Divorce and Remarriage.
Luke 16 v 18 “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery, and the man who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.”
The pain that many have received from the Church because of a verse like this!
In their failure to keep a marriage together some of the loveliest of people have found themselves in the outer courts of the Church.
The irony is that at this time the Pharisees’ interpretation of this Law meant that divorce was acceptable for the craziest of things. I remember stories been taught to me way back in Bible College of divorce being permitted for spoiling your husband’s dinner! But the crazy reasons are still with us. In 2016, in California, a wife filed for divorce because her husband had voted for Donald Trump!
The Pharisees had their own interpretation of the Law, their Mishnah, helping people understand and fulfil the requirements. Jesus came and brought his own interpretation also, it is called the Kingdom of heaven or the Kingdom of God.
In this verse Jesus upholds the Law on the sanctity of marriage. The Law is the Law. He doesn’t say it doesn’t matter. He doesn’t water down the Law.
Not only do we need to be faithful to God with our money (v13) and our possessions (v1), we also need to be faithful to people (v18).
So what about those who have failed to be faithful with money, materials or marriages? Shall we condemn them? No we strongly encourage them to force their way into the kingdom. Outside the kingdom is condemnation. But inside there are all kinds of wonderful graces. Love. Forgiveness. Restoration. Acceptance.
The Law is the Law. But here comes the Kingdom. For all kinds of reasons I am thankful that Jesus came preaching the good news of the Kingdom.