Frequently Asked Questions
Is there an ” Except For Clause in getting out of a Covenant? “
Short Answer. . . “NO!”
Matthew 19: 9 “And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for fornication ( greek word Porneia) and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery.” (greek word Moicheia).
“Fornication” is indulging in sex before marriage or before your betrothal marriage is sanctified if you are a Jew, like during our engagement period for us gentiles, sex then is considered unlawful according to God’s purpose for marriage, because the sexual act is to be holy unto God alone inside of the covenant protection that God alone puts in place for His Kingdom purpose once He has witnessed you both saying “I do” in your holy vows before Him and in front of others.
Sex after marriage now has God’s blessing but sex with someone other than your covenant spouse God now calls it adultery, and it must be repented of in true remorse because of the damage it causes to God’s kingdom plans and to the next generation.
This ‘except for clause’ is nothing but a ploy of Satan’s to destroy what God has called Holy onto Himself, and this ‘clause’ as you call it only comes under discussion when we so called Christians desire to do our own thing at the expense of God’s Kingdom plans, we will seek instead another way, and that’s the world’s way of doing things.
God’s kingdom ways are very different than man’s ways. It is in the laying down of our lives for our spouse like Jesus did for His one-flesh bride the church that He we become aware of the wisdom of God. God’s way is a much more narrow way, and much higher way. People who do not fear God will go looking for a teacher who will tickle their itchy ears with another gospel or go look in the Bible for themselves hoping to find a loop hole in their covenant vows, and thinking they have found it in Matthew 19:9, are now delighted they have found a way to break their covenant vows they made before God thinking they are so wise when they are not!
There are NO EXCEPTIONS once you have entered into a Covenant God makes with you! because He said He is able to reconcile and restore YOU and any damage you do to each other, all you have to do is repent and humble yourself before Him who is Mighty, and behold Him in fear and trembling, and He will restore you back to wholeness again. These people who look for a way out of their holy vows have no fear of God!!! but that is only because they have no real clue as to who God really is, nor do they know Him intimately nor His power to transform us once we repent.
” Betrothals ” were legally signed documents that were so binding for the Jews that they needed to get a legal divorce to get out of them, that is how strong their betrothals were. They didn’t stone you for fornication. The Jews could only stone someone caught in the sin of adultery because of their covenant vows made with God. Their wife had to be dead so they could get out of the marriage so they could get married again. It was God who made the marriage a covenant until the “death of a spouse”. Covenants back then were taken seriously not like they are today!!!
A divorce sought and made by just one of the spouses, doesn’t have the power to break a covenant God made unless you both agree against God. Two against One. But then it still only has the power to break the intimacy you have with one another, death of your covenant spouse is still the only thing that will set you free to marry again because God is able to restore that which has been broken through the sin of adultery even if only the laid down life of just one of the Covenant spouses cries out for God to intervene. What can a mere man do to you with God on your side. All God needs is just you, one of his covenant partners to stand in the gap with Him and believe He who knows how to keep His covenant promises He made to you and your one-flesh partner so your family can be restored for His kingdom glory and pleasure. He will and can hedge your mate up and keep him or her from finding their lovers even after they chase them down. Like He did with Gomer. He is able to bring the prodigal back to their senses, broken and contrite willing to do it God’s way now as long as one of the covenant partners is agreeing with God that is why He made them “One”. The “body” of the one that has gone astray still belongs to the one standing trusting in God to Keep His Word to them when they made their vows before God.
This book we highly endorse: “Divorce and Remarriage” the Trojan Horse within the church. .whom shall we believe. . . by Joseph A.Webb & Patrica L. Webb PH.D exposes the enemy in the camp those preaching false doctrine about divorce and remarriage. . . .
Erasmus, a humanist, and close friend of King Henry VIII in the 14 century was one of the those who tried changing the meaning of this scripture to please King Henry. He was the first to translate the Greek New Testament into English.
Since Erasmus distorted the meaning of the word ‘fornication’ in scripture. A fornicator is described as someone who is not fit (or pure in heart) to enter into a life long covenant of marriage; which is true but they fail to say a fornicator can repent of their wicked ways once they understand they have sinned before God and man and then be fit for a life long commitment. Others have also added their own ideas as to the meaning of the word fornication in scripture over the years.
What Jesus was talking with the Jews in Matthew 19:9. He was saying “Divorce” was only allowed during the betrothal time and the Jews knew what Yeshua was talking about because they stoned the adulterer, not the fornicator. Joseph thought his betrothed wife Mary had sex with someone else so was going to divorce her quietly so as not to shame her, but an angel sent by God change his mind when he realized it was the Holy Spirit who got her pregnant so the she was still a virgin. Being a virgin was very important to the Jews.
Martin Luther who we hold in high regard today in some areas of his teachings, held the view that ‘failure of a wife to perform their normal conjugal responsibility’ was also grounds for divorce. Luther also spoke against the Jews which wasn’t very wise of him or for anyone who speaks against the apple of God’s eye. Yes God divorced Israel because of her wicked and sexual immoral behaviour, but He didn’t break His covenant with her. Israel’s intimacy with God was what was broken, but intimacy with Him is still redeemable upon true repentance due to a broken and contrite heart crying out before the Lord
John Milton (1608-1674) – gave ‘impotence’ as grounds for divorce.
Phillip Melanchthon (1497-1560) – his view was a marriage covenant was ‘broken by the adulterer, and not by the innocent party’, therefore the innocent party was free to marry again. This view is very popular today. This view is not of God.
Jesus said, “It was also said, ‘Whoever divorces his (betrothed ) wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce, but I say to you that everyone who divorces his (covenant for life) wife, makes her commit adultery, and who ever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.’ Matthew 5:31-32
So what Jesus is saying here is anyone divorcing his or her spouse once the marriage is sanctified before God who witnessed it, is in rebellion against God and His ways and if they both get married again then they both commit adultery in God’s eyes. You must repent and ask God what you should do now that you have defiled the marriage bed. Covenant breaking is a serious offense against God and His Kingdom ways! Where is their fear of God?
Huldreich Zwingli (1484-153100) – said other more treacherous things such as ‘murder, treason and sorcery’ were also grounds for divorce.
Even today godly men and women erroneously add their own views to this scripture thinking they have freedom to do so.
There is no ‘exception clause’ once a ‘Covenant’ has been entered into, the ‘except for clause’ was used only during the legal betrothal period the Jews had. It was used to prevent a person from entering into what God called a holy blood Covenant. The Jews wanted marriage to be honoured by all, and the marriage bed undefiled by sexual sin.
All Jews knew divorce was allowed by Moses only during the legal betrothal period and sometimes when it was only made known that their bride was defiled when no virgin blood was found on the marriage cloth. Proof that she was no virgin, evident that sexually active had taken place with someone else. Joseph didn’t want to put his betrothed wife Mary through this embarrassment so planned on divorcing her quietly. Joseph would be considered to be a just man because of that. Mary would not have been stoned because she didn’t commit adultery in their eyes.
Even Jesus said it was ok to divorce for fornication, that is what Jesus was discussing with the Pharisees. Divorce would be justified by the innocent party because the marriage had not been consummated yet so there was no breaking of a blood covenant. Betrothals being a legaly contract, required them to get divorced. The Jews called it a “Get”
*This information can be understood in more depth in Dr. Joseph Webs book called:
” Divorce and Remarriage “: The Trojan Horse Within the Church”
Question # 2:
What is the true meaning of the word Porneia:
This Greek word ‘Porneia’ refers to any and all sexual activity outside of the marriage bed. God created sex for the marriage bed only, and said this sexual activity was sacred and holy unto Him. Any sexual activity outside of what God intended for marriage is called Porneia, and is not allowed.
Porneia is engaging in any sexual activity against God’s design and desire for sex. An example of this is a ‘homosexual‘ or ‘lesbian’ relationships (Leviticus 18:22, Romans 1:26-27, 1 Corinthians 5 ) ‘rape’ (Exodus 22:16-17, Deuteronomy 22:23-29 ) ‘adultery’ (Exodus 20:14, Deuteronomy 22:22) ‘prostitution’ or ‘harlotry’,(Proverbs 7:1-27; 29:3) ‘incest‘ (Leviticus 18:2,4,6, and 18:6-16) ‘pedophilia’ is sexual rape of children, instead of an adult. (same as above for rape) ‘common-law’ relationships (Deuteronomy 24:1-4 ) are like marriages that have never been sanctified before the Lord. ‘bestiality’ sexual relations with animals, an abomination before the Lord . These are all sinful relationships that cause emotionally damage to a person and to all their relationships there after until they are repented of!
Sexual Deviations is condemned in biblical teaching
A marriage covenant is made only when it is witnessed by God as acceptable in His eyes, ‘one man who is free to marry and one woman who is free to marry’. God is the only one with the power to join this man and woman together as one flesh. God has promised to do this in front of witnesses who are gathered to view this sacred union. He then commands that no man separate them. Pastors or lawyers do not have the right or the authority to mess with this sacred sanctified union. God will chasten His own and bring us all back into right standing with Him once we repent of our wicked ways and turn back to Him, then the Church will understand how far they have fallen.
Porneia type relationships were practiced by pagans long before and after Jesus time, and were even practiced by some Jews which the Pharisees were condemning because they knew it was wrong. That’s what Jesus was discussing with the Pharisees in Matthew 19:9, they all knew and understood Jesus was referring to this divorce practice that was going on during the betrothal period was good and just because husbands and wives were not to come together in the marriage bed defiled. Luke didn’t need to mentioned this when speaking to the Romans because ‘betrothals’ were not part of their marital customs.
Question # 3:
What is a Betrothal Period? : A betrothal is like an ‘engagement’ period. A the time when a Jewish man, after making an arrangement with the father and paying him the ‘bride price’, made public his intentions to marry a particular woman, by entering into a legal contractual engagement with his chosen woman to show the world he was serious about his intentions. This betrothed couple were then referred to as husband and wife from then on, even before the marriage was consummated and made holy unto God in a very special covenant ceremony! Papers were signed making their betrothal a legal binding ‘contract’. Therefore a legal certificate of divorce known as a ‘Get’ would be require if the husband wanted out of this promise he made in public, that he was to marry her. He was allowed to divorce her only after having proof his bride wouldn’t come to him pure, and spotless on their wedding night. He would be considered a just man by refusing to enter into a permanent life long covenant relationship with such a woman; as Joseph was considered to be a just man for planing on divorcing Mary quietly after he found his betrothed wife pregnant with what he thought, another man’s child. He knew virgin blood would not be found on the ceremonial marriage cloth that was to be shown to the Sanhedren as proof of her virginity. He didn’t want her humiliated so planned on putting her away quietly out of respect for her, but God showed Joseph in a dream that Mary was not defiled, the child she was caring was their long awaited Messiah, a Son begotten of God not man. Joseph was actually given the hounor of becoming Yeshua’s earthly father. This child born to become their own Saviour and ours.
When virgin blood was found on the marriage cloth it was proof a blood covenant had now been entered into. With no hymen to tear, no blood would be spilt and no covenant would be made. The bride’s whole family would feel the shame if no blood was discovered. So the Jews knew how important ‘blood‘ was to a covenant. A divorce ‘Get‘ would then be handed to his impure bride, this man couldn’t then at a later date change his mind and say he now wanted to marry her, because he had publicly humiliated her by announcing to everyone as defiled. This would be detestable in the eyes of the Lord.
Only Jesus innocent virgin blood spilt on our marriage cloth has the power to wipe away all our sins of defilement, but we must first acknowledge we have sinned and genuinely repent of our wicked and adulterous life styles before we are made clean again by His precious blood sacrifice.
Moicheia: ( another Greek word ) Simply means adultery. Adultery is any sexual activity with someone other than your covenant spouse while your covenant spouse still lives. Only the death of a covenant spouse could set the other free so they could marry again. That is why the Pharisees stoned the women caught in adultery in those days, her death set her husband free so he could marry again. Men made it a practice to protect one another by not exposing on one another, but Yeshua saw what they did behind closed doors. Could that be what he was writing in the dust when they caught that women in adultery?
Jesus didn’t advocate stoning, or death to the woman caught in adultery. He invited anyone who was without sin to cast the first stone, He knew no one was with out sin. Jesus didn’t come to condemn us, but to forgive us who are caught because sin condemns us.
“Go, and sin no more” Jesus said. to the woman
Jesus promised He would never leave us or forsake us no matter what we did. He is not like us. He will continue to stand firm on our behalf, interceding for us to “repent and turn from our wicked ways”. He will continue to cry out on our behalf until He comes back to receive His pure un-defiled repentant bride who has made herself ready, and became fully awake awaiting His return.
The Holy Spirit is Jesus gift to us, given not only to comfort us but to convict us so we can repent. That’s the Holy Spirit’s job, to make us pure and spotless for our Bridegroom Yeshua/Jesus return. He will not give up on us, and we are not to give up on our covenant mates! We are to emulate God’s kind of love towards them until one of us dies. Jesus knows we can’t do this in our own strength, that’s why He left His Holy Spirit to help strength us so we can move forward. He will teach us all things that pertain to life and godliness. It takes a move of the Holy Spirit in our hearts to enable us to forgive a spouse who hurts us so deeply through the sin of adultery, abandonment and betrayal. When we cry out to God and ask Him to help us forgive our enemy, our spouse He will move on our heart because we are willing and He is able.
His resurrection power can spring forth in our hearts as Jesus intervenes on our behalf even after a divorce has taken place . . Jesus wants us to “repent”of the sins of this world, forgive our mates so we can be forgiven, and so our intimacy can be restored with our true Bridegroom Jesus!
Inquire of the Lord if you are feeling convicted to walk on His ancient path of righteousness, otherwise keep on trucking in the ways of this world until the Holy Spirit convicts you. It’s His job to do that, not mine. The Father loves you no matter what you do! But there is always consequences to be paid when we are out of step with God and His ways, He will not be mocked!
If you refuse to forgive someone who has trespassed against you God will not forgive you and you will not be able to enter into His Kingdom glory in this earthly realm, that’s a big thing.