Bible with Cross ShadowThe sayings of Jesus challenge our subjection to His reign. Are we wholly His bondservants? Are we willing to obey regardless of the discomfort and cost? Are there ever excuses for ignoring His instructions?

The fact that self-professed Christians are divorcing at the same rate as the world suggests something is wrong in the church. Clearly, she has not been up to the challenge of this saying:

Furthermore it has been said, “Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.” But I say to you that whoever divorces his wife for any reason except sexual immorality causes her to commit adultery; and whoever marries a woman who is divorced commits adultery. Matthew 5:31-32

I lean heavily toward literal interpretation of the Scriptures when I am searching out a matter. I believe it is much more preferable to allow the word of God to shatter my paradigms, than to force His word into my way of thinking. Twisting the truth to fit my situation is a risk I am not willing to take.

Consequently, I believe this passage to be one of the most compromised in all of the Holy Bible; and, just to be clear, I mean compromised in the church.

At the risk of sounding harsh, most divorce in the church happens because the children of God do not seriously consider this passage before and during their marriage. Many do not believe going in, during, or in deciding to get out, that the consequences of divorce are so severe. How severe?

Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers… will inherit the kingdom of God. 1Corinthians 6:9-10

Much has been said about the damage of divorce on individuals, families and fellowships. Apparently, people are willing to accept the worldly consequences. Perhaps all the discussion of the worldly has become a distraction from the greatest threat of all: Our kingdom inheritance.

The extent that we, the children of God, have adopted the world’s way for the marriage covenant is tragic. I am not so naive to think that there are no exceptional circumstances. Yet, I am grieved at how far we have moved from divorce being the exceptional to it becoming so common.

I know serious minded Christians who have violated this saying of Jesus, with the encouragement of Christian pastors and counselors. Does that mean that they have forever fallen, or that God will no longer bless them? I want to believe otherwise; in the knowledge that God’s mercy and grace exceeds my imagination.

I do believe, with fearfulness for them, that their decision to divorce has affected the strength of their house for the storm.

God, have mercy on us. It is time we take the necessary steps in the church to make sure this does not happen to others. It is time we begin earnestly encouraging, teaching and holding our brothers, sisters and children in Christ accountable to God’s way for marriage. Considering this saying of Jesus is a great place to start.

Humbly yours and forever His,