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February 25, 2022

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DG BookGospel: Mark 10:1-12
Jesus then left that place and went to the province of Judea, beyond the Jordan River. Once more, crowds gathered
around him and, once more, he taught them, as he always did. Some (Pharisees came and) put him to the test with this
question: “Is it right for a husband to divorce his wife?” He replied, “What law did Moses give you?” They answered, “Moses
allowed us to write a certificate of dismissal in order to divorce.” Then Jesus said to them, “Moses wrote this law for you, because

you have hearts of stone. But in the beginning of creation God made them male and female; and because of this, man has to
leave father and mother and be joined to his wife; and the two shall become one body. So, they are no longer two, but one body.
Therefore, let no one separate what God has joined.” When they were indoors at home, the disciples again asked
him about this, and he told them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another, commits adultery against his wife; and the woman
who divorces her husband and marries another, also commits adultery.”

 

Reflection:

 

“Is it right for a husband to divorce his wife?” The gender
bias is inescapable. The question carries reference only to the
“right” of men to divorce their wives. There is no corollary
as to the legitimacy of a wife divorcing her husband. Not even
such a possibility exists in their thoughts. Contrast this with the
later response of Jesus to the disciples, in which he is inclusive
of both genders in his rejection of divorce. He equates both
men and women in his ruling of right and wrong—precisely
because, as he responded to the Pharisees, God has made
human beings male and female. Even when the explicit theme of
the discourse is the question of divorce, let us not lose sight of
the hidden assumptions and false priorities that underlie
such questions. Had there been gender equivalence in their
minds, perhaps the question of divorce would not have
occurred at all!

 

 

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