A Closer Look at the Heart of the Matter

It can be said that the heart of God's New Testament commands concerning marriage, divorce and remarriage is contained in two verses in particular, Matthew 5:32 and Matthew 19:9.

So let's examine those two verses more closely. The resulting list of those situations which are adultery and not adultery are very useful in helping determine where we stand before God.


Matthew 5:32

"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."

Those included here:

1. Man in original/Scriptural marriage - Not committing adultery.

2. Man who puts away his wife for reason other than fornication - Causing her to commit adultery.

3. Man who puts away his wife for cause of fornication - Not causing her to commit adultery.

4. Woman who marries a man who has put away his wife for reason other than fornication - Committing adultery.

5. Woman who marries a man who has put away his wife for fornication - Not committing adultery.*

6. Woman in original/Scriptural marriage - Not committing adultery.

7. Woman who is put away for reasons other than fornication - Caused to commit adultery.

8. Woman who is put away for cause of fornication - Not determined except as follows.

9. Man who marries woman who has been put away - Committing adultery.

A. Man who marries woman who has been put away for reasons other than fornication - Committing adultery.

B. Man who marries woman who has been put away for cause of fornication - Committing adultery.

10. Woman who has been put away for reasons other than fornication who marries another man - Committing adultery.

11. Woman who has been put away for cause of fornication who marries another man - Committing adultery.

*So long as she is scripturally qualified to marry.


Matthew 19:9

"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."

Those included here:

1. Man in original/Scriptural marriage - Not committing adultery.

2. Man who puts away his wife for reasons other than fornication and marries another - Committing adultery.

3. Man who puts away his wife for fornication and marries another - Not committing adultery.

4. Woman in original/Scriptural marriage - Not committing adultery.

5. Woman who is put away for reason other than fornication - Not determined except as follows.

6. Woman who is put away for fornication - Not determined except as follows.

7. Man who marries a woman who has been put away - Committing adultery.

A. Man who marries woman who has been put away for reason other than fornication - Committing adultery.

B. Man who marries woman who has been put away for fornication - Committing adultery.

8. Woman who has been put away for reason other than fornication who marries another - Committing adultery.

9. Woman who has been put away for fornication who marries another - Committing adultery.

10. Woman who marries a man who has put away his wife for reasons other than fornication - Committing adultery.

11. Woman (who is Scripturally qualified for marriage) who marries a man who has put away his wife for fornication - Not committing adultery.


Okay, now let's look at some conclusions based on what we've just studied.

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