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Question #312

I have a long question about divorce and remarriage.

I've read your comments regarding divorce and remarriage. I am a new Christian. Was saved and baptized last year in September. I've had a crash course in Christianity since my husband of 17 years left me last June and is now living with another woman. I still love my husband and want him to come home. I am standing and praying for his salvation and the restoration of my marriage. I know many believe I have the right to divorce because of the adultery, but I choose to trust God to turn my husband's heart back toward home. I feel I am called to do this. My spirit guides me this way. My heart is soft and has not hardened for some reason. Also other circumstances have led me this way. My heart breaks everyday. It's very hard considering where my husband is right now. He has recently filed for divorce. My husband believes in God but obviously is not saved. He is completely unaware of the scriptures in the New Testament regarding remarriage being adultery. I was unaware of these scriptures too before last year. We considered ourselves Christians, but never attended church or read the Bible. Just thought being good people and believing in Jesus would get us to heaven. I now know better. I pray he's not deceived into thinking a marriage to her would get him out of adultery. I cannot tell him because he would not listen to me anyway. I pray that God sends laborers to him. In the meantime, I stand in faith that God can and will restore. He is a God of restoration and healing. I use the story of Hosea as encouragement, and the parable of the prodigal son. I guess my question would be: If my husband left me for another and is now living with her in adultery, and he divorces me against my will and ends up marrying her, would God ever accept this marriage as valid, even though his covenant wife stands in the gap for him and prays for reconciliation? The woman is twice divorced and I don't have any particulars regarding her divorces. My husband and I have never been previously married to anyone else.

The Answer:

Having read the information contained on this website you seem to have a good grasp on the issues involved. The facts as you have outlined them do indicate that you have scriptural grounds for remarriage in the event the divorce your husband filed becomes final. Should he remarry he will be living in adultery. God will recognize the marriage, but he will recognize it for what it is – an unscriptural union. According to 1 Corinthians 7:11 he has two choices upon leaving you, neither of which is to marry another. He must remain single or be reconciled to you, his first wife. Should you remarry he has only one option – remain single.

God's Plan of Salvation

You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." (Romans 10:17)

You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)

You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)

You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)

Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!

Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)