BACKGROUND - MY PERSONAL STORY
When I met my wonderful husband, I was a divorcee with two beautiful boys. Without going into great detail, I will say that my first marriage was very rough. I entered into it at 19 years old, thinking I was marrying a man of God, and over four years later I was a shell of a woman with two children to care for. I genuinely felt like I was rescued from that marriage (by God) and countless experiences have confirmed to me that I did the right thing by ending it. About four more years passed and I met David – a truly wonderful person and a man who seeks to love me as Christ loves the Church. What is even more important is that we both agreed early on that our relationship was to glorify God and raise the standard for godly relationships. As stated in our Relationship Mission Statement (which we created four months into the relationship), the number one reason we wanted to be married was to “be a more powerful force for the Kingdom of God!” Time after time our relationship has been confirmed and affirmed, by God, by others, and by the fruit it has produced. That’s why when I was confronted with this issue, head on, I had a problem with it. Something wasn’t right. I NEEDED to do further study.
Several years into my marriage to David, I felt God leading me to teach women, single and married, how to be better wives. For an entire year, I had monthly meetings with a group of ladies (all ages), teaching from and further developing a curriculum that I had created. Much of this was from the difficult lessons I learned, striving to be my best in my first marriage, but more was from the grace and revelation that God had given me to be a great wife to David.
I credit my husband’s unwavering positive confession that he’s spoken over me since the beginning, always referring to me as an AMAZING wife, and giving me the space to grow without scorn or judgement. His pure love is powerful, and it has freed me to be able to receive revelation from God on this topic. At the end of a year, God led me again: This time to write the book, How to Win Him and Keep Him Happy: Secrets to Becoming an Amazing Wife. A website, some social media outlets, and speaking engagements were, of course, to follow, but what was of significance to this particular research was a video I posted online about “Healing and Remarriage.” For the next detail, it’s important to mention that I am a minister, and everything I am mentioning here is from a Christian perspective.
The public may comment on most YouTube videos and since mine focused on the healing I received from the Lord, mine were getting a lot of comments from the Christian community. Most were very positive and appreciative, but two comments in particular were of concern. One very “helpful” person laid out for me, in detail, the only ways in which I was allowed to be divorced or remarried, and let me know that if my marriage did not fall into one of these categories, I was essentially committing adultery with my husband. Another cut straight to the point and told me I was going to hell. Of course I dismissed the latter because they obviously did not have a revelation of the saving and sanctifying grace of God. That “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from ALL unrighteousness.” The former, however, was the catalyst to my research.
I can no longer find their comment, but they quoted one of the synoptic gospels, which, as it pertains to my research, are all very similar. “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.” Woah. Now I had remembered skimming this in the past, and perhaps even consciously saying to myself, “Well, it’s covered in the blood. I’ve repented for any wrongdoing in my previous marriage and situation.” But now I was a marriage author, and presenting myself as an authority on the topic. While qualified to teach what I was teaching, and possessing special revelation for marriage and wifehood, I STILL needed an answer for this, because no-doubt it would come up again. This accusation against me was just a catalyst to search deeper.
But my heart didn’t convict me. I was so sure that I was in the center of God’s will in my marriage and that I was exactly where I needed to be in life’s journey – my destiny, which INCLUDED my husband – that I knew there was no way that God would have me in a situation that was causing myself or my husband to perpetually commit adultery! This, I believe, is where your faith and your intimacy with God is tested. When you have an intimate relationship with God and know His nature, you will differentiate from His voice and someone else’s. “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.” I “ran away” from the input of this stranger (as opposed to running away from God, thinking He’s condemning me), because I know the character of my God so well. I know Him as a loving and merciful God, and He would never trick me or lead me astray. I read these words about divorce in my Bible, but I couldn’t connect them with my wonderful, merciful Lord, so I decided to seek more information. And what I found out was very interesting…
Because I believe in honoring your elders and their wisdom, I first went to the highly respected, Pastor Daryl Barnett, that used to serve as a Pastor in our church. His revelation on marriage may be unmatched. It is known that he dedicates much of his study time on this topic, and he is widely respected on the matter. I messaged him, explaining my quandary, and he responded with, “Sure I can help, just give me a call. You’re in the clear!” I was glad to hear that and that my instincts were correct. During the call, he explained some things about translation, God’s will for His people, and how ministers never seem to want to study this issue out entirely, by going back to the original Greek and Hebrew for answers. This laid the foundation for my research and motivated me to study more, and when I got the chance to research this for a paper, I jumped on it!
The Common Argument
Currently, most English versions of the Bible translate the few verses we find concerning the dissolution of marriage in the New Testament similarly. Texts on this topic are found in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and 1 Corinthians – Not in John. Matthew and John are the only two of the gospel writers who were part of the first twelve disciples, and therefore the only two that would have been present when Jesus was speaking on the matter. Based on these facts, and because there is nothing concerning this in John, we will be treating only the text found in Matthew. In the interest of brevity, I will not be addressing 1 Corinthians, but I invite you to take an additional look at it after reading my research, as well as Mark 10:2-12 (which only adds a sentence about the disciples asking Jesus about what He said), Luke 16:18, and Matthew 5:31-32 at your leisure, and you will find that everything I show you here lines up with these scriptures as well, including any original Greek translation. We will first take a look at the scripture (Matt. 19:3-9), in the most common English translation, as this is the starting point from which I will assume most of us are familiar.
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 1 John 1:9 (English Standard Version).
 Matthew 5:32 (English Standard Version).
 John 10:27 (English Standard Version).