Since God is our Creator it only makes sense that to live
happy, fulfilling, and contented lives we must follow His
instruction. One of the most obvious problems in the lives of
many is broken marriages. Our Creator instituted marriage and
those who enter into marriage with little respect for God and
His word can not expect anything but problems. Marriage, to the
majority of people, is something simply done out of convenience
without a sense of obligation and responsibility before God. For
those same people divorce is a convenience. Many get married
with the selfish attitude that says, "I'll get married, try it
for a while and if it doesn't work, if I don't like it, I'll get
a divorce." Yet, God views marriage to be a covenant
A covenant is an agreement that involves promises and
commitments. The Bible describes the marriage as a spiritual
covenant that is just as binding, and just as sacred, as the
covenant that God has made with His people. In fact, we find
that when God describes the relationship between Himself and His
people He speaks of the husband wife relationship (cf. Jer.
31:31-32). In the New Testament the blessed relationship
between Christ and the church is described by the covenant
relationship of the husband and the wife (Eph. 5:22-ff).
Marriage is a holy union before God.
Malachi prophesied in a time of general apostasy and
unfaithfulness. The people's apostasy was
characterized by an atmosphere of general covenant breaking. In
Malachi's time divorce was a real problem and became a central
issue in all of the sins of the people. Thus God declared, "I
hate divorce" (Mal. 2:16). There is more to divorce that just
incompatibility, or "I just don't love him/her anymore." It is
something so serious that it involves breaking a covenant that
is just as binding and sacred as a covenant that God makes with
A fact that many fail to realize is though it is a man and
a woman that make the commitment to be married, they are joined
in that commitment, bound in that covenant relationship, by God.
Our Creator instituted marriage from the beginning and only He
has the authority to bind, or say what does and does not
break that covenant. Jesus declared, "..What therefore God has
joined together, let no man separate" (Matt. 19:6). A marriage
covenant involves more than an individual, their spouse, and the
law of the land; it involves God and the covenant that He has
bound when a man and woman vow their commitment before Him.
The only One who has the authority to declare what is a
legitimate reason to break that covenant is the one who bound
it, and that is God. He has given only one exception to this
lifetime covenant which we will discuss next time.