To Handle Adultery, You Need To Forgive, Not Divorce

To handle adultery, and I pray that you never have to, you need to forgive. Do not divorce because the Lord hates it.

STM Bible Lesson

Lesson focus: Matthew 6:14-15. Bible lesson background: This is a short lesson on dealing with adultery. In other words, willful sexual abuse of the marriage contract. Try to forgive first, to please God, before you think of other actions.

graphic for handle adultery

Handle adultery

If you forgive others for the wrongs they do to you, your Father in heaven will forgive you. 15 But if you don’t forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins. Matthew 6:14-15 (CEV)

To forgive, one must not be bitter or want revenge. In fact, you show love and mercy to the other person(s). Plus you no longer blame them for what they did.

Do not be angry with each other, but forgive each other. If someone does wrong to you, then forgive him. Forgive each other because the Lord forgave you. Colossians 3:13 (ICB)

I know this may not be easy or what you want to do. But it is the advice I was inspired to give. After all, we are, as the Scripture says, “peculiar people” (Titus 2:14 and 1 Peter 2:9). Yes, we do things in special ways. In other words, ways that are not usual. So, when others want to divorce, we let go, forget about it, and continue to love.

Let our Father handle it

Marriage is honorable in every way, so husbands and wives should be faithful to each other. God will judge those who commit sexual sins, especially those who commit adultery. Hebrews 13:4 (GW)

Some may find comfort in knowing that your Father will take care of this. You do not have to get revenge or payback. Your job is to love, show respect, and be faithful.

“…each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” [from Ephesians 5:33 (NLT)]

Agapē forgives

Above all things have intense and unfailing love for one another, for love covers* a multitude of sins [forgives and disregards the offenses of others]. 1 Peter 4:8 (AMPC)

*Thayer:
cover (G2572 καλύπτω Transliteration: kalýptō Part(s) of speech: Verb Definition: I veil, hide, conceal, envelop) not to regard or impute them, i. e. to pardon them.
*Benson commentary:
It will cause us to excuse them in others, and will entitle us, through divine mercy to the expectation of forgiveness for our own numberless failings.

To close, the old you may have decided to get rid of the cheater. But you are a loving new person. And because of agape, you can forgive many wrongs. Including the unfaithful actions of your spouse.

The gift of love, given to you via the Holy Spirit, has amazing qualities. It aids to keep pain and hate from leading you down the wrong path. In this case towards divorce. Which is not what the Lord wants.

“For I hate divorce,” says the Lord [Malachi 2:16 (AMP)]

Not divorce

Adultery is when a person cheats on their spouse. It is not, according to the Bible, an excuse to get a divorce. Jesus said “fornication” is the only reason divorce is okay [see Matthew 19:1-10 (9)].

I am so very proud of you and the way you handle adultery. Your decision to forgive and not divorce is the right one. God is pleased with you. Blessings to you and your loved ones— Tim. ☺

Related Bible studies:

See what is available on the Sound Truth Ministry website.

Reference Scriptures

Note: parenthesis (#) encloses the key verse(s).

Matthew 6:14-15 (14) and 19:1-10 (9). Colossians 3:12-17 (13 and 14). Titus 2:11-15 (14) and 1 Peter 2:4-10 (9). Hebrews 13:1-6 (4). Ephesians 5:22-33 (33). 1 Peter 4:7-11 (8). Malachi 2:16.






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