I never had the opportunity, I guess you could say, to research this subject like I have now. I married when I was 19 and was married for 14 years. We had our problems like any other couple does, but after I gave my life to Christ 4 years ago, I had no idea the life God would bring me to.
All the sudden, his sins were blazing in front of me. I could see clearly. I’m not talking about little sins, I’m talking about things that are too horrible, I can’t even mention them online. Things that I just swept under the rug before my salvation. Pretended that we were okay, everything was okay. I guess I was hoping that if I pretended like nothing was wrong, the outcome would be…nothing is wrong.
It doesn’t work like that though. The more a person gets away with, the worse things they do. It keeps escalating. He literally walks around right now feeling invincible, though I know someday, somehow, either on this Earth or not, he will answer to God.
I say this so that you understand that I had a really rough marriage. It was just rough, I’ve dealt with a lot more than the average rough marriage. And while I could name you a list of things that would literally blow your mind, none of that could be my focus. I had to focus on my own self, my own sins, just try to be the best wife I could be when I was a wife. There were days I’d wake up thinking to myself, “Okay, today I am married, tomorrow I might not be, but today, I will do what I know a wife should do, before the Lord.” I lived many days like that the last time he left, knowing he was going to leave. Knowing he was setting himself up in order that he COULD leave, but in secret, I was also setting myself up. So that this time, I didn’t end up homeless again. “Not again,” I told myself. “Not again.”
And then it came…the day my life would forever change. He asked, “Are you SURE you won’t give up your church, give up God for me?” I guess I snapped a little too bluntly. I think that the power of God was present in my voice as I didn’t mean to shout, but wholeheartedly I said, “I. WILL. NEVER. GIVE. UP. GOD. for you or anyone else.”
That was it. The line was drawn. He on one side of eternity and me on the other. Just like Judas when he betrayed God. My ex-husband walked away from God that day and never came back. He never showed the signs of true Christian conversion. He was good at faking though, but living with someone, you just know. You know when someone’s life doesn’t match their speech to everyone else. To me, he fully admits he’s not saved and has no desire to be saved. Yet, as sick and disgusting as it is, to everyone else, who doesn’t know better, he can fool them into thinking he’s a great Christian guy. The tares grow among the wheat after all…until the harvest. On that day, everyone will know his life is a sham.
So, believe me when I say, I know what it’s like. I know that even among SOME Christian circles, that divorce is considered a four letter word. It’s something that Christians are NOT allowed to do, no matter what. I know that many women stay with their husbands because they are told it’s sin to leave. So, they endure physical, spiritual, mental, and emotional abuse at the hands of another due to that. This is wrong!
Then, on the other hand, you have divorces like wildfire, even in churches. If you’re not happy, if you are not being fulfilled in any way, you can divorce. That is the thought behind these casual christians. This is also wrong!
So, what does the Bible say about divorce?
Can it possibly all make sense? Can it possibly all fit together and be understandable?
I say YES…it can!
Both of those scenario’s are wrong. With the first, you have a woman suffering physical abuse. How does that line up with Scripture? A woman is just supposed to stay in an abusive situation? Listen, my ex-husband did get physically violent with me the first time he left. After that, he got physically violent with his mistress as well. Violence is wrong and you do NOT have to take it. If there is physical violence, meaning you OR the kids are in physical danger in any way, you need to get out. Now, get this, I’m not talking about if your husband comes home drunk and snaps at you or yells at the kids. I’m talking about physical danger here. If he is throwing bottles at you, laying hands on you, physically hurting you or the kids in any way, you have to get out. Call the cops and get out. Get to a safe place. Just because you are away doesn’t mean you HAVE to divorce. It means you need to be safe. You can talk to your Pastor about the next steps. Is your husband wanting to reconcile? Was it a one-time thing or continual? What is in your best interest? Every situation is different and it’s only something you can decide. Separation for a time is a good idea in most cases such as those. If your husband wants to divorce, then, the Bible calls us to live at peace. Sign the divorce, don’t fight it. Let him go. I don’t say this lightly. This is what happened in my case.
There are two very clear-cut reasons for divorce, but first you must know that divorce in of itself is sin. It is not God’s standard. God’s standard is one man, one woman, for life. That’s it. End of story. But, sin creeps in and this is what we are sometimes faced with. Divorce is not the answer to many problems, in fact, it brings on just as many problems as being together, just that the problems are different in subject.
With that said, if you have these two things against your spouse, you are fully 100% able to divorce. There is no sin on your part for divorcing if either one of these two things are present.
1) A physical affair
I know that many people often turn to pornography as a physical affair and while it has many implications of a lot of bad things (for my husband pornography was something he did his entire life, it never stopped and the day we divorced, he was at physical affair #6 that I knew about, two women at once, and a baby on the way with someone he was not with anymore. Talk about a soap opera!) The mind doesn’t know the difference between an image and the real deal. So believe me, I get it. It’s hard, but, listen, pornography is not a physical affair. It’s hurtful, it’s painful, but it’s not a physical affair and so if you are wanting to divorce on that basis ALONE, I’d encourage you to seek counseling with a local Pastor of your church to discern what is God’s best for you. That is not something that I can comment on, because the Bible doesn’t specifically comment on that form of cheating.
But, if there is a physical affair, or a whole boatload of them as in my case (!!!!) then you are free to divorce. God will not chastise or punish you. Your husband has already defiled your marriage. Once he enters into that act with someone, the bond is broken and to GOD (not to man) it is already like you are divorced. With the state, it takes a piece of paper to say what God already knows to be true.
Again, this is something I went through, so am pretty knowledgable on it unfortunately. My husband left a few times in our marriage. Each time coming back playing the “Christian” card. I wanted to believe him and gave him a chance. I do not regret this. I know that I did everything in my power to save our marriage, to my own sacrifice. But, there was a point where I said no more. Each person is different. Your ‘no more’ may be different than mine. If a husband abandons you, you are free to divorce with no chastisement or punishment from God. You are not in sin. Your spouse is. Now, if he should come back and want to reconcile, there is nothing against that, and nothing for that. It is completely your choice. You stand before God to make the best decision you can, again, in counsel with your local church for guidance.
Outside of those two things, divorce is a sin. If you feel you can do better than your current spouse, if you’re tired of him treating you badly with his bad attitude, if you just want to move on, it is considered sin, unless your spouse has clearly done either of those things. In my case, my ex-husband didn’t leave room for wondering. I had black and white proof for everything.