Learn to do good.
Help the oppressed.
Defend the cause of orphans.
Fight for the rights of widows.
-Isaiah 1:17, NLT
An observation I’ve noticed is how evangelicals are quick to point to God’s forgiveness for adulterers and adulteresses while totally ignoring their victims. It as as if faithful spouses do not exist or–practically speaking–the “gospel” has nothing to say to them (other than to shame them into “forgiving” their soul rapists).
Where is the Good News for the oppressed–i.e adultery victims?
This is not a holistic Gospel message if it leaves out the victims and the oppressed (see Luke 4:17-19).
A good place to start is to confront the lies. From the pulpit, I recommend calling out “The Shared Responsibility Lie” for the falsehood it is.
Tell faithful spouses the truth:
“It is not your fault.
You are in no way responsible for your spouse’s adulterous sin. God does not hold us accountable for being sinned against.”
I think it is wonderful that we serve a God who forgives all our sins (e.g. I John 1:9). But we also serve a God who cares about the oppressed and those bond up by Satan’s lies and shame. He came to set us free.
Free from sin.
And free from the bondage of Satan’s lies.
By all means preach the Good News that adulterous spouses may find forgiveness in Christ, but please do not forget their victims and the need to lift the burdens of false guilt and shame so often left on their shoulders following their experience of such sinful trauma.