What is the Biblical teaching on marriage? Requirements and limitations
According to the Bible, Marriage is an enduring commitment instituted by God (Matthew 19: 3-8). The Old Testament requires people to marry and give birth to children. The Bible treats marriage as something holy. Marriage is also compatible with God’s commandments. The New Testament also explains why a person can remain unmarried (Rivera, 46). Celibacy can also be something nice for individuals who want to serve their God. The Bible also encourages people to get married instead of engaging in immorality (1 Corinthians 7: 9).
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Jesus Christ and Apostle Paul were unmarried. The two remained unmarried in order to serve God. The first requirement for marriage is having a holy union (Genesis 1:27). The Bible also says that no one can separate whatever God has united (Matthew 19:6). This explains why marriage should be a lifelong commitment. One of the limitations of marriage is that it is purely exclusive. This means that adultery and promiscuity should never arise. According to the Bible, “marriage and indissolubility are incompatible” (Rivera 38).
When does the Bible consider a couple married?
The Bible considers a couple married when two people (a woman and a man) leave their parents and establish a new relationship or family (Genesis 2:24). The couple becomes responsible for one another. The individuals are joined together by God’s covenant. God’s covenant joins these bodies together, thus creating a holy union.
The couple becomes one flesh. God always blesses the union of marriage. This also differs significantly from current societal understanding. Many people do not want to become one flesh (Elwell, 28). The current understanding is that any two people who want to have children will get married.
Biblical Teaching on Divorce
The Bible gives clear ideas about divorce. In the book of Matthew 19:6, the Bible explains why human beings should never separate what God has brought together. God hates and discourages divorce. The Bible views marriage as a relationship intended for growth, maturity, and healing (Elwell 47). The relationship of marriage promotes healing. According to the Bible, “the institution of marriage should never be broken or severed” (Rivera 43).
The Bible allows divorce under some critical situations. The outstanding fact is that the Bible discourages the practice. The New Testament outlines some grounds for divorce. The Bible allows divorce when there is immorality (Matthew 19:9). Divorce can also take place after one of the partners passes away (Romans 7:2). A non-believer might leave the relationship, thus leading to divorce (1 Corinthians 7:15).
These grounds for divorce are rather different in our modern society. Money is one of the major causes of divorce in society today. Many people are driven by their emotional factors, thus resulting in divorce. This differs from the Biblical grounds for divorce. Infidelity is also a leading cause of divorce today.
What are some objections to your view on divorce?
Although the Bible permits divorce on some occasions, it also offers some firm stands against the practice (Elwell 84). God forbids divorce under every particular circumstance (1 Corinthians 7: 10-11). The Bible also goes further to permit the practice under many circumstances (Deuteronomy 24: 1).
I will always support my interpretation of the scriptures as described above. The Bible permits divorce after one of the two individuals die. The person should move on and start a new life. Sexual immorality is unacceptable. Sins cause divorces in society. Divorce might also take place if one of the partners is a non-believer (Rivera 64). The non-believer might decide to leave the marriage and eventually result in divorce.
Is it acceptable for a Christian to remarry?
One of the biggest questions is whether Christians should remarry after a divorce. Some Biblical verses support remarriage. A spouse can remarry if the other partner dies. The spouse can “remarry without indulging in adultery” (Romans 7:13). Sexual immorality is another possible cause of divorce. The Bible allows individuals to remarry if the first marriage ended because of infidelity.
The Bible permits remarriage after the couple dishonors their covenant with God. The Bible also encourages couples to reconcile in order to reduce the number of divorces. Remarriage should only take place after the marriage covenant is broken (Elwell 86). Couples in marriage should always be faithful, support one another, and be truthful in marriage.
The social and spiritual implications of divorce in the wider society
Divorce is harmful to both society and the Church. The practice also affects the strength and success of the immediate family. Divorce results from sins. Marriage is full of God’s pure love. Divorce “gives sin the final victory” (Elwell 75). Divorce weakens the faith and belief of Christians. God might stop loving the people for their sins. The society might also stop believing in God. The Church should not allow the divorce to happen frequently because it will affect its position in society (Elwell 87).
Divorce might eventually affect how people in the society view one another. It might also weaken people’s beliefs and trust. The creation of marriage was intended “to complete the roles of men in every society” (Genesis 2: 18). God blesses the marriage and makes it a powerful relationship that makes a person’s life complete. Marriage should not be broken if the society and the Church are to remain strong.
Elwell, W. Evangelical Dictionary of Theology. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2001.
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Rivera, T. The Heart of Love: Obeying God’s Two Great Commandments. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.