God's Purpose for Marriage (Mark 10:1-12)
Scripture: Mark 10:1–10:12
In Mark 10:1-12 the Pharisees test Jesus about divorce in order that they might get Him in trouble with Herod Antipas. Antipas had murdered John the Baptist because John had denounced his illicit relationship with Herodias who was the wife of Herod Philip. Jesus uses the opportunity to explain that divorce was a concession given by God because of the hardness of men's hearts. The certificate of divorce that Moses afforded women in Deuteronomy 24 allowed women to remarry so that they would not become destitute. By this God showed compassion by limiting the damage done by divorce.
Jesus, however, reestablishes in this passage the design by God for marriage. Marriage is designed to be a safe place for human sexuality and for the raising of children, but it also serves as a type that points to the intimate union Christ will have with His church at the parousia. We learn in this lesson that it is better to be faithful to God by remaining in an unpleasant marriage than it is to pursue our own "happiness" and violate this marital covenant that we have made before God.