I believe that marriage is a covenant, the terms of which are the vows. Habitual, unrepentant, violation of those vows destroys the covenant and entitles the wronged spouse to divorce, though does not require it.
The Bible sets out covenant-destroying sins:
- desertion and abuse (1 Cor 7:15) – abuse is a form of desertion because the evil conduct violates and repels the victim
- adultery (Mat 19, Mark 10).
God doesn’t hate the legal process of divorce. God hates the sins of desertion, abuse and adultery that cause marriages to break down.
I believe that a wronged party, after divorce, is free to remarry, only in the Lord (i.e., another believer). Links below explain the scriptural and historical grounds for my belief.
Is abuse grounds for divorce?
The Bible DOES allow divorce for domestic abuse
Biblical divorce for abuse explained in a nutshell
Malachi 2:16 and the mistranslation “God hate divorce”
God hates divorce? Not always.
Does God hate divorce? (YouTube interview with Barbara Roberts.)
If a man hates his wife he should set her free from the marriage. That’s what Malachi 2:16 says
“If thou hatest her, put her away, and give her a clothing for the scorn” – Malachi 2:16 in the Matthew Bible
The 1611 King James Bible gave “if he hates her, put her away” as an alternate translation of Malachi 2:16
Translations of Malachi 2:16 – Appendix 7 in the first edition of “Not Under Bondage”
Malachi 2:16, ancient versions and English translations, and how they apply to domestic abuse — a paper by Barbara Roberts
You have heard that it was said “God hates divorce,” but I say unto you…
Why has the doctrine of divorce been so misunderstood?
The tangled mess of mistaken notions about what the Bible teaches on divorce
What is the purpose of marriage? Is it to display Christ’s love for the church?
The Bible uses different words for divorce but they all mean legal divorce. Those who tell you otherwise are mistaken.
Does Scripture differentiate between ‘putting away’ and ‘divorce’?
Jesus did NOT say “Hardness of heart is grounds for divorce”. Deuteronomy 24 has been greatly misunderstood.
The Jewish divorce certificate gave women the right to remarry, but some men used it rule over women
Divorce in Deuteronomy 21 gives dignity and rights to the woman
Protecting women from abuse. Has Exodus 21:10 been mistranslated in most English versions of the Bible?
Refuting the idea that ADULTERY is the only ground for divorce
Isn’t adultery the only ground for divorce?
Abuse, Neglect and Pornography as Grounds for Divorce — Brian Sayers, The Journal of Biblical Soul Care, Fall 2021, vol 5, no 1. (Internet Archive link to download the paper, in case The Master’s University alters their link.)
The Tragedy of Abuse — Hope and Reality — Sermon by Ps Brian Sayers, Faith Bible Church, Spokane, Washington. This is Part 11 of Brian’s sermon series on Marriage, Divorce and Remarriage.
Refuting the PERMANENCE VIEW which says divorce is never permissible
Good men: please denounce the permanence view of marriage that denies any reason for divorce
On Unconditional Covenants — (Ps Sam Powell explains that biblical covenants can not be unconditional.)
Does the victim of abuse need church permission to divorce?
Church discipline and church permission for divorce – how my mind has changed — (By Barbara Roberts.)
“Leave the choice to divorce to the victim,” says the SBC’s Church Cares curriculum.
David Instone-Brewer, the Westminster Confession, and judging divorce
The Bible virtually commands divorce for domestic abuse
Theologians and pastors who believe abuse is grounds for divorce
Liam Goligher–a PCA theologian who says abuse is grounds for divorce
David Clyde Jones– a PCA theologian who said abuse is grounds for divorce
R.C. Sproul Changed His View on Abuse as Grounds for Divorce – but to our knowledge he never publicly announced that change
Carl Trueman and Todd Pruitt believe that abuse is grounds for divorce
Archbishop Thomas Cranmer on divorce for abuse
The Hungarian Christians of 1562 Had More Sense than the No-Divorce-for-Abuse Preachers Today
Puritans who said abuse was grounds for divorce
Other articles on divorce which you might find helpful
False Vows do not a Covenant Make — by Pastor Dietrich Wichmann
Do not add an extra clause to the marriage covenant after it has been ratified
The one flesh covenant and divorce. In domestic abuse, divorce is NOT the worse possible outcome.
Barbara Roberts agrees with some of David Instone-Brewer’s views on divorce
Barbara Roberts disagrees with some of David Instone-Brewer’s views on divorce
The Puritan confessions on divorce & remarriage — by Ps David Dykstra. Note: Dykstra is to be abhorred for defending convicted child abuser Tom Chantry. This article on divorce and remarriage by Dykstra can perhaps stand on its own merits. It discusses the 1689 London [Baptist] Confession. The London Confession is interesting because it did not include the section on divorce and remarriage which the [Presbyterian] Westminster Confession had included.