I initiated a discussion over at the Full Contact Christianity blog, (poor them), as to whether or not the bible agrees with divorce for reasons other than premarital infidelity. Well, the discussion really implodes; there is no divorce the Lord approves of, it simply points to Him the fact that you messed it up all the more without Him. He forgives you but not without a re-tuning of your understanding of what marriage is (and sure, He may forgive you even if you remain in the dark). The discussion here really degenerates, as do so many blog discussions today; but the truths gleaned from it are precious. The ugliness with which this discussion ends, I think, emphasizes how badly emotion had overtaken sensibility in this issue.
I'm going to look at the beauty though the ugliness. I'm sorry, but at the end of the day this is what I do and how I think. My design for the activity in this blog is for it to be real. The good and the bad. Development of a whole picture; fully illuminated with no dark part. Being accountable.
This is "reality blogging" at it's most real. Insufficient time for it, insufficient training for it, but issues come up that need addressing. Things stand or fall on their own merit. Nobody gets a free pass based on their credentials. Man's wisdom gets tested against God's, and, sometimes it gets swept aside by God's larger truths.
In this case, some uncomplimentary things were published about how God views divorce. When you sift the New Testament down on divorce, it doesn't appear to be o.k. under any circumstances. So the facts deserve to be sifted through.
Was "Full Contact" made with the issue? It ends terribly ugly; but not before an important matter is settled. A matter which demanded correction, whether done perfectly of imperfectly; a matter that needs to be addressed regardless of the willingness or unwillingness of one to be corrected. The main 'uglines' is a fellows tendency to look for technicalities to rescue himself from not having answers.
This discussion is sort of a tame one as blogging goes. Sometimes men of low character show up and shine light on things for us. Someone must. I'll be the weak one. God uses the weak. The test here is whether we are going to focus more on style or substance. Sometimes maybe God needs to use men with a strategy to get through our tangled web of excuses and willingness not to listen. I'll be the one with the poor manners, but "Full Contact Tim" will have to be the one with the faulty reasoning. Poor reasoning, in this instance, renders the institution of Christian marriage just a temporary formality; poor reasoning gives permission to a 'legitimate' exit from a marriage following an infidelity (and much less) in the place of reconciliation, forgiveness, and the process for maturation, hope. It replaces God's hope with our hope that the next marriage will be better; or the next. Reasoning that legitimizes Christians having the same divorce rate as Non-Christians as being the work of God..
In Nursing, it is taught that the important thing is the answer, not the means of obtaining it. And in the end, style is nice, but is nothing without substance. Good style can lead to a bad end. Good substance never will. God gives us clear and infallible substance to teach and help infuse into a marriage. When it appears to fail, it is our failure, not His. Marriage maintains it's potential for permanence without us.
-- Marriage is permanent and the Lord will never tell you divorce is a good end.
Christ will help you succeed; but He will not help you fail. He is not an "enabler" to disobedience and defeat. But if you accept that you have failed without Him, He will be there after a divorce to help you pick up the pieces and go on.
But the real astonishing part of all of this; He will be there to empower us to endure a marriage that we may not be able to see how we can possibly endure by ourselves, and which may hold a blessing that we have not yet grasped.
Now let us who are able, continue to expand on and teach that great truth. . . our own imperfections and all.