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How does a man divorcing his wife make her commit adultery?

Matt 5:32 says, "I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality, makes her commit adultery."

Matthew 5:32

ESV - 32 But I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality, makes her commit adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

Clarify Share Report Asked January 08 2016 Mini Anonymous

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Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
In my opinion, Jesus in this passage is focusing not on the actions of the woman, but on the actions and culpability of the man. By putting his wife away without sufficient cause, the man becomes accountable in God's eyes for all the subsequent ramifications of that action.

Jesus appears to be assuming that the divorced wife will then marry another man (as she would have been entitled under the Mosaic Law to do, and as would have been normal, since a woman in that time and culture would have had no means of support without a husband). However, when she does so, it will be in God's view as if her former husband forced her to commit adultery, and the woman's former husband (not the woman herself) will be the one who will be held accountable by God.

In fact, he will be doubly accountable, since he will also be responsible for making the man who marries the divorced woman guilty of adultery, even though, again, the Mosaic Law permitted such a remarriage. (As Jesus said in Matthew 19:8-9, however, such permission was a concession to the hardness of the human heart, and was not God's original intent for marriage.)

And, in fact, according to this same verse, the guilt of the ex-husband will be compounded even further if he then marries another woman after his divorce.

January 09 2016 1 response Vote Up Share Report

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