Introduction: -       

1.       Has divided more congregations - had more preachers fired


2.       I know some will be hurt - uncomfortable - all have family involved


3.       This lesson for all of us....

          Children - so they will make better choices

          Young Married - so they will remain committed

          Older Married - remember how important - appreciate God's blessings


4.       Put away pre-drawn conclusions


5.       Preach every year.....


Charts on Divorce Rates: -  

1.       U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT - 6-8-87; "U. S. Tops the World's           Divorce Charts."


2.       TIME - 7-13-87; "Number of Divorces in the U. S. Tripled Each Year Between 1962 and 1981"


3.       In California - there is one divorce for each marriage


4.       9 of 10 persons will marry


5.       3 of 4 divorcees will remarry


6.       Can't let social acceptance change what God's law demands


7.       Would anyone put up a fuss over this lesson in 1700's; 1800's; or even in      1950?




God's Marriage Law: -  


Gen 2:18; 22-24,   Then the LORD God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him." ............  And the LORD God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man.  And the man said, "This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man." For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.


Mal 2:13-16,   "....... you cover the altar of the LORD with tears, with weeping and with groaning, because He no longer regards the offering or accepts it with favor from your hand. Yet you say, 'For what reason?' Because the LORD has been a witness between you and the wife of your youth, against whom you have dealt treacherously, though she is your companion and your wife by covenant.  But not one has done so who has a remnant of the Spirit. And what did that one do while he was seeking a godly offspring? Take heed then, to your spirit, and let no one deal treacherously against the wife of your youth.  'For I hate divorce,' says the LORD, the God of Israel, 'and him who covers his garment with wrong,' says the LORD of hosts. So take heed to your spirit, that you do not deal treacherously."


Rom 7:1-3,   Or do you not know, brethren (for I am speaking to those who know the law), that the law has jurisdiction over a person as long as he lives?  For the married woman is bound by law to her husband while he is living; but if her husband dies, she is released from the law concerning the husband.  So then if, while her husband is living, she is joined to another man, she shall be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from the law, so that she is not an adulteress, though she is joined to another man.


1 Cor 7:10-11,  But to the married I give instructions, not I, but the Lord, that the wife should not leave her husband  (but if she does leave, let her remain unmarried, or else be reconciled to her husband), and that the husband should not send his wife away.        (Note:  v. 26, "present distress")







God Joins 2 into one......:


Gen 2:18; 22-24,   Then the LORD God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him." ............  And the LORD God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man.  And the man said, "This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man." For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.


Jesus said,  (Matt. 19:4 beginning) "Have you not read, that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE,  and said, 'FOR THIS CAUSE A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER, AND SHALL CLEAVE TO HIS WIFE; AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH'?  Consequently they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate."


God's Law on Divorce......:


Mark 10:11,   And He (Jesus) said to them, "Whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her;"


Luke 16:18,  Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery; and he who marries one who is divorced from a husband commits adultery.


The Exception! .....


Mat 5:32,   (Jesus said...) but I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except for the cause of unchastity, makes her commit adultery; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.


Mat 19:9,  "And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery."





The Context of Matthew 19 ..... verse 3....


1.       Verse 3.....


          a.       trying to trick Jesus ... look for the trick


                   1)       Jesus was clear on his teaching

                   2)       Man's practice was different

                   3)       Moses allowed - women being left uncared for -

                             took care of social arrangement -

                             remember - Moses over civil govt. as well as spiritual

                   4)       Neither Moses nor God said divorce was acceptable


          b.       The trick - are you going to tell us to go against the law?


          c.       God tolerated (much like the kings/judges)


 ..... verse 4-6....


1.       The union is God's .... not man's


2.       This is God's law for ALL


          a.       sin is sin even if you are not aware of the law


          b.       is the alien guilty for stealing, etc.?


 ..... verse 7-9.....


verse 7 ...... the trick question......


1.       Matt. 22:15,  Then the Pharisees went and counseled together how they       might trap Him in what He said.


2.       As always .... let the scriptures answer them (verse 5)


3.       we should do the same (story of man who came to my office in Cortez)



verse 8 .....


1.       God didn't change


2.       Your heart changed -------  look at today


verse 9......


1.       Mat 28:18,   And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth".


2.       John 12:48,  "He who rejects Me, and does not receive My sayings, has        one who judges him; the word I spoke is what will judge him at the last         day.


3.       Luke 3:22, (at the baptism of Jesus)  and the Holy Spirit descended upon     Him   in bodily form like      a dove, and a voice came out of heaven, "Thou art        My beloved Son, in Thee I am well-pleased."


4.       "He speaks as one having authority..."


The Law..... (with phrase removed)


The ONLY Exception....


1.       Any sexual impurity that violates the ONE FLESH ..... (i.e. homosexuality,     bestiality, adultery)


2.       ALSO, Whoever marries the divorced woman....commits adultery.


3.       Must be the CAUSE - Not just a "loophole"


          a.       first responsibility is to forgive


          b.       can't force by abstaining


1 Cor 7:3-5  Let the husband fulfill his duty to his wife, and likewise also the wife to her husband. The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does; and likewise also the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does. Stop depriving one another, except by agreement for a time that you may devote yourselves to prayer, and come together again lest Satan tempt you because of your lack of self-control.


          c.       can't just OUT WAIT the other to marry after divorce


          d.       is to be taken seriously - not a  loophole to slip out of marriage                                through


4.       The importance.....


1 Cor 6:9-10, Or do you not know that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, shall inherit the kingdom of God.


Rev 21:8,  "But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death."


Gal 5:19-21,   Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you just as I have forewarned you that those who practice such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

          a.       Some sins have consequences which are irreversible


                   1)       after divorce - too late - many wnat to change God's law

                   2)       many capital offences - can't make restitution (murder - rape)

                   3)       Adultery is capital offence to God 


Lev 20:10,   'If there is a man who commits adultery with another man's wife, one who commits adultery with his friend's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.


Deu 22:22,   "If a man is found lying with a married woman, then both of them shall die, the man who lay with the woman, and the woman; thus you shall purge the evil from Israel.


          b.       God takes it SERIOUSLY


          c.       Violates the sanctity of the home - family is picture of church


          d.       Destroys family relationships & children's sense of identity


          e.       Marriage relationship - earth's most intimate relationship


          f.       To betray one's mate is to betray one's self  


V10-12 "This is a Hard Saying"....


.....verse 10

1. to His disciples


2.       This is a strong saying


3.       It might be best not to marry at all


.....verse 11

4.       Jesus agrees ... for some it might be better not to marry at all


5.       some had already messed themselves up - then as well as now


6.       Some don't want to give up that side of their lives - (then & now)


7.       "to those it was given..."


          a.       marriage was given to those who could be happy with one mate


          b.       given to those who would put the kingdom - put God - first


.....verse 12

8.       There can be some very hard situations....


9.       Some have become eunuchs


          a.       Some say man can't do that - many have; even our Lord...and Paul,                         etc.


          b.       Some times illness of a mate


          c.       Some were in jail




Who is in Adultery?....


Why is it so HARD?....


1.       God's laws don't cause misery and problems - sin does


Prov 15:10-13  Stern discipline is for him who forsakes the way; He who hates reproof will die.  Sheol and Abaddon lie open before the LORD, How much more the hearts of men!  A scoffer does not love one who reproves him, He will not go to the wise.  A joyful heart makes a cheerful face, But when the heart is sad, the spirit is broken.


1 John 3:4, Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness.


2.       God's laws bring blessings -


Rev 22:14,   Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter by the gates into the city.


3.       The presence of children in an adulterous marriage doesn't make it holy!


Ezra 10:2-4,  And Shecaniah the son of Jehiel, one of the sons of Elam, answered and said to Ezra, "We have been unfaithful to our God, and have married foreign women from the peoples of the land; yet now there is hope for Israel in spite of this.  So now let us make a covenant with our God to put away all the wives and their children, according to the counsel of my lord and of those who tremble at the commandment of our God; and let it be done according to the law.  Arise! For this matter is your responsibility, but we will be with you; be courageous and act."


Ezra 10:10-11,  Then Ezra the priest stood up and said to them, "You have been unfaithful and have married foreign wives adding to the guilt of Israel.  Now, therefore, make confession to the LORD God of your fathers, and do His will; and separate yourselves from the peoples of the land and from the foreign wives."


Ezra 10:44,  All these had married foreign wives, and some of them had wives by whom they had children.


4.       Parents must still provide for their children - though they live out of the          home