The 4 Causes of Divorce

Divorce has ripped through our nation like a plague. In its wake there are millions of heartbroken children, financial bankruptcies and emotional devastation for all involved.

As a Pastor, I talk to couples in crisis almost every day. Tragically, by the time they take the initiative to talk to someone like me, one or both of them often feels that all hope is lost. Divorce can still be prevented even in those worst-case scenarios, but its much easier to prevent Divorce when you understand the factors that lead to the collapse of a marriage.

After counseling with countless couples, I believe these are the main reasons (if not the only reasons) why couples divorce:

1. Selfishness. Your spouse doesn’t exist for your happiness and if you treat them like their sole purpose is to make your life better, you are both going to be miserable. When you let your selfishness get the best of you, you’re no longer putting your spouse ahead or yourself and you are forsaking what it means to be in a marriage. Adultery and most of the “big issues” that destroy marriages are usually just symptoms of Selfishness. 

2. Lack of Faith. As a Christian, I’m convinced that no marriage can fully thrive without Jesus in the center of it. Many stats say that “Christians” are as likely to divorce as non-Christians, but what those stats don’t tell you is that when two people are devoted to Christ, humbly walking with Him, studying God’s Word together, serving alongside each other in their church and community and praying for each other daily, Divorce almost NEVER occurs.

3. Terrible Friends. Your friendships outside of the marriage will be a huge influence for either good or for bad. If you find your “friends” talking about your marriage by saying, “You just need to leave! You deserve better!” Then those people are not real friends. Find people who will encourage you, strengthen your faith and support your marriage. Get away from anyone who has a negative influence.

4. Giving Up. We live in a culture that teaches us that we can quit anything once it gets uncomfortable. We don’t like commitment. We can’t ever keep the same cell phone carrier for more than a couple of years. No marriage would last if people quit when it got tough. Pushing through the hard times together is what refines and strengthens a marriage. 

If you’re in a troubled marriage on the brink of divorce, the first thing you should do is remove “Divorce” from your vocabulary. It’s only an option if you make it an option and Healthy Marriages should never have an Exit Strategy. Trust God and Don’t Give Up!

“Jesus looked at them and said, ‘With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26

Your next step is to get help. Find Professional Counseling and surround yourself with people who will support your marriage. Another great resource that I’ve seen several several marriages is the “Dynamic Marriage” class. You can visit this site to find a course near you:


12 thoughts on “The 4 Causes of Divorce

  1. Bethany says:

    Thank you for this post! I am getting married in a few months and this reinforces everything my fiance and I are working for and against!

    • soulcaffeine says:

      Congrats on your upcoming wedding! Thank you for reading. My prayers are with you and your fiancee as you begin your life together.

      • Bethany says:

        Thank you! Your “7 Ingredients for a Healthy Marriage” post was incredibly helpful and encouraging as well! Thank you for sharing your wisdom here and through your Tweets!

  2. Lisa says:

    Thank you! Even after 28 years of marriage there are things we can learn from this.

  3. MrsConrad says:

    We are married and have a precious gift on the way in the next 5 months. All of these are issues that we have addressed. It’s stressful with the extra hormones for both of us. We just keep pressing into God and having a ton of “talks”. I loved this. Thanks!

  4. vanessa valenzuela says:

    Yeah, all this sounds good. But what if your spouse treats you terrible? And he doesn’t see anything wrong with himself?

  5. Allison says:

    “You have heard the law that says, ‘A man can divorce his wife by merely giving her a written notice of divorce.’ But I say that a man who divorces his wife, unless she has been unfaithful, causes her to commit adultery. And anyone who marries a divorced woman also commits adultery. (Matthew 5:31, 32 NLT)

    If either one the husband or wife has been unfaithful that is the ONLY means to even consider divorce. That would be the case for my marriage.

    • Laura says:

      Although its the best known reason, unfaithfulness is only one of several reasons the Bible cites for divorce, the others being abuse and abandonment. Matthew 5:31 is not the only passage on divorce in the New Testement. God does not want people being beaten and abused to stay in a place where they will be killed, nor does he expect a abandoned spouse to wait for the rest of their life to be returned to. Many people think “Of course abuse!” But its rarely mentioned and it NEEDS to be.

  6. […] The 4 Causes of Divorce. […]

  7. Sattin says:

    I have a question about # 3. My sister (also my best friend) is in a situation that I don’t think will be best for her if she decides to get married, she is engaged now. For ex., doesn’t take her out on friday or saturday night usually, doesn’t spend time with her family, and no one likes her fiance. I am afraid he may be abusive toward her if they marry. Would you call me a “terrible friend”?

    • soulcaffeine says:

      Great question. If your sister is engaged to someone you think may be wrong for her, Tell Her! Do it in love citing specific examples, but reassure her that you will love her no matter what she decides and that if she marries him you’ll do everything in your power to support them as a married couple.

  8. Hester says:

    Found this & wanted to share with you.

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