Ask Your Preacher

Ask Your Preacher

MARRIAGE

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Apartment Drama

Wednesday, October 11, 2017
I live in an apartment complex, and the guy that works around here is a pastor.  About a week ago, he came to fix something in my house.  He is a married man, and he gave me a hug.  I am a single woman.  I have not been with a man in four years.  What should I do?

Sincerely,
Tenant

Dear Tenant,

If you believe that there was more to the hug than just platonic kindness – you should make sure that you aren’t ever in a position to be alone with this man.  The problem with something like a hug is that it isn’t a definitively inappropriate gesture, but as a general rule, your “radar” is correct when you sense something wrong with a situation.  The Bible gives one command regarding sexual temptation – FLEE (1 Cor 6:18).  Sexual relations are only intended for a husband and a wife (1 Cor 7:1-2).  You are not married and should avoid all inappropriate relationships with this man.  Adultery and fornication only bring heartache and pain (Pr 5:3-6).

The Guilty Party

Monday, July 24, 2017
Is an adulterer able remarry after divorce, or are they to remain unmarried?

Sincerely,
Quizzical

Dear Quizzical,

Your question is an important one and is one that many christians wrestle with because of the high divorce rate in American society.  Adultery is wrong, and every divorce is caused because of sin.  God hates divorce (Mal 2:16), and His desire has always been for men and women to remain married for a lifetime (Matt 19:4-6).

Because of the complexities of this issue and because every circumstance is unique, we recommend that people with questions on this subject listen to the sermon series “Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage”, compare the sermons to Scripture, and then faithfully examine themselves to see whether they are living as God intended (Php 2:12).

State Of Marriage

Friday, July 21, 2017
Does Romans 7:1-3 imply divorce or a polygamist state when the woman marries another man?  Furthermore, if the verse implies divorce, does the wording of the verse convey that the woman will be in a continuous state of adultery? Since it would not be a one-time wrong against her husband, she would be in a continual state of adultery giving her the title of ‘adulteress’.

Sincerely,
Annulled And Void?

Dear Annulled And Void,

Romans 7:1-3 doesn’t state that she will be in a continuous state of adultery (none of the verb tenses specify continuous action), but it doesn’t necessarily state that she wouldn’t be.  Romans 7:1-3 isn’t really even focused on addressing marriage and divorce – it is using a simple truth (that marriage is intended to be for a lifetime) to illustrate that the Old Law had to pass away in order for the New Law to take over (Rom 7:4-6).  The verse doesn’t specifically imply divorce.  It simply says, “if she be joined to another man” (Rom 15:3)… that doesn’t mean she divorced her husband.  It is possible for someone to be joined to another without divorce – it is called ‘fornication’.  In short, all the verse is saying is that once you are married, you are bound to that spouse for life.  That is the normal circumstance of all marriages.  Other verses (such as Matthew 19:9 and 1 Cor 7:12-15) deal with abnormal marital circumstances.  If you would like more information on the topic of marriage, divorce, and remarriage, we recommend you listen to a series of lessons one of our AYP writers preached on the topic.  That series can be downloaded from here.

In Sickness...

Wednesday, July 19, 2017
My husband had a stroke in 2005 and has been in a nursing home for three years.  I take good care of him and always will, but I need a life.  I’m so unhappy; I’m still young enough to have someone in my life.  I have met a wonderful man that I care about, but I don’t want to go to hell either.  Will God understand if I have this other man in my life?  I know I took my vows for in sickness and in health, and I will always be there, but I don’t want to be alone either.  Please help me in this matter.

Sincerely,
Almost A Widow

Dear Almost A Widow,

Every marriage begins with hopes and dreams for a wonderful and beautiful future, but unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out that way.  We are so very sorry for your husband’s sickness and the trials it has wrought for your marriage; we cannot imagine how difficult it has been.  However, you didn’t write to us for a listening ear – but for Bible answers.  As you said, your vows bind you to your husband through the good times and through the bad – til’ death do you part.  Those vows don’t go away just because things haven’t turned out as you both envisioned (Matt 5:37).  If you choose to begin a new romantic relationship, it is adultery… Romans 7:1-3 is very clear on that subject.  Your husband is alive, and you are still bound to him.  You are in our prayers during this very difficult time.

From Courting To Court

Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Can my boyfriend and I go before God and ask God to marry us without going to a church and receiving a piece of paper stating we are married? We don’t want to fornicate but want God to marry us.  We want the real thing.  I’ve been married two times before with a Justice of the Peace… but what could be better than going to God Himself to make our promise to keep regarding one another.  Will God bless us and consider us one?

Sincerely,
Without A Paper Trail

Dear Without A Paper Trail,

The problem with that kind of arrangement is that:

  1. There is really no biblical precedent for being “married before God” and not married before the law and family.  Christians are supposed to obey the laws of the land (Rom 13:1-3).
  2. You are putting yourselves in a position to look like you are living together without being married.  This means that you are sending the wrong message to mankind.  Christians are supposed to shine as lights in the world (Matt 5:16) and live a “good manner of life in Christ” that they may put to shame those who revile the name of Christ (1 Pet 3:16).
  3. You are setting yourselves up to be deceptive.  When you file for taxes, are you going to say you aren’t married?

No matter how you slice it – it is better and biblical to be up front and legal before God and man.

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