May 6. Jesus Turns toward Jerusalem; Teaches on Divorce

Mt. 19:1-12; Mk. 10:1-12

After spending some time in the area of Samaria near Galilee, Jesus turned toward Jerusalem for the last time. As He came into the region of Judea east of the Jordan River in Perea, multitudes, including Pharisees followed Him.

The Pharisees sensed an opportunity to entrap Jesus by asking a question about divorce. They reasoned that since He had taught against divorce, except for sexual immorality, in the Sermon on the Mount, He was going against the Law of Moses. If He held to the Law of Moses, He would be contradicting His earlier teaching on the mount.

Jesus escaped that trap by going back to the original law of God. He created man as male and female. A husband and wife became one flesh, and since a man could be separated from his flesh only by death, also only death could separate a husband and wife.

A very serious question faced the people of that day regarding divorce and remarriage. The safest resolution is for husbands and wives to work to stay together and never divorce. If the marriage fails, the best alternative is to remain single.