Disqualified?: What The Bible Says About Divorce, Remarriage And Ministry
- Publish Date: 2015-11-10
- Binding: Paperback
- Author: Dave Miller
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The church once spoke with unanimity on the subject of divorce, remarriage, and ministry. All divorce was sin, remarriage was always wrong, and the divorced were excluded not only from all forms of ministry but too often from the fellowship of the church as well. But the breakdown of the home has forced churches to confront the issue again and ask whether our traditional understanding actually reflects the biblical teaching. Pastor Dave Miller has been studying this issue since a seminary assignment forced him to delve into the topic. That research paper became a Bible study for his churches and eventually a series of active blogposts at SBC Voices, where he is the editor. This book is the result of that study. He believes that the traditional view does not accurately reflect the biblical truth on the subject. He views the Bible's teaching as a progressive but unified revelation of God's will about marriage and divorce. The book begins by examining the two truths that set the cornerstone for the Scriptural revelation on the subject. God intended marriage to be a lifelong covenant between a man and a woman. But sin broke the ideal God intended. The hardness of man's heart led to the breaking of that covenant. In Deuteronomy 24:1-4, Moses laid the foundation on that cornerstone, establishing that divorce required moral grounds instead of being simply at the whim of capricious men. Jesus built the structure, reemphasizing the intent of God for marriage to be permanent and sacred, but also granting an exception on the basis of adultery. Paul put the finishing touches on the structure in 1 Corinthians 7, adding a second exception for abandonment and other specific teachings. He also explores the question about how the church should handle abuse and whether abuse justifies divorce. After developing this full revelation of biblical truth on divorce and remarriage, the book turns to church issues, addressing the controversial topic of whether divorced men are eligible to serve as pastors, elders, or deacons in the church. Beginning with a study of the phrase husband of one wife in 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1, Pastor Miller explores tough questions the church needs to address. He then gives specific advice both to those who are divorced and frustrated at their place in the church and to the church as to how it should minister to the divorced and deal with these issues. There is no way we can avoid this discussion, and this book's intent is to engage the issue and inspire the church not only to talk about the issue but more importantly to delve into God's word and seek to understand what the Bible actually says about divorce, remarriage, and ministry.
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