Stupid Things Naive Christians Say…

After the Lord had said these things to Job, he said to Eliphaz the Temanite, “I am angry with you and your two friends, because you have not spoken the truth about me, as my servant Job has. So now take seven bulls and seven rams and go to my servant Job and sacrifice a burnt offering for yourselves. My servant Job will pray for you, and I will accept his prayer and not deal with you according to your folly. You have not spoken the truth about me, as my servant Job has.” – Job 42:7-8, NIV


In the spirit of the Job’s three friends*, I am dedicating this blog post to some bone-headed and insensitive sayings from professing Christians when dealing with adultery. It can be from exes who abused God’s name to cover for their adulteries, or they can come from sincere (yet naive) Christians who were clueless in trying to “help” (the later is more parallel to Job’s friends).

Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar blamed Job for his suffering, and the above quoted passage expresses God’s perspective on their counsel: It made God angry! And I am confident God is angry with many of His children who slander His Name by giving similarly bad advice concerning His heart towards faithful spouses.

Without further ado….

Stupid Things Naive Christians Say To Faithful Spouses:

“Maybe you should just date her more?”

  • Response: I missed the chapter and verse for that approach to dealing with an emotional affair. Was that before or after the passage instructing the Israelites to stone the adulteress and adulterer to death? (Not that I suggest doing that today.)

“She didn’t do anything to you that you didn’t already do to her.”

  • Response: Actually she did do something to me that I did not do to her. I didn’t commit adultery and rape her soul.  She did.

“It’s just a piece of paper. The divorce happened in the heart a long time ago.”

  • Response: Try telling that to a judge when you’re being tried for bigamy. It is more than just a piece of paper. Sounds like someone is justifying adultery here.

“There’s always two sides to a story.”

  • Response: I am curious–what story could someone possibly tell that makes committing adultery okay in the eyes of God?

“God hates divorce.”

  • Response: God may hate divorce, but He hates sin and adultery more. God divorces Israel over her repeated adulteries after all.

“It’s a headship problem.”

  • Response: No, you’re confused. It’s a sin problem–as in in “Thou shalt not commit adultery” sin problem.

“A wife’s actions are just a reflection of her husband’s.”

  • Response: Was Israel’s adulteries then just a reflection of God’s “poor” husband skills? A wife’s actions are her own. She will be held responsible for her own choices just as Israel was in the Old Testament. 

“You let yourself go.”

  • Response: Because it says “Thou shalt not commit adultery unless your spouse lets herself go?” I guess I missed that annotated version of the Ten Commandments.

“You need to learn to submit better.”

  • Response: It’s not a submission issue. Adultery is a sin issue. The one needing to learn to submit here is him–i.e. to his vows and God’s commandment not to commit adultery.

“Aren’t you going to stay together for the kids?”

  • Response: I’d rather give them a home based in truth than built on adulterous lies.

“But you made a promise to God, not just your spouse.”

  • Response: If God did not tolerate adultery, neither will I.


Please feel free to submit your own in the comment section below!


*And a shout out to Chump Lady’s potty-mouthed and inspirational version of this coming out of cheaters’ mouths (link here).

13 thoughts on “Stupid Things Naive Christians Say…”

  1. “You controlled him so much that he needed to have (multiple) affairs to get some freedom.” (You know because all husband’s are rebellious, lying, children!!)

    Your blog post on control verses boundaries REALLY helped me to see how I was not controlling at all… I just expected him to treat me how he certainly expected to be treated. He had all the freedom while I was home raising and homeschooling kids (my family was my life)… his life was acting like a middle-aged teenager.

  2. I had one well meaning friend to suggest to do “The Love Dare”. Really? Is that similar to what Chump Lady refers to as the “Pick Me!” dance?

    1. “Pick Me!” Dance on steroids, I’d say. It’s like saying repentance has nothing to do with Christianity. I beg to differ…John the Baptist led the way with a message of repentance. And Jesus told His disciples to obey His teachings…one of those teachings was “Thou shalt not commit adultery.” Hate the “Love Dare” and its movie “Fireproof” as I write on this blog in an earlier post.

  3. How about all those websites like Rejoice Ministeries that tell you to just wait forever for your spouse to end the affair and come back to you? Don’t say anything “mean” to them, make sure you are all dressed up every time you see them. Absolutely don’t hold them accountable for anything that might make them mad. Just wear your ring and wait 20 years if you have to.
    Response: Get a clue!

  4. “There are two sides to every story”…”No one really knows what went on in the marriage”…”Each spouse owns 50 per cent of the marriage failure”
    These quotes make me see red. Taking this attitude is the absolute worst thing “well-meaning” family or friends can do (incidentally, usually from the cheating spouse’s side). It adds more grief, confusion, false sense of guilt, false hope for reconciliation, etc. on the part of the faithful spouse, and more additional psychic and spiritual damage – the list just goes on…Job’s friends, indeed.

    I will be forever grateful that my family and ALL our mutual friends came down solidly on my side after my cheater’s infidelity was exposed after more than 30 years of marriage. Have no idea what cheater’s family thinks, since we separated and I immediately went no contact with the whole bunch. But it’s been over 6 months and haven’t heard one word from any of them, so they probably swallowed the lies, the rewriting of marital history, etc. Whatever. The ones that matter know the truth and are still very much there for me. I am rich and blessed in relationships that count!

  5. Or how about “But he is still a great dad.” Uh good dads treat their children’s mothers with love and respect and don’t destroy their children’s family.

    1. I agree! If he was a good dad, he would not have broken up his family, financially ruined the mother of his children and moved the OW into his home (not married) and forced a relationship with her to the kids. Yes, real great dad! (Sarcasm intended!)

  6. “Pray harder.”
    “God will honor you if you go to church with him and sit beside him. And if you pray to God, he will help you keep from crying while you’re sitting there.”

    1. Those are truly awful. More blaming the victim. And I’d point out your husband ought not to be welcome to church until he truly repented along the Mt 18 principles of church discipline.

  7. I was the youth minister at my church when I caught my now ex in yet another emotional affair. People minimize the sinfulness of an emotional affair because supposedly sex did not occur. My ex confessed to attempting physical intimacy with his first emotional affair and her rejection of his advances. At the time we’d been married 2 years and were trying to conceive. The last emotional affair was at year 33. Most of those years in between were filled with his anger and verbal and emotional abuse. After much prayer and soul searching, this time I asked him to leave until he figured out what he wanted. He left and soon after stopped paying the first and second mortgages, the electric, insurance, phone, etc. He got a lawyer and closed our joint bank account. Each step he took hit me without warning. I wanted our marriage to work, but he forced me to have to get an attorney. We were forced to sell our house, I was asked to step down as youth minister until we resolved our marriage issues, and my life fell apart. I wrestle with the thought of ” maybe as a Christian I should never have laid down an ultimatum.” It seems that whenever I take any sort of stand I lose. I appreciate these articles. Admitting to an emotional affair is a cop out. It minimizes the sin and leaves the spouse of the cheater in a terrible place of pain where others don’t recognize the full impact. To me an emotional affair is still an affair, a choice not to keep ones vows. He did this with no consideration of the effects his selfish actions would have on our family. He has since remarried while I go on as a single woman, believing that should a new man enter my life I would be committing adultery to allow that relationship to flourish into a marriage. My ex’s choices have left me in a very lonely place that those I love the most simply don’t understand. The one who committed the sin and whose actions that followed led to divorce, gets to be happy while the faithful one must suffer a solitude they never anticipated in their later years when companionship means the most.

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