I have been married 46 years. I remember the wedding ceremony that established a covenant before God and man. It declared that we would remain faithful “until death do us part.” Not the nonsense they spout in the soaps of “as long as we both shall love.” It is a covenant. It is for life.
My wife comes from a long line of divorces. In her background divorce is a common thing. I don’t know how many times when we were going through a rocky time I had to remind her that “divorce is not an option.” She has even quoted me to me on that a few times. Through the grace of God and an understanding of covenant we have made it this far.
On to 47.
God hates divorce.
(Mal 2:16 NAS77) "For I hate divorce," says the LORD, the God of Israel, "and him who covers his garment with wrong," says the LORD of hosts. "So take heed to your spirit, that you do not deal treacherously."The only exception given to this condemnation is in the case of adultery. That is because the covenant has been broken.
My thinking started with the question about breaking the marriage covenant. I cannot, or is it just will not? Does it make any difference? This led me to think about the character of God and the covenants He has established with Israel and modern believers. The Bible uses the picture of marriage to represent the covenant between God and His church. This is described in Ephesians 5. Believers as a group are referred to as the bride of Christ (Revelation 19:6-9).
Many Christians believe that once you are saved then there is nothing that can get God to break the covenant He establishes with them. They like to use parts of Romans 8 to back up this thinking.
(Rom 8:35 KJV) Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?That is a strong statement, but there is more.
(Rom 8:38 KJV) For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.Very impressive and to be honest these verses give me a sense of security. I don’t see them as secure as the Calvinists.
The verses don’t say anything about you changing your mind. They don’t mention apostasy or backsliding. They are understood to put God in a box and I don’t think God likes to be in a box.
God will not break His covenant. The question is will He allow us to break it. How do you tell the difference between “will not” and “can not”? I again refer to marriage. Just because I will not reject the covenant does not mean that my wife cannot. It is a two way agreement. Am I still married if she files for divorce and it is granted by a judge?
We are part of a living covenant. It is not based on a dead promise of the past but on a living commitment of today. I rejoice that I serve a living God who walks the daily covenant with me. That is the kind of eternal security I can live, and die with.
homo unius libri