Teachings of the elders of the Way
Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage
- Marriage is a sacred institution ordained by God, a beautiful and binding covenant between a man and woman to cleave (join) together as one flesh, forsaking all others, a mingling of souls, until separation in death. (Genesis 1:28, Genesis 2:23-25, Matthew 19:4-6)
- The purpose of marriage is to glorify God, to bear witness to the Gospel message as the man loves His wife as Christ loves the Church and the woman lovingly submits to the man as to the Lord. (Ephesians 5:22-33, Colossians 3:18, 1 Peter 3:1-7)
- As such, a Christian ought not to marry outside the faith. (2 Corinthians 6:14-15) A Christian ought not to divorce. (Matthew 9:4-6)
- God established marriage vows: fidelity, food, clothing, and marital (conjugal) rights which can be summarized as sexual faithfulness, general care, and affection. (Deuteronomy 24:1-4, Exodus 21:7-11, Matthew 19:1-9, 1 Corinthians 7:33-34)
- It is the breaking of marriage vows that grieves God, God Himself being a divorcée, having divorced Israel for her covenant unfaithfulness. (Jeremiah 3:1-8)
- If a spouse unrepentantly breaks the marriage vows by sexual infidelity, neglect, and/or abandonment, God provides divorce as an option to liberate the offended spouse from further harm. (Matthew 19:1-9, 1 Corinthians 7:15) Forgiveness of a repentant spouse is always an option that glorifies God.
- Abuse of any kind constitutes extreme neglect and by no means should any spouse remain in an abusive relationship putting them and/or children in harm’s way.
- If anyone has obtained an unbiblical divorce, they ought to seek to reconcile with their former spouse unless the former spouse is already remarried or has rebuffed all attempts at reconciliation. (1 Corinthians 7:10-11)
- Divorce is never an appropriate means to attempt to rectify a previous unbiblical divorce.
- Repentance ought to precede remarriage following an unbiblical divorce or if they have broken their previous marriage vows.
- Please direct any questions to the elders. This is a general statement, and it can not address every possible scenario or situation.