Sunday Sermon Matthew 5:31-32 (2)

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Are there any announcements?
We need to pull out the AC unit out of the window, so men, please stick around to help.
Potluck is next week, so bring your favorite dish and enjoy a sweet time of fellowship!
Priscilla’s baptism will be rescheduled as she is not feeling well.
Please pray for God’s heart for our church as the board will be meeting soon.


Good morning and welcome to FCC, where we worship God in Spirit and in Truth, on verse at a time, one Book at a time.
Praise God for the beautiful fall weather and the amazing colors in the trees that we are surrounded by.
Jeremiah 10:12 NKJV
He has made the earth by His power, He has established the world by His wisdom, And has stretched out the heavens at His discretion.
The Lord is so, so good! Amen!
He created all of this for us to enjoy!
So let’s enjoy the Word let’s open our Bibles to Matthew 5:31-32.

Read Matthew 5:31-32

Matthew 5:31–32 NKJV
“Furthermore it has been said, ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’ But I say to you that whoever divorces his wife for any reason except sexual immorality causes her to commit adultery; and whoever marries a woman who is divorced commits adultery.


Lord Heavenly Father, thank you for your Word and how it gives us everything that pertains to life and godliness. Lord as we approach a difficult and even painful subject for some of us here today and listening online, we would ask for grace upon grace to see us through this text. We ask for those of us that have been divorced that you would bring healing and freedom and that all the marriages represented here would thrive. And Lord when we finish with these verses, may we understand clearly what you teach on divorce and also help us to protect the sacredness of the marriage covenant. Fill us with your Spirit and lead, guide, and direct us now.
In Jesus Name! We Love you! Amen! Amen!


We are in the heart of the Sermon of the Mount which is not for the faint of heart church!
There are only two things that happen with the Word :
For you will either yes and amen the text and seek to apply it into your lives.
Or your will reject it or pick and chose what is palatable to you!
If your in the second category, I must let you know that the Word of God is not a Chinese buffet where you pick and chose what you want, but rather like a gourmet meal that has everything for life and godliness in it.
So this sermon, the best sermon ever preached by the greatest teacher/ preacher that ever lived is for those that are disciples of His, men and women who seek to please God in Word, thought, motive, and deed...
Last week we finished up verses 27-30 and we learned that if we struggle with a pet sin like lust, anger, addictions, coveting, spending or eat too much, and list the list goes on that we must eradicate the sin out of our lives as Jesus taught.
He said if your right eye and hand cause you to sin, pluck it out or cut it off.
Jesus said do something radical and we shared that there are three things we must do to deal with our pet sins:
Confess your sin to God!
If you have tried this and are still struggling with a certain sin or pet sin, then invite someone into the situation to help hold you acceptable.
Because if true repentance is not there, you will go right back to what you know.
So we come to our text for today and as we read we see it is on divorce.
Matthew 5:31 NKJV
“Furthermore it has been said, ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’
But what I must share with you first is that the word furthermore is not in the original manuscripts, but added later on only in the NKJV.
However, I like it here because furthermore means:
Furthermore- adverb- in addition; more importantly, besides (used to introduce a fresh consideration in an argument).
Although it is not in the original and in some of your translations, I think it helps the reader understand that what Jesus is saying here is a continuation of what Jesus said in the previous verses.
Here Jesus begins to give his listeners an example of causing someone to commit adultery and violate the 7th commandment which is thou shall not commit adultery.
It is important for us to remember that all six of this illustrations that Jesus is going to give us over the next few weeks that we cannot keep them apart from His enabling grace. Nor in our flesh, but in the Spirit!!
So why is Jesus bringing up divorce?
It is because he was confronting an issue of the day.
If you think we have a lot of divorces, the Jews of the day had many, in fact too many, so Jesus corrected the misinterpretation of God’s law on divorce.
But before we go there, I wanted to share a few statistics on divorce:
Co-habitors in general have a 50-80% higher likelihood of divorce after marriage than non cohabiters.
Only 36% of college graduates who marry will ever divorce.
Coming from an intact family reduces divorce risk by 14%.
Having an overall annual household income of $50k means a 30% lower divorce risk.
Those with a strong common faith have a 35% lower risk of divorce.
Couples who attend church weekly are 47% less likely to divorce.
However, divorce rates among nominal Christians are equal to the general population.
Having one’s first child after marriage reduces divorce risk by a range of 24% – 66%.
Marriages in which the wife wants children, but the husband does not face a 50% higher risk of divorce.
Marriages with a significant age difference between partners – particularly younger husband or much older husband – have nearly a 50% greater likelihood of divorce than those of similar ages.
The more time people marry the higher the divorce rate goes.
12.  Almost 50 percent of all marriages in the United States will end in divorce or separation.
13.  Researchers estimate that 41 percent of all first marriages end in divorce.
14.  60 percent of second marriages end in divorce.
15.  73 percent of all third marriages end in divorce.
16. The United States has the 6th highest divorce rate in the world.
17. Every 42 seconds, there is one divorce in America, That equates to 86 divorces per hour, 2,046 divorces per day, 14,364 divorces per week, and 746,971 divorces per year
18. Every 16 seconds, there is a marriage in the U.S.  That equates to 230 marriages per hour, 38,762 marriages per week and 2,015,603 per year.
19. There are nearly 3 divorces in the time it takes for a couple to recite their wedding vows (2 minutes).
20. 430 divorces happen during the average wedding reception (5 hours).
21. Over a 40 year period, 67 percent of first marriages terminate.
However, I would like to lay to rest the myth that there are as many divorces in the church as in the world, this is not true.
So while the 40-50% projected rate of divorce risk is true and reliable, there are important personal characteristics that put everyone at different risk, for good and bad. Those with a number of these positive factors in their corner can be expected to have an overall divorce risk of zero! That is very good news indeed
Church, it is clear that divorce is a problem in the US and the problem is sin.
Divorce happens church because of sin and Jesus here is teaching his readers that the teaching the heard was not completely true.
Matthew 5:31–32 NKJV
“Furthermore it has been said, ‘Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’ But I say to you that whoever divorces his wife for any reason except sexual immorality causes her to commit adultery; and whoever marries a woman who is divorced commits adultery.
Here again, we see Jesus saying this what you heard, but this is what I tell you which is the whole truth and nothing but the truth...
Where did Jesus get this from??
The Rabbis had taken the liberty to draw from:
Deuteronomy 24:1–4 NKJV
“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, when she has departed from his house, and goes and becomes another man’s wife, 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, 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.
Church the Pharisees were basically divided into two camps: the school of Shammai and the school of Hillel.
Those who followed Shammai were very conservative, saying that on the basis of this text, divorce could be granted only in the case of uncleanness, which they interpreted to be sexual immorality or adultery.
The followers of Hillel were very liberal, saying uncleanness is much broader than simply adultery or immorality. If a woman, for example, she put too much salt and pepper on her husband’s eggs, which made him lose his temper, she had made him sin, and therefore was unclean—a legitimate reason for divorce.
Or, if a man saw a woman who was more righteous or virtuous than his wife, he had the right to divorce her because she was now unclean by comparison.
The followers of Shammai said a written bill of divorce must be given.
The followers of Hillel said all that was required was for the husband to look at his wife and say, “I divorce you,” three times.
Consequently, not unlike today, divorce was occurring for the most frivolous reasons.
Latter in Matthew, Jesus is confronted by the Pharisees on divorce, let’s pick up iN Matthew 19:1-5
Matthew 19:1–5 NKJV
Now it came to pass, when Jesus had finished these sayings, that He departed from Galilee and came to the region of Judea beyond the Jordan. And great multitudes followed Him, and He healed them there. The Pharisees also came to Him, testing Him, and saying to Him, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for just any reason?” And He answered and said to them, “Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’?
Note you can see that the Pharisees utilizing Rabbi Hillel’s interpretation of Deut 24.
Matthew 19:6–10 NKJV
So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.” They said to Him, “Why then did Moses command to give a certificate of divorce, and to put her away?” He said to them, “Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, permitted you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery.” His disciples said to Him, “If such is the case of the man with his wife, it is better not to marry.”
Two quick observations of this text:
God created marriage and in His Holy and Sacred Word he says that marriage church is between a man and a woman. Not man to man, or woman to woman.
Notice that the Word (Jesus) interprets the Word. Moses permitted divorce in Deut 24, he did not command divorce church.
And he only did this because of the hardness of the Israelites hearts.
Hardness of Heart- sklērokardia (sklay-rok-ar-dee'-ah)- hard-heartedness, i.e. (specially), destitution of (spiritual) perception:—hardness of heart. Stubborn, dry, inflexible, rigid, stiff-necked.
If this is in a marriage, mercy, grace, love and forgiveness is not.
In fact, if this is not dealt with, divorce is sure to come...
The phrase because of the hardness of your heart underscores the truth that divorce is only a last resort response to hard-hearted sexual immorality… Porneia
So which Rabbi is correct? Shammai or Hillel? Let’s look at our text and see what Jesus says:
Matthew 5:32 NKJV
But I say to you that whoever divorces his wife for any reason except sexual immorality causes her to commit adultery; and whoever marries a woman who is divorced commits adultery.
Jesus says, that the first reason for divorce is marital unfaithfulness, sexual immorality, unchastity, or fornication.
All these words mean the same thing;
Sexual Immorality- porneia- unfaithfulness ,illicit sexual intercourse, adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism, prostitution.
The is a comprehensive word that covers all of marital unfaithfulness with regards to immorality.
Jesus says church that the first reason for divorce is sexual immorality.
Does it mean that he is mandating divorce in cases like this? NO
God is all about forgiveness and reconciliation.
I have seen marriages be destroyed by this and end in divorce, but I have also seen forgiveness be given and marriages restored. In fact, when the forgiveness of God is granted, I have seen a once dying marriage with forgiveness thrive.
2. The second reason why someone can be divorced is abandonment:
1 Corinthians 7:10–15 NKJV
Now to the married I command, yet not I but the Lord: A wife is not to depart from her husband. But even if she does depart, let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband. And a husband is not to divorce his wife. But to the rest I, not the Lord, say: If any brother has a wife who does not believe, and she is willing to live with him, let him not divorce her. And a woman who has a husband who does not believe, if he is willing to live with her, let her not divorce him. For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband; otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are holy. But if the unbeliever departs, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases. But God has called us to peace.
The Greek word translated “departs” (chō-rizō) kho-rid'-zo was often used for divorce.
Thus if an unbelieving spouse deserts or divorces a believer, the believer is no longer bound and is free to remarry...
So you might be thinking that you have committed adultery or caused someone else to commit adultery?
This is where grace and forgiveness exists church. God forgives us and extends his mercy, grace, and forgiveness in these situations.
This does not mean that we divorce our current wives and go try to reconcile, because it will cause greater damage, but that we press into God’s kingdom.
But what if someone is abusing me physically, verbally, emotionally, sexually, financially, or what if I am not in love with them no more?
According to God’s word church this is not grounds for divorce, but certainly grounds for separation.
It is grounds to seek help and counsel. It is grounds to set a boundary and let your spouse know that this will happen no more!!!!
It is grounds for you to ask your spouse to leave or you leave for a season to seek help, to seek counsel in hopes that the abuser would become remorseful and repent.
Yes, it will be difficult but I have seen marriage be delivered, reconciled, and set free of all of this.
So if you being abused, either ask your spouse to move out or you move out so you can heal and get help.
Even though God only gave two reasons for divorce, it does not mean it is mandatory to divorce.
His desire is always forgiveness, mercy, grace, love, and reconciliation because that is who he is!
Based on the original text, I strongly believe this verse means that, although God’s plan is that two people remain married until death separates them, those who divorce and remarry, in effect, do commit adultery. However, they don’t live in adultery. Therefore, God forbid that we should say, “All manner of sin is forgiven all man except for one: divorce.” That’s not what Jesus said. He said, “All manner of sin is forgiven all men except the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit—the rejection of Jesus Christ” (see Matthew 12:31). We’re all sinners, gang. We’ve all missed the mark. Look around you and you’ll see a murderer sitting next to you and a bunch of adulterers in front and behind you. We’re all sinners. We all need a Savior.


Lord, thank you that you made things simple for us to follow and not complex. Thank you that you taught us today that marriage is between and man and a woman, and that divorce should only happen in the church for two reasons: sexual immorality and abandonment. Please God heal the hard-heartedness of anyone that is here. And help us remember that we are saved by grace through faith and forgiven. Heal the hearts of those that have suffered divorce and help our marriage to thrive on mercy, grace, love, and forgiveness. Open the door for us to share the gospel this week.
In Jesus Name! We Love You! Amen!
1 Corinthians 15:58 NKJV
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
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