Preparing for Holy Marriage

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a virgin male and a virgin female? Answer: Yes

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a virgin male and a widowed female? Answer: Yes

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a widower male and a virgin female? Answer: Yes

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a widower male and a widowed female? Answer: Yes

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a widower male and a non-virgin female in which her partner is still among the living? Answer: No, such places the couple in a perpetual sin of adultery.

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a virgin male and a non-virgin female in which her partner is still among the living? Answer: No, such places the couple in a perpetual sin of adultery.

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a non-virgin male and a virgin female in which his partner is still among the living? Answer: No, such places the couple in a perpetual sin of adultery.

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a non-virgin male and a non-virgin female in which both one or more of their other partners are still among the living? Answer: No, such places the couple in a perpetual sin of adultery. Special case: If the male and female were both virgins and each lost their virginity one to the other, then the union is one that may be blessed by God by having that union solemnized by a canonical Priest serving the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church of God.

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a virgin male and a divorced female in which the husband she divorced is still among the living? Answer: No, such places the couple in a perpetual sin of adultery.

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a virgin male and a divorced female in which the husband she divorced is not among the living? Answer: Yes, only if she remained celibate since the divorce and since her divorced spouse is dead, then she is a widow and eligible for Holy Marriage. If, however, the divorced female was non-celibate since the divorce, such places the proposed couple in a perpetual sin of adultery.

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a divorced male and a virgin female in which the wife he divorced is still among the living? Answer: No, such places the couple in a perpetual sin of adultery.

Question: Is it okay for there to be a marriage between a divorced male and a virgin female in which the wife he divorced is not among the living? Answer: Yes, only if he remained celibate since the divorce and since his divorced spouse is dead, then he is a widower and eligible for Holy Marriage. If, however, the divorced male was non-celibate since the divorce, such places the proposed couple in a perpetual sin of adultery.

Question: Can there be multiple marriages without committing the sin of adultery? Answer: If the widower/widow is celibate at the time of the proposed marriage, then marriage does not create conditions in which the perpetual sin of adultery is manifested. Otherwise, the answer is No, because such union places the proposed couple in a perpetual sin of adultery.

Question: Can there be same-sex marriages without committing the sin of sodomy? Answer: No, because such union places the proposed couple in a perpetual sin of sodomy and/or adultery and/or fornication.

Question: Is there a conjugal union created between a man and a woman who enter into Holy Marriage? Answer: Yes.

Question: Is there a conjugal union created between a man and a woman who commit the sin of fornication with each other? Yes, although the union is not blessed by God until and unless the couple makes arrangements to have their marriage union Blessed by God through the Priest. After a twelve month period, the union is deemed equivalent to matrimony by the Common Law.

Question: Is a marriage permanent until death does the couple part? Answer: Yes.

Question: Is divorce allowed by the Lord Jesus Christ? Yes, but such is a grave sin and can lead to the ever graver sin of adultery. Divorce is a sin, because the couple desiring such is asking for recognition of an act which cannot be done: the separation of a couple's bond of union and separation of their one flesh into twain. Such is impossible and is forbidden by God. The other situation is that any and all attempts to remarry are creating another more grave sinful state: the sin of adultery. So, what is the best approach? Don't get a divorce. The couple must work out their problems and learn how to live together in the face of controversy. The ONLY ground of divorce allowed is for the ground of fornication. All other grounds are forbidden to protect the family unit. If despite all that is done to avoid divorce, the act of divorce happens, then the best way to live afterwards is by becoming a eunuch according to the Lord's teaching. Thus, monastic life is very attractive and helps build the soul's spiritual development under the guidance of an abbot and under the guidance of God the Word, the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. ---> Hint: The marriage will NOT be dissolved if the couple appoints the Lord Jesus Christ to be the Head of their Household and they seek the Wisdom of the Holy Spirit and seek unanimous decisions in harmony with the action of the Holy Spirit of God.

Question: What are the impediments to Marriage? 1. Difference in religion. 2. Relationship which is of four (4) kinds: a.) by blood, b.) by marriage, c.) Spiritual through baptism, and d.) legal by adoption. For further information about the Orthodox Faith, please view the Catechism here.

Scriptural basis and Definitions for the above conditions

Adultery: An unlawful commerce between one married person and another, or between a married and unmarried person. Source: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1st Edition, Published in the year of the Lord, 1771.

Fornication: The act of incontinency between single persons; for when either of the parties is married, such act is adultery. Source: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1st Edition, Published in the year of the Lord, 1771.

Cohabitation: denotes the state of a man and a woman who live together like husband and wife, without being legally married. By the Common Law of Scotland, cohabitation for year and day, or a complete twelvemonth, is deemed equivalent to matrimony. Source: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1st Edition, Published in the year of the Lord, 1771.

Sodomy: The unnatural crime of buggery, thus called from the city of Sodom, which was destroyed by fire for the same. The Levitical law adjudged those guilty of this execrable crime to death, and the civil law assigns the same punishment to it. Our law makes it a felony. There is no statue in Scotland against sodomy; the libel of the crime is therefore founded on the Divine law, and practice makes its punishment to be burning alive. Source: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1st Edition, Published in the year of the Lord, 1771.

Buggery: is defined by Sir Edward Coke to be a carnal copulation against nature, either by the confusion of species, that is to say, a man or woman with a brute beast; or sexes, as a man with a man, or man unnaturally with a woman. It is said this sin against God and nature was first brought into England by the Lombards; and anciently, according to some writers, it was punishable with burning; but others say, with burying alive. It is by statute, felony without benefit of clergy, and is always excepted out of a general pardon. Source: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1st Edition, Published in the year of the Lord, 1771.

Incest: the crime of venereal commerce between persons who are related in a degree wherein marriage is prohibited by the law of the country. Source: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1st Edition, Published in the year of the Lord, 1771.

Concubinage: denotes sometimes a criminal or prohibited commerce between the sexes; in which sense it comprehends adultery, incest, and simple fornication; but, in a more limited sense, it signifies the cohabitation of a man and a woman in the way of marriage, without having passed the ceremony thereof. Source: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1st Edition, Published in the year of the Lord, 1771.

Concubine: A woman whom a man takes to cohabit with in the manner of a wife, without being authorized thereto by a legal marriage. Source: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1st Edition, Published in the year of the Lord, 1771.

Concupiscence: according to divines, an irregular appetite, or lust after carnal things, inherent in the nature of man ever since the fall. Source: Encyclopedia Britannica, 1st Edition, Published in the year of the Lord, 1771.

The Lord Jesus Christ's Teaching on Adultery

Gospel of St. Matthew, Chapter 5, verses 27-28: "Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart."

Discussion: In this context, as the Lord Jesus Christ has put it, a man can commit adultery with a woman, married or not, if he merely lusts after her in looking upon her. So, therefore, then, he has commited adultery with her already in his own heart. Since woman is defined in the Book of Genesis by Adam, the first man as being "bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man", this saying of the Lord Jesus applies equally well to a woman. However, in the Lord's day, the custom was to direct all commandments of God to the male members of mankind. Nevertheless, his saying could equally well have included, "If a woman looks upon a man to lust after him, she has commited adultery with him already in her heart."

The Lord Jesus Christ's Teaching on Divorce

Gospel of St. Matthew, Chapter 5, verses 31-32: " It hath been said, Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement: But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery."

Discussion: In the context of the Lord's teaching on divorce, we see, plainly, that in the case that a man should divorce his wife on grounds other than her having committed fornication, that he causes her to commit adultery. However, if he divorces his wife on grounds that she committed fornication, then he is blameless in divorcing her because she, in the eyes of the Lord, is liable to adultery by her acts of fornication. The contrary is not available to a married woman. The married woman has made a covenant with her husband to be his help meet and to stay with him at all times. In old testament times, although the practice was frowned upon, men could have multiple wives in a family and this was not seen to be out of the social norm or contrary to the Commandments of God in Judaic law. HOWEVER, in the age of Grace, a man is expected to be the husband of one wife and to be faithful to her in all things. This situation does open up the option that a woman can divorce her husband on grounds of fornication. If a woman divorces her husband on grounds other than fornication, then she causes him to commit adultery. If she divorces her husband on grounds of fornication, then she is blameless in divorcing him because he, in the eyes of the Lord, is liable to adultery by his acts of fornication. In every case, a divorced woman or a divorced man are united for the remaining lifetime of the divorcee. Consequently, the Lord taught that whosever marries a divorced man or divorced woman commits (continuously) adultery with him or her, as the case may be.

The Lord Jesus Christ's Teaching on Marriage Vows Ending With The Death of One Of Either The Husband Or Wife.

Gospel of St. Matthew, Chapter 22, verses 23-33: "The same day came to him the Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him, Saying, Master, Moses said, If a man die, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother. Now there were with us seven brethren: and the first, when he had married a wife, deceased, and, having no issue, left his wife unto his brother: Likewise the second also, and the third, unto the seventh. And last of all the woman died also. Therefore in the resurrection whose wife shall she be of the seven? for they all had her. Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God. For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven. But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living. And when the multitude heard this, they were astonished at his doctrine."

Discussion: The Sadducees came to the Lord and stated their understanding of a doctrine regarding marriage given them by Moses: "If a man die, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother." They then proceeded to give an example of this doctrine to the Lord: "Now there were with us seven brethren: and the first, when he had married a wife, deceased, and, having no issue, left his wife unto his brother: Likewise the second also, and the third, unto the seventh. And last of all the woman died also. Therefore in the resurrection whose wife shall she be of the seven? for they all had her." Although the Lord Jesus Christ, in His answer to the Sadducees said, "Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God.", He did not correct them from the doctrine and example given, but said the premise of their question about the wife in Heaven was in error by saying: "For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven." The Lord did not say that it was forbidden for the widow to remarry or that the doctrine from Moses, as the Sadducees understood it, was in error. By the Lord's lack of correction, He, by His silence on that subject, gave His approval to the doctrine quoted by the Sadducees regarding marriage vows. Such is corroborated by the Great Apostle Paul in his epistle letter to the Romans, Chapter 7, verses 1-3: "Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth? For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband. So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man."

The Lord Jesus Christ's Teaching On Conjugal Union

Genesis Chapter 2, verse 24: "Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh."

Gospel of St. Matthew, Chapter 19, Verses 3-6: The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause? And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder."

Discussion: There is a lovely woman someone met recently who pledged her love to him and who indicated her willingness to be married to him. In subsequent discussions, she was frankly honest with him about the fact that she, to her great sorrow, had moved in with a man (not her husband) and lived with him like as a married couple. She became pregnant and suffered a miscarriage and ultimately the man left her without warning and she repented and remained celibate until this present day. Note: Due to circumstances of a disruption in her living arrangements with a woman she roomed with, she moved in with a second man BUT told him there would be no way that she would allow him in her bed and that she was planning to move out, realizing her error and wanting to remain true to her repentence from the first situation she had had when she lost her virginity. The first man she was with in a living situation is still among the living. Is his girlfriend to be treated as a single person, or is she bound by a common law bond with the man she lived with? The answer is that she is bound to the man to whom she first clung to, and there is a conjugal union that was created at the time she lost her virginity. Therefore, she is to be treated as a divorced* woman who is off limits to all single virgin or widower men for as long as her man is still among the living. The only way to resolve the situation is for such example persons to have instead a love relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ by each of them becoming eunuchs as the Lord says is permissible. Conclusion: It is best for any priest-confessor to recommend to her that she become a nun so she may serve the Lord in a Monastic community without evil passions. For the virgin or widower man, it is best to ascertain if he is likely to best serve the Lord by becoming a eunuch or by seeking an alternate marriage relationship with either a virgin or a widowed female.

Discussion: Why is my interpretation correct regarding the status of his girlfriend? Answer: The Lord Jesus Christ said that a conjugal union is formed as soon as a man clings to his wife; he becomes one flesh with her (not exclusively by the act of a Church wedding ceremony do they become united in this way). The Lord Jesus Christ, Himself also said: "Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.*" Source: Gospel of St. Matthew, Chapter 19, verse 9.

*Note: In a concubinage relationship, it is treated, in law, as a common law marriage. When that common law marriage relationship breaks up; such is equivalent to a common law divorce. In the eyes of the Lord Jesus Christ, it is postulated that He would see equivalency in the status of divorced persons to that of live-in couples who permanently parted from each other. Therefore, such are counted among divorced persons.

The Lord's Great Apostle Paul corroborates his Lord's teaching by teaching us in his First Epistle Letter to the Corinthians in Chapter 6, verse 16: "What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh." So in verse 18 of the same chapter, The Great Apostle Paul warns us: "Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body."

Exodus Chapter 22, verses 16-17: "And if a man entice a maid that is not betrothed, and lie with her, he shall surely endow her to be his wife. If her father utterly refuse to give her unto him, he shall pay money according to the dowry of virgins."

The Lord's Teaching Regarding The Sin Of Divorce.

Gospel of St. Matthew, Chapter 19, verses 6-9: "Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away? He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so. And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery."

Discussion: The Lord's teaching regarding divorce and marriage are hard for most men and women. Those who are weighed down by temptations of the flesh are the ones who have the most trouble with the Lord's teaching on this subject. However, if we transcend these difficulties and transcend our selfish desires, we will overcome and grow in our spiritual life in Christ Jesus our Lord and Master. The expression of love is given by many various means and when such is given without selfishness, then a higher calling of love becomes manifested. The Lord goes on to relate to us what can be done in verses 10-12 of the same chapter: "His disciples say unto him, If the case of the man be so with his wife, it is not good to marry. But he said unto them, All men cannot receive this saying, save they to whom it is given. For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother's womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it."

God Bless you all.

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