This is one of my favorite cartoons, ever. Sound theology does have a way of bringing us peace, even when it directs us to hard decisions.
Unfortunately, a lot of us are subject to unsound theology, which has quite the opposite effect. Reading over comments on the Janet Hinds story on MercatorNet, indeed, Janet’s own testimony, one of the things that has stood out in is the number of women who are told they have to stay with their gay husbands, no matter what, because “God hates divorce.” Well, of COURSE He hates divorce! Divorce is the destruction of the very core of the Institution He established in the Garden, in the time of man’s innocency . . .
Yes, God hates, divorce, but there is an occasion when divorce is permissible: it’s not “adultery,” but “porneia” — which includes the full gamut of sexual depravity (recognize that term as the root of “pornography”?).
I knew this, but I’m not an authority or expert, so I asked my friend Dr. Dennis Sheppard for some help. Dr. Sheppard is a retired United Methodist pastor with degrees in Theology from Duke Divinity School (M. Div.) and Drew University School of Theology (D. Min.), and additional coursework in Psychology and Counseling from Campbell University. In short, he knows his business, and he’s rock-solid, theologically. He has agreed to write for Surviving the Rainbow on theological concerns. In response to the comments mentioned above, he’s agreed to begin with addressing the issue of divorce. His exegetical commentary on divorce begins in the next post.