Divorce, Annulments and Remarriage

Divorce and remarriage is never in the will of God. A valid marriage can never be dissolved by any human power or for any cause whatever except death.

It is important to remember Malachi 2:16: "I hate divorce, says the LORD God of Israel." According to the Bible, marriage is a lifetime commitment. "So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate" (Matthew 19:6).

Matthew 19:9: "And I say to you, that whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and he that shall marry her that is put away, committeth adultery."

Douay-Rheims Catholic Bible commentary explains: "Except it be: In the case of fornication, that is, of adultery, the wife may be put away [i.e., separation (not divorce)]: but even then the husband cannot marry another as long as the wife is living."

This means that a person who has "divorced" a lawful marriage and "remarried" commits adultery or fornication since this person's first marriage is still valid before God, so long as the spouse is alive; and it means that a person who has "married" a so-called divorced person commits adultery or fornication since their marriage is invalid since the divorced person's first marriage is still valid before God, so long as the spouse is alive.

Pope Leo XIII, Dum Multa (# 2), Dec. 24, 1902: "It follows then that the marriage of Christians when fully accomplished… cannot be dissolved for any reason other than the death of either spouse, according to the holy words: 'What God has joined, let no man put asunder.'"

Please also see: Chastity: The Angelic Virtue

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