Summary: The Bible clearly teaches that God does NOT hate divorce, and the divorced ARE allowed to remarry! This Bible teaching has the power to set you free from prejudice and discrimination.
Note: Full PPT Slides and color booklet are free to download from www.TeAtatuBaptist.com
Slide # 1
8 weeks of practical, down to earth tools and resources for families, step-families, divorce and remarriage!
Removing Guilt and Shame
and Discrimination too :-)
Slide # 2
Traditional farmers in the out-backs of desert wastelands would build fences around their cattle in order to ‘keep them in order’.
Gradually, over the decades a new type of farming evolved.
No longer did the farmers use fences to restrain their cattle, they built beautiful ‘watering holes’ with luscious greenery and shade to attract the cattle to stay where they belonged.
Slide # 3
Because of the ‘freedom’ and attractiveness of this new style of farming, the necessity of fences and boundaries was removed.
Instead of forcing the animals to stay where they belonged by using fences and boundaries, the farmers actually removed the fences and gave the cattle freedom to come or go as they pleased,
…and by providing the right atmosphere and provisions, the end result was healthier cattle who wanted to stay within their confines, with better offspring and less effort put into maintaining the expensive fences and boundary lines in the first place.
Slide # 4
Some farmers however, could not adjust to this new way of thinking, and being afraid of loosing control, or their cattle straying into neighboring farmers ‘attractive’ pastures, actually built their fences higher and stronger.
My brothers and sisters, all of whom I love dearly, this story is an example of legalism and grace, of the Old Testament and the New.
It is also a story about you and me, about the views the church has held on divorce and remarriage, and the ‘spirit of grace’ that is sweeping a new generation of believers today, right around the world!
As hard as it is, we need to understand that within three years, by 2010, divorce, remarriage and blended families will be the norm within our society and church, outnumbering first-time or biological families!
If we want to reach these families for Christ and see them ministered to, and ministering within our churches, we need to address this reality ‘head on’ and learn all we can about it.
Today’s workshop is titled:
Slide # 5
Removing Guilt and Shame!
and discrimination too :-)
Extensive studies have been done to determine where the majority of guilt and shame is felt, or comes from – in regards to divorce and remarriage, within blended families.
And do you know what the number one source of guilt and shame is identified as coming from?
Slide # 6
You guessed it – from the Church and Christians!
Instead of building fences to keep the cattle in, we are building walls to keep the cattle out!
I also dare to suggest that the prejudice and discrimination against divorced and remarried couples is so powerful that it may have even affected how Bible Translators interpret the words of the Bible to reinforce these feelings within its readers.
I love you enough to overcome my ‘unbearable’ feelings of upsetting people, and do my role as a pastor and Bible teacher – to challenge you towards freedom and wholeness.
Before we continue, let me share something of the insidious nature of discrimination.
When we are prejudiced, we do not usually know we are prejudiced!
Slide # 7
What a prejudiced person does, is give him or herself permission to proclaim that they are right in what they believe (about Scripture or a subject) but they do not allow other people who think differently – to also have that same right.
A mature Christian, or person – actually has the ability to hold tightly to long held convictions, but allows other people to also hold strong, but different convictions – without ‘kicking up a fuss’ or building their walls higher in the process.
And what I have just taught you, is a key ingredient to a healthy and successful marriage and family life!
You see, marriage and family life is created, ordained and blessed of God.
But you know what, even God’s original kids got in trouble, rebelled against Him, and had a murderer for a son!
But, never the less, marriage and family life is HIS idea to bless HIS creation and to allow US to live in peace and harmony.
Families ARE the building block of society.
One husband, one wife and one family for life – with every person living under the Lordship of Christ!
Slide # 9
Because, if you break apart a family, you break apart the very fabric of our society and church.
From the outset, let it be said, and written down in black in white, that I do not condone (agree with) divorce.
But even if your spouse has been unfaithful to you and your marriage vows (and they confess it, and desire to stay married to you), I would counsel you to work through the issues of repentance and forgiveness rather than separate or divorce.