Grounds for Biblical Divorce
- Thursday, July 18, 2013
"God hates divorce; but, He also hates a man covering himself with violence" (Malachi 2:16). This term comes from a Hebrew word that can also mean, "covering his wife with violence."
I advise any woman who has been hit by her husband to consider getting as far away from him as soon as possible - and never to look back - divorce or otherwise. Continued belittling and mental and emotional badgering fits under the "violence" umbrella. Notice that this principle holds true if the roles are reversed and the wife is the one instigating the violence.
A quick way to break your marriage vows is to hit the one that you promised to love.
4. The husband who consistently refuses to live up his responsibility of loving his wife as Jesus loved the church, may, in some cases, have violated his marriage vows and made the marriage contract null and void (Ephesians 5:25-33).
Paul taught that the marriage vows made by a husband include loving and sacrificing for his wife as Jesus loved and sacrificed His life for His church. According to the vows laid out in the Bible, the husband is to invest his life in loving his wife and caring for her needs even before he takes care of his own. He is responsible to make her into the best woman she can possibly be. He is to watch over her and protect her from “evil things.” He is responsible for his wife’s spiritual development so that one day she may be pure and holy as she comes into the presence of Christ.
Based on years of observation, many husbands walked out on their wives long ago—even while they both lived under the same roof.
5. The wife who undermines and/or disrespects her loving husband, may, in some cases, have violated her marriage vows and made the marriage contract null and void (Ephesians 5:22-24).
As you read the Ephesians 5 passage, notice that while the husband is commanded to love his wife, his wife is never asked to love him. She is to obey and respect him; but she's never told to love him. Many have trouble with a wife being told to obey and respect her husband. It doesn't seem right or fair.
Let me tell you what I see going on here. Women whose husbands are fulfilling their roles of loving and sacrificing their lives for them don't have to be told to love their husbands. Loving men like that comes naturally. It is easy to love and respect some one who has your best interests at heart.
6. The husband who refuses to get a job in order to meet the needs of his family is worse than an unbelieving non-Christian (1 Timothy 5:8). He has forfeited his role as a husband and violated his marriage vows.
Of course, there are times when few or no jobs are available. This is different from the husband who refuses to work. In the former case, the wedding vows are not broken by the failure to make a living.
Jesus said that it is a wrong to marry someone who has been divorced who did not have the proper grounds for divorce. In the same way, it is not right for a person who is divorced without biblical grounds to remarry.
However, the overriding principle here comes from before the Fall when God says to Adam, "It is not good for man to be alone" (Genesis 2:18). It is my opinion that after an appropriate amount of time, and after seasons of brokenness, humility, confession and repentance, God is still intends for marriage to be the first defense against loneliness.
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