Divorce and adultry

Luke 16:18

"Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries one who is divorced from a husband commits adultery."

I know a very faithful Christian couple who are married to each other and each of them have been married and divorced.

Knowing how devote they are I have wanted to ask them about the scripture above. I haven’t. I ask it here to see what they might answer me. Yes being cowardly I don’t want to cause a division between us. We have never discussed religion although she did say once how thrilled she was that through her preaching someone accepted Jesus.

How do devote Christians who divorce and remarry believe they are not committing adultery?


To answer your question, I do not believe that they believe they are committing adultery (most likely they “try not to think about it”). Or if they do feel that they are, but that they will receive forgiveness of this sin.

The Bible teaches us that all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. Thus, I do believe that it is theoretically possible that they could fully confess and repent on this sin a moment before dying and still receive sanctification. But, living this lifestyle certainly does not please God and attempting to rationalize that it isn’t sinful is a futile argument.

Also, I should note thay provided both of their marriages were annulled- no sin is occuring. Legally, they may still be “divorced” but an annulment means that “the marriage never really occurred” from the standpoint of God.

Thank you for your response but it doesn’t answer what I am asking.

I am asking how they view the scripture where Jesus says that to marry a divorced person is adultery>

Also, I should note thay provided both of their marriages were annulled- no sin is occuring. Legally, they may still be “divorced” but an annulment means that “the marriage never really occurred” from the standpoint of God.

Yep. But I am not concerned with annulled marriages, most non-Catholics don’t bother with annulment, but with those Christians who marry and divorce and marry again with a still valid marriage in tact.

I know a dear Christian couple where the husband has a prior marriage. He divorced his first wife on the grounds of his wife’s adultery. He says the Bible allows for divorce on the grounds of adultery.

My husband and I are both remarried. I was initially married as a protestant and was never taught this scripture or that re-marriage was adultery. I married the first time to escape a physically abusive childhood. My husband is Catholic and was first married by a justice of the peace to a woman who was pregnant and he had only dated her five months. We are concluding our annulments and quite frankly, we pray every night about this one issue. I know my God is a merciful, loving God that understands both our first marriages were not valid and forgives us, as he promises he will. We are not perfect, We are sinners. We go to mass, and we practice our faith in the best way we know how. But I admit we talk about this often and it does bother us, We just pray about it. With our annulments being concluded we cannot wait to have our marriage blessed in the Holy Church.

Would you ask another: “How goes your sin with [fill in the blank]?” If not, leave it alone. If they want to share with you, they’ll do so at their own time.

My grandfather ran around on my grandmother but even though the Bible does state that she could divorce him because of his adulterous behavior she never did divorce and he never felt the need to start proceedings either. He ended up living with my aunt’s mother.

I asked my pastor about the divorce and remarriage texts in the Bible and I was confused as to why couples were allowed to remarry and he stated that everyone is a sinner and with confession and repentance they are able to remarry with no issues.

Peace, all!!


No it does not!
Let’s read Mark’s Gospel.

Mark Chapter 10

10:4 And they said, “Moses gave permission to write a bill of divorce and to dismiss her.” 10:5 But Jesus responded by saying: “It was due to the hardness of your heart that he wrote that precept for you. 10:6 But from the beginning of creation, God made them male and female. 10:7 Because of this, a man shall leave behind his father and mother, and he shall cling to his wife. 10:8 And these two shall be one in flesh. And so, they are now, not two, but one flesh. 10:9 Therefore, what God has joined together, let no man separate.” 10:10 And again, in the house, his disciples questioned him about the same thing. 10:11 And he said to them: “Whoever dismisses his wife, and marries another, commits adultery against her. 10:12 And if a wife dismisses her husband, and is married to another, she commits adultery.”

No mention of any causes to allow divorce here.

Now in the Gospel of Matthew. The Greek original text uses a particular word as a possible cause that a marriage can be ended, πορνειας or “Porneia”.

Here are some notes on the meaning of this word.

“Porneia, which is relatively rare in classical Greek (Moulton-Milligan), originally stood for “prostitution” … In other, later contexts it denotes “unchasity, illicit sexual relations” of any kind (“fornication” is a somewhat archaic but common translation).” [The Complete Biblical Library].
Illicit sexual intercourse:

adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism, intercourse with animals, etc.
sexual intercourse with close relatives; Levitcus 18
sexual intercourse with a divorced man or woman;


(The New Testament Greek Lexicon)

Porneia (fornication) “is used of illicit sexual intercourse….” (W. E. Vine, Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words]

Fornication: "illicit sexual intercourse in general … distinguished from adultery (moicheia) in Matthew 15:19 … used of adultery … in Matthew 5:32; 19:9 [Henry Thayer, Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon, pg. 532].

Fornication: “The New Testament is characterized by an unconditional repudiation of all extra-marital and unnatural intercourse” [Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, Vol. 6, pg. 590].

Now what you need to realize is that the author of Matthew did not use the more common word moicheia used to describe “Adultery” therefore it is a mistranslation to use “Adultery” as a cause for lawful divorce.

Not being a Christian I’m a Baha’i … I have noticed that it is extremely easy to obtain a divorce today for irreconcilable differences and other reasons… aside from adultery. The divorce rate in the United States is extremely high…


*“The marriage breakup rate in America for first marriage is 41% to 50%; the rate after second marriage is from 60% to 67% and the rate in America for 3rd marriage are from 73% to 74%.”

The article indicates that the divorce rate is actually going down… At first I thought that was a good thing but the reason rather shocked me…

**"…experts believe that the current rates trend might go down more in coming years as more and more couples prefer a live-in relationship."



It’s been a blessing for me to have been married over forty years to my wife and raised four children but it is very sad to see the breakdown of families and that has such deleterious effects in society today.

Think I would get a new pastor. Jesus clearly says that they are living in adultery, as does St. Paul.

Hmmmm, using your pastor’s logic, it would be okay to divorce and remarry numerous times, as long as you repent :rolleyes: after each divorce.

This is the kind of thing that puzzles me about the “sola scriptora” approach…

I do not know how they view the verse. In their hearts they probably view it as any other sin that they do. You have to remember with many Protestants there is also a “once saved - always saved” mentality so that is possibly their belief. Or, they may think - I will repent before dying and thus be saved. This of course is somewhat akin to playing Russian roulette. There are also many Protestants who don’t believe in a literal Bible - and perhaps they think similarly.

Now with regards to annulments and the Bible allowing divorce for adultery - I do not believe that any married couple can divorce. I also believe that there are people who go through the motions of being married but do not mean what they are saying - one example being faithfulness. An easy way to demonstrate that a spouse did not truly assert the convictions he/she said is to show that they have been faithful. In this way, if an annulment can be determined then the two were never truly married to begin with and are free to marry whomever.

Well we also have to consider how big is their weekly tithing - that has been known to bias a preacher or two in his day…

I did think about this later as being a reason. However, this would not explain those who divorce and remarry without adultery being involved.

God Bless both of you. The thread was not intended as condemnation but wondering how this scripture is viewed by others.

:confused: I have no idea how you arrived at this statement. I am trying to understand the views of others not ask about their sin.

What a well written and eloquent post. May God bless you both abundantly.

Does anyone remember this verse? I think this is the one that my former pastor was alluding to. I understand that you have been taught differently as to how divorce is defined.

New International Version
Matthew 5:32
But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, makes her the victim of adultery, and anyone who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

My sister was divorced 2 times (is a Protestant) and had each annulled to marry a Catholic. This was not helpful for her as she needed counseling for why she married and needed to divorce. She did marry this wonderful Catholic man but ended up divorcing him in the end. I don’t understand the annulment process but I know it was not helpful for my sister.

God bless all,


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