Summary: A lesson outlining what God requires for scriptural marriages and includes information on the controversy of divorce.
Marriage By: Brian A. Yeager
A. Marriage is ordained [established] by God:
B. Marriage is a good thing (Proverbs 18:22).
1. Hebrews 13:4 “Marriage is honourable [as of great price, precious; held in honour, esteemed, especially dear] in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.”
a. The Bed [marriage bed] is undefiled [free from that by which the nature of a thing is deformed and debased, or its force and vigour impaired].
b. God authorizes that which is natural (Romans 1:24-27) in the marriage bed, which would be sinful to occur between two unmarried persons and would be called adultery.
2. I Corinthians 7:3 “Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.”
a. NKJV says: “Let the husband render to his wife the affection due her, and likewise also the wife to her husband.”
b. ASV 1901 says: “Let the husband render unto the wife her due: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.”
D. Marriage is a covenant [binding agreement] for life (I Corinthians 7:39).
I. Who Are the Eligible Candidates For a Lawful Marriage?
A. An eligible man and woman:
1. A man and a woman not bound to another (Romans 7:1-3).
2. A man and woman who leave their families to start their own, not their ex’s to meet another (Ephesians 5:31).
3. If previously married the person seeking to enter into a second marriage would have to have been the one who “put away” their spouse for the cause of fornication, as this is the ONLY exception to the one man / one woman for life law that Christ put forth:
c. Every man is to have his OWN WIFE not someone else’s wife (I Corinthians 7:2).
4. A husband and a wife who have severed their marriage relationship must remain UNMARRIED or reconcile (I Corinthians 7:10-11).
a. There are those who argue what is known as the “mental divorce position” that constitutes the “waiting game”, in which the above scripture destroys that position. God does not approve of unlawful divorces, but he recognizes them (Romans 7:3).
b. Those who teach the mental divorce doctrine need to consider their application in the realm of salvation. EX: Mark 16:15-16 teaches: (believe – baptized – salvation). The Baptist change that to: (believe – salvation – baptized). Jesus said on the subject of divorce and remarriage Matthew 19:9: (fornication – divorce – remarriage). Mental divorce advocates say: (civil divorce – fornication – mental divorce). Application shows how absurd that position is in ALL CASES!!! If one can mentally divorce they can mentally marry, mentally be baptized, mentally commit murder, etc…
c. If "Mental Putting Away" were a valid arguement then what about the case of Joseph and Mary (Matthew 1:18-25).
B. Some argue God’s law of marriage and divorce only applies to Christians. However, the Bible uses the word “whosoever” in describing obedience (II John 9 and James 2:10). Notice also John 12:48, did Christ specify Christians only? NO!