Know Your Bible

VOL. 11                                                                                                                                                             June 24, 2012                                                                                                                                                                NO. 22



In grammar, a postfix (or suffix) is "a sound, syllable, or syllables added at the end of a word or word base to change its meaning, give it grammatical function, or form a new word" (Webster's New World Dictionary).

It occurs to me that postfixing (to fix after) is what some are doing on account of their divorces. Often there is the account given at the time of the divorce and then a postfixed one given at the time of remarriage. The story is now fixed - after the fact - to include scriptural grounds for divorce. Why?  Because the scriptural reason is now far more important than it was at the time of the divorce. 

A person is in a difficult marriage. Things have gotten so bad that divorce seems to be the only way out. The person is so disgusted and hurt by this marriage that he or she just wants out. Is he/she interested in finding another mate?  Never!  He has had it with this marriage. He has had it with marriage - period. The quicker he can end this misery the better. So, he gets the divorce, using the easiest provable grounds he can find that the state will accept (which is almost any reason or no reason) to get the divorce over with. He is fed up with this intolerable situation.

Had the person's spouse committed fornication? He says it really doesn't matter - because he is going to get the divorce anyway. But, what if he should change his mind later and decide to remarry? He assures us that this is not going to happen. But it does! 

We know of several cases where divorced people have adamantly affirmed that they would never want another spouse, but have changed their minds with the passing of time - some within a few weeks, some within a few months, and others within a few years. They meet the new love of their lives and would like for their new marriage to be scriptural and accepted by faithful brethren. So, now the "postfixing" begins.

As they review the past in their minds, they begin to imagine that ‘maybe’ they DID have scriptural ground for divorce after all. So, they begin the quest for evidence by recalling things that happened before their divorce that seems now to point to the unfaithfulness of the ex-spouse. Why did they not bring these things up before? Could it be that they were so bent on getting out of the marriage they simply overlooked them? Or, could it be that they are now more concerned about the divorce being scriptural than they were at the time? Or, could it be that, with the passing of time and the increased desire to have the right to another spouse, the facts (?) that were fuzzy at the time have become clearer as the desire to remarry has become stronger? At any rate, they are now convinced that they did have scriptural grounds after all, but because of the pressure at the time of the divorce they did not use them. They can now marry their new love convinced that they are alright and that good brethren should accept the facts (?) as they are now being presented. 

But alas, the Scripture still reads, "But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.” (Matt. 5:32). "And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery." (Matt. 19:9).  Fornication has to be the reason for the divorce - not an afterthought to justify another marriage. 

The person who has "postfixed" his divorce story might or might not have found the scriptural reason for divorce had he or she investigated enough at the time. But he did not. He was only interested in getting out of an undesirable marriage. The fact is: he divorced his spouse for reason(s) other than fornication. Whether or not the divorced partner was guilty of fornication at the time or prior to the divorce is not really germane to the question at this late date. The fact remains the spouse was not divorced for that reason. The spouse was divorced for a reason other than fornication. Fornication was not the reason for the divorce action. 

It is dangerous to re-write a divorce story to fit the present need and desire for a scriptural marriage. One may deceive himself to believe his revised version, and some brethren may accept it. But, remember the Lord knows the real facts. He will not be mocked. His memory does not become fuzzy with time or biased by desire. 

If you are divorced and want to remarry, the only way that you can do it within the bounds of scriptural authority is for fornication to have been the reason (at the time) that you divorced your former spouse.

---Edward O. Bragwell, Sr.

Page 1




There have been several studies published concerning couples that live together before marriage. A University of Wisconsin stated that "couples who live together before getting married separate and divorce in greater numbers than couples who go straight to the altar. Within 10 years of marriage, 38% of those who lived together had split up, compared to 27% of those who simply married" (via Vitality Magazine).

Some "experts" are surprised at these findings. For years they've told us that a period of living together prior to marriage helps to insure the compatibility of the particular man and woman. This "trial period" will, according to these advocates, point out any glaring differences in personal tastes, living habits, and especially in sexual appetites. These experiments in living together should then guarantee that those who ultimately decide to get married will be the most perfectly suited to one another, and their marriage will be strong, healthy, and long lived.

Such reasoning is seriously flawed, and these reports confirm what God's word has been saying for thousands of years! These "live together" arrangements and any subsequent marriages are headed for major trouble for one simple reason -- lack of commitment. If a man and a woman are unwilling, at any point in their relationship, to make the total commitment that marriage requires ("for better or worse, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer", etc.) then they have no business together at all. 

The Bible says this "living together" is fornication, and will damn one's soul to hell (1 Cor. 6:9-11). So, as in all things, we see that following God's instructions are best for both this current life as well as the life which is to come.

---Greg Gwin

Page 2


Know Your Bible" is e-mailed weekly by the church of Christ which meets at 112 Roberts Avenue in Wise, Virginia. If you know of others who might benefit from the articles contained in this bulletin, we would be glad to have you submit their e-mail addresses and we will include them in next week's mailing. If you are receiving this bulletin and do not wish to continue to do so, please e-mail us with your desire to be removed from the mailing list and we will remove your address promptly. Continue to the bottom of this page and further instructions will be given as to how you may contact us.

--- E.R. Hall, Jr.





Bible Classes ……….....….…............ 10:00 AM

Morning Worship ……..…….….…...... 11:00 AM

Evening Worship …………...……........ 6:00 PM


Bible Classes …………..………........... 7:30 PM



Radio Program

Monday - Friday

WDXC 102.3 FM .....................…........ 10:20 AM



Television Program


Comcast Cable - Heritage TV - Digital Channel 266 ............ 6:00 AM & 2:00 PM


Comcast Cable - Heritage TV - Digital Channel 266 ............ 2:00 PM



World Wide Web:


UNSUBSCRIBE: Reply to and put UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line.

SUBSCRIBE FRIENDS: Reply to and put SUBSCRIBE in the subject line.