As those who believe that “the Bible is God’s very word, … supremely authoritative for what is true and right,” and, as such, “is to be … obeyed in all that it commands” (I. Scripture under Membership Affirmations in the Constitution), we must look to scripture to determine how we should view, handle, and approach the matter of divorce and the potential remarriages that would follow.
However, the subject of divorce and remarriage is one over which many faithful Christians disagree. All agree that remarriage is intended to be a life-long union, with remarriage being permissible after the death of one’s spouse. But, with regards to remarriage after a divorce, whereas some believe that such remarriages are always wrong, others believe that remarriage after divorce may be permissible in certain select cases. Good, respectable arguments exist on both sides. And faithful, Bible-believing Christians disagree.
As members of this church, we are called to hold one another accountable and to intervene in each other’s lives (church discipline) when we stray from following Christ. And we have covenanted to do just that (see the Church Covenant in our Constitution). This discipline and mutual-accountability encompasses all areas of life, no less our marriages, divorces, and potential remarriages.
The question thus emerges, how shall we as a church engage in this sort of mutual-accountability and discipline in the midst of potential disagreements over what is right or permissible with respect to divorce and remarriage? To this end we accept the below principles, which we believe express minimum strictures expected of Bible-adhering Christians, as our boundaries for accountability and discipline.
1:3-11 — A salvation that produces growth in godliness.
1:3-4 — Our salvation has granted us godliness.
1-5-7 — Therefore, put on godliness.
1:8-9 — Which is the product (effect) of our salvation.
1:10-11 — And thereby confirms our salvation.
1:12-15 — A truth bearing repeating [hinge]
1:16-21 — A truth attested.
1:16-18 — Attested by eyewitness testimony to the transfiguration.
1:19-21 — Attested along with the entirely reliable prophetic word.
2:1-22 — Truth which is contravened by false teachers.
2:1 — The prediction of false teachers.
2:2-3a — The influence of the false teachers.
2:3a-10a — The condemnation of false teachers (and salvation of the godly).
2:10b-11 — Description of the false teachers: their insolence.
2:12-13a — The destruction of the false teachers (reiterated).
2:13b-16 — Description of the false teachers (cont.): arrogance, lust, & greed.
2:17-21 — The casualty (outcome) of the false teachers.
3:1-18 — The Lord’s Return.
3:1-2 — Remember the predictions and commandment.
3:3-4 — Prediction of those who scoff at Christ’s second-coming.
3:5-7 — Their error.
3:8-9 — The Lord is patient to return, not slow.
3:10 — The coming of the day of the Lord.
3:11-13 — Live holy in light of his coming.
3:14-18 — Concluding exhortations.
1:1 Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, to those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ: 2 May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
A salvation that produces growth in godliness
Our salvation has granted us godliness
3 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, 4 by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.
Therefore, put on godliness
5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love.