Q. I recently read a post about adultery and divorce on your website. Does a woman who married a man with whom she had an affair that resulted in his divorce from his wife, continue in her sin of adultery as long as she stays married to him? Or upon asking for God’s forgiveness for her sin, is she forgiven, and thus no longer in a state of adultery?
A. In ancient times, men believed they could divorce their wives for any reason by just declaring themselves to be divorced. When Moses began requiring them to obtain a certificate of divorce, this was believed to mean that as long as a man gave his wife a certificate of divorce he hadn’t sinned, no matter what the cause. In Matt. 5:31 Jesus set the record straight for them. Whether he obtained a certificate or not, the only acceptable reason for a divorce was marital unfaithfulness.
So let there be no question about it. He said that divorce for any other reason is a sin. But like other sins it can be forgiven. It’s important to remember that when Jesus went to the cross He already knew every sin we would commit. He took all of them with Him and forgave them there (Colossians 2:13-14). By that once-for-all-time sacrifice He has made us perfect in God’s sight forever (Hebrews 10:14).
In one way or another, we all sin every day. Many of our sins are repetitive and conscious. But at the moment we became believers all the sins of our life were forgiven, past present and future. Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1).