Process of Changing God’s Law of Marriage and Divorce.
That practice was founded by the Roman Catholic Church in about the XI century, long before the time of reformation. If you study history you will find out how it went. The monarchy was always believed to have divine authority long before Christianity and after Christianity became the national religion of the Roman Empire; popes next to kings became co-leaders of nations. Popes just like today played tremendous roles in world politics. Kings and Emperors needed papal help to govern. Popes like Leo III, needed the King’s protection to survive, and in exchange gave his spiritual services to strengthen the king’s authority.
Pope Saint Leo III (750 – June 12, 816) was Pope from 795 to his death in 816. Protected by king Charlemagne from his (pagan) enemies in Rome, Leo III subsequently strengthened Charlemagne's position by crowning him as Roman Emperor.
And so, one hand washed the other. Popes crowned kings, and kings helped the popes to enforce their doctrines and used God by the virtue of papal spiritual powers for their support. Just as it was with coronations, kings used papal services to bind their marriages, to make it more divine, and honorable. Christianity became a national religion of many countries more for political reasons then for personal salvation. One needs to study the history - there is so much to find out and learn to truly understand what Jesus meant by prophesying about them saying.
Matthew 23:27-28 New King James
"Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead [men's] bones and all uncleanness. Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness."
At first, only kings and aristocracy had that privilege to seal their marriage by the “power (supposedly) invested in the pope”, gathering in the Basilicas, Cathedrals and churches to be joined into marriage by the pope or bishop himself. Quickly such ceremonies became fashionable amongst nobility. Demand for such ceremonies grew, and eventually became available to all people. Being profitable for the churches not just financially but through the control of marriages the church had a social control and a lot to say about people’s lives And people money. With all the inside into people private and social lives, the Church had also political advances and manipulations, on the likeness of the modern role of political lobbies. And for all this reasons and many more marriage through the Church quickly became a law, conducted by all churches, pastors and priests everywhere. And later for similar reasons baptism of infants in the catholic church as well as very young children in the protestant church.
Matthew 19:6 New King James
"But it was not so from the beginning!"
Reformation fought all kinds of church corruption, but no one paid enough attention, was zealous or courageous enough to fight the corrupt practices and teachings on marriage and divorce. Obviously the protestant church didn't protest it, because it liked to have such control over its members.
And so, over the next few centuries practices of marriage and divorce, were officially and permanently changed, starting with King Henry VIII.
And after some time any marriage not bounded in the church, and by the church clergy in whom supposedly “the power was invested”, was not recognized, but considered a "fornication", damned and condemn by church law and church members.
And so God’s greatest law was changed. As they say, "necessity is the mother of invention".
With time, and combinations of wars, feminine movements, and with great help from religious freedom and political changes, like atheism, socialism, communism, and now democracy the life style of christians became more and more liberal, and secular.
A “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy was adopted not only in churches, but at homes by parents, and even by new wedded spouses in order to overlook and dismiss the requirement of a bride to be a virgin, because it was simply not practical. Theoretically the requirement is still in place even today, but practically it is long gone. Theology as a fundamental biblical teaching is eliminated from daily life, even from the daily life of clergy, how much more out of common people’s lives, and the sound biblical teachings by God fearing Spirit filled knowledgeable people are replaced by “bible studies” where anyone can believe what they feel like and freely teach others all kinds of heresy under the generally accepted policy of let’s “agree to disagree”.
In the old days the Catholic Church had a lot of pagan opposition, which worshiped all kinds of gods, and Christianity as a national religion had to be adjusted to prevent the rejection by pagan kings in political diplomacy.
Anyone can read the history and understand, it is available all over the internet even in the very Catholic encyclopedia one can find statements of perjury and deceit done by popes and church officials. And yet the church and its members, knowing how deceitful their politics are still insist in believing that the pope and the church is infallible, that is up until recent scandals. Since all the embarrassing scandals began the church now is too shy to claim infallibility, but they still insist the Church to be holy, admitting only that which is strongly proven, hiding all other faults from the general naive public, unwilling to believe, ignorant to understand and lazy to research. Two of the greatest faults of the human nature is that people believe what they want to believe, and that people will tolerate other people’s faults and heresy as long as they tolerate theirs.
All the things that changed from the biblical ways to new laws were politically motivated in the old days, just as things are now. Those who made decisions about changes were not even Church officials, but kings and their advisors, and many radical teachings of the Bible had to be loosened up, and worked into or out of the Catholic theology. Popes didn’t want to but to save in many instants their own life, they had to cooperate and have diplomatically flexible theology under pressure, or they would lose their power, and authority amongst kings and political movements. And so to compromise with the secular world and in many instances with pagan religions, the Church, and one pope after another declared canon after canon, new view on biblical issues and Church theology, which one can call Church politics. By doing this they created new paragraphs in the Catholic Catechism as an additional law of the Catholic faith, with interpretations of the bible to stretch the meanings of some biblical verses, in order to make it work to satisfy those who would bring greater honor to their authority, and be acceptable by those who imposed a pressure on this particular issue. And one error after another was created, and there were many of them.
On that same principle we can observe the Catholic Church with the leading popes working with pagan religions in multi-religious prayer conferences and acceptance of every religion in this world as a different way of salvation.
Church was not supposed to be of this world and in peace with the world, but it became this way, so much so that the pope even received a Nobel peace prize, contrary to what Jesus said about the true destiny of God’s followers.
Matthew 10:34 New King James34 ”Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword.”
John 16:33 New King James33
"These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world."
Meaning that there will be conflict with the world and tribulation because of it, but peace in the spirit as a personal comfort from Him.
A first and fundamental error was created about a lawful marriage being established in Church. A second fundamental error lays in the false teaching about premarital sex being a sin. Biblically however there is no such thing as premarital sex, because sex seals a marriage. It is the first sexual act that seals marriage; therefore it is not a sin, but matrimony. That was the law of God from the very beginning.
Marriage from the beginning was established right when a man and woman in a sex act became “one flesh”. Therefore from the very beginning first sex, - regardless who, when and how – was act of marriage carefully and with details described in the book of Deuteronomy 22:13-30. Period!
In Mathew 19 Jesus gave a definition of marriage referring to the law of Moses given by God in Deuteronomy 22:13-30, that there is no other way to marry lawfully, but the way Adam and Eve and their children were married even before Moses.
Up until the last century virginity was required from bride as a seal of marriages all over the world, even in some pagan religions, like Muslims to this day. But in the last century, especially after the World War II, a sexual freedom revolutionized the world and the Christian Churches, as the practice of sex by all people, but especially young virgins, went out of the control of their parents. In this point all Churches, Catholic and Protestant faced a dilemma. Not wanting to refuse to perform the marriage ceremony and lose their faithful attendance, church officials had to find a way to marry their own interest with the expectations of people. So being very creative they came up with the false teaching of premarital sex, providing at the same time the possibility to confess, repent, and by receive God’s forgiveness and permission to marry the lawful way in the church, and to have a chance to have a family with different a partner.
And the following deception was born. A teaching to confess the sin of premarital sex, receiving forgiveness, and be free to get married to another person - just like that.
But that’s not all, what about those who did marry in church, but their marriage fell apart? For such a situation, they also came up with a solution, not divorce, because God forbids and the church condemns divorce, but annulments of marriage that sound very biblical, given by the church for various reasons. At first it was for mental illness, and for the inability to have children. Later the reason of marital unfaithfulness was added, and few others. The most recently added, and a very popular choice is that the two never intended or couldn’t become “one in spirit”, because if couple can’t become complete “one Flesh”, assuming that spiritual unity or understanding of each other is a necessity. And so the marriage can be annulled and dismissed, and anyone can have his way of getting it, it’s only a matter of time and money.
And so the whole Christian world made sin out of the lawful biblical marriage, and enabled the sin of adultery to become a rightful marriage.
Biblically however, there is no such thing as a premarital sex, because sex is a marriage. The proper meaning of the word marriage is being joined together by an intimate sexual relationship. And every act of sex is a reenactment of marriage. However not every sexual act is a lawful act of marriage.
To make all the laws of marriages, and annulations sound biblically correct, they had to come up with biblical verses. And because marital unfaithfulness became so popular the interpretation of a very important bible verse took care of everything. Every spouse can come up with marital unfaithfulness as a reason, and use that verse as a permission for divorce or annul their marriage.