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MARRIAGE: Adultery, Abandonment, Abuse Only Legitimate Reasons for Divorce

The 700 Club's Pat Robertson's assinine comments about ditching a spouse stricken with severe Alzheimer's has set off a firestorm in the media. Now professor of Christian Ethics at Mercer University, Rev. David Gushee is weighing in. "Adultery, abandonment and abuse are the only legitimate reasons to end a marriage," he told Manya Brachear at the Chicago Tribune. Read more when you go inside...

It was important for Gushee to point that out after Robertson claimed divorce is an acceptable solution for a husband debating whether to stay with a wife who has Alzheimer's disease because the disease is like "a kind of death."

 USA Today reported on what useful and more biblically accurate things Rev. Gushee had to offer up.


Because marriage vows apply "in sickness and in health," Gushee said a more pastoral response would be to connect that spouse with caretakers and other resources to help him carry those vows to the end.

"That would be a meaningful Christian witness to other people," Gushee said. "It's the kind of thing God blesses. There is a certain sublime beauty that can come out of those situations."



Herbert and Zelmyra Fisher, longest living married couple in the worldIf couples didn't stick with each other and stay together for always, we wouldn't have wonderful examples like Herbert and Zelmyra Fisher who were married May 13, 1924.

When asked for marriage advice, they said via their Twitter page: "Respect, support & communicate with each other.Be faithful, honest & true. Love each other with ALL of your heart."

Now that's good advice.

While EEW BUZZ editors are relieved that these ill-conceived remarks by Robertson are not being accepted as truth by all, we are still concerned about those hurt by his words--particularly families touched by this disease.

Tell us, what do you think about Gushee's answer about divorce?



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Reader Comments (5)

Thank you for posting a followup to the original with more prudent commentary. The Fishers are so inspiring. Great post!

September 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTheresa

Marriage is sacred and ordained by God and I know too many people willing to walk away too easy like that's okay. I have VERY strong views on divorce and I think we can't be so quick to throw our hands up.

September 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDominic

Somebody disconnect Pat's mic please. Imprudent comments hurt people!

September 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterToya

We're too casual about divorce these days. Whatever happened to forever?

September 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDonna

His comments were not only reckless but dangerous. In a country where we already treat our elderly like second-class citizens, if families start discarding them like trash, we're in trouble! Part of the purpose of building such strong and healthy relationships while we're young and vibrant is so that it is a joy for those we love to take care of us when we are too weak and feeble to do so on our own.

September 16, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBritney

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