Teaching Pages

Page display options: 1-column; 3-columns

Recovery from Divorce


Part 1: Divorce Support


"There is recovery and there is help after divorce. I've been through it, I know. You'll find on this page compassionate advice about divorce and, hopefully, the support you need in this traumatic post or pre divorce period."


My own divorce was a long time ago but I was made to think about it again by an email I got from a Christian lady I know. She had just started going through a divorce and she wrote,

"I went to a church in London for a recovery from divorce and separation course...It was more pastoral than most people wanted..."


It was clear from the rest of her email that she was struggling to come to terms with what was going on - especially because it seemed so much out of her hands. She was grasping for some hard and fast rules to go by but none seemed to be forthcoming.

I wanted to comfort her with the same comfort I had been comforted with after my divorce. The following is basically the email I sent back to her.


"Thou shalt not divorce" is not one of the Ten Commandments neither is it found anywhere else in scripture. Yet the Bible leaves us in no doubt that God intended marriage to be the unbreakable union of a man and a woman. In the Bible we read,

For this reason (the reason of marriage) a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.

Ephesians 5:31 - NKJV


God by marriage takes two and makes them one flesh. He calls two people in marriage one flesh. Such a single unit is not meant to be rent apart. If it is, the experience is going to be painful.

You will find however, even set against this background, that the Bible addresses the matter of divorce compassionately and individually. This is why Christian ministers generally approach the matter of divorce pastorally and not theologically. They reflect that God through His Son Jesus spoke compassionately and individually about the sad incidence of divorce.


Jesus outlines the divine principle of marriage by quoting the Bible verse we've read above. (It's originally found in the Old Testament.) Those who heard Him, however, weren't satisfied with this. So Jesus went on from the divine principle to address the particular issues faced by man. This is how the conversation went,

'Then why,' they retorted, 'did Moses command us to give a written divorce-notice and dismiss the woman?' 'It was because you knew so little of the meaning of love that Moses allowed you to divorce your wives! But that was not the original principle. I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife on any grounds except her unfaithfulness and marries some other woman commits adultery.'

Matthew 19:7-9 - J.B. Phillips' Translation


Jesus' own disciples found this too much to handle and so again He addresses the particular.

His disciples said to Him, 'If that is a man's position with his wife, it is not worth getting married!' 'It is not everybody who can accept this principle (of marriage),' replied Jesus, '- only those who have a special gift...Let the man who can accept what I have said accept it.'

Matthew 19:10-12 - J.B. Phillips' Translation


In effect then, Jesus is dealing pastorally with a matter that affects very deeply all those involved.


The lady who sent me the email asked, "Are there any Biblical grounds for divorce?" The Bible does give grounds for divorce, namely adultery and "if the unbelieving depart, let them depart". (Mat.5:32 and 1 Cor.7:15) It is worth considering the background to this as it could be of help to you.

A marriage rift or tearing apart can be very real - in no way merely apparent. God acknowledges this sad event in giving grounds for divorce. Notice, though, how the grounds presented to us by the Bible for divorce are not God intended but man precipitated. Man is forcing the issue here rather than God planning it. In reality God has a concept of marriage that is inviolable. It is man in his weakness and failure who falls short of this inviolability and precipitates the tearing apart of marriage.

Related pages

Use the links below to get to other pages on this site that have a similar subject to that which you've read about above.

Suggested eBooks

The following ebooks are related in some way to what you have read and therefore might be of help to you:

Men Made Easy Save the Marriage