March 13, 2022 / Matthew 5:31-32
We are continuing our walk through the Sermon on the Mount from Matthew 5-7. Today’s topic is Jesus’ teaching on divorce. This topic, just like so many others that Jesus addresses in this sermon, had become watered down by the Pharisees. Jesus takes this opportunity to correct what had become the popular perspective and teach God’s original intent. Jesus goes into more detail on the topic of divorce in Matthew 19:1-9, which is where we will take our content from.
I. God’s Plan for Marriage (Matt. 19:4-6)
Before we can understand the problems with divorce, we need to understand God’s plan for marriage. God designed and defined marriage. From the beginning God created them male and female. Marriage is between one man and one woman. They are to leave their parents and cleave to each other, becoming one.
• What is the problem if a husband or wife does not sufficiently leave their parents? What effect does it have on the marriage relationship?
• Describe the cleaving process for the husband and wife.
• How does vs. 6 describe God’s involvement in the marriage relationship?
• Since God has joined them together, they are not meant to be separated. What are activities a husband and wife can engage in to maintain being one?
II. God’s Permit for Divorce & Remarriage (Matt 19:7-9)
The Pharisees had misinterpreted the law (Deut. 24:1-4). God never commanded divorce, but He did permit it. There are two allowances for divorce and remarriage: adultery (Matt. 5:31-32) and an unsaved spouse leaves (1 Cor. 7:12- 16).
• What was the reason for Moses permitting divorce?
• How can a person’s hardness of heart effect their relationship with God?
• How can we miss God’s best because of a hard heart?
• How is our culture’s perspective of divorce different from God’s?
• What can you do to embrace God’s intent for marriage?
• What are ways you can encourage others to embrace God’s intent for marriage?
• How can our commitment to God effect our commitment to marriage?
Is divorce an unpardonable sin? Absolutely not! What do you do if you are divorced and remarried for unbiblical reasons? First, repent, then stay where you are. Take this opportunity to renew your commitment to your spouse and to growing closer to them as you grow closer to Christ.