Does the world harden against women who fall in love with a wrong person?

Margaret W. Lavigne

Bible Study: It’s Against God’s Will to Stay in a Toxic Relationship and Marriage


What the Bible say about marriage, divorce and remarriage? According to the Bible’s instruction, “For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive…ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness but denying its power. Avoid such people” (2 Timothy 3:1–8 ESV). In 1 Corinthians 7:15, it renders a key argument that it’s not “Who walked out?” but “Who caused the separation?”

Bible is often misused by the abusers and those who is void of empathy in what it says about divorce. It’s against God’s will to see anyone live in abuse or be controlled by an abuser.[1] Abuse is a learned behavior, there’s no instant cure for that. In 2007 in the United States, 14% homicides were caused by the violence of intimate partner and 70% of deaths were females.


God’s “soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence” (Psalm 11:5 ESV). Any union with any forms of abuse are toxic and unsanctified union. Reverend Al Miles, author of Domestic Violence: What Every Pastor Needs to Know, pinpoints the harsh reality of abused female Christians. “As Christians, we must never put the sanctity of a marriage covenant before the safety of a woman and her children. A marriage where domestic violence is present is not a sacred bond. “The righteous God abhors wickedness. Pride is capital sin in God’s eyes, let alone physical abuse. Physical abuse is unforgivable. In most cases, abusers fail to practice repentance. It’s worth mentioning that most victims of domestic violence endure different forms of abuse from their spouse for too long before asking help from the outsider.


There was a ground for divorce under English law called “constructive desertion.” If one spouse is ill-treated by the other, then the victim is justified in leaving the abusing spouse. The separation is caused by the abuser.


What if the abuser is a professing Christian? True Christians have a tender humble and righteous heart. The Bible points that “Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues…their religion is worthless” (James 1:26; Proverbs 20:19; Leviticus 19:16).


The Bible commands people to pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness (1 Timothy 6:11 ESV). Thus, all forms of physical, emotional, verbal and sexual abuse would be considered as a sin. According to the Bible’s instruction, “The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life, but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence” Proverbs 10:11 ESV).


Physical abuse is a sin and should be named as such by pastors, elders and counselors. As to the duties of a husband, the Bible makes it clear that “the husband of one wife, sober-minded … not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money” (1 Timothy 3:1–4 ESV). If the husband does not repent, it means the woman is married to an unbeliever.


David left Saul’s court because of Saul’s abuse. David left, but Saul was the cause of his leaving. Thus, if the unbeliever is doing the separating; the believer is commanded to let it be done. Allow the marriage to be over when the unbeliever has destroyed the covenant.


“That is how husbands should treat their wives, loving them as parts of themselves. For since a man and his wife are now one, a man is really doing himself a favor and loving himself when he loves his wife” ( Ephesians 5:25–30 TLB).


According to the Old Testament,“When a man takes a wife and marries her, and it happens that she finds no favor in his eyes …and he writes her a certificate of divorce …and she leaves his house and goes and becomes another man’s wife… then her former husband who sent her away is not allowed to take her again to be his wife” (Deuteronomy 24:1–4 NASB).


God’s design of marriage places the husband as the wife’s equal partner and protector, not her dictator. According to God’s will, a husband should live with his wife “in an understanding way” and “showing honor” to his wife “as the weaker vessel,” since his wife is heir with him “of the grace of life” (1 Peter 3:7 ESV).Do not submit to anything sinful because of your husband especially when he’s leading you into sin or abusing you. Abuse is sin, which differs from God’s will for a marriage.


Biblical Reasons for Divorce

Save a dead-end relationship or let it go? All relationships go through some tough issues. When a relationship is at stake, stay in or get out? Let’s get advice from the Bible.


“Unfaithfulness or immorality” and “desertion” are justified reasons to end a marriage. In a sense, if you marry an irresponsible or unfaithful husband, you are given full permission of God to end the marriage.


 According to the Bible, a husband should love, respect, and honor his wife. Any unfaithful or treacherous act, namely deceptive and untrustworthy acts should be considered as wickedness. Stop trapping yourself in an abusive marriage. “God hates divorce “is one of the most misused Bible verses. The Bible says that the king does not bear the sword in vain: For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer (Romans 13:4 ESV).In other words, God gives to the government the authority to punish evildoers so as to protect the weak and the vulnerable.


The wronged or abandoned party may remarry (In Matthew 5:31–32). In 1 Corinthians 7, the Apostle Paul says that if the unbelieving spouse does not want to stay in the marriage, then the believer should let him/her go. In such cases, the believer is free to remarry. The “freedom to remarry’ is assured (1 Corinthians 7).


Jesus quotes the Old Testament in the Book of Mark and adds further clarification:“But from the beginning of creation, God made them male and female. For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother, and the two shall become one flesh; consequently, they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate” (Mark 10:6–9 NASB).


Stop linking the connection between suffering and sin because of limited knowledge of the Bible. Do not presume God’s intention. According to the Bible, people suffer for several reasons, including the chosen ones and the righteous. We are not all-knowing as God. Judge not. Thus, we should not identity anyone’s affliction as God’s punishment. Remember, making a reckless ill-advised judgment is dangerous. There are replete with examples in the Bible which proves that a life trouble does not amount to God’s punishment.[2]

Never Blame Yourself for Being a Fool in Love: Never Blame Yourself for Believing in the Goodness in People


Without full trust, there’s no true intimacy in a relationship. It is a commonplace thing to be a fool in love. That’s what most people do in love relationships. At bottom, people can’t be fooled out of foolishness but out of full trust. In a sense, people “choose to be fools in love” by giving full trust in intimate relationships because they are unwilling to suspect the ones they are in love with. For those who are being deceived in an intimate relationship, they are not innocent or naïve, it’s just they choose to believe in the goodness of people, especially the goodness of those they love.


People fail to make a correct judgment in a love relationship because they tend to believe everything their significant partner said. We choose to give our full trust to the ones we love. It’s a choice to give your full trust to someone or not. What I learn from life, for people who are decent in character, they are more likely to believe the goodness of human nature. For people who are essentially innocent and pure, they have no darkness in their hearts and that’s why they tend to believe in the goodness and beauty of human nature. Conversely, compulsive liars are those who fail to give full trust to anyone and they never believe in true love or unconditional love. Generally, compulsive liars have serious trust issues. They guard their self-esteem with the ultimate efforts by prioritizing their self-interest.


It’s a wonderful thing to believe the goodness in human beings. Nevertheless, the one who is worthy of your love never fall short of your trust. The man who deserve you love will never be the one who makes you keep practicing boundless forgiveness. The man who deserve you love will never be the one who keeps pushing you to the limited.


It does make sense to be fool and innocent in love. But it’s deadly wrong to resume a septic and malicious relationship for the sake of public eye. By staying with Mr. Wrong or even Mr. Abusive, a woman sacrifices the chance for a better life and better future.


[1] According to the Bible’s instruction, God “will punish everyone who leaps over the threshold, and those who fill their master’s house with violence and fraud” (Zephaniah 1:9 ESV).


[2] The Bible says the wise revere God and “shun evil” (Proverbs 14:16–22).


Margaret W. Lavigne 司馬儀

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