Do you think Jesus knew exactly what He was doing when He chose Judas Iscariot to be one of His disciples? Of course He did, and one of the reasons Judas may have been chosen was to teach us that false brothers are right among us. The other disciples were shocked during the last supper to hear Jesus say that one of them was going to betray Him. Jesus said, "...it is the one who dips bread into the bowl with me." Wow, a false brother involved with and so close to Jesus!
In reading Matthew 7:21-23, it is fair to assume that the church has its share of false brethren when we hear Jesus say, "Not everyone who says to Me, "Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only those who do the will of My Father in heaven". Jesus wants us to be aware of these people. In Acts 20, the Apostle Paul warns us to be on guard for the savage wolves who will come in among us and distort the truth. Revelation 21:7-8 speaks of the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, the sexually immoral, murderers, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in hell, but the ones who overcome and conquer these sins, will be His true children.
So I flat out ask you, could it be possible that you married a false brother when you thought you married a believer?
Over the past nine years in my betrayal recovery groups, women have often come up against this dilemma. Even after they become totally surrendered to the Lord and their trauma somewhat subsides, many of the husbands start to appear like false brothers as they continue to progress in hard-hearted unwillingness to repent or change course.
But, you say, we've heard people say we're not supposed to judge. After all, partners are quick to tell us the Bible says not to judge.
According to 1 Corinthians 5:11-13, we are to judge those who claim to be Christians who are living sexually immoral lives. We must remember that we cannot, nor should not pronounce someone's final judgement. Scripture teaches, that God is the final judge. Also, the Lord is long-suffering to bring the wicked to repentance and we cannot see into our future or theirs.
Thankfully, I've had the joy of seeing Christian husbands who have fallen into adultery become truly repentant. While sin can sear a man's heart, it can never be seared beyond the Holy Spirit's ability to reach it. Some men are convicted immediately, as was David when Nathan confronted his adultery. Others are disciplined by God before they surrender and repent. The Lord dictates the timing, but His word remains true — He will chasten those He loves to accomplish His will of sanctification. (Hebrews 12:6,
1 Thessalonians 4:3)
True repentance creates an environment where forgiveness and restoration can grow and flourish. I love the book When Sinners Say I Do, because it discusses the fact that when both partners in a marriage are truly born of God and surrendered to Him, miracles happen. When God's hand touches an impossible marriage, the restoration is better than the original.
In the case of being married to a false brother, attempts at change and restoration look quite different. Instead of true change, cowardly compliance is seen, with minimizing, blaming, justification, defensiveness, and ultimately, staunch refusal. When I see the divorce rate among Christians matching that of unbelievers, we have got to be convinced that some or many of these believers have married false brothers.
He who belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.
When my marriage was at the brink of divorce, I needed to hear from God on who I was really married to. It can be very confusing when a man who grew up in the church portrays outwardly good behavior, while nothing in his heart connects to or responds to the Holy Spirit. When a wife becomes as desperate for the truth as I was, in order that her own faith does not continue to falter, God WILL fill her in.
If your husband claims to be a Christian and you struggle with trusting God's Word (which translates into not trusting God), because things don't match up, it's time to fast and pray and beg the Lord to reveal the truth to you. He wants you to trust Him on your healing journey and beyond, so if this is the missing piece you need, He'll set the record straight for you.
It's important to remember, that although a husband feels like the enemy, the real enemy in close proximity is the devil. The reason it feels like we're sleeping with the enemy, is because he's serving his father, the devil. The Apostle Paul said that it's dangerous to be among false brothers in
2 Corinthians 11:26, so what you feel is truly a spiritual threat!
So, ARMOR UP with truth, righteousness, peace, faith, salvation, and the Bible, and PRAY, PRAY, PRAY!
Just because your husband is sorrowful and regretful, does not mean he's repentant. To help you understand more about what true repentance looks like, read and pray about the following:
Repentance: 2 Corinthians 7: 9-12
For you became sorrowful as God intended and so were not harmed in any way by us. Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. See what this godly sorrow has produced in you: what earnestness, what eagerness to clear yourself, what indignation, what alarm, what longing, what concern, what readiness to see justice done. At every point you have proved yourself to be innocent in this matter.
Laura serves as the Executive Director on the board of HER. She is passionate about helping betrayed women who struggle emotionally, spiritually, psychologically, and financially. She has been leading weekly marital betrayal support groups for several years. Currently, Laura connects with leaders, writers, and counselors, to unite the efforts of those who share a burden for betrayed women.
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