Ask Your Preacher
My question is one that has been bothering me a lot lately. I am married and totally in love with my husband. He is so wonderful to me, and he is a strong spiritual leader for me. He is everything (and more) that I prayed and asked God for. But, on occasion, the thought of divorce crosses my mind. I don't know why it comes into my mind. I don't want that for my life; when I made my vows to my husband, I didn't make them lightly… not to mention I am so happy and couldn't imagine my life without him. Now what has been concerning me is in Matt 5:21-30, we are taught that even thinking about sinning (which from my understanding, divorce is a sin unless there has been unfaithfulness in the marriage) can be dangerous for our souls. I am concerned that because the thought of divorce pops in to my head once and a while that my soul is in danger. Even though I have no intention of ever acting on that thought, I want to live a happy and long life with my husband. Do you think that my soul is in danger? Thank you for your feedback and the work you do.
Totally in Love
Dear Totally In Love,
Dwelling upon evil desires is sinful (such as lusting after a woman – Matt 5:28), but a thought popping into your head is not the same as dwelling upon evil.
You don’t have complete control over what thoughts come into your mind (this is also true of emotions), but you do have control over what you do with those thoughts. As a simple example, if someone says the word ‘dog’, you will immediately think of a dog. Whether you want to or not! (In fact, you are thinking about dogs right now.) Jas 1:13-15 points out that sin occurs when we allow our thoughts to dwell upon sinful behavior until we actually act upon them. Merely having the thought pop into your mind is not the same as dwelling upon it. You are obviously happily married, have no desire to divorce, and as long as you continue to shove the thought out of your mind as you are doing right now, you aren’t sinning at all.
A divorced man meets his ex-wife and second wife in heaven; what can he expect to be his relationship with both of them?
Jesus was asked a very similar question by a group of Sadducees in Matt 22:23-28. Jesus’ answer was simple – there is no marriage in heaven (Matt 22:30).
Any advice on dating a Baptist preacher? He’s a widower, and I’m a divorcee.
Though all things are possible through Christ, someone who has dedicated their life to a religious denomination that follows tradition over truth would have a difficult road to conversion, and it is well worth talking about the differences upfront. We recommend you read our post, “Baptist Bewilderment”, and have a discussion with him about the various Baptist teachings that don’t match Scripture before you press forward with your relationship. You never know; maybe, just maybe, he has never considered these problems before. With an honest heart, anyone can come to Christ.
I am worried that my wife is getting burnt out. We have always tried to involve ourselves in doing good work such as visiting the sick, helping the elderly, cleaning the church building, helping people get to worship who can't drive, etc. It makes me feel good to do these things. We have something going on just about every night after we get off work. My wife said she feels overwhelmed. My question is: as her husband, is it biblically wrong in any way if I tell her she could slow down? We are members of the Lord’s church, and just like any congregation, few people are willing to do work. It makes me happy to help, and I believe it makes the Lord happy. I just don't want my wife to get burnt out. Any suggestions or Scripture that may help?
Dear Concerned Husband,
There is a time and season for everything. Burn out is a real issue, and Solomon said that there is a time for everything – that would include a time to rest (Eccl 3:1-8). It is good that you are workers in the church, and you shouldn’t stop working, but it may be time to pace yourselves. After all, Christianity is an endurance race, not a sprint (Lk 21:19). There is a season for everything, and your wife’s health and well-being must be factored in as you decide what level of work your family can handle.
I am a Christian separated from my husband who is also a Christian. We have been separated for three years. No unfaithfulness has been committed on either part, but there are issues that have not been resolved yet. I have relocated to another state and am active in my church. I was asked to accept a leadership role, and I did, but I recently stepped down because my husband said it is not biblical for me to be in leadership with our marriage the way it is. Is this true?
We are sorry to hear about your separation, but it sounds like you are handling it the way the Lord intends in such circumstances (1 Cor 7:10-11). Here is the issue – we don’t know what church you are attending, but biblically there are no official leadership positions for women in the church. Technically, the only positions of authority within the church are elders and deacons. The qualifications for both elders and deacons require that they be men (1 Tim 3:1-12). Any church that is creating leadership positions other than those found in the Bible is adding to the Word of God (Rev 22:18-19).