Assumption of Choice

Remember, I pray thee, who ever perished, being innocent? or where were the righteous cut off? Even as I have seen, they that plow iniquity, and sow wickedness, reap the same.”

– Eliphaz the Temanite in Job 4:7-8, KJV

And it was so, that after the Lord had spoken these words unto Job, the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite, My wrath is kindled against thee, and against thy two friends: for ye have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job hath. Therefore take unto you now seven bullocks and seven rams, and go to my servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and my servant Job shall pray for you: for him will I accept: lest I deal with you after your folly, in that ye have not spoken of me the thing which is right, like my servant Job.

– Job 42:7-8, KJV


Not Everyone Gets A Choice

Eliphaz the Temanite has many modern day reiterations in Christian circles. These are the folks that condemn a divorced individual blaming them for the tragedy of their destroyed marriage. They engage in furthering “The Shared Responsibility Lie” and foster the “It takes two” nonsense even when adultery has been uncovered.

Adding insult to injury is when this takes place with a spouse abandoned by a cheater.

These individuals fail to recognize some spouses never get a chance to reconcile or restore their marriages following infidelity discovery. The adulterous spouse blows up the marriage with their sin and compounds that sin by running away adding even more rejection upon the heaping pile of emotional and spiritual trauma left at their faithful spouses’ feet.

Then the religious community takes over blaming the abandoned and soul raped spouse for being such.

It’s downright wicked.

While I was going through my ecclesiastical trial–a now, thankfully, defunct process with that denomination–I was especially angered by this lack of recognition. The documents and questions guiding the process seemed to assume the divorced pastor was always in the driver’s seat when it came to the divorce.

This was far from true in my situation, and I know is not true for many others as well.

Sometimes a spouse is given no choice in the matter of the divorce.

Now, I am glad I am divorced from my cheating ex-wife today. It has opened the doors to the amazing family I have now. I am truly blessed.

Nevertheless, I am concerned as a Christian community about how poorly we handle situations like my own three years ago. I am concerned by the subtle blame-shifting, like Eliphaz, onto the abandoned spouse.

It is as if–even sincere–Christians think an abandoned spouse “got what was coming” to him/her!


The abandoned spouse is blamed for not controlling choices made by another person–i.e. their former spouse. This adds further shame and pain as the faithful spouse is not accountable and cannot control the choices of another human being (see II Cor 5:10). It rubs salt in the wounds of powerlessness that I assure you are especially raw at this time.

Let’s be a church and people that sits in the ashes with our grieved friends (see Job 2:13).

The church does not need more arrogant Eliphazes on these matters.


6 thoughts on “Assumption of Choice”

  1. Only Satan could orchestrate something so hateful, evil, and murderous. It’s one thing to be betrayed, forsaken, and abandoned by the very person you thought you were safest with, but to sit so alone, with no comfort or defense from a life full of brothers and sisters in Christ, is ten times worse. Not only did my son and I move away and start another church, but nobody really wanted to be bothered by our bloody mess. It just gets easier to put on a smile and pretend all is well. Anything less makes you unforgiving, bitter, and faithless. You’re not aloud to grieve. Well, maybe for about a week and then it’s time to get over it and shut up. After all, it takes two to ruin a marriage. Even while my son was blowing up his life out of pure anger, not one Christian man would step up to take two minutes out of their day to embrace him. I even asked, but got no response. I guess they have their own families and problems. He was told to honor and respect his dad because, well, “That is your dad!”. His dad left us and he is scolded for being angry? That was the comfort he got. This could not have gotten any more twisted and perverted for the two of us. At every turn.
    We moved to another state recently and have yet to try another (a third) church. We have been a part of Baptist churches and non-denomination. At this point, I would be going alone anyway. My son turns eighteen soon and God is no longer a part of his life. In all honesty, I really don’t have anything that I can say to him now that can prove that God is real. His dad left for a married woman from our church, that we all knew for years (along with her husband), they flaunted their love story all over social media from day one and got their divorces with tons of support. Remaining as faithful Christians the entire time. Our friends, our church, his Christian family, and their new friends responded so lovingly and accepting of them during their engagement, wedding, and her beautiful baby bump. All in front of our son. Now they live as the celebrated, amazing, Christian couple, with their new baby and ministry.
    We went from a faith filled, devoted, ministering, homeschool family, to now being afraid to even walk into a church, doubting God’s existence, and our son failing out of school. He lost his hero, identity, and faith.
    It’s so hard not to feel forsaken, betrayed, and abandoned by God. We needed God with skin on and nobody showed up. Instead we watched them love on the very ones raping our souls…. and it continues to this very day. God seems dead silent.
    I will continue to get up everyday and hang on to some form of faith, and just pray that God will eventually show up. For now, it feels like Satan has won.
    I know that God sees the heart and they will answer to Him “some day”, but that doesn’t fix the damage that continues here in this life. When we’re all dead, it will be too late. We paid the price for their sin here on Earth. What if our son never finds God again? All those years teaching and building faith in him, and it all goes out the window because of his father’s selfish sin that he passes off as Godliness. Not to mention their Christian supporters that he once trusted. All I can hope is that the seeds that were planted will one day take root. Seems so unfair! I’m just so tired and beaten down.
    Thank you for this blog. It might very well be the only thing that keeps me hanging onto God. Time, with no sign of hope, just makes it harder to keep believing. This blog is the first place where the truth that my heart has been crying out, is confirmed. Thank you so much.

    1. I personally like Malachi 2:13-14:

      “Here is another thing you do. You cover the Lord’s altar with tears, weeping and groaning because he pays no attention to your offerings and doesn’t accept them with pleasure. You cry out, “Why doesn’t the Lord accept my worship?” I’ll tell you why! Because the Lord witnessed the vows you and your wife made when you were young. But you have been unfaithful to her, though she remained your faithful partner, the wife of your marriage vows.”

      Someone who insists upon being unfaithful may win over other people with the motions they go through, but those motions do not impress God. It also goes on to say that God will put people on trial and that He is eager to witness AGAINST all adulterers. You are not the only one who is angry about what your ex and the other woman has done to your family. God is definitely on your side on this one.

      I truly believe that God has a hold of your son. No one can snatch a child of God’s out of God’s hand. (John 10:28) However, many people have periods of time, especially when young and/or disillusioned, where they appear to stray. I have heard many, many stories of people who wandered away for a time and were brought back with even stronger faith.

      I hope you and your son are able to find believers with skin on who will support you. There are still some Christians and churches out there who do not buy into lies and who will love you.

      1. SueB, Thank you so much for your words. This is the second time I have come back to read them. God is using your tremendous wisdom and compassion , along with Divorce Minister, to show up for the broken hearted and begin healing for so many.
        This has been the most unimaginably shocking turn in my life. Not just what my EH did, but who it was with, and the tremendous amount of support they have received from the Christian community. Blew me right out of my ignorant Christian bubble.
        Moving away was definitely the right move. No more reminders of their lies and betrayal. Hindsight is 20/20.
        I see joy in my son again, he is out of trouble now, and focusing on the future. While I was being unwillingly divorced, God walked me through school to become an RN ( something I never could have done as his wife) and now I have the freedom to go anywhere and do whatever I am called to do. You all are a reminder that God does see me and has a good plan for my life.
        Thank you again.

  2. Dear Divorce Minister, I don’t know how to say in words but will try, I do feel that divorcing of my now XH was justified due to his infidelity. He also didn’t want to try or give our marriage a chance. He is one that fell in love with his soulmate and although I gave everything I could he had already decided. The worse was after being told he wanted to divorce me and marry OW he did all the rewriting of history, very painful and of course left me doubting all of my past. In the beginning I thought I would wait for him because surely he would realize one day.
    I prayed for myself, for him, for our marriage. One time it seemed that God had told me “wait” but I didn’t know what to wait for, how long to wait.
    Eventually I gave up and couldn’t accept the disrespect and mistreatment from the man that I used to think was my best friend. So since he was unwilling and decided to live in sin with her I finally started separation and filed divorce.

    Although he wanted to divorce he wouldn’t do a thing so I was left with not only the grieving but had to deal with the chaos and burden of the legalities. XH has not made remorseful apology, nor repented and is now engaged to OW, I haven’t had any contact since the divorce.The entire time I always felt guilty that I had given up and that God would be disappointed with me for not waiting.

    It felt like I was orchestrating my own divorce that in my heart I never wanted. I hope that God will forgive me for choosing to end my marriage i.e. divorce, however, I know that I am not the one who broke my vows. Please give me advise on resolving this cognitive dissonance of my own regarding being the one who actually legally finished the marriage.

    Thankyou, spiritwoman

    1. Dear spiritwoman,

      Your xH did not give you a choice. He left you and continued to commit adultery from what you wrote. So, your options were to enable/tolerate his adultery by remaining married or divorce him. I’d say you made the right choice in a difficult place. Remember, God does not tolerate adultery (see Jer. 3:8 and Hebrews 13:4). What you did, IMO as a pastor, was godly.

      I suspect the Enemy or the flesh is telling you that you had an option that you never had. That option was a whole marriage without the infidelity dealt with through your, now, xH’s repentance. Such an option was not on the table. Even God does not force us to repent but accepts our decisions to reject Him…even permanently. Your xH did not only reject you but He also rejected God by his sinful choices to remain in an adulterous relationship.

      If that internal voice or outsiders condemn you for actualizing the divorce, remind them/it that the only other option was enabling/tolerating adultery, which is unacceptable for a follower of Christ. God prohibited in the Ten Commandments for good reason.

      Blessings and virtual hugs,

      1. DM, in tears right now, thank you for your clear understanding and sharing the love of God with people you don’t even know yet know through your own experience their struggles.

Comments are closed.