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Marriage Divorce and Remarriage PowerPoint Presentation

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  • Slide 1 - Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage The Biblical Position of Orange Park Bible Church: A Biblical Position with a Gospel Posture
  • Slide 2 - What Is Our Goal? To Glorify God: II Corinthians 5:9, 14-15 To Proclaim the Gospel: Ephesians 5:22-33 To Shepherd the Flock: 2 Timothy 3:10-17; 1 Peter 5 To Inform the Conscience: James 4:17; Romans 2:14-16; 1 Peter 3:13-17 To Establish a Standard: Matthew 18:15-17; Hebrews 13:17
  • Slide 3 - A Synopsis of our journey Pastor Brian and the Elders read multiple books covering all four views and several more books specifically covering each side of the two most credible views. Pastor Brian listened to numerous sermons covering each side of the two most credible views. The Elders met for a weekend retreat (9/30-10/1/11), prayed, and searched the Scriptures diligently to reach a conclusion. The Elders met with other respected members of OPBC to share our position and for prayer, wisdom, and feedback (10/12/11). These men were Kemp Roddy, Tom Chase, Bob Barker, Chuckie Sowers, Jason Carryl, and Mike Mahan. Pastor Brian then put together a 36-page presentation to teach the Church our position and how we arrived there Biblically. The presentation was sent to the Elders for approval on 11/1/11.
  • Slide 4 - Four Possible Views No, no: Divorce and remarriage are both never permitted, with the exception of death. Liberal Exception: Divorce and remarriage are both permitted under a wide range of circumstances. Narrow Exception: Divorce and remarriage are both permitted under very limited circumstances. Permanence: Divorce is permitted under limited circumstances, but remarriage is always prohibited, with the exception of death.
  • Slide 5 - Two Credible Biblical & Historical Views No, no: Cannot be Biblical (1 Corinthians 7) Liberal Exception: No credibility Biblically or historically. There are limited passages that give room for exception. The exceptions given are limited and specific. Narrow Exception: Westminster Confession; MacArthur; Jay Adams Permanence: John Stott; John Piper; Voddie Baucham; Jim Eliff; many lesser known Reformed Baptist Pastors; “No Remarriage” was common among Puritans
  • Slide 6 - The Elder’s Conclusion The Elders concluded it is most consistent with Scripture to have a narrow exception position with a Gospel posture. The purpose of this teaching is to define the terms “narrow exception position” and “Gospel posture” and to show how we arrived at our conclusion.
  • Slide 7 - Proceed with Caution What does the Scripture teach? Can I be objective (Church; culture; preference; circumstance)? Which view is most consistent with the character of God? Which view best reflects the Gospel? Does all of Scripture help answer this question or only the isolated passages pertaining to marriage, divorce, and remarriage? Challenge: Keep your mind on the slide we are discussing.
  • Slide 8 - Key Texts Genesis 2:24 (Genesis 2:18-25) Deuteronomy 24:1-4 Matthew 5:31-32 Matthew 19:1-11 Mark 10:1-12 Luke 16:18 1 Corinthians 7:10-16, 39 Romans 7:1-6
  • Slide 9 - Jesus’ View Mark 10:1-10; Mark 10:10-12 Luke 16:18 Matthew 5:31-32 Matthew 19:1-11 Narrow Exception: The qualifier was not asked of Jesus “for any reason” (an abuse of Deuteronomy 24) in Mark and Luke, therefore Jesus did not need to qualify His answer. Permanence: The Betrothal View; Matthew is speaking to a unique audience (Jews).
  • Slide 10 - King Context part 1 Matthew 5:31-32 must be seen in context. The pattern: You have heard it said, but I say to you. Anger: Matthew 5:21-22 Lust: Matthew 5:27-28 Marriage: Matthew 5:31-32 Oaths: Matthew 5:33-35 Retaliation: Matthew 5:38-39 Enemies: Matthew 5:43-44
  • Slide 11 - An observation from the Greek “But I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality (porneia), makes her commit adultery (moicheia)” (Matthew 5:32). “And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality (porneia), and marries another, commits adultery (moicheia)” (Matthew 19:9).
  • Slide 12 - King Context part 2 Why is Matthew the only writer to include what seems to be an exception? What can we learn from the context of other passages and the pattern of Matthew 5? Remember, Jesus is increasing the standard in the Sermon on the Mount.
  • Slide 13 - Matthew: The Exception part 1 In the Jewish culture, there was a committed contractual period before marriage called betrothal. Our culture can relate best to betrothal through engagement. In Jewish culture these legal annulments were referred to as divorces and were considered when one of the parties to the premarital agreement was found to have been sexually impure prior to the wedding.
  • Slide 14 - Matthew: The Exception part 2 Permanence Reasoning According to universal scholarly opinion, Matthew’s Gospel was written to a Jewish audience. Matthew’s goal was to convince Jews that Jesus was the Messiah. Since Jews would understand Jewish betrothal laws and would wonder if Jesus were prohibiting even this type of divorce, it would explain the exception of Matthew versus the absence of this exception in Mark and Luke who were writing to Greek and Roman readers.
  • Slide 15 - Matthew: The Exception part 3 Notice that each time Matthew uses porneia (fornication), he also uses either moicheia (adultery) or its verb form in the same sentence, making an obvious distinction. In Matthew 5:32 and 19:9, if the exception clauses were meant to describe sexual unfaithfulness in the context of a consummated marriage (which is always adultery, not fornication) it would be hard to explain why Matthew consistently draws a distinction by using two different words. Where Matthew describes adultery elsewhere, he consistently uses moicheia, not porneia (5:27, 28, 32; 15:19 – look up two words in this passage; 19:18).
  • Slide 16 - Matthew: The Exception part 4 Matthew is the only gospel writer who includes the “exception” clause (5:32; 19:9). Matthew is also the only writer who describes Joseph’s intent to divorce Mary (Matthew 1:18-19). Since Matthew is the only writer to mention Joseph’s “betrothal dilemma,” it logically follows that Matthew would be the one to include the fact that divorce (annulment) in these specific circumstances (impurity during betrothal) as lawful. The betrothal view reconciles much confusion. However, the permanence view does not stand on the betrothal view.
  • Slide 17 - Matthew: The Exception part 5 In spite of the popularity of interpreting Matthew 19:9 as an exception, it betrays the immediate context of 19:6 where Jesus rejects the Mosaic provision of divorce as being against God’s creational plan for the permanence of the marriage union. Jesus was asked two questions in Matthew 19. Read each question and answer separately and find the context. “Had Jesus permitted divorce for sexual misconduct, He would have hardly provoked such a reaction on the part of His disciples (vv. 10-11). The astonishment of the disciples indirectly proves that they understood Christ’s standard for marriage to be immeasurably high” (Samuele Bacchiocchi).
  • Slide 18 - The Betrothal View: A Final Fact It can be argued that “divorce” as we view it in our culture was not provided for by Moses. Deut. 24:1-4 and Deut. 22:22; Leviticus 20:10 Adultery is apparently not in view in Deuteronomy 24:1-4, for adultery was punishable by death (Notes from The Reformation Study Bible by R.C. Sproul).
  • Slide 19 - Porneia and Moicheia: Coincidence, Providence? “But I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality (porneia), makes her commit adultery (moicheia)” (Matthew 5:32). “And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality (porneia), and marries another, commits adultery (moicheia)” (Matthew 19:9). The parenthesis with “porneia” and “moicheia” were added for emphasis.
  • Slide 20 - Porneia and Moicheia: Coincidence or Providence? Matthew’s usage of the word porneia (a junk-drawer term for all sexual sin) is always distinguished from the word moicheia (used specifically for sexual sin committed within a consummated marriage covenant). Matthew uses porneia three times in his Gospel. We read two of them in the previous slide. Here is the third: “For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries (from the root moicheia), fornications (from the root porneia), thefts, false witnesses, slander” (Matthew 15:19). Why mention both?
  • Slide 21 - Paul’s View 1 Corinthians 7:10-16, 39 Paul claims to give Christ’s own command (vv. 10-11). “She is not enslaved” shows that she is not pursuing the divorce. Paul gives no support for the idea that in certain cases it is lawful to initiate a divorce. The Elder’s interpret “she is not enslaved or bound” to mean she is free from the covenant of marriage. Four times in 1 Corinthians 7 Paul says, “do not divorce your spouse” (vv. 10, 11, 12, 13). There is no provision for remarriage in Paul’s passage (vv. 10-11). Does no provision assume prohibition? Permanence would say yes, while narrow exception would say no. The death of a former spouse is the only “exception” Paul gives for remarriage (Romans 7:2-3; 1 Corinthians 7:39).
  • Slide 22 - Additional Information part 1 A Contractual versus a Covenantal view of marriage (Matthew 19:6; Genesis 15:17; Jeremiah 34:17-19). The Unparalleled Parallel of Ephesians 5:30-32 The parallel of marriage, the Gospel, and salvation in the Old Testament (Hosea; Ezekiel 16; Jeremiah 2; etc.). Divorce is NEVER commanded or commended. The importance of understanding the illustration Paul gives in Romans 7:1-3.
  • Slide 23 - Additional Information part 2 Mark does not provide any exception (Mark 10:10-12). Luke provides no exception (Luke 16:18). 1 Corinthians 7:10-11, 39-40 provides no exception. Pharisee’s question: Can we separate? Jesus’ answer: Man can’t separate what God has joined. If fornication gives permission, who in here would be eligible? Is that consistent with the Gospel? Is that elevating sexual sin above all other sin?
  • Slide 24 - Additional Information part 3 The Pharisee’s heresy in John 8:39-41 The word the Pharisee’s used was porneia. The Pharisee’s were attempting to discredit Jesus as the Messiah by implying Jesus was born not from a virgin, but from the sexual immorality suspected in Matthew 1:18-19. The context explains Jesus’ harsh reply in John 8:44.
  • Slide 25 - Additional Information part 4 Romans 8:31-39 “Jesus never, never, never divorces His bride, the Church. He never forsakes her. He never abandons her. He never abuses her. He always loves her. He always takes her back when she wanders. He always is patient with her. He always cares for her and provides for her and protects her and, wonder of wonders, delights in her. This is how God relates to you in Christ” (John Piper).
  • Slide 26 - Additional Information part 5 We must also highly consider the following passages: Matthew 18:21-35 “This seems like a lot to forgive” Luke 17:1-10 Is he/she really unrepentant? Does Church discipline (considering my unrepentant spouse an unbeliever) give me grounds? 1 Peter 3; 1 Corinthians 7; Remember the context of Matthew 18:15-17. Matthew 18:15-17 “the meat of instruction for Church discipline” is sandwiched between the parable of the lost sheep and the parable of the unforgiving slave.
  • Slide 27 - Defining Our Terms Narrow Exception Position Divorce is Biblically permitted in only two unique instances: Abandonment: We interpret 1 Corinthians 7 to mean physical bodily removal resulting in irreconcilable abandonment. Sexual Sin: Unrepentant, habitual, high-handed, irreconcilable sexual sin. Gospel Posture A Gospel posture is a relentless pursuit for reconciliation until reconciliation becomes physically impossible. A Gospel posture is defined simply, but is accomplished only by grace as we dwell on the Gospel.
  • Slide 28 - Some Clarification on “Narrow” Abandonment that frees one from covenantal obligations is nothing other than irreconcilable physical separation (sexual; emotional; financial; etc.) Sexual sin does not automatically place the marriage at your mercy. Gospel Posture means you might feel exasperated. Gospel posture means you must have supernatural grace and a firm perpetual grip on the Gospel. Gospel posture may mean years of patience. Hence, Matthew 19:10-12.
  • Slide 29 - An Understanding Stance part 1 The Elders at OPBC will always strongly encourage reconciled marriages. The Elders at OPBC are committed to walking through difficult, long, and seemingly impossible situations with you. Please hear the distinction between posture and position. We believe in absolute truth. However, this is a very controversial issue that we will hold with grace and understanding.
  • Slide 30 - The 1% Pre-Conversion – Abuse – Manipulation of Seventy Times Seven It is most wise to take “the 1%” on a case-by-case basis. We will not take a hard predetermined stance on the 1%. Each situation will be evaluated, data will be gathered, investigation will be conducted, facts will be checked, we will bathe it in prayer, search the Scriptures, seek counsel, and discuss with the Church body our decision-making process and conclusion.
  • Slide 31 - What If… I disagree? We would welcome you to maintain your membership if you are willing to disagree, yet also submit to the Elder’s conclusion. This means avoiding gossip, division, rebellion. This applies to all other secondary doctrinal convictions (baptism; giving; covenantal versus dispensational trajectory; etc.). I am married after an unbiblical divorce? In most cases, you should repent of your initial sin or remarrying wrongfully. You should remain married and strive to have a God-honoring marriage (John 4:18). Marriage after unbiblical divorce DOES NOT result in perpetual sin. We believe it is a legitimate marriage now that a covenant has been taken. My conscience convicts me of the permanence view? After searching the Scriptures, prayer, and pastoral counsel, you should obey your conscience and maintain unity and submission.
  • Slide 32 - What about Ezra? We believe the imposed divorces of Ezra 10:6 are an exception to this rule that is probably owing to the unique situation of ethnic Israel living among idolatrous pagan peoples and breaking God’s law not to intermarry with them. Christians are still prohibited from marrying unbelievers (2 Corinthians 6). We know from 1 Corinthians 7:13 and 1 Peter 3:1-6 that the Christian answer to mixed (Christians with Unbelievers) marriages is not divorce.
  • Slide 33 - Closing Quotes part 1 Quotes from Grace Community Church’s (Pastor John MacArthur) narrow permissive view (as of 2011): “All believers should hate divorce as God does and pursue it only when there is no other recourse. With God’s help a marriage can survive the worst sins.” “Divorce should only be pursued when there is no other recourse.” “After all means are exhausted…”
  • Slide 34 - Closing Quotes part 2 “O how I pray that one of the effects of this series will be to make us a people profoundly serious about the sacredness of marriage. The world treats this diamond like just another stone. But in fact, marriage is sacred beyond what most people imagine. It is a unique creation of God, a dramatic portrayal of God’s relation to His people, and a display of the glory of God’s covenant keeping love. Against all the diminished attitudes about marriage in the world, Jesus’ words about marriage are breathtaking. This is the work of God, not man, and it does not lie in man’s prerogative to end it” (John Piper).
  • Slide 35 - Closing Thoughts We want to deal with each member and prospective member lovingly on this issue, and with grace. We realize that a new understanding of the sinfulness of past actions may be hard to receive and can be very startling, especially if sincere efforts were made to obey God. We have struggled with a proper response to this dilemma. We trust that all members will realize that we are conscience-bound, but we will also empathize when discussing these matters. We are committed to carefully work through the unique circumstances of any member. Our goal is to glorify God by honoring His Word.
  • Slide 36 - Questions and Answers We will now open the floor for questions and answers. Before we open, let us pray together. While praying, please consider the following: Is this a question I should take a week to pray about before asking? Would it me most wise to ask in private? Will this question be gossip or promote gossip?

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