Cross in front of Founders Hall



Healing in Marriage

Lent 2021

Read Matthew 19:1-12

Now when Jesus had finished these sayings, he went away from Galilee and entered the region of Judea beyond the Jordan. 2 And large crowds followed him, and he healed them there. 3 And Pharisees came up to him and tested him by asking, “Is it lawful to divorce one's wife for any cause?” 4 He answered, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, 5 and said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? 6 So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.” 7 They said to him, “Why then did Moses command one to give a certificate of divorce and to send her away?” 8 He said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. 9 And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery.” 10 The disciples said to him, “If such is the case of a man with his wife, it is better not to marry.” 11 But he said to them, “Not everyone can receive this saying, but only those to whom it is given. 12 For there are eunuchs who have been so from birth, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Let the one who is able to receive this receive it.

We cannot get around Jesus’ very pointed comments on the subject of divorce. God hates divorce. It goes against what He established since creation. These are difficult words to hear, especially coming authoritatively from the lips of Christ Himself. Our world often colors divorce as a neat and clean break, trying to separate it from the brokenness in the marriage that led up to it in the first place. However, if you have been divorced, helped others through a divorce, are a “child of divorce,” or have in any other way been impacted by divorce, then you have seen the effects. It fills lives with grief, hurt, anxiety, anger, fear, pain and distress.

When God established marriage He had something much different in mind for us. He desired that a man and woman would have a unique bond when joined together as husband and wife. They would benefit from mutual companionship and be blessed by what comes in this unique relationship where each is singularly committed to the wellbeing of the other. Our world tries to persuade us with different understandings and expectations for marriage; painting it as a mutually beneficial situation that is only worth-it as long as we are getting what we want out of it. In marriage God unites husband and wife as one flesh, making divorce the tearing apart of that flesh.

But God brings healing. He can bring healing to any marriage in hardship, even when divorce seems eminent. He can bring healing to individuals who have gone through divorce. He can bring healing to anger, hurt, betrayal, and shame. God has a powerful forgiveness that we can give to those who have wronged us. He has a powerful forgiveness for us if we have wronged others. He can, He has, He does bring healing; for our God is the God of reconciliation. May we recognize the hurt that is a reality of our marriages not worked at with God’s purpose in mind and in the divorces that dissolve them. May we comfort those who have experienced this. May we be at work for our own marriages (now or if in the future) to guard and protect them as sacred gifts. May we help to guard and encourage the marriages of others. May we give guidance and good council to any who might be considering marriage, that they would be joined together according to God’s intentions.


God, protect marriages everywhere, and provide healing to those who may still be dealing with hurt from divorce. Amen.

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