So, I want to ask a question like this:
Q: Was Hosea's wife Gomer faithful after she was redeemed?
The impetus for this question is advice oriented in nature (believe it or not.) My counselor and I wrestling with a serious issue in my life - whether or not I really can go through with my divorce.
The counselor's contention is that Hosea was trapped in a bad marriage, but that God had called him to this. The counselor goes on to suggest that this is a pattern to follow - namely that if God is God, He has the right even to overrule one's "happiness" in marriage, no matter how abusive the marriage or how unfaithful the spouse. The obvious implication, of course, is that if Hosea could stay in a marriage that was horrible - even for the rest of his life, knowing that it wouldn't get better, I should too.
My contention is the opposite - namely that to force a person to remain in a situation is inconsistent with God's character in so many other ways. that said, I want to give the hypothesis the maxim benefit of the doubt, and build the case as strongly as possible before discarding it or accepting it.
What I would be seeking to do in asking the question is evaluating an argument that would be made in counseling.
Put another way, I want to know if it is both biblical and relevant to the situation at hand.
If accurate, it would be helpful to others. If not, I suppose even its existence shows that it was considered.
What bothers me, of course, is that the motivation really is pastoral advice in nature - but it doesn't run afoul of the worst parts of pastoral advice.
It isn't too localized, because it answers something that others could consider.
It isn't replacing the advice of a counselor or pastor - indeed, it is actually supplementing it.
It is biblical in nature. It is asking a real question about the text and looking for material to evaluate the case.
So, is this on topic?
I realize that the question could be framed in ways that make the actual situation irrelevant - which is why this is sort of testing the bounds of pastoral advice. I've always used the question, "If the "I" is removed, does the question still make sense?" to judge. I can clearly remove the "I" - but I want to be up front with my motives if I do.
Trust me, I hate divorce. I can't believe I'm in that place. In chat, I think I've mentioned the circumstances - and sure I bear responsibility. I'm aware, and I hate what I'm doing. I also don't know how to live in that marriage any longer. I am sorry.