Leslie Answers Your Questions
Lessons from Sarah's Story
Question: I have spoken in
depth to my leaders about your book. They just really won't address the
issue of emotional, financial, or verbal abuse. I was asked if I think
my situation is worse than Sarah in the Bible and what Abraham did to
Yet there was a speaker at our Biblical counseling
conference that spoke on the very topic and recommended your book!
I am wondering what you think about divorce?
As I read your blog and comments from other women
some have been separated for many years. How do you go on with life? I
am not entering this lightly. I have been taught the only grounds for
divorce are infidelity, abandonment, and if the unbelieving spouse
walks away from the marriage.
I just don't know how to keep going on like this. My
husband won't work. He threatens me with divorce and then comes back
and says he didn't mean it.
There is so much like this that has gone on for many
years. My children are very stressed. I just want to be right in Gods
eyes. I fear losing his blessing if I go the route of divorce. Would
there be consequences for me?
Answer: As I read your letter I
feel heartsick.Heartsick for your turmoil and grief. Heartsick for the
blindness of your leaders who God has given the charge to protect the
flock, yet remain blind to how they enable bullies to bully or fools to
continue their foolishness because they refuse to support wives who
want to implement consequences for destructive behaviors.
Let’s look more closely at the story of Abraham and
Sarah.Abraham threw Sarah under the bus twice because of his own
selfishness and fears. Read Genesis 12 and Genesis 20 for the stories.
2 Timothy 3:16 says, “All Scripture is breathed out
by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and
for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent,
equipped for every good work.”
What is the lesson here in these stories?Why did God put them in the Bible?
The lesson most Christians take from this story is
to emphasize Sarah’s submissiveness. Peter did that when he wrote about
her in 1 Peter 3:9.But Peter also went on to warn husband’s to live
with their wives in an understanding way showing honor to her since she
is an equal or joint heir with him before God.
However, the error Christians make is that they
extrapolate from Sarah’s example that a wife who is being mistreated
should simply submit to her husband’s foolishness regardless of what it
costs her. The underlying belief here is that if she is to be
protected, God will protect her like he did Sarah.
But this is short sighted theology and not in line
with the whole counsel of God. First, let’s look at the context of the
story: Abraham and Sarah were nomads. They had no family nearby or
“church” community to provide accountability or protection. They lived
in a very patriarchal culture where women had little choice and few
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