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My Marriage Ended Without Biblical Grounds for Divorce. Does God Still View Us as Married?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
October 26, 2023 1:30 pm

My Marriage Ended Without Biblical Grounds for Divorce. Does God Still View Us as Married?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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October 26, 2023 1:30 pm

Episode 1345 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

Show Notes

 CoreChristianity.com

Questions in this Episode 1. Is the Teaching of Purgatory Found in the Bible?   2. How Should We Approach the Teaching in John 16 to Ask For Anything?   3. My Marriage Ended without Biblical Grounds, Does God View Us as Married?   4. Is the Increasing Frequency of Mass Shootings a Sign of the End Times?   5. Can You Be Unloving and Still a Christian? Today's Offer What Still Divides Us   Request our latest special offers here or call 1-833-THE-CORE (833-843-2673) to request them by phone.   Want to partner with us in our work here at Core Christianity? Consider becoming a member of the Inner Core.   Resources

Book - Core Christianity: Finding Yourself in God's Story by Michael Horton

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My husband ended our marriage without biblical grounds for divorce.

Does God still view us as married? That's just one of the questions we'll be answering on today's edition of Core Christianity. Well, hi, this is Bill Meyer, along with Pastor Adriel Sanchez, and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. You can call us right now with your question. Here's our phone number.

It's 833-THE-CORE. We'll be taking calls for the next 25 minutes or so. So now is the time to call 1-833-843-2673.

Now you can also post your question on one of our social media sites. And of course, you're always welcome to email us your question at questionsatcorechristianity.com. We want to begin today by taking just a moment to pray for the victims and the family members who have lost loved ones in that terrible mass shooting in Maine. Yeah, brothers and sisters, let's join together and ask once again for God's mercy to be poured out.

Lord, we come before you, and God, we are overwhelmed by the great evil that we see in the world and even here at home, Lord. We pray for those who are mourning today in light of yesterday's events. We ask, Lord God, that you would be with them. We do pray, Lord God, for this tragedy to end, that there would be no more loss of life or harm. And God, that through these very difficult circumstances, you would direct our eyes upward to you and that you would grant comfort to all. And that through this, Lord God, you would continue to be at work in advancing your gospel, we ask in Jesus' name. Amen. Amen. Such a terrible situation when these things happen. This is Core Christianity, and we would love to hear from you if you've got a question about the Bible, doctrine, theology, something going on at your church that you're concerned about.

We would love to hear from you. Let's go to Brian who's calling in from Missouri. Brian, what's your question for Adriel? Yeah, I've wondered about this, and I have people that are confused, but why do so many religions believe in a purgatory when it's never even mentioned in the Bible? I think specifically here, Brian, you're referring to the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church. The Roman Catholic Church teaches that purgatory is a purification so that individuals can essentially achieve the holiness necessary to enter into heaven.

In other words, you die and you still have sin attached to you, and so you have to undergo this purgation, this cleansing. So some of it gets into our understanding of the doctrine of justification, our understanding of the merit through which we enter into God's presence, into heaven. And for us, for myself, as a Protestant Christian who embraces the teaching of the Reformation, right, justification is an act of God whereby we are forgiven all of our sins, and the righteousness of Jesus Christ is imputed to us and received by faith alone so that we can stand as righteous and holy in God's sight, not on the basis of our own inherent righteousness, not on the basis of our own works, but on the basis of the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ. And so that's the righteousness that we need to stand in God's courtroom.

Apart from that, we're toast. And so I think at the heart of it is our understanding of the doctrine of salvation and the nature of our justification and the way in which we stand in God's presence, and that's where there's a difference between Roman Catholicism and Protestant theology. And so yeah, I think there are, you know, verses of scripture that they'll point to in various places as a way of trying to justify this doctrine.

But I think when you look at those passages, those texts in particular don't really support that theology, that doctrine of purgatory. And so I appreciate the question, Brian, and may the Lord bless you. By the way, we've got a great resource available to you on the differences between Protestant and Catholic theology. It's called What Still Divides Us, and Adriel, I know we get a lot of calls from Protestants who have friends or family members who are Catholics, and they struggle sometimes with being able to respond to some of the Catholic beliefs, and this resource will really help them. Yeah, it's a free resource that we've been offering, and Brian's question sort of led us right into it, what still divides us. And if you, as Bill was just saying there, if this is one of those topics that you're interested in learning more about, or if you have friends or family members who you get into conversations with and you, you know, you want to be able to know what you're talking about, get a hold of this resource over at corechristianity.com forward slash radio.

Once again, it's called What Still Divides Us. It's free like many of our other resources. In fact, if you go to our website, we'd encourage you to browse around. We have some great core guides and core questions that will help you on some of the difficult issues of the Christian faith and some wonderful Bible studies.

If you're involved in leading a small group or a Sunday school class, those Bible studies would be wonderful for you. So check that out, corechristianity.com. Well, here's a question that came in from one of our YouTube viewers. He says, in John 16, 23, Jesus said that whenever we ask the Father in His name, it will be given to us, and he wants to know more about that particular promise.

Yeah, I'm guessing that what you're curious about there is, really? Anything? You know, how do we make sense of this? John chapter 16, verse 23, in that day you will ask nothing of me. Truly, truly, I say to you, whatever you ask of the Father in my name, he will give to you. Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask and you will receive, that your joy may be full.

Well, just a couple of things. Elsewhere in John's Gospel, you know, Jesus said, if you abide in me and my words abide in you, you will ask whatever you want and it'll be given to you. So we're talking about an individual who prays in accordance with God's word and will.

If you abide in me and my words abide in you. And John also says in 1 John, we know that when we pray according to his will, we have whatever it is that we've requested, because he hears us and he answers those prayers that are in accordance with his will. So this isn't, you know, if you're a true child of God, you can just pray for whatever you want and God will snap his fingers and give it to you. God, give me a Lamborghini and give me, you know, that house on the hill that I always wanted and, you know, cure me of my cancer. No, that's not what Jesus is getting at here. He's talking about the fact that his children, his followers, have his word in them and are praying in accordance with his will and can be confident that God is pleased to grant their requests so that our joy might be full. You know, God is a generous giver.

Every good and perfect gift comes from the Lord. That's what James says. And there's this temptation, I think, that each of us has to question that reality. It's the same temptation that Adam and Eve fell into, where they bought into the lie. And God doesn't really want what's best for you. He's withholding something good from you. Remember what Satan said to them, you know, that tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you know, God doesn't want you to have that because he knows if you had it, you'd be better off, and he doesn't want that for you. And I think we face that same temptation. We think that the Lord is withholding good things from us, that he's against us. But Jesus said, if you, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give good gifts, the Holy Spirit, to those who ask him?

And so God help us, one, to have his word abiding in us so that we would indeed pray according to his will, but two, to really believe that God is as good as he says that he is in his word, because he is, and to come to him as our good and gracious Father, knowing that he's eager to give us those good gifts that will benefit us in our walk with Jesus Christ. So well said, and Richard, thanks so much for checking us out on YouTube. By the way, if you want to look at our YouTube channel and see what's happening in the studio, every day, Monday through Friday at 1130 a.m. Pacific time, you can go to YouTube and you can also send a question to Adriel through the YouTube channel. You can also leave us a voicemail anytime. Here's our phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE. That's 1-833-843-2673.

Let's go to a voicemail that came in from one of our listeners named Linda. I have a question regarding marriage. My husband recently divorced me, and I don't believe that it was based on biblical grounds for God to allow a divorce. I still feel in my heart that I'm unmarried because I made that covenant vow before God. There was no infidelity.

There was no extenuating circumstances as far as addictions. There was some anger issues, some fighting, some blended family issues with children, and money issues. But my question to you is, does God consider us to still be married in his eyes?

Thank you very much. Linda, I'm sorry to hear about this circumstance, and I do hope that you are in a solid church where you're getting some additional help, and counsel, and encouragement you need to be. Especially in situations like this, it's so important that we have community around us. For your husband who's left you, abandoned the marriage, he needs people calling him to follow Jesus and to be obedient to the Word of God, you need people encouraging you and walking with you. Applying the truth of the Gospel to your life and to your situation.

So I hope that you have that, and if you don't have that, I want to encourage you to get plugged into a solid church. But with regard to your question, it's a really good question because Jesus said in Matthew 5, verse 31, it was also said, whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce. But I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality, makes her commit adultery. And whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery. And the reason Jesus says that, the assumption here is that you guys are still married just because you got a certificate of divorce. You're trying to dissolve your marriage for these reasons that aren't justifiable. And we know what scripture says, what God has joined together, let no man separate. You can't just dissolve the marriage for any reason. You can't just let no man separate. Now, there are some things that legitimately dissolve a marriage and can legitimately dissolve a marriage, like adultery there, but what was happening in Jesus's day, Linda, was, you know, you had these religious people who were just leaving their wives. And there were two schools of thought that the Jews in Jesus's day had. One was a little bit more conservative, but the more popular view was that, yeah, you could basically just leave your marriage, divorce your wife, give her a certificate of divorce, because you were just unhappy with her.

You no longer wanted to be with her. And Jesus, he's calling out that low view of marriage in his day, and by extension, I think, calling out, you know, a really low view of marriage that people have in our day today. And so this is where it's so important for you to be in a solid church, where they can walk alongside you in this and say, okay, we need to call this individual to repentance. Now, I would say, this individual being your husband, I would say that Paul seems to indicate in 1 Corinthians 7 that if one spouse abandons the marriage, then, you know, and they're not willing to be married and they just leave, that that also can dissolve or lead to the dissolution of the marriage covenant. Now, I don't know if your husband claims to be a Christian or not. If he claimed to be a Christian, was in a church, and was just leaving the marriage without biblical grounds, then he would, you know, be under church discipline or should be under church discipline.

And if he didn't repent, then that would lead to him being excommunicated from the church, treated as a non-believer. And if he was unwilling to, you know, restore the marriage, then essentially what he would be doing is he would be saying, no, I'm abandoning this marriage. And Paul says in situations like that, 1 Corinthians 7 again, the believing spouse is not bound. In other words, that marriage is and can be legitimately dissolved.

You would be free to marry. But this is where, again, it's important to have the church walking alongside of you. And I recognize, you know, how complex these situations are and how hard this situation has to be for you. And so, Linda, I pray that in all of this, the Lord Jesus Christ brings you His comfort and grace and wisdom and helps you in the midst of this situation, upholds you. And so let's pray for our sister Linda right now. Our Father in heaven, we come before you. Would you be with Linda, comforting her by the grace of your Holy Spirit and granting her the wisdom that comes from heaven, Lord, so that she would know how to respond and how to act in this situation, that in the decisions she makes, Lord, she would honor you and exhibit a love for you and a love even for her husband, who is not with it right now. And we pray for him as well, that you would bring him to repentance, that you would humble him and help him, Lord Jesus, to return to you and to obedience to your word and to loving his family.

Oh God, would you do the work that only you can do? We look to you in Jesus' name. Amen.

Amen. Thanks for that, Adriel. And Linda, we are so sorry that you're dealing with that situation. This is Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. Our phone lines are open right now if you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, doctrine, theology. Maybe you could use prayer for something going on in your own personal Christian walk. We'd love to talk to you and pray for you.

And maybe you've got some questions about something happening at your church that you're a bit confused about. Here's our phone number. It's 833-THE-CORE.

That's 1-833-843-2673. Let's go to John calling in from St. Louis, Missouri. John, what's your question for Adriel? Yeah, how you guys doing there?

I enjoy your show. Hey, let me ask you a question. All these mass shootings and all these crime and all the, you know, in this disregard for human life, is this part of the demonic invasion that the Bible specified in the last days? Or is this part of the delusion of people's hearts being so cold that, you know, it's like almost like they don't even think of this as shootings. Like, you know, they just turn the page and just go on about their lives.

Like, so I was wondering, why are people so cold-hearted or why are their hearts so cold when it comes to these type of situations and no one really seems to address it? They just all political talk. I'm going to stand there and hear your comments.

Thanks. Hey, John. You know, you bring up something really interesting there and it's the fact that we can grow numb to the evil that we see all around us. And especially, you mentioned mass shootings and with the one that we just had yesterday. I mean, it seems like, you know, on a monthly basis you're hearing about more and more of these. It's easy to grow numb to it. It's easy to grow numb to the violence, the images that you see on the news. We were just praying yesterday about the horrible things that have been taking place, that took place in the last week in the Middle East.

And so just really heartbreaking. Now, you're just saying, is this a sign of the end times? It's definitely a sign of, you know, the depravity of mankind. Jesus does say in Matthew chapter 24, because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. And I think there is a correlation there between love growing cold, Jesus says it, and that increase in lawlessness, in wickedness. And so, I mean, what are we called to as the people of God? We're called to be faithful, we're called to trust in the Lord, we're called in the midst of, you know, seeing great evil all around us, to be salt and light in the world, sort of walk in purity, to live lives that are distinct, characterized by the fruit of the Holy Spirit, and to set our hope on Christ and so that's what we need to be doing, and pointing others to that great hope. I mean, the tragic thing that breaks my heart is you see all of this, this death and destruction around us, and for those who don't have the eternal hope, the everlasting hope that we have as followers of Christ, the hope, the confidence that one day all evil will be vanquished, and indeed that Christ has conquered sin already through the cross, but that we are coming to a day where the judge of all, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, is going to set everything right. That gives me hope in the midst of a world that often seems irreparable.

I have hope because Jesus is Lord, and so we can't lose sight of that hope even as we experience and see terrible atrocities around us. May God bring peace and protection and salvation. I mean, that's what we want to see, and so, John, thanks for reaching out to us and continue to pray that the Lord's kingdom would come and for the safety of those who are being tormented right now.

God bless. You're listening to Core Christianity with Pastor Adriel Sanchez. If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life, you can email us anytime at questions at corechristianity.com.

Here's an email that came in from one of our listeners named Eric. Eric says this, I'm an atheist. From the outside looking in, I seem to see two categories of Christians. The two groups I see are what I call love Christians and label Christians. Label Christians fixate on that label Christian. There's an in-group and an out-group If you're a Christian, I can get along with you.

If you're not a Christian, I can't. Usually they don't have nice things to say to me as an atheist, but love Christians tend to say things like Christ taught me to love everyone, so I will. It's easier for me to find common ground with them because love is my guiding principle also.

I just wanted to see what you thought of those two categories and whether I'm on to something. I need to examine my own biases and my stereotypes about Christians, which I recognize might be unfair. Eric, I appreciate you reaching out to us and sending us an email, and I think that maybe you are on to something here, distinguishing between love Christians and label Christians.

Now, one of the things I'd say is I think our culture, our society has a really skewed understanding of what love is. I'm interested to hear that you as an atheist, but for you love is kind of that driving principle, that driving force, and I would want to ask you where that comes from, that love and that sense of we ought to love each other and do good to each other. That's what the Bible calls the greatest commandment, really. Jesus said that the law of God is fulfilled in loving God with all of our hearts and loving our neighbor as ourselves.

That's the fulfillment of the law, and so I would have all sorts of questions for you, and I hope that we can connect and dialogue about this. I love when people reach out to us who aren't Christians and are curious. Another thing that I would say is so interesting, kind of the way you worded your email, Jesus was known in the gospels for associating with people that the religious leaders in his day typically didn't associate with. You said, you know, for label Christians, it just seems like, you know, as long as you have the Christian label, I'm going to be cool with you, but if you don't, if you're on the outside, I don't care about you or I'm not going to be kind to you. One of the things that got Jesus into hot water so often during his earthly ministry was he was accused by the religious leaders of being a friend of tax collectors and sinners. Now, even there, as Jesus is pursuing people, the down-and-out, the broken, the quote-unquote sinful, as he's pursuing them, he's not just saying, yeah, live however you want, believe whatever you want, and everything's going to be fine.

No, he's pursuing them like a doctor pursues a very sick patient, and he's coming with the healing grace of his gospel. And so this is where I think people confuse maybe what love is. For so many people in our society today, Eric, love is you just have to affirm me in whatever I believe and whatever I want to do, and the way in which we can coexist and love each other is just by not challenging each other at all.

Love says, you know, you do you, I'll do me, but that's not love. The way the Bible talks about love, love looks like laying down your life for the good of others, and Jesus is the ultimate example of that. It's that sacrificial self-giving. That's where the love of God and the love of Jesus Christ was exhibited toward us, and that's the kind of love that Christians should have for one another and even for their neighbors. And I recognize that we fall short of that, and we as Christians recognize that we fall short of that. That's why we need the grace of God, because all of us, and you said it, you said, you know, love is my driving principle. Well, Jesus said we ought to love even our enemies, and when you really think about what love is, you quickly realize, okay, I don't perfectly love God, and I don't perfectly love the people around me.

I have a hard time loving the people who love me, you know, not to mention the people who don't care about me, the people who hate me, and so we fall short of that love. That's why we need, that's why you need the gospel of grace, and God sent his Son into the world to love us and to redeem us so that we might be saved, delivered, freed from our sins, and serve each other. And so Christians ought to be characterized by love and service and conviction, holding fast to the truth, the truth of God's word, and I hope that we do get a chance to talk more. I'm going to follow up with you. Thank you for emailing us, and Bill, I'm so just encouraged by the fact that, you know, we get callers and emails from people who believe all sorts of different things or don't believe anything at all, and so what a blessing it is to get to speak with you and to share the truth of Christ with you. We explore the truth of God's word together.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-10-26 20:51:55 / 2023-10-26 21:01:44 / 10

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