Should Adultery Be Illegal?

He upholds the cause of the oppressed
    and gives food to the hungry.

-Psalm 146:7a, NIV

Spring 08 in New Haven 033

Yes, absolutely!

Adultery ought to be illegal.

It is a violation of a civil contract, minimally. Adultery is abuse, in my opinion. It destroys lives, finances, and communities. And it is an incredible injustice that adultery is remains legal in most modern societies.

Now, I am not advocating returning to Biblical punishments (e.g. Deut. 22:22).

I am not advocating to put adulterous spouses to death.

However, I am suggesting a just society would seek to do a better job caring for the victims of adultery. It would do more than simply grant a divorce. A just society would levy the costs associated with the damage the adulterous spouse caused.

It only seems just that the adulterous spouse have to pay all the costs of the divorce. They broke the marriage “contract” and covenant after all.

It only seems just that they pay the lawyer fees, forensic accounting fees, PI fees, and other evaluation fees associated with the divorce. The adulterous spouse made such fees necessary by engaging in deceptive and maritally destructive behavior.

It only seems just that they demonstrate that they are not crazy and a bad influence on their children if children are involved. By committing adultery, the adulterous spouse has demonstrated relational violence towards one of the kids’ parents. A wise person takes note and would need evidence demonstrating this was the exception to their behavior as opposed to the norm.

I am not giving legal advice here. I am simply speaking as a concerned citizen and a pastor exercising my free speech.

Adultery needs to be taken more seriously. 

That includes in our legal system.

4 thoughts on “Should Adultery Be Illegal?”

  1. DM, I 100% agree with you! Adultery and the destruction it causes to the whole family and finances can be devastating! It leaves a horrible scar on on betrayed spouses at a time when many of these left behind families are struggling to wrap their heads around the bomb that was just dropped and the cheaters are off trying to figure out how to run off with every dime leaving the faithful spouse with little or no resources to even hire an attorney and file for divorce. Then it seems the courts don’t want to entertain any “fault” and they further the destruction of the families left behind! It is criminal! The sane parent who is trying their best to provide for the children and maintain the home are sometimes so devastated they aren’t able to provide even the minimum necessities to the well being of the kids! The laws need to change, but right now the best any betrayed partner can do is to hire a savvy lawyer and often there is no money to do that with! The betrayed spouse and the kids are sometimes so confused and depressed and could benefit from counseling, but it’s either not availiable or a choice has to be made between food and shelter so it’s not feasible! It’s appalling what infidelity does to the innocent and faithful spouse and family! There absolutely should be mandatory penalties for the people who engage in adultery! One would hope it would be a deterrent to their lust!

  2. Amen! I live in a no-fault divorce state. I had to pay for the lawyer. He has a hard time coughing up his half of any court costs – I borrow from my parents. He’s been an absolute shit but he got his way by being “free” now. He has tried the whole “I’ve barely got enough money to eat” my response is, “yes, your two children and I have the same problem.” Marriage is a civil contract, why are there no penalties for the one breaking the contract?

  3. I recently saw a court case on 48hours where the wife had videotaped the verbal abuse her husband subjected her to in front of her children. It was extreme verbal abuse and physical intimidation and it was hard to watch. She brought it to court to get full custody of her children. The judge not only gave her full custody of the children, he also sentenced the husband to 36 years in prison for destroying a family. We need more judges like this. Maybe if we videotaped what we go through and our kids go through after infidelity a judge would get it. I doubt many of us faithful spouses would have the focus to do something like that at such a horrible and confusing time. I’m all for adultery being illegal. It should also be considered child abuse. Watching my children go through this is worse than seeing my dad die from cancer. How do people do this without faith?

  4. Yes, but to do this society as a whole would need to see this as abuse and stop shifting blame onto the faithful spouse. It would be great if that would actually happen, but I’m not sure I see that happening in this fallen world. I think the Lord is going to have to dole out the justice on this one.

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