What Does The Bible Say About Divorce and Adultery For Husbands and Wives?

by Sister McCook
Scissor cutting a marriage certificate in half

Marriage is a covenant made between a man and a woman with God as their witness. It is not just a partnership which can be broken if they don’t agree with each other in any subject. God commanded that no man should separate the couple from their intimacy in a marriage relationship (Mark 10:9).

Nowadays, people get into a wedding relationship without having proper prayer or preparation and dedication for married life. Because of that, many marriage relationships break up and end in divorce.

Scissor cutting a marriage certificate in half

The saddest part of this is that among those who go for divorce there are a large number of Christians who boast about their zeal for their God. They run to get out from their wedding lock because they don’t realize or don’t want to follow the laws that God made for a marital relationship.

If we know the truth about marriage relationship and its importance in the sight of God, it will be more helpful for us to adhere to the laws of God that teaches us how to live in a marital relationship.

What is The Purpose of Marriage?

The first union that our God made on this Earth is a marital relationship between a man and a woman. In the beginning, there was only a man to take care of the garden and he was alone.

God found that the man won’t be complete without a helper comparable to him. So God made Eve out from a rib of Adam the first man (Genesis 2:20-22). A man becomes complete with the arrival of his wife in his life through marriage.

Letters spelling out forever with rings

God wanted them to rule over the Earth together and He never allowed them to be alone without each other. They are expected to bring up their children as godly offspring together (Malachi 2:15).

The joyful life of a husband and wife is the actual reward that was given to a man by God and the portion for all his labour in his days of vanity (Ecclesiastes 9:9).

Once we understand the purpose of marriage, it naturally implies that there should be nothing that separates the relationship between a man and his wife.

Does The Holy Bible Allow Divorce?

As broken relationships in marriages could be seen everywhere in our days, we need to know whether God accepts such separation.

God does not want a marriage to be broken for any reason till the death of any one of them (Romans 7:2; 1 Corinthians 7:10,11).

Even if the spouse of a person is a nonbeliever and does not walk in the path of God, the believer should not divorce them as God views them as one once they get married.

Letters spelling out divorce

The believer should wait on God’s presence for the repentance of his/her spouse. Divorce is not an option for a person to get relieved from being tortured by his/her spouse (1 Corinthians 7:12-14).

If a nonbelieving person wants a divorce from a believing spouse, then the Bible allows it as we cannot impose the rules of the Bible on them (1 Corinthians 7:15).

The Holy Bible does not permit to get divorced for any reason other than being caught for having an unfair sexual relationship with someone else other than one’s own spouse.

Adultery is unlawful before God. It was given as a law for the people of God when He made a covenant with His people through Moses (Exodus 20:14).

What Does The Bible Say About Physical Intimacy/ Sex in a Marriage Relationship?

God has created man and woman with sexual desires which is the nature of the human body. God never gave any constraints for those desires being fulfilled within marriage. All sexual desires should be addressed within the husband and wife (Proverbs 5:18,19)

The person should love and admire his/her spouse and should accept him/her as their own flesh. Once they accept them as their own flesh, then there will be physical and emotional unity (Genesis 2:24).

couple in love kissing

The husband has the authority over his wife’s body and the wife has the authority over her husband’s body. They should fulfil the sexual desires of each other (1 Corinthians 7:3,4).

No one else should enter into their sexual relationship. The Bible doesn’t permit a man even to touch some other woman other than his wife and the same applies to a woman also (1 Corinthians 7:1,2). A couple should never be separated from each other except for fasting and prayers to grow in their spiritual life (1 Corinthians 7:5) that too for a short period.

What is Adultery According to The Bible?

If a person goes to anyone else other than his/her spouse to fulfil their sexual needs and desires, it is adultery (Proverbs 5:20). For a married person, no one else should be more beautiful than their spouse. It is a sin before God (Job 31:9,10).

In Matthew 5:28, Jesus said that if a person looks at another man/woman with a lustful thought, then the person would be deemed to have committed adultery. God wants His people to be holy as Himself even in their thoughts.

God wants everyone to make a covenant with their own eyes so that it won’t lead them to adultery which is a sin against Him (Job 31:1).

And if someone divorces his/her spouse for any reason other than being accused of committing adultery and marries someone else, then he/she is said to have committed adultery (Matthew 5:32).

What Is The Root Cause of Adultery?

The word of God says that adultery is a work of the flesh (Galatians 5:19). The word of God also says that adultery comes out from the heart of a man which is wicked because of the disobedience in the garden of Eden (Matthew 15:19; Genesis 6:5).

When a person is deprived of the love of his/her spouse or neglected by them, the enemy facilitates them with situations that lead them to the sin of adultery.

If it happens for a couple to live separately for any reason for a long time, they might be tempted to seek sexual pleasure from someone else which is the cunning plan of the enemy to separate a family that was ordained by God (1 Corinthians 7:5).

The tool that the enemy employs to kick them down might be a small lustful thought or a glance at some porn content or a lustful conversation among the people around them.

Consequences of Adultery

When a person commits adultery his family members will suffer and people laugh at them. They will be withheld from their rights and lose their wealth and respect in society (Judges 11:1,2; Proverbs 5:9,10).

Adultery affects the health of the person and leaves him without anyone to support him (Proverbs 5:11-14). It brings disgrace to him forever (Proverbs 6:33).

As it is a sin against God and against the body which is the temple of God, it kills the soul of the person from His spiritual life (Proverbs 6:32; 1 Corinthians 6:18,19). The marriage relationship will be broken and ended in divorce.

Can God Heal a Marriage After Adultery?

Our God is the one who loves the sinners while hating the sin. So He is always willing to accept the sinner if he comes back to Him with true repentance (Isaiah 55:7).

Bride and groom making heart shape with hand

Though God allows divorce as an option for the sufferer of adultery, God never wants a marriage relationship to be broken. It is very difficult to forgive the wrongdoer as it’s negative impact in their lives would be huge.

But God can heal the wounds if the spouse of the repented adulterer is willing to forgive and accept their spouse as God forgave their sins (Ephesians 4:32; Colossians 3:13).

How Can We Protect Ourselves From Falling in The Sin of Adultery?

We can’t boast about our self-control as no one is perfect and we too are weak and live in this world filled with wickedness (1 Corinthians 10:12).

We need to keep ourselves away from sexual sins as our body is the temple of God (1 Corinthians 6:15).

We need the support of the Holy Spirit to conquer the temptations which tempt us to sin. We should run away from the temptations as Joseph did with the fear of God (Genesis 39:9,12).

When we seek the face of God and correct our paths according to the word of God, we will be able to escape from the temptations that try to make us fall (Psalm 119:9,105).

We need to examine ourselves in the light of the Word of God (Proverbs 6:23,24). We should understand that we are not here to live as we wish but to live a Holy life for a joyful eternity.

We need to seek the help of the Holy Spirit so that we could be able to protect our thoughts and eyes from sinful stuff around us (Proverbs 4:20-27).

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