We took note in this passage that as Matthew gives us Jesus teaching on marriage and divorce that he sets it directly after the parable of the unforgiving servant. Understanding how great a debt that God has forgiven us, and understanding that we are commanded to forgive others should be foundational truths that undergird our marriages. The Pharisees attempt to Jesus into making a controversial statement about divorce by asking Him if it was lawful for a man to divorce his wife for just any reason.
Before Jesus addresses their question, He gives them the foundational truths of Genesis regarding God's original intent for marriage. Marriage is not merely a civil union with divine origin, it is a divine union, with divine origin. That being the case, mere paperwork from a human court can't dissolve what God has joined together. The disciples understood how strict a stance Jesus took on divorce, and said "If such is the case of the man with his wife, it is better not to marry."
The problem with that is not everyone has the gift of celibacy. Jesus gives us two paths in this passage:
- Heterosexual, monogamous, permanent marriage.