"Can I be a Christian and a Divorce Lawyer?"

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SharperIron's picture
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"Can I be a Christian and a Divorce Lawyer?"

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“In a fallen world, do we need divorce lawyers? I would argue, yes.”

Ed Vasicek's picture
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Good Question, Good Answer

Yes, sadly we have to deal with what is, not what should be.  Well done.

"The Midrash Detective"

Chip Van Emmerik's picture
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So Ed, using your rationale,

So Ed, using your rationale, we should also have Christians who are bartenders since drunkenness is also so rampant in society today.

 

If divorce is an activity Christians should avoid, then why would we condone those involved in its progression? Why can't a Christian lawyer find other avenues to use his training and skill, and leave this particular section of the field to the world?

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

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Chip, drunkenness is not a

Chip, drunkenness is not a necessary part of life with biblical guidance. Divorce is. Moore answered your question directly by pointing to the necessity of protection.

The question for you is, when a spouse files for divorce from a Christian, does that Christian have a right to helpful guidance and protection through the divorce proceedings? I think they do (and so does Moore) and I think a Christian lawyer can do that. After all, they (should) have some scruples and principles that make them a better attorney.

Chip Van Emmerik's picture
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Larry wrote: Chip,

Larry wrote:

Chip, drunkenness is not a necessary part of life with biblical guidance. Divorce is. 

Larry, how is divorce a necessary part of life?

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

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Larry, how is divorce a

Larry, how is divorce a necessary part of life?

To quote Jesus, "because of the hardness of your hearts." Simply put, no matter how godly one spouse might be, the other might be determined to divorce no matter what. Does that godly spouse deserve protection in the court of law?

Out of curiosity Chip, did you read Moore's article? He makes an excellent case that you seem completely unaware of.

 

Ed Vasicek's picture
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Thoughts

Chip Van Emmerik wrote:

So Ed, using your rationale, we should also have Christians who are bartenders since drunkenness is also so rampant in society today.

 

If divorce is an activity Christians should avoid, then why would we condone those involved in its progression? Why can't a Christian lawyer find other avenues to use his training and skill, and leave this particular section of the field to the world?

 

Chip, if there were such things as "drink-limit laws," then yes.

With no-fault divorce and sinful people trying to take advantage and get all they can at another's expense, divorce lawyers are really needed.  The problem, though, is that many divorce lawyers assume their client is in the right and will do all that they can to get what they can.

"The Midrash Detective"

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There are times...

Although getting divorced for just any reason is wrong in the eyes of God, there is one situation, in which a Christian is allowed to divorce; and that is when a person's spouse has been unfaithful. Then a Christian may require the services of a divorce lawyer. If a spouse has been unfaithful, he/she should not be allowed to take advantage of the other person(financially, materially), or take custody of the children.

Ed Vasicek's picture
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The Point

The point we need to remember is that people who have no intention of getting divorced can have a spouse who chooses to divorce him or her, and we cannot stop it.

"The Midrash Detective"

Rob Fall's picture
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Concur

And these folks are in need of representation and protection from the sharks.

Ed Vasicek wrote:

The point we need to remember is that people who have no intention of getting divorced can have a spouse who chooses to divorce him or her, and we cannot stop it.

Hoping to shed more light than heat..

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considering john the

considering john the baptist's response to the repentant tax collectors and soldiers in luke 3, i would say a believer who maintains an exceptional level of integrity can do many jobs rejected by the religious establishment without compromising their faith.

Jim's picture
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Lawyer story

Back in 1980 I lead an immigrant from El Salvador to the Lord. She was baptized and joined our church. 

Several years ago she contacted me and told me about how her husband had abandoned her for another woman. He controlled all of their finances and she only had her small income. 

I called back East and contacted a Christian attorney who had been my friend for many years. 

He represented her and through discovery was able to ascertain the assets the woman's husband had hidden from her. Divorce ultimately did result but the woman was well-represented and received a fair settlement. 

-------

I've had several opportunities myself to hire attorneys

  • Several times to write wills. (Although today I think Legal Zoom would be as effective and less expensive)
  • Once to represent my son who ran afoul of the law
  • And just this year to represent me when I was arrested for expired license plate tabs. 

I love lawyer jokes such as:

Q: Why did God make snakes just before lawyers?
A: To practice.

But I value the profession. We have a handful of S/I members who are lawyers  . 

Chip Van Emmerik's picture
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Ed Vasicek wrote:The point

Ed Vasicek wrote:

The point we need to remember is that people who have no intention of getting divorced can have a spouse who chooses to divorce him or her, and we cannot stop it.

I understand this Ed. However, do you think this represents a significant number of the cases in which Christians are involved in divorce? Even if every case or professing Christians getting a divorce had one party who was biblically faultless for the situation according to your standards of acceptability, you would still only have 50%. My point is that a Christian lawyer will not have enough of these cases to build a practice. What do you suppose a Christian divorce lawyer is going to do with the rest of his time? Are you suggesting he investigate every case before taking any, and only take the cases where he believes the person he is representing is in the right morally, or should he take all comers because he finds a certain percentage are in the right biblically and need help? 

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

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Answering Chip's questions

"My point is that a Christian lawyer will not have enough of these cases to build a practice."

Actually, Chip, you're completely wrong.  A friend of mine -- a wise, gentle, godly Christian attorney -- has spent several decades representing only the non-initiating spouse, mostly Christians, in divorce cases.  He has more work than he can handle.  I have referred more cases to him over the years than I have referred cases of all other types combined.  Unfortunately, two years ago I became his client, too.  Ironically, the attorney representing my Christian wife -- who sought divorce without biblical grounds and contrary to pastoral and Christian marriage counselor advice -- was himself a well-regarded Christian.  That's the Christian attorney who has some explaining to do in light of 1 Cor. 6 and biblical teaching on divorce.  In addition, that attorney's litigation strategy was to abuse the system and to overreach wildly on financial issues, among other things.  I am thankful for my Christian attorney's protection legally, but even more so for his wise, godly counsel in the face of provocation and unfairness from the other side.  I believe God is glorified by my friend/attorney's work.  I would have a hard time seeing how the same is true of his Christian opponent's work.