James 1:5, ESV promises this: If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. God kept that promise to me. When I received the biblical wisdom of The Tame Divorce Doctrine I already had years of ministry experience. Christians with divorce and remarriage in their background were among those I served, and at that time, I was confident in my divorce and remarriage doctrine. I was, until one member of our community of faith, a remarried divorcee I’ll refer to as “Carter,” challenged my doctrine and it changed forever.
Carter privately described being confronted with the “gleeful” condemnation of what I like to call, Luke 18:9 Christians. The encounter had occurred a week prior to our meeting, and Carter had studied their doctrine in the meantime. He was told his second marriage was illegitimate, also adulterous, because he remained one flesh with his first wife until death. To repent, Carter was supposed to divorce his second wife and remarry his first wife or be celibate. He greatly feared for the salvation of his current wife, his ex-wife, and her husband. Carter explained if he divorced his wife, his ex-wife and her husband would still be damned; as long as he was alive and one flesh with his ex-wife, her marriage remained adulterous. He felt responsible for being a “stumbling block” to the salvation of his ex-wife and her husband.
His insistence this doctrine, if true, meant his wife, ex-wife, and her husband were hellbound, and his desperation to find conclusive evidence to prove or disprove it moved me. For two months I spent every available moment, daily and nightly, on the Internet or in my Bible. I consulted colleagues and a mentor. I prayed fervently to receive God’s will for Carter and every other remarried divorcee. Frustratingly, both sides of the doctrinal debate brandished the exact same scriptures in their support, and both counted credible clergy, theologians, and scholars among their ranks. Conclusive evidence that the adultery of remarriage was a single sin or a state of sin eluded me.
On the night I gave up, my search results all returned websites I previously visited. After two months I reached the conclusion I had exhaustively researched the doctrine online. My failure to find conclusive evidence for or against the doctrine led me to reluctantly accept it. It felt safest to assume remarriage after divorce was a state of sin that required divorce. I scheduled a meeting with Carter in the morning and resolved to counsel him to divorce his wife.
It was then the answer I searched and prayed for was revealed. I received a vision of the words, “this is the adultery,” and below them I saw the verses of Deuteronomy 24:1-4. The Holy Spirit opened my eyes to what I had been blind; the remarriage in that passage was analogous to extramarital adultery. This was the adultery of remarriage Jesus spoke of. As I explained what would become The Tame Divorce Doctrine to Carter the next morning, I observed relief and peace replace his fear and sorrow. When I finished he confided in me. He reminded me that his ex-wife and her husband would be damned, per the false doctrine, as long as he was alive and one flesh with his ex-wife. Carter quoted me John 15:13, then confessed that had I found that doctrine to be true, he planned to kill himself. He planned to remove himself as a stumbling block to their salvation.
Divorce and death are the fruit of the false Traditional (a.k.a. Marriage Permanence) Doctrine, whereas marriage and life are the fruit of The Tame Divorce (a.k.a. Biblical) Doctrine. The Lord has saved marriages and at least one life through The Tame Divorce Doctrine. TameDivorce.com exists to provide the truth about divorce and remarriage to those who seek it. We offer our highest thanks and praise to God for his faithfulness to answer those who call on him.