Buffet of Bad Options

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“‘If a man is found lying with a married woman, then both of them shall die, the man who lay with the woman, and the woman; thus you shall purge the evil from Israel.”

-Deuteronomy 22:22, NASB.


While much is made of God’s proclamation of hating divorce in Malachi 2:16, I fear that many pastors gloss over verses like this one from Deuteronomy treating them as unimportant in the discussion about adultery and divorce because we no longer put adulterers/adulteresses to death. This glossing over is foolish. God’s word reveals God’s heart about these things even if we have mercy these days for cheaters. We know that God does not change and thus neither would God’s opinion on the matter of adultery.


Notice adultery is labeled “evil” in this verse. It is such an evil that God instructs them to kill human beings who are made in His Image! Maybe I am missing it, but I cannot find a single verse ANYWHERE in Scripture that calls divorce evil. And while God may hate divorce, Scripture does not label it evil.


It is adultery that is evil.


Personally, I believe God does this because God realizes the limited choices before a faithful spouse. I was talking to a friend finding himself in this dilemma over what to do after discovering infidelity. He described the decision process like playing a sadistic game of “Would you rather?”

Would you rather…


….lose a leg or an arm?


be a single dad or stay married to someone who has painfully demonstrated that they are an adulteress?


…divorce or live a with an unrepentant adulterer who feels entitled to continue risking your life by playing a sick hooker game of STD-Russian-roulette?”


The options stink.


It is a buffet of bad options.


That is why I believe God does not call divorce evil. It is an adult decision made in the face of the reality of sin. Like losing a limb, it is not pleasant nor ideal. I wish all could experience the ideal option of a happy and long marriage. However, the ideal options were taken off the table by the cheater. NEVER FORGET THAT!


Speaking to the faithful survivors of adultery, you really only have these two choices (and some may not even have that many): 1) stay with an unrepentant adulterer/adulteress abusively blame-shifting the adultery upon you or 2) divorce the cheater. All other options are outside of your control as they require a response or action from someone else, namely the cheater. You see, the option of repentance from adultery is in the hands of the adulterer/adulteress. You do not control that. And even if they do repent, the road to healing will still be full of much pain.


No option is good.


I believe God in His mercy realizes this sad reality. That is why He makes a provision for the faithful spouse to divorce without shame.


Is divorce good? No. But sometimes it is the best option left on the buffet line.

If God does not condemn a faithful spouse for divorcing, who are we to?

18 thoughts on “Buffet of Bad Options”

  1. Thank you Divorce Minister!

    This post really hits the nail on the head. For those of adultery survivors, divorce is usually the least bad option. I’m of the LDS faith, and we’ve been taught that marriage is for forever. It was very difficult to decide to divorce because of this. But one night I was hurting so badly, and just wanted to make the pain stop. I briefly contemplated suicide, but then the thought came to my mind that divorce would be so much easier on me and on my poor children than that. After I consulted a divorce lawyer, I felt like a great weight had been lifted off me. I knew it was the right decision. Fortunately, the majority of the people in my church have been supportive and understanding. Unfortunately, divorce has become much more prevalent than it was 20 years ago in our church.

    Anyway, thank you for this blog. I know it will help many people that are struggling with the decision to divorce.

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