More rules?

Readings  Mark 10:1-12 


Check out this picture of the grizzly mom and her cubs.  Award winning don’t you think?  What do you mean, you can’t see them?  This reminds me of my dad’s picture of a killer whale.  The little black spot in his picture could have been just about anything you would want it to be, even the “monster of the deep”, or even a penguin.  🙂  (If you enlarge the picture, you can see at least one brown blur, by the edge of the woods, beyond the green grass, really.)

Readings  Mark 10:1-12 

Dear loved ones,

Just heard yesterday of a story of a man being killed by a grizzly bear out inYellowstoneNational Park.  It is rare for bear attacks there, and the last death by a bear in that park was in 1986.  There have been deaths elsewhere by bears, and that is why there are rules set up for hikers as I mentioned the other day.  Following all the rules set up may have saved the man from death.  It is very sad for the wife and family of this individual.  Makes me thankful that no one was hurt when the grizzly showed up byLake Louisewith her two cubs, and all the people stood there taking pictures.  Even though bear attacks are very rare, and you are much more likely to die from a snake bite, or a bee sting, next time I go out, I will bring pepper spray, and be more aware of the rules.  They do have a purpose in preserving life.

As we are proceeding slowly though Mark, we come to a rule that many people are ignoring today.

In Mark 10, we see Jesus get up from where He was and went to the region of Judea beyond theJordan, where He again began to teach the people.  Some of the Pharisees came to Jesus to test Him, and they did so by asking Him about divorce.  The Pharisees may have been hoping to stir up opposition to Jesus as there were some opposing views to when divorce might be okay.  Some were more strict on divorce only being allowed when some form of sexual unfaithfulness occurred, while another group believed that anything could allow for a divorce.  Seems this is a view of many today.  If you simply do not “love” the spouse anymore, then that is reason to be divorced, or if you have “irreconcilable differences” it is okay.  How did Jesus deal with this?

First He brought them back to Moses, where they were basing their actions.  Jesus acknowledged that Moses had allowed the people to “write a certificate of divorce”, but because of the hardness of their hearts.  He then went back to the way marriage is meant to be, the way it was created for, not the way men and women have turned it into.  Listen: 

Mark 10:6-9 (NASB95)
6 “But from the beginning of creation, God MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE.
8 AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH; so they are no longer two, but one flesh.
9 “What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.”

It can’t be much clearer than that.  When you get up close, you can see the intent of God, the permanence of the relationship, the part God has in it, and the fact that man is not to get involved in separating the union.  Jesus responds further to the disciples questions later:

Mark 10:10-12 (NASB95)
10 In the house the disciples began questioning Him about this again.
11 And He said* to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her;
12 and if she herself divorces her husband and marries another man, she is committing adultery.”

Pretty strong words, don’t you think?  In Matthew  19:9, Jesus only allows for divorce in the case of sexual immorality, and even there, does it say that it should always happen?  Further study on God’s desire for marriage to be permanent even in the midst of it being “broken”, can be looked at in Hosea 1-3, and even I Corinthians 7:10-11

Maybe there is someone in your life that is contemplating divorce, maybe it is time that they hear the words of God regarding marriage, rather than their own interpretation, or the world’s view.  Marriage is a beautiful thing, but unless we depend on God, and find our contentment in Him, and follow His way, marriage can become so difficult, that divorce seems the only answer.  God is always about restoration.  If He wasn’t, we would all be condemned to Hell, but praise God, through Jesus we can find forgiveness and Life.  Our marriages can also be restored as we look to Jesus, and not our own selfish ways.  Let’s look to the Way, Jesus, for He is the Truth, and Jesus is to be our Life!

Let’s lovingly, compassionately come alongside one another and encourage one another in our relationships.  Let’s not ignore the warning signs of a disintegrating marriage, but let’s also not ignore the “rules” God has set up regarding marriage.  There is hope.




One thought on “More rules?

  1. Steve, excellent post! It saddens my heart to see how casually marriage vows are often treated these days. As we see in Ephesians 5, marriage is something sacred—something so special that Scripture points to Jesus as our Bridgegroom and to us as His Bride. Just as He will never forsake the vows He has made to us, so we should lift up and highly treasure the marriage vows we’ve made before Him.

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