Photo by Chad Runge / Creation Swap

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Divorced Biblically

In our culture, the word divorce no longer has quite the stigma attached to it the way it used to.  In the early history of the United States, for example, the New England colonies viewed marriage as sacred.  Divorce wasn’t typically viewed as an option.  But even though divorce wasn’t common practice, that’s not to say that divorce was nonexistent either.

Statistically speaking, divorce was barely a blip on the radar of the national consciousness even as recent as the mid-1800’s.  Unfortunately, however, divorce has become so rampant in the U.S. that today it leads the world in the divorce rate by country.  There’s no doubt there are as many reasons for this occurrence as there is sand on the seashore.  The main reason, though, would undoubtedly come from one main source:  SIN.

Sin is a very serious problem.  If that weren’t true, what would be the need for Jesus Christ to take on the form of flesh and die in our place as the penalty for our sin?  It’s the rebellious nature of man that brought us in direct enmity with God and it’s the nature of man that brought about the unfortunate result of divorce that rips apart marriages and families.  Jesus even said, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning."

What if you were told you that you were married to the law?  What would that mean to you?  Now consider that the law has authority over you, much in the same way a married woman is bound to her husband (Biblically speaking of course.)  Would you feel trapped?  Consider what the law does.  At, it is explained that knowing the law brings guilt, that the law condemns, it brings about God’s wrath, it increases sin by arousing sinful passions, and ultimately the law kills the sinner.

Now what if you were told that you could divorce the law?  That would sound like an attractive offer at this point, wouldn’t it?  I mean, who would want to remain bound by a law that sounds as bad as that?  In a sense, Jesus made that possible for us as well.  Technically, it would be wrong to say that Jesus divorced us from the law.  A more accurate statement would be that Jesus made it possible for us to die to the law.  What is meant by that?  Let’s look at the following passage:

1 Do you not know, brothers and sisters—for I am speaking to those who know the law—that the law has authority over someone only as long as that person lives? 2 For example, by law a married woman is bound to her husband as long as he is alive, but if her husband dies, she is released from the law that binds her to him. 3 So then, if she has sexual relations with another man while her husband is still alive, she is called an adulteress. But if her husband dies, she is released from that law and is not an adulteress if she marries another man. 

4 So, my brothers and sisters, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God. 5 For when we were in the realm of the flesh, the sinful passions aroused by the law were at work in us, so that we bore fruit for death. 6 But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.

According to this passage, Paul is saying that for believers, they are dead to the law through the body of Christ.  Because of this, the law no longer has authority over believers nor is it able to arouse sinful passions in them at will the way it used to.  Interestingly, just as in a death in a marriage where the living spouse is free to remarry, the believer is free at this point to belong to another.  Of course, this freedom has the implication that you will belong to another, not maybe.  The reason being is that you either are bound to the law or you are bound to Jesus Christ and righteousness.  Which would be your choice?

Jesus paved the way for us to be released from the law through death, as the passage suggests.  But Jesus has also paved the way for us to be raised again to new life to bear fruit for God.  Though this is different from the technical definition of divorce, isn’t it great that we can Biblically divorce the law and be free?  This is a divorce we all can live with.


  1. What an interesting study of divorce. Yes divorce if rampant today, many are innocent in the divorce?? Big questions?

  2. Kim -

    I appreciate you coming by and commenting on my blog. I hope you have a great week!

    God bless!

  3. A divorce from the law? I never thought of it quite like that but I like it :-) Divorce the law and become the bride of Christ is the only way to go!


    Good post :-)

  4. Ron -

    I was attempting to look at being free from the law from a different perspective. I love your analogy, though, by being divorced from the law we have the freedom to become the bride of Christ! I love it.

    Thanks for your comments. Hope you have a wonderful Merry CHRISTmas!


  5. Very interseting post...what a unique analogy. Thanks for giving me food for thought! Have a blessed Christmas.

  6. Renee -

    Thank you for your kind comments. I appreciate you stopping by. I will make it a point to visit your blog as well. Have a very Merry CHRISTmas!

    God bless!

  7. Interesting comparison to marriage and the law. I'm old enough to remember when it was considered disgraceful to divorce. Now it is almost expected. So sad.
    Have a blessed Christmas.

  8. Charlotte -

    Divorce causes problems for all. Maybe it wasn't the best comparison, but we should all want to be free from the law to be with Jesus!

    Merry Christmas!

  9. Olá Dean!!!
    Graça e paz!!!

    Tenha um Feliz Natal cheio da presença do Senhor Jesus.

    Obrigada por estar presente em meu blog.

    Em Jesus,


  10. Suely -

    Graça e paz para você! É um prazer tê-lo como um amigo no mundo dos blogs. :) Espero que você e os seus tenham um Feliz Natal!

    Deus te abençoe!

  11. I really enjoyed reading your study on biblical divorce. You did a great job. I Just dropped in to wish you and your family a Merry CHRISTmas. And a special thanks for being such a blessing to all who read your blog. God bless, Lloyd

  12. Lloyd -

    Thank you very much! I hope you had a Merry CHRISTmas yourself. :) And hope you have a very blessed New Year as well.

    It has been a blessing to me to have such a circle of friend in the blogging community. I love reading everyone's inspirational studies of God's Word. I've learned so much, such as your word studies Lloyd.

    Happy New Year and God bless!