Teaching about Divorce
He left that place and went to the region of Judea and beyond the Jordan. And crowds again gathered around him; and, as was his custom, he again taught them.
Some Pharisees came, and to test him they asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?” He answered them, “What did Moses command you?” They said, “Moses allowed a man to write a certificate of dismissal and to divorce her.” But Jesus said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart he wrote this commandment for you. But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female.’ ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”
Then in the house the disciples asked him again about this matter. He said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her; and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.”
This afternoon, I had the honor of spending an hour or so with a couple in our congregation who have been married for 63 years. Likely they will not reach 64 years as the wife has moved into hospice care. 63 years. While visiting, I asked them if they would mind me taking a picture of them holding hands, but specifically a picture of their beautiful hands. This morning I initially thought of getting a picture of me and my wife holding hands, but when I got the call this morning about visiting this dear couple, I thought that their hands were the ones for this picture. Whenever I officiate at a wedding, I have the blessing of saying “Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” This reflection tonight isn’t one on divorce per se, but instead celebrating this couple and what 63 years of hands being held represents. Hands that have weathered the storms and embraced the blessings of life. Hands that first had rings put on fingers. Hands that held smaller ones as children came into their lives and were held as they walked across a parking lot. Hands that made countless meals, folded an infinite amount of laundry, fixed countless toys, threw many baseballs, that tickled ticklish spots, and hands that now hold one another as they approach the sunset of their lives. I am blessed to be able to be a small part of their lives now as they are an inspiration, an encouragement, and a challenge to me. They are a reminder to me about holding my beautiful wife’s hand and remembering that we have many many more years ahead of us. 63 years for this couple – joined together and always together.