I’m reading the novel, A Secret of the Universe by Stephen Gibson. Adultery, and the ancient definition of the same, came up in the chapter I just finished. Then, during Sunday school yesterday, we went over the Ten Commandments. So, anyway, I was interested in exactly what this means:

You shall not commit adultery. Exodus 20:14.

According to Gibson’s character in the book, adultery is a property crime.

As a lawyer, I know the first thing to do is see if the code defines its terms. This is from Deuteronomy:

If a man is found sleeping with another man’s wife, both the man who slept with her and the woman must die. Deut. 22:22.

Wikipedia says that this defines adultery as when a married woman has sex with someone other than her husband, and that she and the man with whom she has sex are guilty. Although, a married man sleeping with an unmarried woman is not guilty of adultery. I’m not sure.

Also, here’s what Jesus says,

You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. Matt. 5:27-28.

Jesus didn’t say if you look lustfully at a married woman.

I told the kids (5-12 years old) adultery was when married people break the promise they made to each other when they got married. One of the kids asked about divorce, and I told him that adultery wasn’t about divorce. I said adultery was when they broke the promise while they were still married. I think that’s the main point.


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