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Churches Of Christ/Have I married already in the past?


Nice to meet you. I read some of your answer related to Marriage and found they are great. I am wondering I have committed adultery in the past. Can you give me some advice to determine?
When I was 19 years old, I have a boyfriend and our relationship are very good. We have been together 4 years and we sometimes called each other “ husband “ and “wife” because we really loved each other very much at that time. But, we haven’t got any wedding yet.

However, we have broken and we has new boyfriend and girlfriend afterward.

Now I become Christian and learn more about bible, I found that bible not allow to divorce beside the case of commit adultery and dead.

I am wondering  whether I was my ex-boyfriend ‘s wife in god ‘s eyes or not because we called each other “ husband “ and “wife” sometimes in the past. Recently, I have married to another man. Have I committed adultery then?

Please help.

Gold bless you!

ANSWER: No, you have not been married. You have committed fornication, perhaps but not adultery. Calling each other husband and wife from time to time is irrelevant. Because you referred to each other as girlfriend and boyfriend, that tells us what we need to know.

Have a wonderful life.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------


Thank you for you answer.

However, I really forgot that when I called him as husband, I really consider he is my husband or not. If I called him as husband and consider he as husband is that already counted as married?

We haven't had any wedding and we never seriously agree each other as wife and husband.

In the past, I classified two people is married when a wedding is held, therefore I did not consider myself have been married to my ex-boyfriend. However, after become a Christian, I am not sure whether this concept is still correct. Is it possible for a person has married but he don't know?

Really wish that you can reply me. I always worry that I have made mistake in it.

Many thanks!


Hi Yan,

This sentence in your message provides us the answer:

"We haven't had any wedding and we never seriously agree each other as wife and husband."

You were not married, and I think it would be very hard to be married and not know it.

Enjoy your current relationship and follow God.



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Hoyt Roberson


I can answer just about any doctrinal, relational, or Scriptural question from a "traditional" church of Christ perspective, and from perspectives of somewhat more progressive congregations. If you want an answer from a particular perspective, let me know that up front, and I'll respond in that vein. If you want to peg me on the liberal-conservative spectrum, I would suggest a bit left of center. Depending on the question though, I might be far left, or perhaps rather toward the right.


I have fifty years as a member of Churches of Christ. Over those five decades, I have taught teen classes, adult classes, served as a deacon and congregational administrator, Lay Leader at two military congregations, and finally as a shepherd of a 500 member congregation. Most of the congregations I have been a member of have been "mainline" congregations, but I am quite familiar with more conservative and more liberal congregations and views as well. I read and subscribe to various books and periodicals for churches of Christ, and have discussed a variety of topics with representatives of our various groups both in person, and via mail. One of my Masters degrees is from Pepperdine, so let that guide your understanding of my formal training.

Christian Association for Psychological Studies, American Association of Christian Counselors, and the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy.


I hold a Masters of Ministry degree from Pepperdine University, as well as a Masters of Counseling degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of Phoenix.

Awards and Honors
The greatest temporal honor I have had is to be an elder for ten years. The next greatest temporal honor is having been asked to preach for our current congregation.

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