Today we have a Guest writer with us and his name is Shawn Holcomb. The question Shawn has answered today is a question that many followers of Christ ask if they have been through a divorce. Let’s all give Shawn a big Ask God Today welcome in the comments below.
Can You Remarry if You Are Divorced?
by Shawn Holcomb
The easy answer is yes, but the question that really should be asked is this, “Should I remarry after my divorce?” The reason I make this question personal is because each person and situation is unique and should be measured by what God says surrounding relationships … all relationships.
What is your story?
- Are you divorced because of your ex’s infidelity? If yes, then you are free to remarry. (Matthew 5:32, Matthew 19:9)
- Are you divorced because your ex is/was an unbeliever and broke the marriage covenant or abandoned the relationship? If yes, then you are free to remarry. (1 Corinthians 7:15)
- Are you, and your ex both believers but divorced due to irreconcilable differences and want to remarry? If yes, then hold the phone … let’s talk about relationships as a whole and then I’ll answer that question.
Every relationship, including marriage is incredibly important because God uses relationships to draw others unto Himself. As Jesus was preparing His disciples for His earthly departure, He encouraged them with a very loving and powerful charge:
“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13: 34-35 (NIV)
The Lord is making two very powerful statements here.
- We have the ability to love one another with the same love that He shares with us. It is a selfless love, a sacrificial love, a love that keeps no record of wrongs and never gives up.
- Insomuch, our actions of love toward one another will point people to Him.
The facts are irrefutable. All relationships matter to God greatly. If we keep a high standard in our relationships with one another, how much more of a standard should we hold surrounding the marriage covenant?
In the Old Testament, Moses easily allowed divorce. A certificate of divorce could be issued for a man simply not liking his wife (Deuteronomy 24:1-4). Even though this is recorded in Scripture, this isn’t a standard we should follow. Later on Jesus set it straight by saying, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning.” Matthew 19:8
“God’s desire for marriage among believers is for it to be
a life-long commitment.”
Remember, He’s given us the ability to love each other with a selfless, sacrificial love (John 13:34-35). It’s up to the couple to welcome God’s Spirit into the marriage relationship. If properly welcomed, no obstacle will be able to penetrate the marriage vows of, “Til death do us part”. If this love is truly welcomed and practiced, the apostle Paul said, “The two shall become one flesh.” (Ephesians 5:31).
Therefore, what if a rekindling of the past marriage between believers is impossible or unlikely?
Does that mean both can never remarry ever again?
If this is part of your story, remarriage is possible but should be approached carefully with extreme humility and transparency.
God’s redeeming and renewing grace allows for this but we must put first things first:
- Are you able to identify what went wrong?
- Are you able to own up to your part in what went wrong?
- Are you able to ask God and your former spouse for forgiveness?
If the answer to any of these questions is no, then you should not remarry because you’ll most likely bring the past unresolved issues into your next relationship. This is unhealthy and could be the catalyst for another failed relationship.
The bottom line to the question, “Can you remarry if you are divorced?”
Yes, but only if you’ve taken the necessary steps and built proper safeguards for the new relationship.
“But if the unbeliever leaves, let it be so. The brother or the sister is not bound in such circumstances; God has called us to live in peace.” 1 Corinthians 7:15
Do you have a question we might be able to answer for you regarding divorce or remarriage? Please leave us a comment.
Shawn is a happy, energetic, passionate lover of Jesus Christ, happily married since 1997, father of five children, four daughters and one son. Shawn has been in full time ministry since 1995, graduate of Rock Ministerial Family’s ITS school and senior Pastor of Crossroad Christian Church since 2008. Shawn loves to spend time with his family and friends. His heart truly longs for the unity of the body of Christ among local churches. Psalm 133
Shawn can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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