What does the Bible say about divorce?
Love, it’s a beautiful thing, isn’t it? We each know love, in some form from the moment we enter this world. Whether it’s the love of a mother or father, a guardian or stranger, we were each created by God with an innate desire to love and be loved.
Of course, when sin came into the world, so did the hurt and pain that breaks loving hearts.
God is love, and He’s the reason we are able to love. But in our humanness and on this earth, the Bible says we WILL experience pain, and heartache and confusion and anger. And in most cases, love will be the primary source of that suffering.
Take divorce for example. According to the CDC, 41 percent of first marriages end in divorce. That number is DOWN from eight years ago in 2010 when the United States divorce rate was more than 50 percent of the annual marriage rate.
Image: McKinley Irvin Family Law
What’s worse is that the Christian divorce rate doesn’t differ much from that of culture.
The Bible tells us a lot about what to expect, and how to face trials in this life. Jesus himself walked this earth and spoke very clear instructions on what is good and righteous.
So, what does the Bible say about divorce?
Well, a lot actually.
For starters, divorce is NOT a new thing. With the evolution of technology and temptation, many tend to think that divorce is something that more recent generations have turned to in their desire to escape the trials of this world.
The reality is that, because sin exists in this world, man has always had a way to escape their circumstance—divorce being one of them.
Examples of Divorce in the Bible
When you find yourself asking, what does the Bible say about divorce, perhaps you’ll look to Mary and Joseph for example.
“This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.” (Matthew 1:18-19)
Scandalous isn’t it? Joseph wasn’t even married to Mary, and he already had plans to divorce her.
The Bible talks a lot about divorce because just like today, divorce happened a lot. In fact, in the Old Testament, The Law, as described in Deuteronomy 24:1, says that it was fairly easy for a man to divorce his wife. As long as he felt she was displeasing to him or there was something indecent about her, he would write her a divorce certificate and send her from his house. A woman, however, could not initiate divorce in any form.
Obviously today it’s a little bit different than that—or at least, we make it out to be. In 2018, we call it “falling out of love,” and women have more rights.
But when you look at the big picture, divorce today is a lot like divorce thousands of years ago as it is written in the Bible. Historically, divorce is two people separating for selfish, human reasons.