Question: Prior to becoming born again, I married a Muslim man. The marriage ceremony was performed by a Muslim priest (Imam). Am I married to this man in the eyes of God?
Answer: That would depend upon the legalities of the marriage ceremony. Was the Muslim priest who performed the marriage ceremony recognized by the government as a person who can legally perform a marriage ceremony? Was everything done according to the laws of your country? If so, then yes, you are still legally married.
Once you are born again, you become a new creation in Christ, but your circumstances will be the same. “But as God has distributed to each one, as the Lord has called each one, so let him walk. And so I ordain in all the churches. Let each one remain in the same calling in which he was called. Brethren, let each one remain with God in that state in which he was called.” (1 Corinthians 7:17-24)
God has put the government over us. We are to obey the laws of the land unless they directly conflict God’s Word. “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. For he is God’s minister to you for good.” (Romans 13:1-7)
I am assuming your husband is not born again. If not, but he is willing to stay with you, then you are to stay with him and perhaps win him to the Lord. If he is not willing to stay with you, and wants to divorce you, then you will be free of the marriage once he divorces you. “And a woman who has a husband who does not believe, if he is willing to live with her, let her not divorce him. For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband; otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are holy. But if the unbeliever departs, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases. But God has called us to peace. For how do you know, O wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, O husband, whether you will save your wife? (1 Corinthians 7:13-16)
If you are in a dangerous or abusive situation, then you need to protect yourself. This might mean you need to get away from the situation until you can be safe in that environment. A separation is quite different than a divorce, and you need to keep yourself pure in all.
In Christian love,
Marlene Kay Panell
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