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Malachi 2:10-16 God says : “I hate divorce!”. Unique Features There is more of God’s speech in Malachi than in other of the prophetic books. Of its 55 verses, 47 (that is, 85%) are the direct words of God. . Unique Features

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slide1

Malachi 2:10-16

God says :

“I hate divorce!”

slide2

Unique Features

There is more of God’s speech in Malachi than in other of the prophetic books. Of its 55 verses, 47 (that is, 85%) are the direct words of God.

slide3

Unique Features

There is more of God’s speech in Malachi than in other of the prophetic books. Of its 55 verses, 47 (that is, 85%) are the direct words of God.

It is unusual in that Malachi is the one prophet who had dialogues with people.

slide4

Unique Features

It is unusual in that Malachi is the one prophet who had dialogues with people.

So the prophecy takes the form of sharp exchanges between the prophet and the people. On 12 occasions, he said, “But you ask ..” – implying interruption of one sort or another.

slide5

Unique Features

This is God’s last message to them until the coming of Jesus Christ 400 years later.

slide6

Unique Features

This is God’s last message to them until the coming of Jesus Christ 400 years later.

Malachi 4:6

“He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse.”

slide7

Actually, God’s last (written) word to His people are :

Revelation 22:14 –

“The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen.”

slide8

Background of Malachi

  • Written 100 years after the return of Judah from exile.
  • Jerusalem was still relatively deserted and the farmland largely barren and uncultivated.
  • The temple was small compared to that built by Solomon.
  • Judah simply comprised of a small hill town and some surrounding villages.
slide9

Background of Malachi

  • For God’s people in Malachi’s time, their religion had become a formality – a ritual without true faith.
slide10

Background of Malachi

  • For God’s people in Malachi’s time, their religion had become a formality – a ritual without true faith.

1st generation – “why be too serious with God?” [Sunday Christians – God should not be in my life Monday to Saturday.]

slide11

Background of Malachi

  • For God’s people in Malachi’s time, their religion had become a formality – a ritual without true faith.

1st generation – “why be too serious with God?” [Sunday Christians – God should not be in my life Monday to Saturday.]

2nd generation – “why bother about God?” [Christmas, Easter, Wedding, Funeral Christian – God should not be in my life most of my life.]

slide12

Background of Malachi

  • For God’s people in Malachi’s time, their religion had become a formality – a ritual without true faith.

1st generation – “why be too serious with God?” [Sunday Christians – God should not be in my life Monday to Saturday.]

2nd generation – “why bother about God?” [Christmas, Easter, Wedding, Funeral Christian – God should not be in my life most of my life.]

3rd generation – “why bother be good ?” [No longer a Christian – no longer need to be good.]

slide13

Background of Malachi

  • For God’s people in Malachi’s time, their religion had become a formality – a ritual without true faith.
  • “Why be faithful to God?” 
  • “why be faithful to my wife ?”
slide14

Malachi 2:10-16 :

10Have we not all one Father? Did not one God create us ? Why do we profane the covenantof our fathers by breaking faithwith one another?

11Judah has broken faith. A detestablething has been committed in Israel and in Jerusalem: Judah has desecrated the sanctuary the Lord loves, by marrying the daughter of a foreign god.

slide15

12As for the man who does this, whoever he may be, may the Lord cut him offfrom the tents of Jacob— even though he brings offeringsto the Lord Almighty.

13Another thing you do: You flood the Lord’s altar with tears. You weep and wailbecause he no longer pays attentionto your offerings or accepts them with pleasure from your hands.

14You ask, “Why?”It is because the Lord is acting as the witnessbetween you and the

slide16

wife of your youth, because you have broken faith with her, though she is your partner, the wife of your marriage covenant.

15Has not the Lord made them one? In flesh and spirit they are His. And why one? Because He was seeking godly offspring. So guard yourselfin your spirit, and do not break faithwith the wife of your youth.

slide17

16“I hate divorce,” says the Lord God of Israel, “and I hate a man’s covering himselfwith violenceas well as with his garment,” says the Lord Almighty.

So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith.”

– Malachi 2:10-16

slide18

Malachi 2:11

11Judah has broken faith. A detestablething has been committed in Israel and in Jerusalem: Judah has desecrated the sanctuary the Lord loves, by marrying the daughter of a foreign god.

slide19

Malachi 2:11

11Judah has broken faith. A detestablething has been committed in Israel and in Jerusalem: Judah has desecrated the sanctuary the Lord loves, by marrying the daughter of a foreign god.

The bible commandment is that a person who belongs to God must not marry someone who does not worship the God of Israel (OT) / Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (NT).

slide20

Malachi 2:10-16

God says :

“I hate divorce!”

slide21

Why does the Lord says He hates divorce ?

Angle #1 : Biblically, according to Malachi

It was a reflection of one’s unfaithfulness to covenants one swore to upkeep – both to spouse and to God (Malachi 2:10).

Divorcing one’s wife = Breaking faith

(Malachi 2:11, 14-16)

slide22

Angle #1 : Biblically, according to Malachi

Men abandoned their wives for foreign women who worshipped other gods (Malachi 2:11).

slide23

Why does the Lord says He hates divorce ?

Angle #1 : Biblically, according to Malachi

It was a reflection of one’s unfaithfulness to covenants one swore to upkeep – both to spouse and to God (Malachi 2:10).

Men abandoned their wives for foreign women who worshipped other gods (Malachi 2:11).

God was the Witness at the wedding between a husband and his wife (Malachi 2:14) – God’s will had been broken.

slide24

Angle #1 : Biblically, according to Malachi

It was a reflection of one’s unfaithfulness to covenants one swore to upkeep – both to spouse and to God (Malachi 2:10).

Men abandoned their wives for foreign women who worshipped other gods (Malachi 2:11).

God was the Witness at the wedding between a husband and his wife (Malachi 2:14) – God’s will had been broken.

God’s will was also that godly offspring be the fruit of the marital union. The abundant life that should have been, became a life of suffering because of man’s sin.

slide26

Angle #2 : Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In the timeof Moses

Deuteronomy 24:1 – “If a man marries a woman who becomes displeasing to him because he finds something indecent about her, and he writes her a certificate of divorce, gives it to her and sends her from his house, …”

Divorce except for “something

indecent”

slide27

Angle #2 : Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In the time of Moses

In the time of Jesus

The more conservative school of Shammai believed that divorce was only permissible on account of adultery.

The more dominant and liberal position of the school of Hillel allowed divorceon whatever basis which caused displeasure to the husband.

slide28

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

b) In the time of Jesus

Matthew 19:3-9

3Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?” 4“Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ 5and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? 6So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.”7 “Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?” 8Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. 9I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, and marries another woman commits adultery.”

slide29

Jesus’ teaching on Marriage

(based on Genesis 1:27, 2:24)

Marriage is a divine institution (Matthew 19:6 – “… God has joined together …”)

slide30

Jesus’ teaching on Marriage

(based on Genesis 1:27, 2:24)

Marriage is a divine institution (Matthew 19:6 – “… God has joined together …”).

It is meant to be complementary (Matthew 19:4 – “… the Creator ‘made them male and female’ …).

slide31

Jesus’ teaching on Marriage

(based on Genesis 1:27, 2:24)

Marriage is a divine institution (Matthew 19:6 – “… God has joined together …”).

It is meant to be complementary (Matthew 19:4 – “… the Creator ‘made them male and female’ …).

Marriage is intended to be permanent (Matthew 19:5 – “… the two will become one flesh”).

slide32

Jesus’ teaching on Marriage

Marriage is a divine institution (Matthew 19:6 – “… God has joined together …”).

It is meant to be complementary (Matthew 19:4 – “… the Creator ‘made them male and female’ …).

Marriage is intended to be permanent (Matthew 19:5 – “… the two will become one flesh”).

It is to be exclusive (Matthew 19:5 “… united to his wife …”).

slide33

Jesus’ teaching on Marriage

Marriage is intended to be permanent (Matthew 19:5 – “… the two will become one flesh”).

It is to be exclusive (Matthew 19:5 “… united to his wife …”).

The marriage bond would surpass that of a man’s relationship with his parents (Matt 19:5 – “… for this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife …”).

slide34

Why did Moses allow divorce?

It was to protect the women.

slide35

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In the time of Jesus

Therefore permission for divorce was a concession made because of men’s hard hearts.

God has never intended divorce.

Divorce except for adultery.

slide36

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In the time of the Apostle Paul

1 Corinthians 7:15 “But if the unbeliever leaves, let him do so. A believing man or woman is not bound in such circumstances; God has called us to live in peace.”

Divorce except if a non-

believing husband/wife deserts the believing spouse.

slide37

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In the first 2 centuries

Clement

of Alexandria

Shepherd

of Hermas

Divorce except for adultery.

slide38

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In the Medieval Period

The Roman Church’s stand was that marriage is ‘indissoluble’, that is, no divorce would be permitted.

Divorce !!!!

The Church of Rome came to view marriage as one of its 7 sacraments; a sacrament being a sign of a holy thing, that which can sanctify man.

slide39

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In the Reformation

Martin Luther and then John Calvin saw the sacramental understanding of marriage as something more of a papal tool of control.

Luther – “nowhere in Scripture was marriage given any such redemptive significance”.

Divorce except for adultery, desertion,

impotence and ignorance of a previous marriage.

slide40

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In the Reformation

The spiritual perspective of marriage can allow the individuals to relate deeper with each other and with God, and it can also help us understand the relationship between Christ and His Church.

slide41

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In Our Time

How does the modern church respond to Divorce ?

No United Stand on this matter.

Divorce : ???

slide42

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In Our Time

How does the modern church respond to Divorce ?

Divorce : ???

As such, it is really up to the Senior Pastor and Church leadership to decide what they will do with divorce.

slide43

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In Our Church

Divorce : ???

slide44

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In Our Church

Divorce : ???

God says :

“I hate divorce!”

slide45

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In Our Church

Using the Jesus-Principle in Matthew 5:21-48 to understand what it means when God says He hates divorce

slide46

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In Our Church

Using the Jesus-Principle in Matthew 5:21-48 to understand what it means when God says He hates divorce

People then thought that God is only against the act of Murder and Adultery, but Jesus went deeper into the Root Causesof murder and adultery.

slide47

Theological Journey of “Divorce”

In Our Church

Using the Jesus-Principle in Matthew 5:21-48 to understand what it means when God says He hates divorce.

It is not just the act of divorce that God is against, we need to look at the root causes of divorce. It is not that God hates those who divorce but rather the act of divorce and especially the sins that lead to that happening.

slide48

Sins (leading to divorce) such as

  • infidelity
  • abuse (be it physical or emotional)
  • lack of love (usually it is the husband who commits such a sin)
  • lack of honor (usually it is the wife who commits such a sin)
  • lack of faithfulness
  • lack of responsibility
slide49

Family

Spouse

Children

Parents

Siblings

Friends

slide50

Sins (leading to divorce) such as

  • infidelity
  • abuse (be it physical or emotional)
  • lack of love (usually it is the husband who commits such a sin)
  • lack of honor (usually it is the wife who commits such a sin)
  • lack of faithfulness
  • lack of responsibility
slide51

The Social Principles of the Methodist Church in Singapore :

“The Church views with great concern the increasing number of divorces and affirms the need for adequate premarital and marital counselling as well as marriage enrichment programmes.  We also encourage an active and supportive commitment of the church and our society to minister in love to the divorced and their families.”

slide52

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Adequate Premarital and Marital Counseling

Unbiblical Beliefs

Marriage will lead to divorce, so why marry ?

Romance is most important for marriage (other factors not considered).

slide53

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Adequate Premarital and Marital Counseling

Unbiblical Beliefs

Marriage will lead to divorce, so why marry ?

The Christian community should teach and model for our young people this truth – that marriage is a beautiful gift.

slide54

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Adequate Premarital and Marital Counseling

Unrealistic Thinking

Romance is most important for marriage (other factors not considered).

slide55

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Adequate Premarital and Marital Counseling

“This is a worldwide statistic – if you make mandatory pre-marriage counseling, you will lower the divorce rates by 50%”.

Unrealistic Thinking

Romance is most important for marriage (other factors not considered).

slide56

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Adequate Premarital and Marital Counseling
  • Marriage Enrichment programmes
  • The Marriage Course !!
slide57

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Adequate Premarital and Marital Counseling
  • Marriage Enrichment programmes

What Pam wanted was not her 2nd nor 3rd chance – but her 3652ndchance.

slide58

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Adequate Premarital and Marital Counseling
  • Marriage Enrichment programmes

What Pam wanted was not her 2nd nor 3rd chance – but her 3652ndchance.

The Marriage died from NEGLECT !

slide59

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Adequate Premarital and Marital Counseling
  • Marriage Enrichment programmes

Seek Reconciliation !!

slide60

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Adequate Premarital and Marital Counseling
  • Marriage Enrichment programmes
  • Ministry to the divorced and their families.
slide61

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Ministry to the divorced and their families.
  • Legalism
  • (that is, we cannot accept divorce nor anyone who has divorced and remarried because the Bible says it is a sin).
  • Casual divorce
slide62

Overcoming “Divorce”

  • Ministry to the divorced and their families.

Through it all, may we find the faith to believe that the kingdom of God is one of mercy, forgiveness and the giving of new life; where there can be new relationships, where the past is mercifully forgiven, and a loving and life-giving future is possible.