Have we not all one Father? Has not one God created us? Why then are we faithless to one another, profaning the covenant of our fathers? Judah has been faithless, and abomination has been committed in Israel and in Jerusalem. For Judah has profaned the sanctuary of the LORD, which he loves, and has married the daughter of a foreign god. May the LORD cut off from the tents of Jacob any descendant of the man who does this, who brings an offering to the LORD of hosts!
And this second thing you do. You cover the LORD’S altar with tears, with weeping and groaning because he no longer regards the offering or accepts it with favour from your hand. But you say, “Why does he not?” Because the LORD was witness between you and the wife of your youth, to whom you have been faithless, though she is your companion and your wife by covenant. Did he not make them one, with a portion of the Spirit in their union? And what was the one God seeking? Godly offspring. So guard yourselves in your spirit, and let none of you be faithless to the wife of your youth. “For the man who does not love his wife but divorces her, says the LORD, the God of Israel, covers his garment with violence, says the LORD of hosts. So guard yourselves in your spirit, and do not be faithless.”
Comment: The people try to justify themselves as being of the One Creator God, their Father. Then they ask a serious question -‘Why then are we faithless to one another, profaning the covenant of our fathers? The why is good, if it is an attempt to sort themselves out. I fear that it is an ‘excuse’ word, something like why then are You accusing us? Or ‘How then’? But then God steps in and tables two situations before them.
- There has been intermarrying and to daughters of other religions and presumably allowing worship of their false idols. Their judgement is excommunication.
- Faithlessness in marriage. The point is made that marriage is witnessed by God; It is a union into oneness, involving the Spirit of God; it is to produce children, brought up to be God-fearing and God-serving. Divorce is defined as violent and the people are charged to be careful (guarded) and faithful. Love is presented as a choice not an emotion.
Prayer: You are honest with us as to how You think, O God. Help me to be honest to You in return.