Peacemaker continued 4
But if a man commits adultery with another man's wife; it has a direct tendency to produce the great evil of alienation in the wife; which is murder to her posterity in its nature: and he robs the husband of his most precious rights, violates the interest of his life and family in the most sacred points of man's existance. He therefore, and the adultress shall be put to death.
God now calls us to peace, and purity and order; for his house is a house of order, and not of confusion. This is the object of the whole law. But your laws upon this subject, lays the ax at the root of the tree of peace and order, and good government in the earth. And the fruits of disorder and cruelty and wickedness that have prevailed this thousand years, even with the gospel in your hands, is a demonstration of this fact.
Now then make the reasonable law of God your guide; instead of your own misguided vain imaginations of what is fitting and best for mankind; and a glorious reward, both in time and eternity, willbe the blessed consequences. The families of the earth are the root of all righteous government among men. And unless order, a perfect and independent head is here established by law, wretchedness, and confusion in the very nature of things will, and must be the certain consequences.
The honor, the affections, the prosperity of the father and the husband, are powerful checks to his becoming a tyrant. The fatherly government has in all ages where it has been supported, been found the most virtuous and just. Besides, the law can easily, and completely control any disposition of a tyranical nature in the supreme head of a family; without bringing him under the unlawful, and ruinous bondage of a woman.
If he require any thing of his wife which love and reason would not dictate; or if he inflict blows upon his wife; it is of the nature of assault and battery. And if he is convicted of such an offence; it is the law of God that he be publicly whipped, not to exceed forty stripes; according to the agravation of the offence.
And where, I enquire, would such a man go to get a wife, after he was known? Such men, if any there be among us, ought not to be the fathers of the rising generation: for we now enter the Millennium. For by the law of Christ; a man is bound to be kind to his wife, and he is under the law to Christ who is his lawful head: but not under the law to his wife.
The wife has no right to teach, admonish, reprove, rebuke, or to exercise any kind of dictation whatever. He is her head, and she should be guided by the head. If the wife wants to know any thing, let her ask her husband at home. She hath therefore the right of petition. And this is a right that all who are governed should possess.
If she will seek any other guide depending on something else besides her husband, (except it be the Lord who is head of all,) she must be miserable; she is out of the order which God has established in the creation, and wretchedness is the inevitable fruit. Therefore the law should confine her completely under her husband's power for good, but not for evil. Has the church a right to admonish or dictate Christ? But the head of the woman is the man, and the head of the man is Christ. I suffer not a woman to teach, or to usurp authority over the man, but to be in subjection.
Here we are informed that an attempt, even to teach her husband is an usurpation of power forbidden by the holy spirit. But the church have the free right of respectful petition, and Christ encourages the use of that right in his bride. Some men argue that it is in vain to petition the Lord in any case, for say they the plans of the Lord are immutable, and cannot change to accomodate our petitions, without imperfection in him. But such persons do not consider, that it is one of the grand objects of the Creator in creating rational beings, to bring them acquainted with himself: and there is in the head of man a design of creating a communion between himself and them.
Therefore the thing petitioned for by us, might as well be foreknown by him as any other thing; and to constitute the blessings of communion and society with God, all those right petitions are included in the original design, without supposing any change in our Lord and Master. while we may enjoy the comfort and consolation of beholding our petitionsgranted, and our faith is thus strengthened, and we may enjoy society and communion with God.
But to return. Let be remembered that the law of God cannot be changed without bringing down ruin, misery and eternal degradation upon the heads of those who change it.
If a woman does commit fornication against her husband and does not reform, it is his indispensible duty to put her away. And how is it possible that a reasonable woman could desire to live with a man, when in her heart she is alienated from him? Surely she would much rather be free, that she might lawfully unite with some man whom she could respect and love. It is therefore a privilege to a wife in such a case, to be legally freed.
If a wife desire a bill in any case, it is a proof positive by her confession that she is alienated in heart from her husband. And the law then, should compel the husband to give her a bill, whatever the husband's feelings or affections towards her might be notwithstanding.
Thus it is the woman that can break this covenant, not the man, because the woman is the subject of this law, and not the ruler by the law. So neither can Christ Jesus himself break the covenant of promise that binds the church to him. But the church can apostatize as she has done, and whereby she has been put away. Yet the law however fixes a check upon the light versatility of the mind of the woman by her not being allowed any dowry in such case; and no control over her children if she have any. The support and education of the children belong to the father, and all his substance to perform those duties with.
The law therefore in all respects is calculated to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children; and the hearts of the children to their fathers. Not only in this instance, but by exalting their authority, influence and dignity of character in the earth. Even so let it be saith the Lord; lest I come and smite the earth with a curse. (I was told in 1987 that the earth would be smitten with Nuclear War, BECAUSE WE have NOT obeyed God in ALL things! As Matthew 4:4 tells us to do.)
The father of a family is the image of God, and it is not well pleasing to him that his particular image on earth, should be degraded by law, unlawfully. The wife in the above case takes nothing but her own property unless the husband is pleased to give, for the law allows of no schism in the body, or ground of contention, and there is none.
And the divorced wife after being married to another cannot return to her former husband. The highest signification of the term law, is governing power. And the perfect penal law of God should be the governing power of all nations. All nations being thus brought under one and the same system of perfect government, would soon beat their swords into plough shares, and their spears into pruning hooks; and learn war no more. So mote it be.
We have been treating of the governing power of marriage, and we clearly show that it is placed in the hands of the husband as cheif executive; and no where else under heaven. And that he is not a subject of that power. To suppose that this governing power is placed in the husband wife equally, is an absurdity. In the name of common sense, who then would be the subject? If the governing power of marriage was placed equally in the hands of the husband and the wife, there would be no subject, consequently no possibility of violating the power of the government, for it is the subject only that can violate a law: and therefore there could be no possibility of divorcement.
For I cannot possibly hold a governing power over one, that holds a governing power over me in the same case. If I hold the power as a father, to govern my son; he cannot at the same time hold the legal power of governing me. But you may object, that you place the governing power of marriage in neither of the parties, but in the court. But the law of God never placed this power in the hands of the Pope, nor Court.
Do you not perceive that this opens a door of unlawful litigation between the husband and the wife; and places the power we speak of equally in the hands of both; separating in open hostility what God has joined together. And thus your absurd unrighteous law, binds the husband by the law of the wife as long as the wife lives; and at the same time binds the wife by the law of the husband as long as the husband lives? What folly then to talk of divorce at all?
For a righteous power cannot be constituted to violate another righteous power in any case. If thus they are wedded together, no power but death can righteously part them. And in fact you have no settled principle of divorcement: but Popes and Courts do as they please with the bodies and souls of mankind. Nothing but death, could possibly dissolve such a covenant. Do you not ever blush, at your own absurdity?
This is not the nature of the true marriage covenant by any means, for that admits of divorcement, executed by the husband; who holds the power of this law in his hands, and to exercise it for the fornication of the wife, and for no other cause whatever. So saith the Lord Jesus Christ amen. Hence it is written of me. That kings shall shut their mouths at him; for that which has not been told them shall they see; and that which they have not heard shall they consider. Isaiah 52:15
Is Christ under the law to the Church in any sense of the word? impossible. So neither is the husband under the law of marriage to his wife in any sense of the word. But is he not bound to love his wife and provide for her by the law of marriage? Truely he is thus bound, but not by the law of marriage, but by the law of Christ, which also binds him even to love his enemies; consequently to provide for his own, and especially them of his own house hold.
So also by the law of his head and husband he is bound, to give his wife a bill of divorcement when she becomes alienated from him. God anciently said unto his church, I am married unto thee. Jeremiah 3:14
If the law of marriage places the husband under any government whatever, or if he is thereby laid under any obligation whatever; then was God under the law and government of his church; and under the same obligations to her, by being married to her. The fact is, the man is under the law to Christ, but not under the law of marriage to his wife: or in any sense obligated by it. Moreover the covenant of marriage is, or ought to be conditioned according to the law of God, which admits of divorcement; but not according to the absurd law of the gentiles, which consistent with itself admits of no divorcement.
According to this latter law the kingdom of marriage has but two subjects, and both of them are equally sovereigns over each other: and consequently in reality there are no subjects at all: therefore no possibility of violating the sovereign authority: hence there can he no divorcement, and at the same time no possibility of exercising sovereignty, and finally no kingdom or government; but a tyranical state of anarchy, whereby thr families of the earth are filled with confusion, and held together, only by a principle similar to that which the goats, and wild beasts herd together.
CLICK HERE PEACEMAKER CONTINUED 5