2x2s and Remarriage While First Spouse Alive
Many of the 2x2s believe it is OK to divorce and remarry. And the specific details of their convoluted beliefs I have never been able to ascertain. They act like they have a special knowledge of God's will. And they cannot explain their beliefs. Here are some things I've witnessed regarding divorce and remarriage:
My first year in the work, I met a couple that had divorced their spouses, then they became Christians at some church, and then remarried anyway. This couple was not allowed fellowship in other churches because their first spouses were alive, and hence they were living in adultery. They met some of the friends and came to meetings and wanted to join the 2x2 religion. So, they asked Randy and I how a people joined their church. They also wanted to know if they could be part of the church since they were living in adultery. Please keep in mind that the 2x2 religion doesn't practice any faith in repentance. So, my companion Randy Russell called up the overseer to get permission first. He talked with the overseer Howard Mooney and Howard said it was OK since they had never professed before! The reasoning was, that since they had never come to meetings and professed, only been to a church, that God would not hold them accountable for knowing what they did was adultery. In other words, since they had only heard from Christians and the Bible, it was not the Word of God to hold them accountable since they hadn't heard if from the workers.
So Randy decided we would "test" the meetings (we knew that they wanted to profess, so how was that testing? the meetings? As they said they would, they professed in meetings. Also, their son professed.
When they came to convention, they were introduced to Howard Mooney. Howard said he was glad that they had professed because they needed a plumber at that convention (the man was a plumber by trade). At age 19 and being in the work, I thought to myself that this was a strange reason to be delighted in someone professing. What about their salvation? The newly professing man was put in charge of making a pipe handrail for the workers to assist them in getting and and off the platform at Boring convention.
Divorced and Remarried (multiple) Relative
I had a relative that was divorced and remarried a few times. When he (my relative) asked about professing, he was told that it would be OK for him to profess and take part in meetings, since he hadn't professed before he divorced and remarried. What? The justification for their decision was that people who haven't professed are not considered to be able to "know" it is a wrong to divorce and remarry. This happened up in Washington. This shows at that time that there were different rules applied to previously professing people compared to people who had not yet professed.
Many Stories Related During My Truck Driving Years
When I was driving a semi-truck, I traveled the 48 contiguous states. I've been to meetings in almost every state of the United States. The conclusion from what I've seen is that 2x2s can divorce and remarry as long as they support the workers and their new spouse professes. You may be asked not to take part for a year or so. This is the punishment of the workers and people's obedience to them strengthens the workers' control over the friends. I've found (as with most 2x2 practices) that it's all about money, power and control of the older brothers, workers and their elders.
Divorce and Remarriage in Texas
When I lived in Texas, I was told by my Sunday morning meeting elder Byron Potter not to give my testimony about divorce and remarriage because there were people there in the meeting who had recently professed and were taking part who were divorced and remarried and he didn't want them offended.
And in Texas, Kelvin Naef told me that they (the Texas overseer and subsequently the workers) had changed their doctrine on divorce and remarriage ten years ago (it was year 1999 or 2000 when I talked with him) and that they were not going back. He refused to meet and discuss the issue. He told me it was a was a waste of time to go over it or read what it said in the Bible. He believed the Bible could be interpreted many ways and therefore it was a waste to involve it in discussions. Kelvin Naef also told me that it was "inappropriate" to talk about divorce and remarriage in gospel meetings. It was also from this experience with Kelvin Naef that helped me to leave the 2x2 cult in 2004.
Divorce and Remarriage in Oregon
In Oregon, I set up an appointment with Harold Bennett to talk with him. I didn't tell him what I wanted to talk about. He probably thought I was going to offer for the work again. He suggested lunch (of course to fill his belly at my expense). I met with Harold and his young male companion and over lunch I asked him to explain to me his teaching on divorce and remarriage. He told me that he could not because I was too young (I was mid 20's at the time, LOL), it was too complex (LOL) and that I didn't have the experience in life to be able to understand it. Then he quickly got up, asked his companion to leave with him before even finishing his lunch. He obviously didn't wanted to be embarrassed by such simple questions that revealed false religion in front of his young male companion. From what I've read of other's experiences with overseers and workers, this childish behavior is typical. At this age, I had a lot to think of as I finished the lunch on my own with two plates of partially uneaten food sitting across from me. Later, this provided me more evidence of their secretive ways and their disbelief in the Bible or God's authority over all matters. This helped me to leave the 2x2 religion, and later become a Christian.
Adultery OK if Person's Spirit is Right
I have been told by workers and elders that God's approval shows on people who divorce and remarry if their spirit is right. I've found, however, that a person has a right "spirit" if they idolize the workers, give them money, and have big homes for workers to stay in.
I have also found that if people divorce and remarry and are not in favor with the WORKERS, do not give them money and are contentious about this doctrinal issue, then they are not allowed to take part in meetings but may come to their gospel meetings. Why? It's my believe that is their hope that you will change your mind or that they can influence you, your spouse or your kids. When they sit in the workers' meetings, it demonstrates their hold over followers and goes to show that non-conformists were simply "unwilling" and that they know that they were "wrong" (hence their continued meeting attendance).
Even if you are professing and are therefore considered to know that divorce and remarriage is wrong, if you: have enough money, go to meetings, are subservient to and support the workers, then you are deemed to have the "spirit" (that they want you to have) and therefore must be blessed by God (since you have this spirit) so then divorce and remarriage is OK for you in your specific situation. This shows that the 2x2s are led by an evil spirit and don't believe that the Bible is the word of God. Again, the 2x2s are very spiritual, but it is not the spirit of God because their spirit doesn't believe in the Bible or the word of God.
Married - Home|
Come to Meetings
Divorce and Remarry
|To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me. - Jesus Christ speaking to Saul, see Act 26:18, see Salvation through Jesus Christ.|