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CHRISTIAN APOSTOLIC ANSWERS

trlitteral@usa.net

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Q: Can a person be saved if they were married got a divorce, and then remarried?

A: If the reasons for the divorce falls under two narrow and specific catagories they can. The first of these is adultery and the second is if the spouse of a believer who is an unbeliever doesn't want to live with the new convert. Let's examine these separately.

Jesus said that when a man and woman are married they are no longer two in flesh but one: Matt 19:5-6. This "oneness" is achieved by a Spiritual link. My arm is the flesh link between my hand and my shoulder making it all "one flesh." The link established by the physical union (in a legitimate marriage) forms a Spiritual link after the same fashion as my arm provides for my hand and shoulder. The only thing that breaks this "bond" is death: Rom 7:2-3. From this passage we find that if the spouse die the remaining can freely marry but in the Lord 2 Cor 6:14.

In Matthew 5:32, Jesus says that if a person divorces someone for the reason of fornication (adultery) that person is free to marry. The person who is "put away" however may not remarry since they do not meet this requirement. This implies that as far as the marriage is concered, if the innocent person choses not to remain with the adulterer or the adulterer will not repent, it is the same as if that person had died. This person can of course repent and be forgiven of their sins but cannot remarry even their original spouse. Under this circumstance the innocent party can remarry whom they chose (in the Lord) and remain saved.

The only other instance that this can take place is if a new converts spouse chooses not to "remain" with that person. This comes from 1 Corinthians 7:15 which says that if the unbelieving depart from the believing to let them go and that the believer is not under bondage. The only legitimate way for an unbeliever and a believer to be married is for two unbelievers to be married and for one to "become" a believer since believers are not to marry the unbelieving. In verse 16 however Paul says that if the unbeliever will stay for the believer to try to convert the unbeliever by their lifestyle. This too has the implication that the unbeliever is among the "dead" therefore "freeing" the believer but since we are called to peace not to "force" the issue.

I would like to add that if a person is in a relationship that is abusive or they just really cannot stand the other person they are free to separate from this person but cannot remarry 1 Cor 7:10-11. This also says to not do this unless it is absolutely necessary. The way it is phrased implies that it is the Lord's will that the married live together in peace but if this is not possible you may leave but you are still married. If you again want a mate you must be reunited with your spouse.

To recap, a person can remain saved after a divorce and remarriage if they are the innocent spouse of an adulterer and if they are a new convert whose spouse has chosen to leave them. If you have no other recourse you may leave and not divorce a spouse but you must not remarry and if you chose to you can be reconciled to your spouse.

Any remarriages by a person who was divorced while a believer, even if backsliden, under any other circumstances than these makes them an adulterer until they terminate the marriage and remain unmarried. It is easy to see why the Apostles said that it would be better for a man not to marry then is it not?

If you have any questions at all write me!

trlitteral@usa.net

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