Beware of the Strange Woman
To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flatters with her words; which forsakes the guide of her youth, and forgets the covenant of her God (Proverbs 2:16, 17)
There are many strange women who are forsaking and divorcing their husbands today and forgetting the covenant they made with their husbands. Many more women are divorcing their husbands than husbands divorcing their wives and the reasons are all too common: “I am not happy” or “We were incompatible” or “He drank too much” or “He watched porn” or any number of reasons but not one of them is a biblical reason to divorce.
“Which forsaketh the guide of her youth,…. Not God, the God of her life, and who had provided for her from her youth up; nor her parent that had taken care of her in her infancy, and had been the guardian of her virgin state; but her husband, to whom she was married in her youth, and to whom she gave up herself to be guided and directed, ruled and governed, by: and as it is an aggravation of evil in a man to deal treacherously against the wife of his youth, and the wife of his covenant; so it is in a woman to forsake ‘the friend’ or ‘companion of her youth,’ as the phrase may be rendered; who loved her and espoused her in his youthful age, and with whom he had lived long in love and friendship, and in great happiness, but now forsakes him; her affections being alienated from him, leaves his company and bed, and associates with others” (Gill’s Exposition).
God said in His Word that what He joins together, let NO man tear asunder, yet too many women have no qualms tearing apart their marriages and leaving their husbands, then going after another man to marry, thus committing adultery with him. Women, this is serious business in the eyes of the Lord. He created marriage to be an example of Christ and the Church. As the Church must never forsake Christ, so wives must not forsake their husbands.
Don’t allow anything into your thought life or actions that will cause a schism between you and your husband. Watch for those little foxes that spoil the vine, such as a disrespectful attitude towards him, critical and negative thoughts about him, questioning and even rebelling against his decisions, or undermining his authority in the home by usurping it and doing things your way.
I seriously doubt many wives have given themselves up to be “ruled and governed” (as Gill’s Exposition stated in the comments above) by their husbands even though this is what the Lord calls them to do. God has ordained wives to be their husband’s help meet and not vice versa. Our main ministry in life is to our husbands to make their lives as good as we can and help their lives to be easier. Our husbands are the decision makers and we are called to obey and support these decisions joyfully and willingly, just as we do the Lord’s decisions and commands to us.
We also need to protect our marriage by dressing modestly in the company of other men. We must be careful to not flirt with other men in any way but only give ourselves to our husbands since they are the husbands of our youth. We must never allow “strange woman” be used to describe us. We don’t lust after other men, nor do we spend any time being entertained by them in our thought life but we take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. Any man who attempts to flirt with us in any way, we flee; for we refuse to break the covenant of our youth.
“And forgetteth the covenant of her God: not the covenant made with Noah, in which adultery, as well as other things, were forbidden; nor the law of Moses, or covenant at Sinai, in which it was condemned; but the marriage covenant, which she entered into with her husband when espoused to him, and when they mutually obliged themselves to be faithful to one another: and this is called ‘the covenant of God’; not only because God is the author and institutor of marriage, and has directed and enjoined persons to enter into such a contract with one another; but because he is present at it, and is a witness of such an engagement, mid is appealed unto in it; which, as it adds to the solemnity of it, makes the violation of it the more criminal.” (Gill’s Exposition of the Bible)
God created marriage between a man and a wife until death do they part. It’s a commitment we entered with our husband and the Lord on the day we married each other. We love our husbands and what is love? God has clearly spelled it out to us in 1 Corinthians 13:
“Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it (it pays no attention to a suffered wrong). It does not rejoice in injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything (without weakening). Love never fails (never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end).” (Amplified Version)
This is a good passage to memorize since love has NOTHING to do with our feelings and emotions. Not one woman who lives out this definition of love would ever divorce her husband or go after another man and be called a ‘strange woman.’ She would be kind, forgiving, loving, cheerful, and her hope would be in the Lord, not in how perfect her husband was supposed to be.
If her husband had been lured away by a strange woman, she would put on the full armor of the Lord and fight for her husband’s eternal soul by obeying 1 Peter 3:1-6. She would understand that his eternity is more important that her earthly happiness and determine to not be a covenant breaker. Yes, she would let him go if he wants to go, as the Word commands that she does, but she would pray and ask the Lord to restore their marriage and then go about winning him back without a word by learning to have a meek and quiet spirit which is beautiful in God’s sight.
Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
20 thoughts on “Beware of the Strange Woman”
How do you feel about divorced women serving as children’s teachers in the church? My husband and I are currently dealing with this. A woman pursuing divorce from her husband (no cheating involved), and she is still serving as a Sunday school teacher. We feel like she shouldn’t be in any teaching position because she is going directly and blatantly against the Bible. We do have a meeting with our pastoral staff to discuss, but I would greatly appreciate your thoughts.
Tough call Laura, not biblically, but for the church of our culture. Our churches do a terrible job of discipline when it comes to sin. I can’t blame the pastor/elders completely for not wanting to open a can of worms where no sinners can serve in the church. Most churches would be left with few to minister, or sitting on their pews anymore because if they don’t like what someone tells them they just leave and find another church.
I guess if I were the pastor I would first ask you if you have talked to her about it in love and a desire to win a friend. Have you expressed your concern that maybe she should not be serving at this point in her life if she is living in sin, wanting a divorce based on non-Biblical reasons?
After talking to her I might give her a week or two to stop teaching and if she continued, then prayerfully take it to the pastor or elder who can help you sort it out. I would also encourage you to simply express your concerns and then leave it to the elders to do with it as they think best. Trusting that they will deal with this difficult issue and you have done all you can on the matter. If you feel strongly she should not be teaching your child, you can bring your child into the service the times she teaches or ask to have your child go up or down a grade. If she/he is old enough to be a helper in an younger class then see if you can have them there.
These are things that we can form strong opinions about, but we have to trust our elders to do the right thing without second guessing them. If we are going to second guess our elders we are either in the wrong church, or there is not a church that can give us everything we would want in a church and we have to live with some things we don’t particularly like or agree with, but that is part of living in a family together.
I will comment. This has happened in my past yet the SS teacher was the man and his wife just moved out and moved in with her boyfriend then later husband. Before the parents could raise any concerns the man was asked to step aside from teaching and being the church service leader. He complied. The move was confusing to us boys but when our parents explained the reason we understood and accepted the reason for the disruption. So yes if the elders of the church have not acted you do need to discuss it with them. If they are not willing to remove the women then start looking for a new church that will teach the bible and ask those who are actively sinning to step aside until they are restored through the biblical methods. This is a big part of church discipline that many churches ignore because they do not want to cause division and lose people in the pews and money in the coffers.
“Many more women are divorcing their husbands than husbands divorcing their wives. ” From where did you glean this alleged fact?
I have read it was 70% but this article states that it is 80% so I suppose it depends on what study you read but from all I have read, women are divorcing their husbands in far greater numbers than men are divorcing their wives.
You have to wonder what these men are doing. There is so much sin among both sexes
There is certainly men who are not loving and caring for their wife and family as they should, but we get about a husband a week asking us what he can do with his difficult wife, and how his marriage revolves around her difficult and often mean demeanor. What happened to her most often began when her soul was damaged in her youth by feeling unloved by her mother.
Many moms working and having no time for their kids, and some moms not knowing how to love their children. Look up the epidemic on BPD and the root cause has nothing to do with the husband, but rather the pained soul of a little one who wants to love and be loved, but spends most of her time protecting herself with walls that seem insurmountable.
Satan has convinced many women, even Christians, that they can both work and raise a family, that they don’t need a husband’s leadership. Then the stress and pain that the messed up thinking of our age causes wives to “blow up” as they are overloaded with stress and the lies that they have been told, even as I see husbands trying hard to sacrificially love them. It’s so sad.
Men tend to assuage their pain with addictions, and women by blowing up their relationships and being angry at those who love them most.
This happens in most developed countries. Percentages vary, of course, but the fact remains true.
If you read feminist media, this is considering a progress, since it shows that women are revolting against the chains of patriarchy… or something like that, anyway.
Funny that you ask what the MEN are doing as society tells us that everything is always the mans fault. No doubt there are some men who are not living as they should but the Bible greatly limits the justification for divorce and if it’s the women who (statistically) are doing more of the divorcing the better question is… what are the women doing.
From what I have seen and experienced most often in the church, is men who are trying to live (their roles) in obedience to what God has called them to do and it’s the wives (poisoned and deceived by feminism) who are rebelling against their husbands (and Gods) authority.
Many, (I would say MOST) men just give up (or greatly compromise) trying to lead and let their wives run the show. They see no other option if they are to live in some semblance of peace and/or save the marriage. This is not Gods way and it does not result in the blessings He has for marriage. Stress, anxiety and depression are just some of the results of living in sin. Many of these marriages limp along in a miserable state. Some survive but more and more these days (at the hand of the women), don’t.
If the men do persist in trying to lead (teaching and admonishing) their sinful (confessing to be Christian wives), the rebellious, prideful women (who will not be told that they are wrong and need to repent from their sin), are eventually overwhelmed by this strife, pressure and unhappiness of not getting their way and they too end up divorcing their husbands.
These women (blinded by their pride, consumed in their selfishness and controlled by their feelings) will disengage from the marriage by either separating from or divorcing their husbands, often claiming to anyone who will listen that he is cruel, uncaring and unloving when the reality couldn’t be farther from the truth. So many women do not even know what real (agape) love is but rather get consumed focusing on how they “feel”.
This conflict is to be expected in marriages as a natural result of our sinful natures but I attribute the overwhelming percentage of failure (not only divorces but also women led households) to a lack of Godly teaching from the pulpit (even among pastors who know the truth), a lack of Godly older women teaching the younger women in the church and ineffective (or nonexistent) church discipline.
The Bible does teach the message of hope through confession and repentance from our sin and reconciliation with those we have sinned against. Gods blessings still await those who are obedient to His word.
I asked because Lori pointed out it was the woman who were leaving.
Ken, are you saying that women who divorce have BPD? My understanding was that BPD is found in only a tiny percentage of the Population. I would value your opinion
Trey, I’m really uncomfortable with how anti-woman your comments usually are. Yes, no doubt many (most, perhaps) Christian women are living in rebellion to God’s design in marriage and are a big pain to live with I’m sure. But both men and women are to blame for the state of things today, not just women. The men cannot continue to sit by and do nothing. That is actually the bigger problem, I believe. They are the God-ordained head of the household whether or not their wives like it. Who did God call out first after the fall? Adam. He was cursed not only for eating the fruit, but for following his wife’s lead. Today men continue to do a huge disservice to their marriages and children by allowing their wives to walk all over them. They need to step up to the plate.
When the men “give up” as you put it, guess what? They are no longer living in obedience to God and will be held accountable for the demise of their households (the women will certainly be held accountable for their personal choices too, but the men to an even greater degree because of their leadership position).
When you talk about a husband “sacrificially loving” his wife, what should this involve the husband actually doing?
Your church made a very Christlike response
A husband who loves his wife tries his best to provide for her and the family. He seeks to serve her in the areas she cannot do, or when she is sick or weak. He is involved in the family’s daily life, takes the kids off her hands to give her a break, and chips in with the dishes or other ways to help her, especially when she is feeling overwhelmed or needs a break. In my case, when my wife was very sick, she did the best she could and I jumped in to do the rest, including some cooking and care for the kids.
The loving husband tries to find ways to show his love with back rubs or foot massages, hugs and kind words of encouragement.
But sacrificial love goes beyond these things to recognize that his wife is not built with the same strength and stamina that he is, and has a different set of emotional hormones coursing through her veins…, so he lives with her in an understanding way.
Real sacrificial love comes when the times get tough and your wife is sick, truly sick for months and years at a time. When she is in massive pain or thinking she is dying and you are just holding her and speak love and truth into her life. Sacrificial love comes when your wife is difficult or rebellious and yet you try to live with her at peace, even knowing that she is being disobedient to the Word and to the vows of the marriage.
Sacrificial love is setting standards and boundaries and patiently reminding her of them not to rule her, but so that she may learn to rule her own mind and behaviors. Sacrificial love is not responding to her nonsense and anger with anger and quips, but still holding her accountable to do her part in the marriage.
Sacrificial love is staying up all night with her to watch guard over her in the hospital, working your tail off so she and the family can have a better life, and sticking with her through the hard and difficult years when you feel unloved and uncared for by her.
There are lots of us in the Always Learning Men’s Group who have at periods of our lives, or are currently, sacrificing for our wives, even in times they don’t deserve it at all, just because Christ is our model for life godliness and marriage. Many wives can be very difficult, disrespectful, controlling or mean and angry with their husbands and we make many sacrifices going through the turmoil they put us through for the sake of our marriages and for Christ. And we are most often rewarded for our sacrifices with wives who find that obeying God at His Word in doing their part of the marriage is the keep to happiness and a fulfilling marriage.
GT, Trey is one of those men who has not given up, but trying to hold a wife accountable who is rebellious and is like trying to ride a bucking bronco. She will eventually throw off any accountability if she wants to with many excuses, and most tend to then blame their husband as being controlling.
I agree with you that it is epidemic out there, even in the Christian world that one or both of the spouses are not following God’s design for marriage. If God had given us an “equal marriage” to strive for many more marriages would be blown up. Instead to tell husbands to sacrificially love and live with their wives in an understand way, and wives to win their disobedient husbands by their chaste, respectful and godly behavior. Do you see it? God’s prescription for a marriage puts its success squarely on the godly spouse to do the right thing, even when the other spouse does not do their part.
But in my experience and Lori’s, we have seen a shift from Christian husbands being the primary problem of marriages… When they were aloof and involved with family, controlling and mean at times, stingy with the checkbook, and had the attitude, “Hey I am working hard at work to pay the bills so don’t bug me.” I can’t think of one Christian man I know who does that now.
Now the epidemic is Christian wives whose expectations have been through the roof. They are often disrespectful, certainly not submissive and they want to not be “equal partners” but do what they want most of the day. The basics of taking care of the kids gets done, but many moms are too busy on Facebook at social media, Bible Study and who knows what else to have the home picked up when Dad arrives home or have food on the table. Sex is given when they want, and if they feel like it, and a husband is said to be selfish for expecting anything from his wife…
I wish I could say this is an exaggeration, but there are many husbands who feel they are living in marriages like this, dirty homes, and few dinners made, all because their wife is too busy. And they can’t figure out what it is they are doing. Recently, a husband told me his wife teaches school from 8-3 and comes home and vegs in front of the tv. It is he and his older daughters who clean the home and get dinner ready as she is too tired. He wants her home, but she wants to work, but has little to give the home.
Why? Selfishness. Self seeking is not just a wife’s issue as it does go both ways, but unless a wife is open to correction and a husband’s coaching, all that seems to result is a war… and then the husband is faced with one choice. Either stay at war with his wife or seek peace by allowing her to stay in control. God’s way is first headship… but when a wife refuses to follow, and a husband has done his best to try and lead, he now is left with choosing peace, even when he knows it is not best for his marriage. Hoping and praying, sometimes trying again to lead, that some day his wife will do marriage God’s way with him.
No, I would not say most women who get divorced have BPD, but it is becoming epidemic. It certainly is one of the root causes of struggling Christian marriages where the husbands are godly loving men, and their wives are very difficult.
Most likely BPD is the result of the current busy lifestyles where working moms, or non-working moms who do not invest love in their children. Feeling unloved is the root of the problem as bitterness is covered up with the walls of fear and self-defense, no longer allowing any relationships to bond properly.
My understanding is that about 8% of the population is either BPD or Bipolar. The vast majority of the BPD are women (80%) and vast majority of the Bipolar are men (80%). It makes sense that men would externalize their pain and women more internalize their pain.
BPD affects 5.9% of adults (about 14 million Americans) at some time in their life
Here’s the problem with the 5.9% stat. First research is generally far behind the times (10-20 years); and second, many or most with BPD type symptoms don’t seek help; and third, many do not have all the symptoms of BPD, but they have 2-3 of the major symptoms, especially hypersensitivity, anger/bitterness and the inability to bond in relationships, believing that they will be abandoned. This thought of abandonment actually causes the person to push relationships away.
It’s a sad world when pain begets pain. BPD only becomes a disease after the root of sin takes hold of a person and maps their brain in way that it cannot process emotions correctly. Bipolar may have other organic causes, but both result devastating relationships, and are becoming more prevalent in this new age, that many think is so much better. Better in some ways, even as it is devastating families… as pain begets pain.
My few is that it is better if immorality is not brought to v
Children’s attention any sooner than absolutely necessary. Divorced and single parents may be blameless (an abused wife or a rape victim respectively for example. But it would still be better if these women did not teach.
For the record, I am really uncomfortable with my comments most of the time also but the truth needs to be spoken and God says that His word will not return void.
You say “Today men continue to do a huge disservice to their marriages and children by allowing their wives to walk all over them. They need to step up to the plate.”
The reality is that there is very little men can do to prevent their out of control wife from walking all over them. Women are told that they might win their disobedient husbands with their chaste and reverent behavior. Men have no such verse to lean upon. We can be persistent and insistent but we can only take it so far before the wife decides to separate from and/or divorce you.
What is more important? For the men to back off and try and save the marriage (for the best interest of their wives and children) or just stiffen their necks, stand strong on principle and allow their wives to make the biggest mistake of their lives that will have negative consequences not only to them but to their children and grandchildren for who knows how many generations?
Husbands are commanded to love their wives as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her…. If you think about it, Christ gives us (the church) all kinds of instructions that we are to follow but He does not FORCE us to obey them. He gives us a choice. There are blessings, fellowship and an intimate relationship if we obey… and loss of reward, no fellowship and no intimacy if we do not obey (same holds true for marriage ladies). Regardless, He continues to show us grace and mercy, including loving discipline from time to time, but His Love for us is never ending.
What is love? It’s not a “feeling”, it’s actions. (1 Corinthians 13) “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”
For us men, this is a really tall order (especially applying it to a rebellious, disrespectful and disobedient wife) and can only be accomplished while walking in the power of the Spirit but it is how a husband is commanded to treat his wife. The bottom line is, that just like a wife submitting to her husband, it is a CHOICE for us men to love our wives and the biggest thing we often have to do is to get past our own pride.
It has taken me a lot of years to come to grips (and I am still striving to find the right balance) with this but for many men, there is NO greater demonstration of love than for him to give himself up completely and sacrifice all of his pride (suffer extreme humiliation) to save his wife from herself even while she continues living in disrespect and disobedience.
This might just be the most loving, painful and sacrificial thing that a man ever does. If the marriage is intact, there is at least a chance for repentance and reconciliation. Once divorce occurs, it’s all over. God hates divorce.
Interesting. Thanks for your thoughts, Ken and Trey.