In 1958 the newly-formed UPCUSA adopted the following text, without Scripture proofs, to replace Chapter 24 of the Confession.

Chapter 24. Of Marriage and Divorce.

1. Christian marriage is an institution ordained of God, blessed by our Lord Jesus Christ, established and sanctified for the happiness and welfare of mankind, into which spiritual and physical union one man and one woman enter, cherishing a mutual esteem and love, bearing with each other's infirmities and weaknesses, comforting each other in trouble, providing in honesty and industry for each other and for their household, praying for each other, and living together the length of their days as heirs of the grace of life.

2. Because the corruption of man is apt unduly to put asunder those whom God hath joined together in marriage, and because the Church is concerned with the establishment of marriage in the Lord as Scripture sets it forth, and with the present penitence as well as with the past innocence or guilt of those whose marriage has been broken; therefore as a breach of that holy relation may occasion divorce, so remarriage after a divorce granted on grounds explicitly stated in Scripture or implicit in the gospel of Christ may be sanctioned in keeping with his redemptive gospel, when sufficient penitence for sin and failure is evident, and a firm purpose of and endeavor after Christian marriage is manifest.

The following revised text was adopted by the PCUS shortly before its union with the UPCUSA, and is included with the above in the new PC(USA) Book of Confessions.

1. Marriage is a union between one man and one woman, designed of God to last so long as they both shall live.a

a. Gen 2:23-24; 1 Cor 7:2; 1 Cor 7:39; Mat 19:4-6; Eph 5:28; Eph 5:31; Eph 5:33; 1 Cor 13:8; 1 Cor 13:13; Mat 5:31-32; Mark 10:5-9; Rom 7:2-3.

2. Marriage is designed for the mutual help of husband and wife;a for the safeguarding, undergirding, and development of their moral and spiritual character;b for the propagation of children and the rearing of them in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.c

a. Gen 2:18; Gen 2:24. • b. Gen 1:27-28; Eph 5:22-23; Col 3:18-19; Gen 2:18-25; 1 Cor 7:3-5; 1 Cor 7:9; 1 Cor 7:36. • c. Gen 1:27-28; Gen 9:1; Mal 2:15; Mat 18:5-6; Mat 18:10; Mat 18:14; Mat 19:14; Eph 6:1-4; Col 3:20-21; Mark 10:13-16; Luke 18:15-17.

3. All persons who are able with judgment to give their consent may marry,a except within the limits of blood relationship forbidden by Scripture,b and such marriages are valid before God in the eyes of the church.c But no marriage can be fully and securely Christian in spirit or in purpose unless both partners are committed to a common Christian faith and to a deeply shared intention of building a Christian home. Evangelical Christians should seek as partners in marriage only persons who hold in common a sound basis of evangelical faith.d

a. Gen 1:27-28. • b. Mark 6:18; 1 Cor 5:1; Lev 18:6-18. • c. Mark 1:30; John 2:1-2; 1 Tim 5:14; Heb 13:4; 1 Cor 7:7; 1 Cor 7:36; 1 Cor 9:5; 1 Tim 4:3. • d. 1 Cor 7 (especially verse 39); 2 Cor 6:14-15.

4. Marriage for the Christian has religious as well as civil significance.a The distinctive contribution of the church in performing the marriage ceremony is to affirm the divine institution of marriage;b to invoke God's blessing upon those who enter into the marital relationship in accordance with his word;c to hear the vows of those who desire to be married; and to assure the married partners of God's grace within their new relationship.d

a. Prov 18:22; Mat 19:6; Eph 5:29-30; Eph 5:32; Mark 10:9; Mark 10:11-12. • b. Gen 1:27-28. • c. Mark 10:9. • d. Eph 5:22-23.

5. It is the divine intention that persons entering the marriage covenant become inseparably united, thus allowing for no dissolution save that caused by the death of either husband or wife.a However, the weakness of one or both partners may lead to gross and persistent denial of the marriage vows so that marriage dies at the heart and the union becomes intolerable; yet only in cases of extreme, unrepented-of, and irremediable unfaithfulness (physical or spiritual) should separation or divorce be considered. Such separation or divorce is accepted as permissible only because of the failure of one or both of the partners, and does not lessen in any way the divine intention for indissoluble union.b

a. Gen 2:23-24; Mat 5:31-32; Mark 10:5-9; Rom 7:2-3; 1 Cor 7:2; 1 Cor 7:10-11; 1 Cor 7:39; Eph 5:28; Eph 5:31; Eph 5:33; Mat 19:4-9; 1 Cor 13:4-13. • b. Mark 10:4-9; 1 Cor 7:12-13; 1 Cor 7:15; Mat 19:7-9.

6. The remarriage of divorced persons may be sanctioned by the church, in keeping with the redemptive gospel of Christ, when sufficient penitence for sin and failure is evident, and a firm purpose of and endeavor after Christian marriage is manifested.a

a. 2 Sam 12:13; Neh 9:17; Psa 32:5; Psa 130:4; Mat 12:31a; Mat 21:31-32; John 8:3; John 8:11; Rom 3:23; Gal 6:1; 1 Tim 2:4; Heb 7:25; 1 John 1:9; 1 John 2:1-2; Luke 7:36-50; Luke 15:11-32; John 3:16-17; Rom 10:9-10.

7. Divorced persons should give prayerful thought to discover if God's vocation for them is to remain unmarried, since one failure in this realm raises serious question as to the rightness and wisdom of undertaking another union.a

a. Mat 5:31-32; 1 Cor 7:10-11; 1 Cor 7:20; 1 Cor 7:32-35; Mark 10:11; Luke 16:18.