Today I am heading home after three weekends in Portugal. At the moment I am stuck in Amsterdam after a 3 hour flight delay and missed connections. I have arranged a new route home, but a bit later than expected. Such is the life of travel (ha, ha). It was a great trip. I was able to record two more training courses in Portuguese. This is a total of ten courses in video, audio, and print in the Portuguese language. We are putting together some key training resources for the Portuguese world.
I have been addressing the topic of God’s design for marriage. Marriage is a partnership of life-giving relationship that empowers two different individuals to become one flesh made of two. Divorce is the destruction of a one-flesh relationship. God hates divorce, because God loves life. Divorce is not a certificate; it is a state of not being. In the Old Covenant, Moses permitted a certificate of divorce because of the hardness of the human heart. The inability for human beings to be changed in their hearts and minds needed a resolution to what was no longer manifesting as one flesh. In Deuteronomy chapter 24, the describes how a certificate of divorce is given.
Deuteronomy 24:1 “When a man takes a wife and marries her, and it happens that she finds no favor in his eyes because he has found some uncleanness in her, and he writes her a certificate of divorce, puts it in her hand, and sends her out of his house, 2 when she has departed from his house, and goes and becomes another man’s wife, 3 if the latter husband detests her and writes her a certificate of divorce, puts it in her hand, and sends her out of his house, or if the latter husband dies who took her as his wife, 4 then her former husband who divorced her must not take her back to be his wife after she has been defiled; for that is an abomination before the Lord, and you shall not bring sin on the land which the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance.
The divorce is given not a means of bondage, but a certificate of freedom. It was given so there can be a new beginning. It isn’t so there can never be a beginning again. In these verses it includes the man being remarried and the woman being able to remarry as well. Divorce is not God’s desire, but an out for the hardness of the heart of man. It is Greek thought to interpret Scripture as when you get divorced you can never get married. I will address this in a future blog. What is divorce? A divorce is the dissolving of one flesh to become two individuals again. Marriage is a covenant where two individuals become one made of the two. They were ok when they were each a single individual; but when they made a covenant, they became one of two, something new. A man and a woman joined together as one flesh is a way to be life-givers that produces the fruit of life and the foundation of life as family. This is the authority of family. This is not just the power to have sex, but the authority of family. Marriage is not the binding of two individuals’ freedoms. It is not a limitation of two individual’s freedoms. It is a liberation to a greater freedom of one flesh made of two individuals. It includes the freedom of different things becoming one thing for the sake of generational life in others. Marriage is the freedom of a greater intimacy of spirit, soul, and body as one flesh made of two individuals that can fulfill the mandate of being fruitful, multiplying, filling, subduing, and having dominion in life. Marriage brings a greater freedom of a larger individual made of two. When a marriage fails a divorce dissolves the one made of two so there can be a recreation of two individuals again. In Jewish law a divorce was not to prevent someone from getting married again, it was meant to free them from a covenant of marriage that was not producing life so there could be two individuals who could move forward and even be married again. There were certain requirements. One reason for divorce was adultery. This is where two individuals should be one flesh, but one joins themselves to another flesh which then brings the spirit soul and body influence of that third party into their family. It becomes a perversion of one flesh. It needs to be fixed, because it will destroy the identity, the testimony, and the inheritance of the family. It will bring additional spiritual influences, influences of the soul, and natural influences into the relationship of two as one. In Hebrew law this would be there greatest reason to dissolve a covenant. In a sense, invading forces are now coming into this marriage. The only hope is something supernatural. In the Old Covenant they had Law, but they didn’t have the hope of Christ in them. If you could get Christ in them, even a situation that has adultery in it could be healed. Because the power of Christ in the marriage could supernaturally heal and deliver the complicated multiple flesh. We are in a New Covenant time. So, I don’t believe that adultery is an absolute reason for divorce. We have the power of Christ in us, but sometimes people get confused. They get deceived. They make bad decisions and then it is recognized we made a bad decision. We are destroying the relationship. The New Covenant provisions of mercy and grace are supernatural forces that can make relationships new again. It is supernatural testimony of life and testament to the goodness, kindness, mercy, and triumph of God in all things. If you have experienced a divorce in your past, make this a new day for your time called now. We can’t undo the past, but we can avoid the pitfalls of a previous path if we pay attention to the life we have today.
Ted J. Hanson
Two more courses video recorded in Portuguese.
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Thank You So Much – Ted J. Hanson