall do a good thing. If there are illustrations and examples, let them be.
One thing is true/ the Bishop you speak of and the two women, did you warn them of their contrariness, if not you are just as guilty. Don't talk about what you can't do anything about, and anyone you have not helped.
Love is a many things, that all added up to one. If you had understanding you and others would keep your mouths off of others, and attend to your own. The Weeks, The Whites and all others.
The main thing is that no-one has showed any compassion nor Love toward these folks and others. But have surely been quick to condemn and call names, and then the so-called man of God LIES on me as if he knows something. When you become perfect and untouchable please let us know how that happened.
None of us are perfect and need to learn that everyday we all need the Lord to keep it together, if one has fallen help them get up, and stop being as the priest and the levite, and pass by on the otherside. When all the time claiming to be on the lord's side.
Man you ae missing the whole point.

Fisrt of all. He was not a bishop. he was an elder. Second yes they were warned. third why are you stuck on saying the same thing.

Yes love covers a multitued of faults but the word says warn a brother once, warn him again. then have if he does not listen, have nothing to do with him. I am not governed by my emotions I am governed by the word of God that is what leads me and that is what I follow. The word is the same for everyone on the face of the earth with no favoriatism.

Nobody is judging anyone as you seem to believe. People are just commenting on a discussion. You sound so hard and harsh. lighten up. People are going to have their different opinions and the way they look at things because they were taught different whether by parents, pastor or whomever. But tell you this. God and his word will stand forever no matter what anyone says. I take the word for face value. I don't try to put a twist or give my own interrpretation, it is what it is.
You speak of the weeks and whites. These are prominate people in the public eye. They put their own business out there. Plus, If they are functioning contrary to Gods word. They are to be judged accordingly. By Gods word. For we will kow them by their fruit. and if their fruit is not in step with the word. What do we do, say oh well the made a mistake. not once but twice. We must look at it this way. These people are leading others and have many people hooked into them. And what they do others are going to feel they can do it also because their leaders did it. and that should not be so. We should be able to confront the issue and call it like it is. according to the word of God. and not brush anything under the carpet. Because when one stands before God what will they be able to say. what excuse will they be able to give. People must lead by example. Someone can't tell me how to love someone when they have already been divorced and remarried and will likely do it again. Brother God is not pleased with that. How can someone stand in front of their congregation and tell them that they are getting a divorce not for marital unfaithfulness, but just because they are going in different directions. That is not Gods word. so stop defending them and acting like we are judging them I am strictly coming from the word.
My point is still the same, tell me can/shall they not be forgiven, if they ask?
No I haven't missed the point. I shall stand by my convictions, You see so many people are talking about someone elses affairs, and not looking upon their own. So what if they are in the public eye, aren't you and i for that matter. Many people have been led too Christ through these people. what they have put their hands to has prospered. And if you haven't noticed those that love them have rallied around them. The word is the word. And at the sametime have you and others become so in-touch with it that you can sit in the seat of judging another.
I have a different opinion also, but truly through your and this other perfect person Mine seems to be wrong.
And how can two walk together unless they be agreed. God has a plan for everyones life, we all have a path to take, don't know about you and others, but mine hasn'tbeen all that perfect. And for some idiot to take pot shots and call me all sorts of things because they feel they know where sin lies is damnable. So look at it any way you please.
And I shall continue too pray for them and others who may be like them, be most assured with all of this judging being done here on earth there shall be more of the same in heaven.
And it's not our love that so-much covers ones faults, But most assuredly it is the love that God gave and continues to give each and every one of us.
Confront the issue and leave the people alone. Let God be their judge, he is the judge of us all.
i believe that in all situations God should be glorified and not used as a tool for brother to war with brother.
The Apostles were in a difficult situation, and one man named Gamaliel stood and said if what they do be not of God it will all come too naught, so you see if the Weeks, Whites or anyone else is contrary let them be and God will visit too see if the thing is true. As for you me and anyone else let us continue too work in the vineyard. I am not as you say defending them, but the truth of the matter is, whether coming from the word or not these people and others are being judged in the court of public opinion. Be careful/ and work out your own soul salvation with fear and trembling.
It doesn't matter too me that i am deemed as being a defender and friend of wrong-doers, someone has too.but one thing is i refuse to judge them, I believe that it should be left to the judge.
Why am I looked upon as being hard and harsh, because I don't speak as others, nor carry the popular opinion of the day, I have spoken the Word of God also, but from my view point it isn't taken oh! well
Too God be the Glory. And may he continue to bless you and yours, along with the Weeks, and the Whites.
And one thing about them they didn't stand and tell them a lie! they could have let them find out on the news or not told them at all. Let god work through the situations and stand back and take care of the business that we have been entrusted with.
and please don't tell me how too act or who to defend, I defend the homeless and young people who are deemed to be un-aproachable, and people tell me not too defend them. I defend the orphans and the widows and also them that are in jail, I speak of God to the downtrodden and the heavy buedened, maybe I shouldn't do that either.
But for all who call them sinners and distressed/ they are just the folks who God wants to bless. Remember he came seeking that which was lost. that is also from the word..
on the discussion of marriage and re-marriage. If the Whites stood in front of their congregation and told them that they were divorcing, not for marital unfaithfulness like the bible says. they have just corrupted all those thousands of people into thinking I can leave my marriage for no reason at all and God will accept it. There is no such thing as irreconsilable differences in the eyesight of God. They are not following Gods word at all. I wouldn't follow them because they are acting contrary to God's word. You are right in saying that God will be the judge. But in the mean time thousands of people are being mislead by their actions and their teachings. my heart greives because there are so many people who have put the people on a pedastal and promote them and get caught up in the man and the woman more than they get caught up in God. People would rather hear them rather than hearing how to make it into heaven and what it takes to enter in. I tell you this they are not teachig that one MUST repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the removal of their sins and the receiving of the Holy Ghost like Jesus told Nicodemas. because they don't believe that. I don't have the popular opinion on that one. But it is the word anyhow. The people promote themselves in the name of God. I urge you and all others to do a research and look into these people. and raise up God not man.

We ought to obey God Rather than man.

In today's society, People need to search Gods word for themselves and not just take what the pastor or minister says as gold.

I have a question. if you speak on forgiveness why do we teach people that they can get a divorce when a person cheats, yes it is in the bible that they can get a divorce but why not just forgive them and try to make the marriage work. The bible is not going to contradict itself. The problem is I believe is that people are so eager to get married and when they stand there before God and take those vows and not really thinking and taking them to heart they are merely just saying the words for the ceremony. the vows that we take say for better or worse, rich or poor, in sickness or in health, til death do we part. What happened to that.
I would like for you to consider Jer. 3:8 in light of your comments about there being no such thing as irreconcilable differences. God gave the nation of Israel a divorce due to unfaithfulness.


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