By Wendell Tenison

Spiritual adultery and the law of separation in the new testament:

First, the law of separation of man and wife in the new testament. Remember Godís original laws applies to all of mankind whether they be in the kingdom of Christ or not. The verse below is speaking expressly to members of the church of our dear Lord.

1 Corinthians 7:10-11 "And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from her husband:.....But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried, or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife."

The Greek New Testament rendition of the word "depart" in verse ten is "separate." The Greek rendition of the words "put away" in verse eleven is "leave." Obviously the KJV was translated in error in these places. This mistake in translation of the latter part of verse eleven, actually reverses the position of the husband.

There are no provisions in 1Cor.7:10-11 for a "putting away (divorce)." If a husband or spouse leave, they must remain unmarried or be reconciled to their mate. This goes back to what our Lord said, in Matt.19:4-8.

The point is, God took back his bride when they committed spiritual adultery. Here in the new testament the same thing goes: if either wants to return, according to the law of forgiveness, they must be taken back. This is Godís working from the spiritual application in the old testament to the literal in the new testament.

Just because one spouse might leave the other, does not automatically indict them as having committed adultery. Unfortunately, this is not the case with very many.

Now to spiritual adultery:

James 4:4 "Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God."

This verse was quoted in the introduction, but needs be looked at again. Whoring around with the devil is spiritual adultery. Adultery expresses the connotation that a marriage is involved. But, what marriage?

Romans 7:1-4 "Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?.....For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband......So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.......Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God."

The apostleís point here is not marriage under the law, but only to show that when a man died, his wife was free to marry again. Paul makes this very clear, the law of Moses became dead when Christ nailed it to his cross, Col.2:14, under which those Jews had been married to God spiritually. We have already seen this in the reading of Jeremiah. But, now, since they are free from the law of Moses, they are free to marry another, Jesus Christ.

If while those Jews were married to God under the law of Moses, which was in effect at the time of his ministry and he stole them from God while they were still married, he would be called an adulterer and the defiled wife of God, adulteresses. We know beyond any shadow of a doubt that Jesus did "not" do that!

Therefore, we are the bride of Christ and it is very possible that we could commit the act of spiritual adultery against him. If that be the case, can we return to the husband? Absolutely! Remember that in our spiritual marriage to Christ the gender is neuter. That is why Paul said, in Gal.3:28, there is neither male nor female.

Galatians 3:28 "There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus."

Spiritually, there is no such thing as a single Christian which would apply only to fornication and the married to adultery. Spiritually we are all married to Christ in the church, therefore, there are no single Christians. Here is the perfect example of one who committed the act of spiritual fornication against our Lord.

Revelation 2:20-23 "Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols......And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not......Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds......And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works."

Notice very carefully that Jesus gave Jezebel space to repent and she did not. Did Jesus really cast her into a bed with great tribulation and kill her children with death? He said, that he did. The point is, after committing spiritual adultery, we can return to Christ and God. Here again, this is in keeping with God's means of reconciliation that he used with the children of Irael.

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© 2001 by Wendell Tenison