From Gary...



A. Subject of today message is  

C. Simply the most debated topic of our 

D. Subject of importance to Christians!



1. This is a difficult 
   problem..questions of life,death,   

2. This is happening on a routine basis
   in this country!

3. This is a problem for Christians   


1. Worldly answer: It's my body and
   I'll do what I want!

2. World of Christianity is our 
   immediate concern 1 cor. 5:9-13; 

3. What is the nature of life

   a. Man is made in the image of God  
      Gen 1:20-28

   b. Man is known to God before birth 
      and is therefore alive before  
      birth Psalm 139:1-24 (esp 13-17)

4. What does this mean?

   a. God is involved in conception (to 
      deny his control in this matter
      is wrong)
      2 Cor. 6:18; Exo 4:22; Isa 64:8;    
      Jn 1:14; Jn 8:41; Job 33:4; Rom 
      5:17-21 Dt 28:1-4; 28:15-18; Eccl   
      11:5; Isa 44:2,24, Jer 1:5

   b. If God sets something in motion, 
      who are we to fight against God?
      Acts 5:11-42

   c. If what God creates is good, and 
      what God destroys is bad, why  
      would we call bad what he has   
      called good?(definition of 
      Satanism, as per HBO special)


1. Convience: to allow sinful behavior.

2. Consequence: to avoid the penalty 
   for fornication,adultery.

3. Concern for the unborn's perfectness  
   really means "playing God"

4. Casual respect for others - the "I" 

5. Confusion of right and wrong: "what 
   ever happened to sin"?


1. Cruel and unusal punishment: salene, 
   suction, d & c.

2. Consider the fate of the "fetus" who 
   lives through an abortion.

3. Conscience of the woman over the 
   years.... HURTS!

4. Consider the Christian who has an 


1. Replaces God with self

2. Removes life from the earth, and the 
   possibilities of the least likely to  

3. Relegates God's creation to  

4. Really is man playing God.


1. Murder on a vast scale exo 20:13

2. Monumental judgement against the 

3. Morality declines rapidly.

4. Monitions for us... we must fight 
   against it!!!





From Gary... Picture this...

I am not what you think I am, I am more...

I break through the misconceptions people have of me and look for something better...

News flash!!!

I know the world does not revolve around me...

and I look at higher things than you can imagine....

And see the beauty of life in all its myriad colors...

Because I am like this on the inside...

Because of the blood price that was paid for me...

Someday, I shall walk golden streets that lead to the presence of God the Father...

And will see His pure nature with my own eyes...

And I will be loved forever!!!!

Each picture meant something to me personally. Every one of them conveyed a feeling, an emotion and this  translates into a story.  Paul puts it this way....

1 Corinthians, Chapter 13
  1 If I speak with the languages of men and of angels, but don’t have love, I have become sounding brass, or a clanging cymbal.  2 If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but don’t have love, I am nothing.  3 If I dole out all my goods to feed the poor, and if I give my body to be burned, but don’t have love, it profits me nothing. 

  4  Love is patient and is kind; love doesn’t envy. Love doesn’t brag, is not proud,  5 doesn’t behave itself inappropriately, doesn’t seek its own way, is not provoked, takes no account of evil;  6 doesn’t rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;  7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.  8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will be done away with. Where there are various languages, they will cease. Where there is knowledge, it will be done away with.  9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part;  10 but when that which is complete has come, then that which is partial will be done away with.  11 When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I felt as a child, I thought as a child. Now that I have become a man, I have put away childish things.  12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I will know fully, even as I was also fully known.  13 But now faith, hope, and love remain—these three. The greatest of these is love. 

A Christian's life is like this series of pictures- the world may see you as a skunk, but God loves you!!!! Picture this; believe it, because it is TRUE!!!!

Addendum... I am corrected by my granddaughter Elizabeth- the picture at the top is a badger, not a skunk!!!

You know, a badger is fits the sentence even better because it is one nasty little animal!!!

Mar. 7 Exodus 17 Exo 17:1

Mar. 7
Exodus 17

Exo 17:1 All the congregation of the children of Israel traveled from the wilderness of Sin, by their journeys, according to Yahweh's commandment, and encamped in Rephidim; but there was no water for the people to drink.
Exo 17:2 Therefore the people quarreled with Moses, and said, "Give us water to drink." Moses said to them, "Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you test Yahweh?"
Exo 17:3 The people were thirsty for water there; and the people murmured against Moses, and said, "Why have you brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us, our children, and our livestock with thirst?"
Exo 17:4 Moses cried to Yahweh, saying, "What shall I do with these people? They are almost ready to stone me."
Exo 17:5 Yahweh said to Moses, "Walk on before the people, and take the elders of Israel with you, and take the rod in your hand with which you struck the Nile, and go.
Exo 17:6 Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock in Horeb. You shall strike the rock, and water will come out of it, that the people may drink." Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel.
Exo 17:7 He called the name of the place Massah, and Meribah, because the children of Israel quarreled, and because they tested Yahweh, saying, "Is Yahweh among us, or not?"
Exo 17:8 Then Amalek came and fought with Israel in Rephidim.
Exo 17:9 Moses said to Joshua, "Choose men for us, and go out, fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with God's rod in my hand."
Exo 17:10 So Joshua did as Moses had told him, and fought with Amalek; and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill.
Exo 17:11 It happened, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed; and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed.
Exo 17:12 But Moses' hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side. His hands were steady until sunset.
Exo 17:13 Joshua defeated Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.
Exo 17:14 Yahweh said to Moses, "Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: that I will utterly blot out the memory of Amalek from under the sky."
Exo 17:15 Moses built an altar, and called its name Yahweh our Banner.
Exo 17:16 He said, "Yah has sworn: 'Yahweh will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.' "

Mar. 7, 8
Mark 6

Mar 6:1 He went out from there. He came into his own country, and his disciples followed him.
Mar 6:2 When the Sabbath had come, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many hearing him were astonished, saying, "Where did this man get these things?" and, "What is the wisdom that is given to this man, that such mighty works come about by his hands?
Mar 6:3 Isn't this the carpenter, the son of Mary, and brother of James, Joses, Judah, and Simon? Aren't his sisters here with us?" They were offended at him.
Mar 6:4 Jesus said to them, "A prophet is not without honor, except in his own country, and among his own relatives, and in his own house."
Mar 6:5 He could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people, and healed them.
Mar 6:6 He marveled because of their unbelief. He went around the villages teaching.
Mar 6:7 He called to himself the twelve, and began to send them out two by two; and he gave them authority over the unclean spirits.
Mar 6:8 He commanded them that they should take nothing for their journey, except a staff only: no bread, no wallet, no money in their purse,
Mar 6:9 but to wear sandals, and not put on two tunics.
Mar 6:10 He said to them, "Wherever you enter into a house, stay there until you depart from there.
Mar 6:11 Whoever will not receive you nor hear you, as you depart from there, shake off the dust that is under your feet for a testimony against them. Assuredly, I tell you, it will be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city!"
Mar 6:12 They went out and preached that people should repent.
Mar 6:13 They cast out many demons, and anointed many with oil who were sick, and healed them.
Mar 6:14 King Herod heard this, for his name had become known, and he said, "John the Baptizer has risen from the dead, and therefore these powers are at work in him."
Mar 6:15 But others said, "He is Elijah." Others said, "He is a prophet, or like one of the prophets."
Mar 6:16 But Herod, when he heard this, said, "This is John, whom I beheaded. He has risen from the dead."
Mar 6:17 For Herod himself had sent out and arrested John, and bound him in prison for the sake of Herodias, his brother Philip's wife, for he had married her.
Mar 6:18 For John said to Herod, "It is not lawful for you to have your brother's wife."
Mar 6:19 Herodias set herself against him, and desired to kill him, but she couldn't,
Mar 6:20 for Herod feared John, knowing that he was a righteous and holy man, and kept him safe. When he heard him, he did many things, and he heard him gladly.
Mar 6:21 Then a convenient day came, that Herod on his birthday made a supper for his nobles, the high officers, and the chief men of Galilee.
Mar 6:22 When the daughter of Herodias herself came in and danced, she pleased Herod and those sitting with him. The king said to the young lady, "Ask me whatever you want, and I will give it to you."
Mar 6:23 He swore to her, "Whatever you shall ask of me, I will give you, up to half of my kingdom."
Mar 6:24 She went out, and said to her mother, "What shall I ask?" She said, "The head of John the Baptizer."
Mar 6:25 She came in immediately with haste to the king, and asked, "I want you to give me right now the head of John the Baptizer on a platter."
Mar 6:26 The king was exceedingly sorry, but for the sake of his oaths, and of his dinner guests, he didn't wish to refuse her.
Mar 6:27 Immediately the king sent out a soldier of his guard, and commanded to bring John's head, and he went and beheaded him in the prison,
Mar 6:28 and brought his head on a platter, and gave it to the young lady; and the young lady gave it to her mother.
Mar 6:29 When his disciples heard this, they came and took up his corpse, and laid it in a tomb.
Mar 6:30 The apostles gathered themselves together to Jesus, and they told him all things, whatever they had done, and whatever they had taught.
Mar 6:31 He said to them, "You come apart into a deserted place, and rest awhile." For there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat.
Mar 6:32 They went away in the boat to a deserted place by themselves.
Mar 6:33 They saw them going, and many recognized him and ran there on foot from all the cities. They arrived before them and came together to him.
Mar 6:34 Jesus came out, saw a great multitude, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd, and he began to teach them many things.
Mar 6:35 When it was late in the day, his disciples came to him, and said, "This place is deserted, and it is late in the day.
Mar 6:36 Send them away, that they may go into the surrounding country and villages, and buy themselves bread, for they have nothing to eat."
Mar 6:37 But he answered them, "You give them something to eat." They asked him, "Shall we go and buy two hundred denarii worth of bread, and give them something to eat?"
Mar 6:38 He said to them, "How many loaves do you have? Go see." When they knew, they said, "Five, and two fish."
Mar 6:39 He commanded them that everyone should sit down in groups on the green grass.
Mar 6:40 They sat down in ranks, by hundreds and by fifties.
Mar 6:41 He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he blessed and broke the loaves, and he gave to his disciples to set before them, and he divided the two fish among them all.
Mar 6:42 They all ate, and were filled.
Mar 6:43 They took up twelve baskets full of broken pieces and also of the fish.
Mar 6:44 Those who ate the loaves were five thousand men.
Mar 6:45 Immediately he made his disciples get into the boat, and to go ahead to the other side, to Bethsaida, while he himself sent the multitude away.
Mar 6:46 After he had taken leave of them, he went up the mountain to pray.
Mar 6:47 When evening had come, the boat was in the midst of the sea, and he was alone on the land.
Mar 6:48 Seeing them distressed in rowing, for the wind was contrary to them, about the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea, and he would have passed by them,
Mar 6:49 but they, when they saw him walking on the sea, supposed that it was a ghost, and cried out;
Mar 6:50 for they all saw him, and were troubled. But he immediately spoke with them, and said to them, "Cheer up! It is I! Don't be afraid."
Mar 6:51 He got into the boat with them; and the wind ceased, and they were very amazed among themselves, and marveled;
Mar 6:52 for they hadn't understood about the loaves, but their hearts were hardened.
Mar 6:53 When they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret, and moored to the shore.
Mar 6:54 When they had come out of the boat, immediately the people recognized him,
Mar 6:55 and ran around that whole region, and began to bring those who were sick, on their mats, to where they heard he was.
Mar 6:56 Wherever he entered, into villages, or into cities, or into the country, they laid the sick in the marketplaces, and begged him that they might touch just the fringe of his garment; and as many as touched him were made well.

From Jim McGuiggan...

Angels with Dirty Faces

I only have to read scripture to know that people are walking contradictions and that some of us are breathing civil wars. Beyond that I simply have to look within to know that while what the Bible says seems very plain, what I see and feel within is absolutely beyond debate. And my experience with people confirms these two sources.
I don’t say that we are all equally conflicted. I believe I know people that across the board are much more mature than I am. Yes, I suspect that on the whole they are more finely balanced and permeated to a greater degree with virtue than I am or ever have been. I would suppose if I were judged by my moral failures and weakness in some specific areas of my life that I would come very close to the bottom of the moral ladder. This is a great sadness to me for there is a part of me that longs for moral grandeur, there’s a deep desire in me to be like the God in whose image I have been and am being created. [I mustn’t give you the impression that people should be assessed on the basis of so many virtues over against so many vices—that would be wrong-headed, but I think you know what I mean by the above.]
I wish to make the point that however difficult it is for us to believe it, people are not just one thing. That should be—should it not?—a matter beyond dispute. Only the Christ was "just one thing".
I’ve known many people up close and personal who were faced with a choice between right and wrong and chose the wrong. But it has occurred to me that in many of those cases I was blessed in not being faced with the situation they were faced with; blessed with not having to make the choice between good and evil for I’m not at all certain that I would have stood where they fell.
Some poor souls are daily faced with the pressure to do evil while others of us (God be praised and thanked!) live in our morally cosy little routines. Surrounded by godly friends, provided with more than adequate material and social resources and having been shaped by strong and warm people and structures we are sheltered from many of the storms that beat ceaselessly around the heads of millions. Yes, surely there is profound reason to be grateful for our conditions but do they not underscore the moral disadvantage of the masses?
Is it surprising that so many are morally weak and fragmented? Given the social and cultural structures that promote the worst aspects of hedonism and greed and self-centredness, should we be surprised that masses fear neither God nor man? And if this is what they fight against from the moment they draw breath do we do well to feel nothing but revulsion and a desire to isolate or exterminate?
In a powerful television drama one of the characters is morally and mentally ill. He has killed repeatedly but due to the limits in the human judicial system he was not convicted. He attached himself to a lawyer, who, understandably, was afraid of him and wanted nothing to do with him. But the man felt the influence of this lawyer changing him for the better. He gets a job and purposes to live in goodness, free from the evils he had engaged in but the lawyer—again perfectly understandably—feels compelled to undermine his agenda. He’s devastated by what he feels is betrayal and comes to say to her, "As you know, I have never denied being evil. One of the reasons I came to you initially—I saw you as my guardian out of evil and you in fact became that. I was beginning to turn my life around. I rediscovered hope and goodness and I credit much of that to your influence. But you walked away from me like I was some crazy, which I am at many levels. But my feelings for you...my friendship for you was sane and real and legitimate and good. It represents the part of me that wasn’t ill or evil—it was good."
This expresses well what I want to say. I don’t say that there can’t be exceptions. I don’t say that there are not people, who like Mephistopheles says in that other classic drama, "Evil be thou my good/ good be thou my evil." But I do say that such exceptions aside that there is not one of us that is "one thing". I do say that down somewhere in the mysterious depths of a human heart, along with its evil there can be the vestiges of good longed for, the residue of good purposes that died for lack of inner strength and outside help.
In the old movie Angels with Dirty Faces we have the hard-bitten and brutal gangster (played by Jimmy Cagney) going to the electric chair for multiple murders. He’s arrogant, unrepentant and unafraid. For the sake of some boys who worship him as their hero the priest begs him to pretend he’s afraid to die. Cagney goes to the chair kicking and screaming and begging for mercy—for the sake of the kids and because his friend asked him to do it.
Should we dismiss this as bleeding-heart drivel, nauseatingly sentimental and false to life? I think not. Hanging on a tree the young Lord of creation saw his enemies with their glittering eyes and heard their hoarse mocking and said, "Father, forgive them, they don’t know what they’re doing." Maybe it takes a purer and stronger heart than most of us have to speak this way under such circumstances. There’s little doubt in my mind that the bulk of us when faced with someone we judge to be a threat have no wish to dwell on his or her virtues. The only thing that counts is their vice.
But when we gather in an assembly we’re not slow to sing Rescue the Perishing. One of the stanzas has this neglected truth. "Down in the human heart/Crushed by the Tempter/Feelings like buried that grace can restore/Touched by a loving hand/Wakened by kindness/Chords that were broken will vibrate once more." This sounds well in four-part harmony and feels good during times of peace and tranquillity. But let me assume that for the most of us (certainly in the West) that actually doing something costly about such a truth is a real stretch, especially as the expression of our living out that truth on a daily basis. Maybe executing such conviction is beyond us—though it’s possible for some that we know or have heard of. But I would suppose that before we can bear unbearable sorrow and fight unbeatable foes we need to truly think the unthinkable.
Ah well, then, so no one should be held accountable for wrongs done? I don't believe that. Even the Christ held accountable those he loved and pitied. But maybe we can quit pretending that we hold that all sin should be punished. We don’t think all ours should be punished. Maybe we can chastise with less relish and more sensitivity. Maybe we can pity as well as punish. Maybe we can temper our speech when condemning the sins of others and perhaps we can renounce (if only to ourselves) the sense of moral superiority we feel. Should we ever judge? Of course we should! But surely not from a position of power, as though butter wouldn’t melt in our own mouths. And should we ignore great evil because there is in the transgressor something of real worth? Oh, I’m certain we should not. I’m also certain of this, we should not ignore the something of real worth in him or her because there is great evil. And I’m certain we should take full measure of our own evil that lurks down among our virtues.
Wasn’t it Schweitzer who told us that two boys were wrestling in a school playground? It was a long and hard tussle but finally the bigger boy (Schweitzer) triumphed. The skinnier kid, panting, said something like. "You wouldn’t have beaten me if I had been getting soup twice a day like you." Hmmm, I wonder...
©2004 Jim McGuiggan. All materials are free to be copied and used as long as money is not being made.

Many thanks to brother Ed Healy for allowing me to post from his website, the abiding word.com.

From Mark Copeland...

                       "THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW"

           Jesus On Divorce, Remarriage, & Celibacy (19:1-12)


1. A serious problem in the world today is that of divorce and 

2. As described by God, divorce is a treacherous, violent act - cf. Mal 2:16
   a. Its affect on children has been well documented by Judith
      Wallerstein, author of Second Chance (Ticknor & Fields, 1988)
      1) Almost half of children of divorces enter adulthood as 
         worried, under-achieving, self-deprecating, and sometimes
         angry young men and women
      2) Half grew up in settings in which the parents were warring
         with each other even after the divorce
      -- Reported in Time, 2/6/89 
   b. Parents who divorce are not left unhurt either
      1) "A divorce is like an amputation: You survive, but there's
         less of you." - Margaret Atwood (Marriage Partnership, Vol.
         7, No. 4)
      2) Average percentage change in a woman's standard of living the
         year following a divorce:  minus 73%  -Daniel Evan Weiss, (The
         Great Divide, Poseidon Press, 1991)

3. Remarriage after divorce is not without it problems also...
   a. It does not always heal the wounds inflicted by the divorce: "I'm
      lucky my parents have stayed together. Unlike so many of my 
      friends, I've never had to cry on a holiday." - Tales Out of High
      School. Marriage Partnership, Vol. 5, no. 6
   b. Many remarriages are unlawful in God's eyes, constituting what
      Jesus called "adultery"

4. While I am concerned about the social and psychological effects of
   divorce and remarriage, it is the spiritual effects that concern me
   a. Too many people are ignorant of what the Bible teaches on this
   b. Such ignorance leads to quick and easy divorces, and to
      adulterous marriages that are unlawful

5. In Mt 19:3-12, we find Jesus discussing divorce, remarriage and
   a. His teaching was occasioned by a challenge from the Pharisees
   b. But He used the opportunity to teach His disciples what people
      today need to know!

[As we consider this passage carefully, we find that Matthew first


      1. Divorce was a touchy issue then, even as it is today
      2. Divorce was not uncommon (e.g., King Herod)
      3. The scribes were divided over the proper grounds for divorce
         a. The school of Hillel taught that a man could divorce for
            just about any reason
         b. The school of Shammai permitted divorce only in the case of

      1. If He took the popular lax view, the Pharisees could deride
         His claim as a teacher of superior morality - cf. Mt 5:20
      2. If He upheld the stricter view, He would be unpopular with the
         majority (which the Pharisees could use against Him)

[Of course, Jesus was not concerned with what man thought, but in
pleasing His Father in heaven.  This becomes evident as we next


      1. "Have you not read...?" - Mt 19:4; cf. Gen 1:27; 2:24
      2. He does not place stock in the opinions of religious leaders
         of the day
      -- Is there not something for us to learn here?  Where should we
         go to find the answer concerning the issue of divorce?

      1. "He who made them at the beginning `made them male and 
         female'..." - Mt 19:4
      2. It is helpful to keep in mind:
         a. Where we came from
         b. Who created us
         c. What we are
      3. For our views on divorce and remarriage will be influenced by
         our views of ourselves!
         a. Are we simply animals?
            1) Compelled by instinct?
            2) Unable to control fleshly desires?
            -- Then divorce and remarriage ought to be free and easy
         b. Or God's highest creation?
            1) Made in His image?
            2) Able to control fleshly lusts to the glory of God?
            -- Then divorce and remarriage ought to reflect God's
               desire for man's holiness!

      1. Notice, it was GOD who said "For this reason..." - Mt 19:5;
         cf. Gen 2:24
      2. Therefore questions about marriage (such as divorce and
         remarriage) must be answered by God, not by man (nor by man's

      1. The two become one flesh - Mt 19:5-6; cf. Gen 2:24
      2. They are joined by none other than God Himself!

      1. What GOD has joined together, let not MAN separate - Mt 19:6
      2. Man has no right to separate what God Himself has joined

[It is clear that God's intention is that marriage is to be for life!
It is God who joins the couple, and no one has the right to rend
asunder what God has joined together!

Are there any exceptions to this rule?  The Pharisees thought so, as we
now notice...]


      1. Jesus had urged scriptural reasons against divorce - Mt 19:4-6
      2. They allege scriptural authority for divorce - Mt 19:7

      1. They appealed to Moses' statement in Deut 24:1-4
      2. Which they took to permit divorce as long as a "certificate of
         divorce" was given to the wife - cf. Mt 5:31
      3. Yet a careful reading of that passage reveals:
         a. Moses was forbidding the remarriage of a spouse who marries
            someone else
         b. The reason was despite the "certificate" the woman became
            "defiled" when she remarried - Deut 24:4
         c. The word "defiled" is used elsewhere to describe adultery
            - Lev 18:20; Num 5:13-14
         d. She actually became an adulteress by the remarriage! - cf.
            Ro 7:1-3
      4. While they appealed to this passage in divorce (and 
         presumably, remarriage), it actually described the treachery
         of divorce:  defilement of the spouse - cf. Mt 5:32

[The shakiness of their rebuttal is seen further as we consider...]


      1. The Jews at that time were a hardened people - cf. Deut 9:6;
      2. Is this not a commentary on the state of one's heart when they
         desire to divorce their spouse?
         a. It takes a hard-hearted person to want to divorce their
            1) Either to divorce arbitrarily (for no scriptural ground)
            2) Or to divorce when the guilty person is pleading for
               forgiveness and reconciliation
         b. Of course, that is exactly the condition of those in the
            world (or those in the church who are of the world) - cf.
            Ep 4:17-19

      1. The permission to divorce was only temporary
      2. Note carefully:
         a. The Law of Moses (which was temporary) considered the
            hardness of men's hearts, and permitted hard-hearted 
         b. The gospel of Christ cures the hardness of one's heart!
            1) His grace removes the heart of stone, and replaces it
               with a heart of love!
            2) I.e., a heart able to abide by God's original design for
      3. Paul would later make it clear that under normal conditions
         divorce is not an option - 1Co 7:10-11

      1. "And I say unto you..." - Mt 19:9
         a. His sayings were with authority - cf. Mt 7:28-29
         b. Upon which He expected people to base their lives - cf.
            Mt 7:24-25; 28:20
      2. Divorce is allowed only in the case of fornication - Mt 19:9
         a. Divorce for any other reason results in adultery when there
            is remarriage
         b. Which is what Jesus taught in Mt 5:32
      3. To marry a divorced (put away) person results in adultery
         a. Does this apply only to a person put away for a cause other
            than fornication?
         b. Or to the one who is guilty of fornication?
         c. The lack of the definite article would suggest any "put 
            away" person
            1) Either an innocent person wrongly "put away"
            2) Or a guilty person rightly "put away" for fornication

      1. Any divorce must be on those grounds specified by Jesus...
         a. For marriage is an institution ordained by God - Mt 19:5
         b. And we must not separate what God has joined - Mt 19:6
      2. A divorce for any other grounds...
         a. Is an attempt to separate what God has joined together
         b. Results in a remarriage where people commit adultery
            - Mt 19:9; cf. Mk 10:11-12
      3. Jesus' teaching was contrary to two views held by the Jews of
         His day...
         a. That as long as a "bill of divorcement" was given, they
            were free to divorce and remarry for any reason
            1) Consider Mt 5:31 as an example of their belief
            2) Yet Jesus taught:
               a) To divorce for any reason other than fornication
                  causes the spouse to commit adultery - Mt 5:32
               b) To divorce and remarry for any reason other than
                  fornication is to commit adultery - Mt 19:9
         b. That they could marry a woman who was divorced (with the
            exception of the priests - cf. Lev 21:7,14)
            1) Yet Jesus taught that to marry a divorced woman was to
               commit adultery!
            2) Again, the lack of the definite article in both Mt 5:32
               and Mt 19:9 indicates:
               a) Whether the woman was put away for the right reason
                  or not
               b) In either case, the end result is adultery!
      4. Jesus defined the meaning of adultery...
         a. It was not uncommon at that time for some Jews to believe:
            1) That a man was guilty of adultery only if he violated
               another man's wife
            2) That he could be married, have relations with a single
               woman, and still not be guilty of adultery
         b. But Jesus defined adultery to include:
            1) Sex with the spouse of another (the standard definition)
            2) Looking at a woman to lust for her (certainly this would
               include either a married or single woman) - Mt 5:27-28
            3) Marrying a person who was divorced by his or her spouse 
               - Mt 5:32; 19:9
            4) Remarrying when one did not divorce for fornication
               - Mt 19:9

[As one might expect, what Jesus said prompted strong reactions.  While
we do not know how the Pharisees reacted, we do know...]


      1. It is better not to marry! - Mt 19:10
      2. The single life would be preferable to being so bound to one's

      1. The disciples of Jesus:
         a. "If such is the case with divorce and remarriage, it is
            better to be single!"
         b. With them, there was no question about obeying Christ's law
            on this subject
         c. Only that in view of His teaching, the preferable option is
      2. Many people today:
         a. "If such is the case with divorce and remarriage, it is
            better to be lost!"
         b. Rather than submit to scriptural marriage or celibacy, many
            people are more likely to opt for eternal damnation!
         c. Choosing to prefer a few years of adultery over an eternity
            of bliss!

[With the disciples' mention of celibacy as a viable option, Jesus used
the opportunity to speak on the subject as it related to His previous
"saying" or teaching...]


      1. I.e., the saying of Mt 19:9
      2. The saying of Jesus regarding divorce and remarriage

      1. "those to whom it has been given" - Mt 19:11
      2. "he who is able to receive it" - Mt 19:12

      1. Those willing to accept it "FOR the kingdom of heaven's sake"
         - Mt 19:12
         a. The kingdom of heaven means that much to them
         b. They are willing to do whatever necessary to enter it
      2. Even it means making themselves "eunuchs" - Mt 19:12
         a. I.e., remaining single, even though they were not "born
            thus from their mother's womb"
         b. In order to remain true to the teaching of Jesus
      3. That such sacrifices might occur is implied in Mk 10:29-30;
         Lk 14:26
         a. One must put Christ before all others, including one's
         b. Doing so may even cause one to leave their spouse 
         c. Yet the only situation in which one would be justified in
            doing so...
            1) Would be if their marriage was unscriptural
            2) For otherwise one is not to leave their spouse - cf. 
               1Co 7:10-11
      4. For those willing to live the celibate life if necessary...
         a. They will receive the ability to live by His Will - cf. 
            Php 4:13; Ep 3:20
         b. They can provide more service to the Lord being single 
            - cf. 1Co 7:32-35
         ...just as many single and widowed serve the Lord faithfully
            in celibacy!


1. Any view of divorce and remarriage must take into consideration...
   a. The Word of God
   b. The nature of man and woman
   c. The sanctity of the union between man and woman created by God
   d. The consequences of rebelling against God, trying to separate
      what He has joined
   e. The value of entering "the kingdom of heaven"

2. The only course for faithful Christians is to comply with the
   teachings of Jesus...
   a. That divorce:
      1) Is an indication of one's hardness of heart
      2) Puts the spouse in a position to commit adultery when they
      3) Causes one who has divorced their spouse to commit adultery
         when they remarry
   b. That there is only one ground for divorce and remarriage:
      1) Which is fornication
      2) In which the innocent person has the right to divorce and
   c. That celibacy is a viable option:
      1) For those who desire to enter the kingdom of heaven
      2) Who may find it necessary to "make themselves eunuchs" (remain
         celibate) in order to do so

3. For those who find themselves in "unlawful" (i.e., adulterous
   marriages - cf. Mk 6:17-18), there is forgiveness through the blood
   of Jesus...
   a. But as with any sin, forgiveness in conditioned upon repentance
   b. Just as the Jews who had married foreign wives needed to repent
      by putting them away (cf. Ezra 9-10)
   c. So one repents by leaving any relationship described as adultery

May the Lord bless those with the faith to live according to His word,
and may we be diligent in teaching our children what the Bible teaches
regarding divorce and remarriage!

Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2011

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