“For the LORD God of Israel says That He hates divorce, For it covers one’s garment with violence,” Says the LORD of hosts. “Therefore take heed to your spirit, That you do not deal treacherously.” (Malachi 2:16 NKJV)
“Furthermore it has been said, “Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’ But I say to you that whoever divorces his wife for any reason except sexual immorality causes her to commit adultery; and whoever marries a woman who is divorced commits adultery. (Matthew 5:31-32 NKJV)
The Pharisees also came to Him, testing Him, and saying to Him, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for just any reason?” And He answered and said to them, “Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning “made them male and female,’ and said, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.” They said to Him, “Why then did Moses command to give a certificate of divorce, and to put her away?” He said to them, “Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, permitted you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery.” (Matthew 19:3-9 NKJV)
Now to the married I command, yet not I but the Lord: A wife is not to depart from her husband. But even if she does depart, let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband. And a husband is not to divorce his wife. But to the rest I, not the Lord, say: If any brother has a wife who does not believe, and she is willing to live with him, let him not divorce her. And a woman who has a husband who does not believe, if he is willing to live with her, let her not divorce him. For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband; otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are holy. But if the unbeliever departs, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases. But God has called us to peace. For how do you know, O wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, O husband, whether you will save your wife? (1 Corinthians 7:10-16 NKJV)
As part of the by-laws in our Church organization, the ministers that are licensed with our organization cannot have been a member of the church, divorce, remarry and then seek minister’s credentials. Recently, I have seen those that purport to hold to our particular faith accept ministers who have been twice, or three times, married into the ministerial fold. Is it acceptable?
Divorce is an ugly thing, however, it is at times very needful. Would any pastor in his right mind actually counsel a spouse to stay in an abusive marriage? Or would you counsel a couple to stay together for the sake of the children? God lines out acceptable divorce procedures. Sexual Immorality is at the top of the list, and frankly, I am pretty liberal concerning what is sexual immorality and unfaithfulness in marriage.
If you read the passages above, you will get the general idea that God hates divorce, but he allows for remarriage if that divorce is predicated under an adulterous relationship. Remember, although divorce is allowed, remarriage is only allowed for sexual immorality on the part of the other spouse.
So, to what level do you allow those that do such things, willingly, back into the leadership fold? I do not believe you can restrict access to the altar or to Communion. Although you should allow a man or a woman who is remarried back into the congregation, no one should allow them to hold a leadership position in the Church, especially that of pastor.
Let me also direct you to this site.
Marriage is a key factor in understanding the relationship of Christ and His Church. It is something to be honoured an protected. In this world, divorce, or even the cohabitation, is common, and the true idea of marriage is almost gone. Before any religious precepts were given to Man and Life, God gave them the covenant of Marriage. It was a mystical union, and one that must be preserved in sancity.
The same is said of the Church. If adulterers are allowed to hold posts, then their idea of ministry remains under sin. If they could not honor their wife, then how can they honor God?
These are incomplete thoughts – what are yours?