In this lesson we want to consider several more examples of modern day disobedience. Under the Law of Moses, God commanded the Israelite nation never to marry anyone from the nations they conquered, because evil communication would corrupt the Israelite. In their case, they were tempted to worship the false gods of those nations (Exod. 34:10-17; Deut. 7:3-4). Under the New Testament, Christians are also admonished: “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?” (2 Cor. 6:14). Corresponding to this teaching is the very specific command to widows in 1 Corinthians, chapter 7: “The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord” (1 Cor. 7:39). Some want to ignore this principle, but it is hardly a coincidence that God’s directive is the same under both covenants. Others want to use this as an excuse to put away the non-Christian wife they have married. By that same reasoning, they probably have abortions when they commit fornication and conceive out of wedlock.
An American preacher went to a foreign country for a short mission trip. While he was there, he had an accident and had to be hospitalized over an extended period of time. During the time he was being treated for wounds sustained in the accident, he fell in love with a nurse and wanted to marry her. There was just one problem: He was already married to an American Christian back home. As soon as he was able to travel again, he flew back to his home to divorce his wife, return to the foreign land and marry the nurse. He freely confessed that he had sinned in divorcing his wife for some other reason besides her adultery, but claimed he had repented of that sin and God had forgiven him. Thus he was now free to marry again.
- Is a marriage covenant broken when a man has put away his wife and married another according to Christ directive (Matt. 19:9)?
- If a man divorces his wife for any other reason than her unfaithfulness, is the bond created by God actually broken (Matt. 19:6, 9)?
- If the bond that God made between husband and wife is not broken, then does either mate have a right to marry someone else?
- Does baptism dissolve a marriage covenant and promises made before God and witnesses?
- If baptism dissolves an adulterous marriage, then would it not also dissolve good marriages?
- Are all those who have been baptized required to marry their wives after their baptism?
- If baptism dissolves a marriage, which marriage does it dissolve when a man has divorced and married another: 1) the original marriage or 2) the adulterous marriage?
- Is the man who puts away his wife and married another living in adultery if the civil court has broken the first covenant?
- Jesus says that a man who puts away his wife and married another commits adultery. If the civil court has broken the bond of a man’s first marriage, would he not be free to marry another?
- Does God agree that the civil court has broken the bond He made if he declares that man is living in adultery?
- If the civil court is able to break the bond that God made in a marriage, then why would Jesus declare that the person who divorces and marries another is living in adultery?
- Would there be any adultery if the first marriage bond and covenant had actually been dissolved?