75%-80% of all divorces are initiated by the wife. The same percent of women get the children and money.

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, about 50 percent of marriages in the United States end in divorce, and about 80 percent of the divorces are initiated by women. That 50 percent is often quoted and it is probably on the high side, but it is illuminating that 80 percent of the divorces are filed by the wife.From: http://www.divorcesource.com/…/why-women-file-80…/

Regardless of the standard applied, the great majority of children in single-parent families live with their mothers. Most studies show mother custody at about 70 to 80 percent, with father custody, split custody, and shared custody accounting for the rest (Maccoby and Mnookin 1993; Melli, Brown, and Cancian 1997). From: http://www.encyclopedia.com/social…/law/law/child-custody

In the 1991 data, every step of the process was biased against men, with the end result being that women received over 94% of child support dollars paid. This new data is very similar. All of the steps of the process are biased against men except the percentage of support due which is collected (the two are now roughly equal).From: https://dalrock.wordpress.com/…/latest-u-s-custody-and…/

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Unilateral and Bilateral are the two type of Covenants in the Bible

1) Unilateral comes from “uni” meaning one. Like a unicycle: this is an “Unconditional Covenant” because it is one-sided.

2) Bilateral comes from “bi” meaning two. Like a bicycle: this is a “Conditional Covenant” because each persons promise is dependent on the other.

The Hebrew word for Covenant is “Berith”. This most likely comes from “bara” meaning “to cut”, as Abraham cut the animals in two to prepare God’s covenant in Gen. 15. This is most likely were we understand the term “blood covenant”.

So, a blood covenant symbolizes “life” or more likely “death”. Some say this was communicating, may my blood be required of me if I do not uphold this bond.

A covenant is a confirmed “promise”. This was usually associated with either witnesses, or symbols to establish the promise. God called this a confirmed oath.

Heb. 6 “13 For when God made a promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself, 14 saying, “Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.”[d] 15 And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise. 16 For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute. 17 Thus God, determining to show more abundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath, 18 that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might[e] have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us.

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It’s Not Fair!

Life is not fair!
 
Marriages that are bilateral (two people making a promise to each other) have “zero” foundation for the headship principles taught in Scripture. This is made apparent by Paul repeatedly instructing the Gentile women to obey their husband (1 Tim. 2:11-14, 1 Cor. 11:2-16, 1 Cor. 14:34, Titus 2:4-5). Gentile women were considered equal in all regards; both before the marriage and during.
 
Legally speaking, western marriages are considered similar to a business contract 50/50. But marriages were designed to be unilateral “only” and a young woman to be living under her father’s roof before marriage (Deut. 22, Numbers 20:2-16, Ex. 22:16-17). More than likely, Greco-Roman women were not given in “arranged marriages” but either acted independently of their parents or were married/divorce before (similar to our high divorce rate).
 
The Gentile women in the New Testament married similar to our culture. That means, no one paid a bride price or negotiated a deal to marry her. In their bilateral marriage the contract could be breached by any of the promises broken by either party. This was considered a conditional contract. So, legally speaking, unbelieving Gentile women enjoyed the same privileges as her husband in all regards and there was no foundation for headship.
 
In a unilateral marriage covenant, though, the woman was paid for or gifted by her father so, his authority was passed on to the young man (Nub. 30:15-16). Moses added the concession later on (sexual immorality by the one under authority Deut. 24:1). Unilateral covenants are unconditional by nature and this is why Jesus responded to the Pharisees and Scribes in saying that in the beginning divorce did not occur “was not so” (Matt. 19:8b).
 
In a Jewish marriage, the woman never makes a vow, or says “I do” in a wedding ceremony. Only the man traditionally makes all the promises. The Bride only accepts his proposal with a “cup of acceptance” at the betrothal. The bride never signs the marriage covenant but her father, the groom and two witnesses. Therefore, it was “unlawful” for a Jewish woman to initiate a divorce because she was under his complete authority by acquisition and not by vow.
 
So, yes, we practice marriages incorrectly and women should have a civil right to divorce a husband if he where to ever break any of the promises that he made to her: to cherish her, be faithful, provide for her, love her etc… Therefore, it is correctly understood that the husband is in breach of contract for neglect, abuse or infidelity in a bilateral marriage covenant. But since this is not what Paul, Jesus or the Bible taught it has caused much confusion.
 
God’s law (Gen. 3:16) and his principles (Adam and Eve) in Scripture supersedes all marriages covenants; either unilateral or bilateral. So although it is not fair for the type of covenant that a woman entered to be submissive to her husband, it is just. Paul made this clear by saying that a woman is bound to the “law under her husband” Rom. 7:1-2 and 1 Cor. 7:39.
 
Woman today initiate 75% to 80% of all divorces here in America.
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Matt. 19:9’s “exception clause” (vs.) 1 Cor. 7:15’s “exception clause”

Paul starts off in 1 Corinthians 7:10 telling us that this is the “Lord’s command” and not his. Why? Well, for two reasons. First, Paul wanted to have a platform of authority on which to build. And secondly, he wanted to speak to the women who had an ability to divorce their husband unlike many of the Jewish women before them. There seemed to be some concern in this letter about the authority of Paul’s personal judgments.

Paul then tells the woman not to “separate” from her husband. There has been some controversy over what this meant, but Matt. 19:6 clears it up very quickly. Matt. 19:6 says, “Therefore what God has joined together, let no man SEPARATE.” It makes sense that Paul referencing the Lord’s command would use the same general word for divorce as Jesus.

Paul says next, “But if the woman separates…” This does not mean that Paul is about to slack on the Lord’s former commands. This word in the Greek could be talking about a woman who has divorced her husband in the: past, present or future. Since this is Paul’s response to their former letter (1 Cor. 7:1) it makes sense that some of the Gentile women could have divorced their husband already in which they questioned Paul. Matter of fact, you can pretty much bet your life on it.

Paul then gives a very specific and, shall we say, dangerous message to the women, “remain unmarried or reconcile to her husband”. There are two things to consider here. One, Paul is still referencing the Lord’s command and two, Paul is clearly giving a message to these Gentile woman in Corinth. Although Jesus did not use these words directly “remain or reconcile” but by understanding Matt. 19:9 (in regards to “committing adultery” in remarriage) this message would be fundamentally correct. The women were not allowed to initiate a divorce, according to the Law of Moses, so marriage to a man other than her first husband (while still alive) would have clearly been considered “adultery” to Jesus (Deut. 24:1, Matt. 19:9).

Paul then ends 1 Cor. 7:11 by saying that the man is not to “divorce” his wife. It is important to note that Paul does not tell the men to “remain unmarried or reconcile” as he did to the woman. Paul is simply telling the men not to divorce their wife. But where is the exception clause of Matt. 19:9? And are they allowed to remarry? It is therefore clear that Paul was referencing the “put away” that Jesus spoke of in Matt. 19:9, both by Greek expression (Antiquities of the Jews 15:259) and the intended use of this word in the next two verses (vss. 12-13). Paul talked about the man’s right to remarry in 1 Cor. 7:27-28 by being “bound” or “loosed” from a wife.

“The Greeks would have been divorcing according to Greco-Roman laws, so there would have been no direct use of the Jewish “put away” with a Writ of Divorce, as used in Matt. 19:9.”

Paul then says in 1 Cor. 7:12 this is what I say, “not the Lord”. Paul wanted to be very clear that his next set of instructions is not going to be referencing the Lord’s commands from the Gospels, but as he felt led by the “spirit” (vss. 25, 40). Paul was said to be a man born out of due time. Paul is going to be giving a message on love, grace, forgiveness and mercy as to believing Gentiles not subject under the Law of Moses.

Paul goes on and tells the men/women not to “divorce” their unbelieving spouse if they want to stay. It is important to ask, “why did the Corinthians think it was permissible to divorce a spouse even though they did nothing wrong?” We can see in this chapter that they did have some questions about the practical application of the Law, such as circumcision (vs. 18). 1 Cor. 8:1 Paul goes on and talks to them about the large idol influence in their culture. Therefore, we can conclude, that their unbelieving spouses were definitely influenced by a culture saturated in paganism.

There was also a time of a pagan practicing culture colliding with the Israelite Nation. Ezra said in 9:14, “Should we again break Your commandments, and join in marriage with the people committing these abominations? Would You not be angry with us until You had consumed us, so that there would be no remnant or survivor?” They were eventually commanded to divorce these abominable women and the children that were born unto them (Ezra 10:3). Therefore; 1 Cor. 7:12-14 was obviously a question the Corinthian’s had about being married to unbelieving pagans.

But, it would only be speculation to conclude Paul was talking about Ezra 10:3 if it were not for the following verse in 1 Cor. 7:14, “…otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are holy.” If it were not for the sanctification of the Holy Spirit the Corinthians would have been correct in their deductions. Paul later tells them to, “Therefore, “Come out from among them (unbelievers) and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you.” Meaning unbelievers are called “unclean” in which they were commanded to not be “unequally yoked” with. Nevertheless, Paul tells them to remain in the situation in life that the Lord called them to walk in (vs. 17).

Paul commands (Imperative) the believer to “separate” from the unbeliever in 1 Cor. 7:15. But, many miss the first part of this verse. The unbeliever clearly “separated” from them first, “But if the unbeliever separates, let them separate…” Paul is not saying if they do not want to live with you then divorce them, or giving the believer permission to put an unbeliever out of the home, but if the unbeliever was already in the process of a divorce (active tense) give them the divorce.

The next part in 1 Cor. 7:15-16 is fairly easy to decipher. Paul tells the believers that they are “Not in bondage” in such a situation. The “such case” in vs. 15 means that Paul is going to give an “exception clause” about staying married to their unbelieving spouse. The difference between Jesus’ “exception clause” in Matt. 19:9, and Paul’s “exception clause” in 1 Cor. 7:15 is Jesus was focusing on the sins of remarriage, while Paul was focusing on the considerations about divorce. Therefore; Paul is only talking about a permission to divorce their unbelieving spouse (apart from the Law of Moses) and not giving permission to remarry (according to the Law of Moses).

But, as many cases, context can be the key to understanding words in the Greek. Paul then goes on in the next verse and shows us what they felt in bondage too, “For how do you know, O wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, O husband, whether you will save your wife?” There was obviously some question about staying married to their unbelieving spouses in order to try and save them. Paul wanted to insure the believer that holding onto an unbeliever in marriage did not guarantee their salvation. Paul was releasing them from guilt or sorrow by giving the believer permission to allow the unbeliever a divorce to stimulate “peace” in a rather un-peaceful marriage.

P.S. Although the believers understood Paul’s challenging judgments in this chapter, there was still further question of the death of a husband. Paul uses the word “sleeps” for death in 1 Cor. 7:39. That leads us to believe the woman must have felt bound to a husband that did not taste the second death. Paul told these women you may remarry, but only marry “in the Lord”. Paul later suggests that the young widows remarry due to the weakness of their flesh but older ones to continue to serve the Lord (1 Tim. 5) having been the wife of only one husband.

 

Scripture was taken from the NKJV.

Love you,

Michael Sayen

 

 

 

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Essay on Divorce and Remarriage in the Church

Today we live in an age where divorce runs rampant in the Church even though we preach it from the Pulpit, in our marriage-ministry, and in the pre-marriage courses. Divorce and remarriage is still a highly emotional and debated subject even after 2,000 years of Christianity. We claim to have an understanding on this subject, but our divorce rate is just as high as the World. It goes without saying, the family unit is under attack like never before and a house divided cannot stand.

Let’s look at the foundation of marriage contrasted with present day living. First, it was originally designed to be until the death of the spouse (Matt. 19:8-9 “from the beginning it was not so” and “what God joined together, let no man separate”). The Bible also says a marriage is not a contract but a covenant with intended lifelong obligations. But many of the principles of marriage in the Bible seem to be cultural, impractical and outdated. For, we come from a culture and age that is extremely sexual immoral and promiscuous. Furthermore, our civil laws governing divorce and remarriage seem to be based on an ever-changing world view of morality (legalizing homosexual marriages).

Concerning divorce, there are those who believe “what is good for the goose is good for the gander.” Meaning, what is allowed for the man should also be allowed for the woman. But, the Bible teaches a woman is to be submissive to her husband “in all things.” Sometimes these two ideas collide. It can get confusing to know at what point does a woman “submit” to her abusive husband and at what point does she rebel against his reign. When is that fine line crossed over, from grace and forgiveness to self-preservation and protection?

The Bible comes from a unilateral position; where bride prices are prescribed (Ex. 22:16-17) and betrothal means more than engagement (Deut. 22). The bride price transfers the authority (Numbers 30:2-16) and subsequently ownership of the woman to the man (“purchase price”). Where her vows are not what holds her to the marriage, but the “law” of her husband does (Romans 7:2, 1 Cor. 7:29, Gen. 3:16). Consequently, being that the marriage was unilateral meant the divorce was also unilateral (Deut. 24:1). Only the man could initiate a divorce being she was “acquired” for him by price?

Despite the fact that the Corinthian culture followed a bilateral form of marriage (both parties promise to be faithful to the other) Paul still held to the commands of Moses combined with the purposes of God (1 Cor. 7:10-11 “woman not to separate from her husband… and man not to divorce his wife”). The Gentile culture did not affect the morality of divorce/remarriage to Paul, or the authority of a man, regardless of the type of marriage covenant they made (bilateral or unilateral). The Corinthians had questioned how to apply Jewish law to their freedoms in Christ (Acts 15:28-29).

Paul, taking the Gentile culture into consideration, still commanded the woman to “remain unmarried or reconcile with her husband” after her unlawfully recognized Greco-Roman divorce (1 Cor. 7:11). Paul was not influenced by their relaxed culture, or tickling their ears, but teaching a theory based on woman’s origination and design for man (Adam was created first than Eve, and Adam was not deceived but the woman). Still, Paul’s main concern was love, mercy and grace in a life led by the Spirit (1 Cor. 13 “love” Chapter). This is why 1 Cor. 7:12-16 Paul expressed more of an egalitarian response (man and woman) than strictly a patriarchal one (man only).

It’s God’s (speaking through the Apostle Paul) position, His Perfect Plan, that marriage is a relationship based on love, forgiveness and mutual respect for one-another. Never do you see a godly man or godly woman initiating a divorce that would cause the other trouble or pain. 1 Cor. 7 was simple answers to complex questions, concerning divorce and remarriage, to Gentiles living in times very similar to our own. Therefore; I believe the message for us today would be the very same answer he gave over 2,000 years ago. That is, “Do not separate what God has joined together, unless the unbeliever wishes to depart.”

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Divorce dilemma in the early Church

Yes, this writing has never been taught in 2,000 years. That God’s design of the bride price and unilateral marriage was the fundamental basis for Moses’ concession expressed in Matt. 19:9 (only man could initiate divorce for porneia). When the Gentile Church started to grow on its own, without the Jewish council of James and the elders in Jerusalem, they read the command’s for the Church from a “bilateral” culture and in a literal fashion. This is what caused so much confusion in the first 400 years of Christianity.

The majority of bilateral thinkers read scripture and came to the conclusion that the woman was “never” allowed to remarry (remain unmarried or reconcile with her husband vs. 11) until the death of her husband (1 Cor. 7:39). Not because their view was bilateral, but because this is the literal “expressed” interpretation of chapter 7. They really did not understand how to combine Paul’s writings with Jesus’ exception clause. This was evident by the majority of Christian commentaries in 200-400 C.E.

It is clear, if the marriage covenant was broken according to Moses laws both are free to remarry without being guilty of “adultery” in remarriage (Matt. 5:31-32). But, what was not clear is that Deut. 24:1, being unilateral, meant only the man could initiate the divorce. The woman cannot divorce her husband for anything other than if he was an unbeliever and requested the divorce (1 Cor. 7:15). The early Church fathers missed putting all these points together.

So, with an unbalanced approach, their teachings were soon rejected as “flawed” by the majority for skipping the basic premise of Deut. 24:1. It is my assumption and observation that at the beginning of the 5th C.E. the majority of Christians flip-flopped with Deut. 24:1 being their primary text (bilateral marriages being practiced) while skipping the premise of Paul’s clear unilateral unwavering approach to remarriage.

Paul did not need to reiterate Deut. 24:1 to the believers living in Corinth, for it is obvious they had an influence of the Law of Moses by mentioning “circumcision” and dietary laws. It’s as if the far “left” Christians were not able to agree with the far “right” Christians in the early Church. So, divorce and remarriage became a highly contentious subject. But, there is a balanced approach to Paul’s writings and Deut. 24:1-4. Paul never tried to change or do away with Moses’ permission, only answer those questions posed by the Gentile believers who already knew and accepted the Law.

 

 

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Marriage?

Hello everyone, today I am going to talk about marriage. Not in the way that you would expect or even like. But, one that will bring truth to our lives, and truth will help us live a life that is well pleasing to God. And, by the way, is that not what we are here for, to please God?
 
For one thing, statistics show us that around 75% to 80% of all divorces are initiated by women in the United States. Now, this does not mean that 75-80% of women are more sinful than common man; it just means that they are the ones that “pull the plug” first. I will demonstrate why…
 
Learning a little from my blogs or books you will see that marriages were designed to be unilateral, not bilateral. Paul knew this. But, if you noticed in Paul’s writing (1 Cor. 7) he was not interested in bringing “bride prices” back or even enforcing unilateral marriages again, but to teach us how to live a life that is well pleasing to God regardless how we got there. That is, one of sacrificial living and not of selfishness, unforgiveness or hardness of heart.
 
Paul starts off telling us the commandment of our Lord in 1 Cor. 7:10-11 to remind us that He said we must not divorce one another! But, in 1 Cor. 7:12-16 you will get more of a universal feel. Paul preaches equal compassion and concern for our lost spouses and to live according to grace in the Spirit. I do not want you to be deceived though, Paul was very clear to the Gentile women living in Corinth that if you divorce your husband you must not remarry another man (vs. 11) because only the man was given permission by Scripture to divorce his wife (Deut. 24:1, Matt. 19:9).
 
Paul was not commanding the Gentile believers that they must now practice Judaism or the Law of Moses but that our obedience to Christ means that wives obey their husband and husbands love their wife in everything we do. Therefore; since the women were made for man, they must be submissive to him regardless of the type of marriage they are in (either Gentile or Jewish). The woman must not initiate a divorce to rebel against this authority (vs. 10). After all, isn’t this what the law also says? (1 Cor. 14:34, Gen. 3:16)
 
In contract law, a woman was correct; in a Greco-Roman bilateral contract she would have every right to divorce her husband fairly. But, to the contrary, God did not approve in bilateral, equal authoritative marriages (Gen. 3:16). Therefore, all divorces are to be unilaterally initiated only by the husband in accordance to the Law of Moses (Deut. 24:1) regardless if you are Jew or Gentile. Today, women have a power that they were never designed or biblically allowed to have according to Scripture.
 
Looking back… Men in the Old Testament did not always initiate a divorce with their wife when they were not happy but many times they would simply marry another woman (i.e. Esther). Women, on the other hand, could not divorce or marry in polyandry, according to the Law, so they would eventually leave the husband (Jer. 3:8-9, Judges 19:1-).
 
We see this played out in marriages today.
 
The men, rather than jumping into a divorce, would go back to their natural urges and simply look for another woman to lust after. For, isn’t it far easier for a man to have two women at the same time (polygamy) then it is for a woman (polyandry) who has children? Women, however, are more naturally inclined to leave their husband when displeased with his leadership. Scripture says we can’t have two Masters for we will end up loving one but hating the other. And so with a woman. In a polyandrous relationship she would end up loving one man and hating the other. Men do not have these issues.
 
I am not saying that it does not happen the other way around, but due to scriptural examples, this would seem to be their first initial action towards sin. A man is concerned in having sex with another woman, and a woman is more concerned in getting out of her neglectful/abusive relationship. A sinful man usually tends to use his greater strength and size as intimidation/fear tactics in an argument, or try and disrespect her by ignoring her complaints all together. These are usually his “go-to’s” in a fight with his wife genetically.
 
Paul suggests that women are more easily deceived than man, “For Adam was not deceived but the woman being deceived fell into transgression.” If given the chance a woman will seek a divorce as a means to ultimately escape her relationship being deceived by the world into thinking this is permissible to God. For the world’s wisdom screams, “God would want you happy, right?” Hopefully, I have shown that to you in today’s writing to help couples in pain.
 
Paul said a woman is not to separate from her husband and a husband is not to divorce (put away) his wife. This was God’s design for marriage from the very beginning for [divorce] was not originally an option for him (Matt. 19:6).
 
In all things, God be gloried.
 
In Jesus name, amen.
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