This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. – John 3:19, NIV
Why not tell the truth? The answer is simple. It would exposed the evil deed to light. Humans for thousands of years have been running from such light. They do not want their wickedness exposed.
This is true about adulterous spouses. They have done some evil deeds (lying and cheating) and therefore, according to Scripture, hate the light. So, do not be surprised if they lie in front of a pastor or show anger at being cornered with the truth. This is what we do when we have not been transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit:
We hate the light and seek to maintain our existence in darkness.
Another part of this verse that strikes me is how Jesus does not mince words about what kind of deeds human do: These deeds are “evil.“
Part of modern couple’s counseling as I experienced it (as a non-professional) and was taught (as a pastor) is to hear both sides of the story. When dealing with situations involving infidelity, this can quickly lead to “The Shared Responsibility Lie” and a sin inquisition where the pastor is seeking to find sin equal to the adultery in the faithful spouse. Such a tact, I suspect, is taken to look impartial and balanced. The pastors are afraid to drive away the adulterous spouse and ultimately more afraid the marriage will end in divorce than adultery will reoccur. As I say in another post (click here), such motivation is misplaced.
Personally, I think such counseling underestimates human depravity. It fails to recognize how humans are truly capable of true evil as Jesus teaches in John 3. And it almost assumes the other spouse must have done something to warrant such a wicked “response.” The lack of sound theology leaves the pastor blind to the fact that humans do not need any reason beyond their own selfish and fallen hearts to commit wicked deeds.
So, my exhortation to other pastors and to faithful spouses who need to be attuned to these things: