Sunday, July 19, 2020

Does Scripture Allow Remarriage After Divorce?

By Maria Merola אריאל

© Copyright Double Portion Inheritance, September 2008


The entire point of this article is not to condone divorce for any reason. This word study is for all those (including myself) who have been divorced wrongfully, against their will by a cheating spouse. 

If you are the victim of having been divorced by a cheating spouse, and you have been made to feel that you can never remarry, this article is for you.

There are a few places in Scripture, where the English translators mistranslated the Hebrew & Greek words “putting away,” as the word “divorce.” However, these two words do not have the same meaning, as you will soon discover.

Having been the victim of an unwanted divorce from a cheating spouse, I thought I was never allowed to remarry. Nevertheless, I was completely freed from the shackles of hopelessness, when I discovered that there is the promise of a happy and fulfilling life after an unwanted divorce, (contrary to what many in the Church have taught us to believe).

Ever since I can remember, I have heard people in the Christian Church quote Malachi 2:16, as they would often say “God hates divorce.” This phrase was often used as if to imply, that those who were divorced (even if they were the innocent party, and did not want the divorce) were somehow in sin for having been divorced by their spouse. 

While it is true that YaHuWaH hates it when a family is torn apart; (and a marriage covenant is broken), it is not true that divorce is always a sin in every case. As an example, let us look at Joseph (the earthly father of our Messiah). He was a righteous man, who was intending to divorce his betrothed (his wife to be), Miryam, aka “Mary.

Mattithyahuw (Matthew) 1: 

18 Now the birth of Yahuwshuwa Mashiyach (Messiah) was on this wise: When as his mother Miryam (Mary) was espoused to Yahuwceph (Joseph), before they came together, she was found with child of the Ruwach ha’Qodesh (Holy Spirit). 

19 Then Yahuwceph (Joseph) her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily. 

20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of YHWH appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Yahuwceph (Joseph), you son of Dawiyd (David), fear not to take unto you Miryam (Mary) your wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Ruwach ha’Qodesh (Holy Spirit). 

Joseph was a just man, and yet he was planning to put away Mary (Miryam) privately; because he did not want to cause her shame, or to have her stoned to death. If Mary (Miryam) had committed adultery, then Joseph would have had a just cause to divorce her. But as he was visited by the malak (angel) of YaHuWaH, he soon found out that she was not an adulteress, but that she had conceived by the power of the Ruwach ha’Qodesh (Holy Spirit). This goes to show that divorcing a woman who had committed adultery was not a sin according to Deuteronomy 24. 

Ever since I was a child, (raised in the Catholic Church), I was taught that if one was divorced, that he or she could never re-marry, or else they would be committing adultery. This false conclusion stems from modern Bible translations, which use the wrong interpretation of the Hebrew & Greek word divorce.It is important at this point, to make a distinction between the phrase “put away, and the word

In Matthew 5, Matthew 19 & Malachi 2:16, few people realize that the King James Version correctly translates the words that are intended, by making this distinction. The King James Version uses the Hebrew Masoretic Text for the Tanakh (Old Testament), and it uses the Greek Textus Receptus for the Briyth Chadashah (New Testament). Whereas, modern translations of the Bible use corrupted manuscripts that twist and completely change the meaning of these verses. To learn more, please see my other blog: The King James Version vs Modern Translations

All modern translations do not make a distinction between the words “put away” and divorce,thus causing many divorced people to live their lives in bondage with unnecessary guilt. When I was born-again in 1981, I was confronted by a few people from the Pentecostal Holiness” Church who placed condemnation on me because I married a divorced man. 

However, my former husband (at the time) had an ex-wife who had divorced him, and she had already remarried another man. Therefore, there was no hope for him to be reconciled with her. These people were citing verses from the Scriptures, and trying to make me believe I was an adulteress, because I was married to a divorced man.

What I did not know back then, (that I do know now), is that the verses they were using to condemn me were wrongly translated. In the Strong’s Hebrew Concordance, we can clearly see a distinction between “put away” and divorce.

#H7971. shalach shaw-lakh’ a primitive root; to send away, for, or out (in a great variety of applications):-- any wise, appoint, bring (on the way), cast awaycast out, conduct, earnestly, forsake, give (up), grow long, lay, leave, let depart (down, go, loose), push away, put away, forth, in, out, reach forth, send away, send forth, out), set, shoot (forth, out), sow, spread, stretch forth (out).

#H3748. kriythuwth ker-ee-thooth’ from 3772; a cutting of the matrimonial bond, i.e. divorce:--divorcement).

As you can see, the word “shalach” simply means “to send away (without a certificate of divorce to make it legal). This means that some men in biblical times were sending their wives out of their homes, or separating from them without giving them a legal divorce certificate. YaHuWaH hates this, because these women were left hanging in limbo, and were unable not remarry. The other Hebrew word is “kriythuwth” which means “To severe the matrimonial bond” or to “legally divorce.” With this new understanding, let’s see what the King James Version says in Malachi 2:16:

Malakiy (Malachi) 2:16: For YHWH, the Elohiym of Yisra’el, says that he hates putting away [shalach]: for one covers violence with his garment, says YHWH of hosts: therefore take heed to your spirit, that you deal not treacherously. 

Now let’s compare Malachi 2:16 in some of the modern translations:

New King James Version: 

16 “For the LORD God of Israel says That He hates divorce, For it covers one’s garment with violence,” Says the LORD of hosts. 

New International Version: 

16 “The man who hates and divorces his wife,” says the LORD, the God of Israel, “does violence to the one he should protect,” says the LORD Almighty. 

New American Standard Version: 

16 “For I hate divorce,” says the LORD, the God of Israel, “and him who covers his garment with wrong,” says the LORD of hosts. “So take heed to your spirit, that you do not deal treacherously.” 

Let’s take a look at the Oldest Hebrew Translation:

Malachi 2:16  כיH3588 שׂנאH8130 שׁלחH7971 אמרH559 יהוהH3068 אלהיH430 ישׂראלH3478 וכסהH3680 חמסH2555 עלH5921 לבושׁוH3830 אמרH559 יהוהH3068 צבאותH6635 ונשׁמרתםH8104 ברוחכםH7307 ולאH3808 תבגדו׃H898

You will notice that the word “shalach” (put away) is used here, for it is #7971. It mentions nothing about “Elohiym hating divorce!” It simply says that he hates “shalach” (putting away).

This means that YaHuWaH hates it when a man separates from his wife (and marries another woman), without legally divorcing the first wife. This is not to say that YaHuWaH is okay with men cheating on their wives. This, of course is a sin. But if the man is going to commit adultery, (and marry another woman), the very least he could do is to give his first wife a certificate of divorce, thereby freeing her up to remarry. We must then ask ourselves “Does YaHuWaH really hate divorce in all cases?” The answer to that question is a resounding “no!”  

What YaHuWaH hates, is when a husband separates from his wife (without having a just cause), and then, to top it all off, he does not make it legal, by giving her a certificate of divorce, which would enable her to get remarried. This is what YaHuWaH hates!

YaHuWaH Does Not Always Hate Divorce!

How can we be sure that YaHuWaH does not hate divorce in all cases? We find out that YaHuWaH himself is divorced from Yisra’el:

Yirmeyahuw (Jeremiah) 3:8 And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Yisra’el committed adultery I had put her away [shalach], and given her a bill of divorce [kriythuwth]; yet her treacherous sister Yahuwdah (Judah) feared not, but went and played the harlot also. 

Notice that he did two things:

1.) He first put her away. 

2.) Then, he wrote her a bill of divorce. 

He did not merely “put her away,” but he made it legal and wrote her a divorce decree! This is exactly what is written in the Towrah of Mosheh (Moses). 

Debariym (Deuteronomy) 24: 

1 When a man has taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he has found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement [kriythuwth], and give it in her hand, and send her out [shalach] of his house. 

2 And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man’s wife. 

Notice, that a man who wants to divorce his wife may only do so for “some uncleanness” in her. What does this mean? It means that she has either committed adultery, or he thought she was a virgin before marrying her, but on the wedding night, he discovers that she was not a virgin. It can also mean that she is an idol worshiper and she worships other gods. 

However, if the husband discovers that his wife is not a virgin, (but he loves her anyway), he would kill a lamb, and place the blood of that lamb on the bed-sheet, and thereby provide proof of her virginity! Is this not what our Messiah has done for many of us, in cleansing us of our sins by his precious blood?

In the book of Ezra, chapter 10:3-19, the men returning from the Babylonian Captivity were commanded to divorce their heathen, unrepentant wives before being allowed to return to the Promised Land. However, there are other reasons why a divorce may be out of someone’s control. It is when the innocent party (the believer) has an unbelieving spouse who wants to leave the marriage. In this case, the believer in Messiah must do their best to keep the marriage from ending. However, if the unbelieving spouse want to leave, we should not try and stop them.

1st Qorintiym (Corinthians) 7:15 But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart. A brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases: but Elohiym has called us to peace. 

The Apostle Sha’uwl (Paul) is telling us that if an unbelieving spouse wants to depart, then let him/her go. He goes on to say that we are “Not under bondage” to the marriage covenant in such cases.

Now that we know that there is a difference between being “put away,” and being legally divorced, it changes how we read certain passages in Scripture regarding divorce and remarriage. In Strong’s Greek Concordance we find the same distinction as we do in the Hebrew.

#G630. apoluo ap-ol-oo’-o from 575 and 3089; to free fully, i.e. (literally) relieve, release, dismiss (reflexively, depart), or (figuratively) let die, pardon or (specially) divorce:--(let) depart, dismiss, forgive, let go, loose, put away, send away, release, set at liberty.

#G647. apostasion ap-os-tas’-ee-on neuter of a (presumed) adjective from a derivative of 868; properly, something separative, i.e. (specially) divorce:--writing of divorcement.

#G3080. lusis loo’-sis from 3089; a loosening, i.e. (specially), divorce:--to be loosed.

We are now going to see how these Greek words should be translated into English.

Mattithyahuw (Matthew) 5: 

31 It has been said, Whosoever shall put away [apoluo] his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement [apostasion]:

32 But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away [apoluo] his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causes her to commit adulteryand whosoever shall marry her that is divorced [apoluo] commits adultery.

As you can see, in verse 32, even the King James Version mistranslated the word “put away” (apoluo) as 

In verse 31, they translated it correctly from the Greek #647 “apostasion,” but in verse 32, they erroneously translated #630 “apoluo” as if it says “divorced.” In Matthew 19, the King James Version translates the words correctly from Greek to English.

Mattithyahuw (Matthew) 19: 

3 The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away [apoluo] his wife for every cause? 

4 And he answered and said unto them, Have you not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, 

5 And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they two shall be one flesh? 

6 Wherefore they are no more two, but one flesh. What therefore Elohiym has joined together, let not man put asunder. 

7 They say unto him, Why did Mosheh then command to give a writing of divorcement [apostasion]and to put her away [apoluo]?

8 He said unto them, Mosheh because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away [apoluo] your wives: but from the beginning it was not so.

9 And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away [apoluo] his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, commits adultery: and whoso marries her which is put away [apoluo] does commit adultery. 

As you can see from the above verses, the thing that causes one to commit adultery is to marry someone who is “put away” or separated, because they are not legally divorced. The Greek word that is used in Matthew 19 is “apoluo” in every case, which simply means that to marry someone who is not legally divorced (but only separated or put away) is committing adultery!

Now, in the even that a spouse divorces or leaves his/her current marriage partner in order to marry someone else, this is committing adultery. However, if the innocent party (the spouse that has been cheated on) has been wrongfully divorced against their will, they are free to remarry. 

I would like to address the question that was posed to Yahuwshuwa by the religious leaders of his day.

Mattityahuw (Matthew) 19:3 The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause? 

Marqos (Mark) 10:2 And the Pharisees came to him, and asked him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife? tempting him.

The answer that our Messiah gave is essentially, “No, it is not lawful for a man to put away his wife for any reason.” He went on to explain that the marriage covenant from the beginning (with Adam & Eve), was intended to be kept until one of the parties dies, which would then terminate the covenant.

Our Messiah (knowing the Mosaic Law) set the religious leaders straight, by reminding them that the only reason why a man could “put away” his wife is for the cause of fornication or adultery. However, he was still required to write her a certificate of divorce in such cases. You see, it was a common problem in those days for men to abandoning their wives without having a just cause without making it legal with a divorce decree. 

Men would often do this, because they did not want to be financial responsible for the wife of his youth. However, the Scriptures clearly forbid a man from showing favoritism towards his second wife and her son. YaHuWaH made sure to address this, because of the trouble and disfunction it caused in Jacobs household, as he showed favor towards Rachel, and her son Joseph.

Debariym (Deuteronomy) 21:15 If a man have two wives, one beloved, and another hated, and they have born him children, both the beloved and the hated; and if the firstborn son be hers that was hated: 

Debariym (Deuteronomy) 21:16 Then it shall be, when he makes his sons to inherit that which he has, that he may not make the son of the beloved firstborn, before the son of the hated, which is indeed the firstborn: 

Debariym (Deuteronomy) 21:17 But he shall acknowledge the son of the hated for the firstborn, by giving him a double portion of all that he has: for he is the beginning of his strength; the right of the firstborn is his.

You may notice that Jacob did the opposite of what this Towrah command says, because he gave his son by Rachel (the beloved wife) a “double portion” of all he had (Genesis 48:22). YaHuWaH did not condone what Jacob did, nevertheless, we learn from history, that showing favoritism caused much strife and division in the family.

Therefore, even though YaHuWaH never condoned plural marriage from the beginning, he is commanding men not to treat the son of his first wife less favorably, than the son of favorite wife. This does not mean that Yah condones polygamy. He is simply stating that even if a man make this unfortunate choice, the very least he should do, is acknowledge the biological firstborn son. However, in the case of Abraham & Hagar, she was not a legally married wife, but only a concubine, and a slave woman, whose son legally belonged to Sarah.

In Malachi the 2nd chapter, the context was about men who did not have a just cause for divorcing their wives, and they were wrongfully putting them away, and not giving them a divorce certificate. As previously noted, Deuteronomy 24, states that a man may divorce his wife if he has found some “uncleanness” in her (either fornication or idolatry). The Pharisees knowing this already, were trying to trick our Messiah to see if he would agree with Mosheh (Moses) or not.  

In Debariym (Deuteronomy) 24, however, if a man marries a woman who is legally divorced, he does not commit adultery. It is only when he marries a woman who has not been legally divorced by her husband that he is then committing adultery.

Debariym (Deuteronomy) 24:1 When a man has taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he has found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house.  

Debariym (Deuteronomy) 24:2 And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another mans wife.  

Debariym (Deuteronomy) 24:3 And if the latter husband hates her, and writes her a bill of divorcement, and gives it in her hand, and sends her out of his house; or if the latter husband dies, which took her to be his wife;  

Debariym (Deuteronomy) 24:4 Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before YHWH: and you shall not cause the land to sin, which YHWH your Elohiym gives you for an inheritance. 

You will notice from the above passages, that even if the woman is divorced for a just cause, she may remarry another man (once the first husband has legally divorced her). However, she may never return to the first husband (if the second husband should also divorce her or if he should die). 

But what about stoning to death?

The Towrah provides strict requirements regarding sexuality and marriage. In Deuteronomy 22:13–30 there are many laws focused on violations of the marriage covenant. Verses 20–21 address the case of a woman who presents herself as a virgin in marriage to a man but is not really a virgin. In such cases, the woman was sentenced to death by stoning: 

“If . . . the charge [that the bride was not a virgin on her wedding night] is true and no proof of the young woman’s virginity can be found, she shall be brought to the door of her father’s house and there the men of her town shall stone her to death. She has done an outrageous thing in Yisra’el by being promiscuous while still in her father’s house. You must purge the evil from among you.” 

The reasons for this command, as noted in Deuteronomy 22:21, include the fact that the disgraced bride had done an “outrageous” thing and been “promiscuous” while living in her father’s home. In other words, the woman in this situation had engaged in premarital sex and then lied about her virginity—or at least allowed her husband to assume she was a virgin, thus lying by her silence; either way, she had entered the marriage under false pretenses. 

Her stoning was to be carried out at the door of her father’s home, rather than outside the camp, because of the shame attached to her family’s name. The Towrah had addressed fornication and its penalty in Exodus 22:16–17, and the prescribed penalty was not death. This fact has led many to conclude that the situation described in Deuteronomy 22 refers to adultery, rather than fornication. In other words, the woman’s immorality had occurred after she was betrothed to her husband; thus, she had broken a marriage covenant already in place. And such was the case with Joseph & Miryam (the parents of our Messiah).

Joseph had the option of shaming her publicly, (and legally charging her with adultery, thereby having her stoned to death); or he could choose to have compassion, and simply divorce her quietly (as he was planning to do). This, of course, was before the messenger of Yah showed him that the child had been conceived supernaturally. 

The Jewish Talmud states that if the groom loves the bride, (and he discovers that she is not a virgin on their wedding night), he could apply the blood of a lamb to the bedsheet, and provide that as “proof” of her virginity. Even though this provision is not found in the Towrah, it seems very similar to what Joseph did with Miryam, in that he could have had her stoned to death, but he chose not to do that. 

As a matter of fact, she was pregnant with “The lamb of Elohiym, who takes away the sins of the world,” and since she and Joseph did not consummate until after the child was born, technically, she was indeed covered by the blood of the lamb, by the time they did consummate!

Now let’s take a look at Mark’s gospel:

Marqos (Mark) 10: 

2 And the Pharisees came to him, and asked him, Is it lawful for a man to put away [apoluo] his wife? tempting him. 

3 And he answered and said unto them, What did Mosheh command you? 

4 And they said, Mosheh suffered to write a bill of divorcement [apostasion]and to put her away [apoluo]. 

5 And Yahuwshuwa answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept. 

6 But from the beginning of the creation Elohiym made them male and female. 

7 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; 

8 And they two shall be one flesh: so then they are no more two, but one flesh. 

9 What therefore Elohiym has joined together, let not man put asunder. 

10 And in the house his disciples asked him again of the same matter. 

11 And he said unto them, Whosoever shall put away [apoluo] his wife, and marry another, commits adultery against her. 

12 And if a woman shall put away [apoluo] her husband, and be married to another, she commits adultery. 

You will notice, in verse 12, that if the “Woman shall put away her husband” (meaning that she merely separates), but she has not been legally divorced by him, that she is also committing adultery if she marries another man. In verse 11, Yahuwshuwa says that if a man shall “Puts away his wife and marries another woman, he is committing adultery against his first wife.”

This once again, is proof that polygamy is wrong. The first wife is being sinned against when a man takes another wife (while he is still legally married to her).

Luqas (Luke) 16:18 Whosoever puts away [apoluo] his wife, and marries another, commits adultery: and whosoever marries her that is put away [apoluo] from her husband commits adultery. 

When the Yahuwdiym (Jews) came out of Babylonian Captivity, many of the men had married heathen wives, and they were commanded to divorce these heathen wives before being allowed to return back to the land. However, these heathen wives were commanded to either repent, and be converted, or be divorced by their husbands.

Ezrah 9: 

1 Now when these things were done, the princes came to me, saying, The people of Yisra’el, and the priests, and the Lewites, have not separated themselves from the people of the lands, doing according to their abominations, even of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians, and the Amorites. 

For they have taken of their daughters for themselves, and for their sons: so that the holy seed have mingled themselves with the people of those lands: yea, the hand of the princes and rulers has been chief in this trespass. 

3 And when I heard this thing, I rent my garment and my mantle, and plucked off the hair of my head and of my beard, and sat down astonied. 

4 Then were assembled unto me every one that trembled at the words of the Elohiym of Yisra’el, because of the transgression of those that had been carried away; and I sat astonied until the evening sacrifice. 

5 And at the evening sacrifice I arose up from my heaviness; and having rent my garment and my mantle, I fell upon my knees, and spread out my hands unto YHWH my Elohiym. 

In the above verses, we have Ezra tearing his clothes, and plucking out his beard as he mourns and weeps in repentance on behalf of the sins of the House of Judah for marrying heathens who worship idols. Then he went into prayer and fasting to seek after YaHuWaH to know how to handle the situation:

Ezrah 9: 

12 Now therefore give not your daughters unto their sons, neither take their daughters unto your sons, nor seek their peace or their wealth forever: that you may be strong, and eat the good of the land, and leave it for an inheritance to your children forever. 

13 And after all that is come upon us for our evil deeds, and for our great trespass, seeing that you our Elohiym have punished us less than our iniquities deserve, and have given us such deliverance as this; 

14 Should we again break thy commandments, and join in affinity with the people of these abominations? would not you be angry with us till you had consumed us, so that there should be no remnant nor escaping? 

15 O YHWH Elohiym of Yisra’el, you are righteous: for we remain yet escaped, as it is this day: behold, we are before you in our trespasses: for we cannot stand before you because of this. 

In the next verses we read that all the remnant of the House of Yahuwdah (Judah) wept and repented for marrying heathens and idol worshipersAfter there was repentance, they entered into Covenant with YaHuWaH to divorce their unrepentant heathen wives: 

Ezrah 10: 

1 Now when Ezrah had prayed, and when he had confessed, weeping and casting himself down before the house of Elohiym, there assembled unto him out of Yisra’el a very great congregation of men and women and children: for the people wept very sore. 

2 And Shechaniah the son of Jehiel, one of the sons of Elam, answered and said unto Ezra, We have trespassed against our Elohiym, and have taken strange wives of the people of the land: yet now there is hope in Yisra’el concerning this thing. 

3 Now therefore let us make a covenant with our Elohiym to put away all the wives, and such as are born of them, according to the counsel of my lord, and of those that tremble at the commandment of our Elohiym; and let it be done according to the law. 

In conclusion, we know that YaHuWaH really does not want any married couple to be divorced, but in some cases, he actually commands us to divorce a spouse who is a heathen that worships idols. As Apostle Sha’uwl (Paul) stated, that if the unbelieving spouse wants to remain married to the believing spouse, the believing spouse should attempt to win that spouse over to faith in Messiah.

Yet, what if that unbelieving spouse is a witch or a Satanist? There are extenuating circumstances where a wife may have to flee with her children to get away from a dangerous spouse. If a man is married to a woman who is practicing witchcraft or has idols in the home, then he may divorce her according to Deuteronomy 24 for this is considered “uncleanness.”

There is a fine line between an unbelieving spouse who needs prayer (and wants to remain in the marriage), and a blatant heathen who is worshiping idols (thereby inviting demons into the home). This would cause the entire household to be brought under a curse. It is one of those things that should be determined on a “case-by-case” basis (with much prayer and counseling) and also by the leading of the Ruwach ha’Qodesh (Holy Spirit).

If the unbelieving spouse does not want to dwell with the believing spouse, then we are not under bondage in such cases (see 1st Corinthians 7). Ideally, we should all take the approach like the prophet Hosea, who prayed for his wayward spouse. But if the wayward spouse refuses to repent, ultimately,  we are free to divorce and re-marry according to the entire counsel of Scripture.

My Own Personal Testimony 

I had a husband who cheated on me for many years. He used drugs, beat me, and verbally abused me, but I never left him, because I was under the impression that if I left him, I would never be allowed to remarry. It was because of these mistranslations in the English Bible, that I chose to stay in a dangerous situation to my own peril.

In March of 1990, David left me for another woman, and went to live with her. I continued to fast and pray for the restoration of my marriage, all during that one year separation. However, after the one year separation, he announced that he wanted marry the other woman, and therefore, I had no choice but to follow the words of 1st Corinthians 7:15. I had to Let him depart.” It was at this point that I gave him the divorce that he was asking for, by signing the divorce papers. 

Even though I still loved my husband, (and did not want the divorce), it was no longer my choice. I could not force him to stay, and today, I am thankful that YaHuWaH delivered me from a very abusive situation. After my former husband left me for the woman, he began  dabbling in Satanism, and he even recorded worship music offered up to Satan in the recording studio. When my children had court-ordered visitation with their father, they were terrified when they heard him playing this satanic music. Even after he divorced me and remarried, I never stopped praying for his salvation, because he would always have an influence over my two children. 

I would’ve taken him back, and forgiven him if he had repented; however, YaHuWaH released me from that terrible marriage. There were people in the Christian Church who told me that I could never remarry, because I was divorced. However, I knew this was not right. After reading Deuteronomy 24:2, I understood that when a man writes his wife a certificate of divorce, “She may go and become another man’s wife. This was the verse that helped me realize that I was no longer under bondage to my former marriage. At the time, I did not know there was a distinction between the word “divorce” and putting away.” And because of this, I endured unnecessary condemnation for being divorced, even though it was out of my control.    

I have since then counseled others who are married to a spouse that abuses drugs and/or alcohol, and is physically/mentally abusive. To those who find themselves in this situation, I counsel them to remove themselves physically from danger by separating. However, if the abusive spouse wants to remain married, do not file for a divorce right away. 

Take time to fast and pray for the deliverance of your abusive spouse. There is always the possibility that your spouse can be saved, and delivered from the demonic oppression they are under. Nevertheless, each situation is unique, and every effort should be made to redeem the unbelieving spouse through prayer. 

However, I cannot tell you how long you should hold out and wait for your spouse to be delivered. If the abusive, unbelieving spouse wants a divorce, you should wait for them to be the one to initiate the divorce, (if possible). Do not be in a hurry to pursue a divorce, unless enough time has gone by, and it becomes obvious that your spouse is not going to repent and change their ways.

1st Qorintiym (Corinthians) 7: 

10 And unto the married I command, yet not I, but YHWH, Let not the wife depart from her husband: 

11 But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife. 

As you can see, Sha’ul (Paul) is telling the woman not to depart from her husband, but “IF SHE DOES,” let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband. This tells us that there could be extenuating circumstances whereby she has to physically leave, (because she is in danger). However, if she does this, she is to remain unmarried. If the husband is rehabilitated, and quits drinking/using drugs, and beating her, (if he repents, has demons cast out of him, etc.), she may return and be reconciled to him. 

I don’t believe that YaHuWaH wants a woman to remain married to a man who is a pedophile, or a spouse who sodomizes her and/or the children. Neither should a woman remain married to a man who is a homosexual, (who sleeps with men), thereby infecting her with sexually transmitted diseases. 

These are extenuating circumstances where I cannot blame a woman for separating, and ultimately divorcing her husband (should he refuse to give her a divorce). However, it is preferred that a woman should ask her adulterous and abusive spouse to be the one to initiate the divorce, so that she is eligible to remarry, according to Deuteronomy 24:2. 

Does this mean that if a woman divorces her husband (even if he refuses to give her a divorce), that she is not eligible to remarry? I cannot really answer this question with confidence, because there are no easy answers to these difficult questions. However, I do believe that the Elders of Yisrael in ancient times, would have ruled in favor of a wife who was enduring such abuse, and they would probably have forced the husband to write her a divorce certificate, thereby freeing her to remarry.

There is one more situation that I would like to address, and that is in the event that a man or a woman divorced their spouse, before they were “born-again” by the blood of Messiah. In this situation, every effort should be made to restore the marriage covenant that you were responsible for having broken. 

However, if your former spouse has already remarried, and you have repented for wrongfully divorcing them, (and have apologized directly to that former spouse); I believe YaHuWaH is an Elohiym of second chances. He will honor the new life that you have found in him. In this situation, it is often within his will for a redeemed person to remarry, (once every effort has been made to amend your former sinful ways).

2nd Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Messiah, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.


  1. Great post. This should set a lot of believers free.I have a few questions. 1) You stated, "This is also another proof that YaHuWah never condoned polygamy but he merely tolerated it." However, he instituted the Kinsman Redeemer allowing a brother to marry she who had no children after her husband died. He may have already been married and now he could take on a second wife.That's polygamy. 2) I am baffled as to why YaHuWah does not allow a woman to divorce her husband who may continually be having numerous affairs. Any insight? 3)Is a woman who divorces her husband an adultress for the rest of her life even though she was not aware of God's law according to U.S. law and prior to being born again? Thanks

    1. Jan, I am sorry for taking so long to respond to your questions. In the Law of the Kinsman Redeemer, it does not suggest that the brother that marries the wife of his dead brother can already be a married man. As a matter of fact, in the account of Judah & Tamar (in Genesis 38), Judah's wife Shuah had died by the time he impregnated his daughter in law, Tamar with twins.

  2. Very very impressive clearification.
    Great analysis done and well expressed.
    I really understand your clearication on this topic. Some pastors are still confused to explain. Commendable.. God bless you