Note: This series is written as a first-person narrative in order to present Jesus in the context he walked with the unknown disciple that narrates presenting my thoughts and sparking more thoughts with his questions.
Jesus wasn’t done yet, apparently, he was just getting started.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’” He pauses, meets our eyes, “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”
In the Law, there were no exceptions to that. Simon the Zealot leaned over, whispering, “He’s tying it to ‘You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.'”
“You’re right,” I said. “Many of our moral teachers condemned lust. Jesus is saying we shouldn’t even want to commit adultery. It’s a heart issue again.”
“If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right-hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.”
An overstatement to make his point, do whatever is necessary to avoid destruction. I paused…what about divorce? How does that play into adultery?
“It has been said, ‘Anyone who divorces his wife must give her a certificate of divorce.’ But I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, makes her the victim of adultery, and anyone who marries a divorced woman commits adultery.”
In the times of Moses, divorce was easy. The certificate was to protect the divorced woman from becoming an adulteress, and unclean.
Jesus said it shouldn’t be easy. Only in the case of sexual immorality. The Pharisaic school of Hillel allowed divorce for any reason, however, the school of Shammai was in line with what Jesus said.
The woman remarrying, unless her husband was sexually immoral, is considered adultery. Jesus was definitely drawing a hard line on divorce…for both sexes…