"Therefore, what God has joined together, let no one separate." (Mark 10:6-9)

"But from the beginning of creation, God has made men and women. For this reason a man will leave his father and mother – and together they will be one body. Thus they are no longer two, but rather one body. Therefore, what God has joined together, let no one separate." (Mark 10:6-9)


Why is Jesus discussing divorce?

Jesus is discussing the rationale for why divorce is not condoned or recommended, and should be avoided if possible. He is now utilizing parts of Genesis to underscore the intention of the Supreme Being that a man and a woman become married.

The fact is that this world is not ours. We did not create these bodies, nor did we create the material universe. These were designed and created by the Supreme Being in order to teach us.

You see, this physical world is a rehabilitation center. Sure, we can try to change the rules and mess with the design. That is our freedom - also granted by God. But changing things around also comes with consequences.

It might be compared to a man going to prison and thinking that he can just do what he wants in prison. Yes, he can fight with the guards or destroy prison property. But these activities will simply land him additional years in prison and greater restrictions.

But if the prisoner were to do "good time" and work to become a better person, he can be rehabilitated, and become released from prison and go out into society.

It is like this in the physical world. This world is designed by the Supreme Being to teach us. Should we humbly approach our lives and learn the lessons that the physical world delivers to us, we can become better people.

The first lesson of this world relates to our identity. Understanding our identity as spirit and our position as one of God's loving servants is the lesson that God is trying to teach us within the physical world - if we choose to learn it.

Is Jesus speaking of a marriage centered around God?

As part of the design of this world, God set up marriage as opposed to unrestricted sex life. This provides a form of regulation, providing stability for children in the form of families. It is a system that provides a launching point for the family members to share in the learning process together.

It also provides a platform for the parents passing on knowledge to children - especially spiritual knowledge. This is the ultimate purpose of marriage and families: To help each other in their progress towards resuming our loving relationship with the Supreme Being.

Jesus emphasizes this purpose:
"Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate."
This is why it is ancient tradition to have a couple joined together by a priest - to make the marriage a union with God at the center.

This also means that if the couple is not joined by God, then there may be a case for separation. For example, if one of the couple is opposed to worshiping God, or is interfering with their partner's ability to worship God. Obviously, in such a situation, God is no longer joining the couple together.

Do they have the same body?

But do two people who marry literally become the same "body" as stated by Jesus? No. Jesus is speaking metaphorically. The word body is being translated from the Greek word σάρξ (sarx) can mean, according to the lexicon, "flesh" or "the body" and "used of natural or physical origin, generation or relationship."

Thus Jesus is not speaking literally of "body" here. It is not as if a married couple's bodies become literally joined at the hip or something. What Jesus is speaking of their becoming united in purpose and intent. They join their lives together and work together to achieve a united purpose.

And what should that purpose be? According to Jesus' teachings, the only purpose of becoming married is to work together to love and serve the Supreme Being. Whether this means having children or not having children, the purpose should be the same: To help each other in becoming pleasing to God - becoming God's loving servants.

Jesus confirmed this reality when he said:
"For whoever does what pleases my LORD in the spiritual realm is my brother, sister and mother.” (Matt. 12:50)
But this doesn't mean that a person has to become married to please God. Jesus' own life was centered around pleasing the Supreme Being:
"By myself I can do nothing; As I hear, I make choices, and my choices are just because I do not seek to please myself but to please Him who sent me." (John 5:30)