This passage is part of a conversation between Jesus and the Pharisees regarding marriage and divorce. The Pharisees question Jesus about the allowance of divorce, referring to Moses' commandment that permitted giving a bill of divorce. Jesus responds by pointing out God's original intention for marriage and clarifying the concession made by Moses due to the hardness of people's hearts.
Jesus affirms the unity and indissolubility of marriage, stating that when two people are joined together in marriage, they become one flesh. He emphasizes that this union is established by God and should not be torn apart by humans. Jesus' teaching reflects the sacredness and permanence of the marital bond.
The Pharisees then raise the question of why Moses commanded them to give a bill of divorce if marriage was meant to be permanent. Jesus explains that Moses allowed divorce as a concession because of the hardness of people's hearts. The provision for divorce was not God's original design but a response to the fallen nature of humanity.
In this passage, Jesus highlights the contrast between God's ideal plan for marriage and the reality of human brokenness. He reveals that divorce was permitted due to the hardness of hearts, the lack of love, forgiveness, and commitment within relationships. Jesus does not endorse divorce but rather acknowledges its existence as a response to human frailty.
This passage calls for a reevaluation of the understanding and practice of divorce. It reminds us of the importance of recognizing God's intention for marriage as a lifelong commitment and the need to work diligently to maintain and nurture the marital relationship.
Jesus' teachings on marriage and divorce in Matthew 19:6-8 align with His broader message of love, forgiveness, and self-sacrifice. He challenges His followers to approach marriage with a deep sense of commitment, cherishing and honoring the marital bond. Divorce should not be viewed as a quick solution to marital challenges but rather as a concession made in response to human brokenness.
As Christians, we are called to uphold the sanctity of marriage and to strive for healthy, loving, and lifelong relationships. This involves fostering an atmosphere of love, forgiveness, and understanding within our marriages and working through challenges with a spirit of reconciliation and grace.
It is important to note that while divorce is allowed in cases of sexual immorality or abandonment (Matthew 19:9, 1 Corinthians 7:15), it is not the desired outcome. The teachings of Jesus call us to a higher standard of love and commitment, seeking to build strong and enduring marriages that reflect God's intention for the marital union.
In conclusion, Matthew 19:6-8 addresses the topic of marriage and divorce. Jesus affirms the unity and indissolubility of marriage, emphasizing that what God has joined together should not be torn apart by humans. He explains that divorce was allowed as a concession due to the hardness of hearts but that it was not God's original intention. This passage challenges us to uphold the sanctity of marriage, working diligently to cultivate healthy and lifelong relationships founded on love, forgiveness, and commitment.
See also: vs 4-5
Matthew 19:6-8. "What therefore God has joined together, don’t let man tear apart.” They asked him, “Why then did Moses command us to give her a bill of divorce, and divorce her?” He said to them, “Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it has not been so."