CultureWatch

Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

Getting Rich From Busting Up Marriages

Apr 12, 2010

An American online “dating site” has just opened in Australia. It is actually a cheating site, and its motto is, “Life is short. Have an affair”. The Ashley Madison website encourages married couples to have affairs, claiming that this is in fact good for marriages.

The founder, Noel Biderman, claims that 18,000 Australians have already signed up. He says, “Having sex with a like-minded person is better than starting a relationship with a friend or someone in the workplace, or going on to singles sites or bars to meet people. No one has to get hurt this way.”

No one? Sorry Jack, but I am not buying this baloney. Cheating always hurts people. It hurts the one doing it, it hurts the one being cheated on, it hurts any children involved, and it hurts all of society. This clown is simply getting rich off the destruction of other people’s marriages.

And he is a stinking hypocrite to boot. He says that he is “a happily married man” with two children, and that his wife only reluctantly agreed to this business. So whether he is cheating or not, he is quite happy to encourage other couples to cheat.

Incredibly, he claims that “Cheaters still love their partners”. Sorry bub, but I am not buying that one either. Love is more than an emotion. It is a commitment to another person, willing them the highest good. That can never be achieved by breaking trust with them and cheating on them.

If you really love your spouse, you will not cheat on him or her. It is that simple. Cheating is a clear indication of lack of love. If a football player cheated, helping another team to win by throwing the game, could he still claim that he loves his team? I don’t think so.

This whole business is one ugly grubby attempt to make money off the misery of others. As Biderman admits, he’s made millions through this website. Now he wants to make more millions by busting up even more marriages here in Australia.

And what about all the children in these destroyed marriages? It is clear that he doesn’t give a rip about them either. And yet he has two of his own children. Does he love them? Would he be happy to see them become the product of a broken home?

This guy is sleaze city big time. What is worse, I just watched a TV news interview with the guy. The female newsreader simply treated it all as a joke. She didn’t ask of him any hard questions, and she just went through the interview in a flippant and cavalier fashion.

No wonder low life like this guy are allowed to get away with murder, when our mainstream media cannot even see the seriousness of it all. The MSM, like much of society, has simply lost its moral compass altogether. The moral freefall we are involved in shows no signs of levelling off.

American social commentator George Will once said that “the only question remaining about the decline of Western Civilization is the pace”. It is not so much a question of if it will happen but when it will happen. When you have hucksters like this profiteering from the breakdown of society’s most important institution, and without a whimper from the MSM, then you know we have pretty much lost our way.

President Ronald Reagan rightly noted, “Only our deep moral values and our strong social institutions can hold back the jungle and restrain the darker impulses of human nature.” It seems that both are in big decline nowadays. It is hoped that things can turn around before the jungle completely overtakes us.

www.heraldsun.com.au/news/national/aussie-desperate-for-affair-as-thousands-sign-up-for-ashleymadisoncom/story-e6frf7l6-1225852502872

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26 Responses to Getting Rich From Busting Up Marriages

  • If someone like Biderman wants to associate himself with something that could be described as TOTALLY evil, I wish he wouldn’t add insult to injury by claiming that his motive is really to save marriages. If this were true, then the marriages of the well named Tiger Woods and the even more accurately named Jesse James would be in great shape.
    Hollywood is an example of sleeping around and I wonder if too many of them are genuinely happy. Most of them are neurotic nuts, are very suspicious of their colleagues, who they usually despise, because they are jealous of them.
    In a radio interview I did with one of the actors, who appeared in the movie “The Godfather”, I asked him if he had close friends in the business, particularly seeing he was of Italian extraction, as were many of his fellow actors in the movie. He answered “No, because we are competitors”.
    Frank Bellet, Petrie Qld

  • Thank you Bill, once again for highlighting these subjects.
    The blind seem to drift to these sites, like moths to a light. Never considering their motives and is this kind of behaviour good for them or anyone else, surely many people will be hurt from this site.
    My opinion, i think the results could even cause death. I mean the person being cheated on, it could be the last straw for them and commit suicide.
    The only thing about all this, is this Biderman, he will wish he hadn’t done this and like many, have to try and explain to the lord, why in fact he did it. To make money?
    Daniel Kempton

  • The so-called heterosexuals, in breaking down the sexual barriers, during the permissive sixties have given the moral right not only to the homosexuals to claim their share of the action (to public acceptance of their sexual activities) but also to those behind them who in dark places engage in paedophilia, incest, polyamory, polygamy, exhibitionism and even bestiality. These groups are known for their lack of restraint and for their risk taking. First the heterosexuals have validated homosexuality and now the homosexual has beckoned the heterosexual into these darkened cupboards. Like a fire feeding off itself, heterosexuals are now encouraged to cast aside all restraint and seemingly outmoded inhibitions and to give full expression to their narcissistic instincts.

    Paul in Romans 1: 24-27 speaks directly into our society, whereby homosexuality is not just a sin, but His punishment and curse on us: “Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen. Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.”

    David Skinner, UK

  • Ever since the sixties, when sex became detached from the boundaries of marriage and family and from the morality and truth of the Judeo/Christian faith, it has become merely a recreational activity that can be practised in whatever form one wishes; but, like high explosive that is no longer confined by its steel casing, or a nuclear core that is withdrawn from its protective surrounds, it becomes a force for destruction when it is no longer bounded by the protective laws that used to surround marriage. It has resulted in the dehumanising and the reduction of the individual to being simply a lump of meat, to the misery of unwanted pregnancies, abortion on an industrial scale, an explosion of Sexually Transmitted Diseases, HIV, AIDS, rape, the continuing break up of the family and now teenage murders. So much for a “successful and progressive society.”
    David Skinner, UK

  • I saw this guy on Larry King Live the other day as well. The discussion topic was infidelity and Jeff Probst (or whatever the host of the American Survivor series’ name is) stood in for Larry. There was a psychologist who spoke sense, an ex-wife of some US celebrity who lost her husband because he was unfaithful and then this guy from the cheat site. The psychologist pointed out how destructive cheating and how real sex addiction is and exactly what the causes of it in society is: mainly because the current culture has an absolute misunderstanding of what love and intimacy is; the ex-wife seemed very forgiving yet realistic about the issues surrounding infidelity and then the cheat site guy took the “don’t blame me, I’m just providing a service to an already existing market/ don’t shoot the messenger” type stance. Worst of all, he spoke in a very sincere way as if he honestly believes he is serving society. Had Larry King been present I think he might have put him more on the spot but the harder questions did come from the other two participants though.

    Servaas Hofmeyr, South Africa

  • Even if all parties to the adultery including the betrayed spouse were all happy swingers and not offended is besides the point. It is still serious deadly sin.
    God has laws that are based on true love and faithfulness and so no one can speak of it from a man centred point of view. Christ is not only man but God, therefore His faithfulness to all the expanded dimensions of the ten commandments are binding upon us in love.
    To disobey is to be unloving. God is love.
    Michael Webb

  • Why am I not surprised? Please forgive me for my sarcasm – however I would hope that this joker reads the above passage and then he might think a little deeper about this whole sordid sorry affair (no pun untended!).
    Steve Davis

  • Michael Webb, absolutely. At the moment in Britain, politicians are busy trying to woo Christians to back their parties in the forthcoming elections. In particular Gordon Brown reduces the Bible to a social gospel, to the material dividends that Christianity has brought to Britain.

    There is no mention of the fact God tells us to be holy because he is holy. There is no mention of the need for righteouness or purity. There is no mention of the fact that man’s chief end is to glorify God.

    Were these politicians to say that becoming a Christian meant denying oneself, to take up one’s cross and suffer as Christ suffered, one wonder’s what the result would be? Who knows, national repentence!!!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orlquEsMTQc&feature=player_embedded

    David Skinner, UK

  • Wow. This service unashamedly falls in line with gay marriage advocates in the goal of completely redefining – and devaluing – natural marriage out of oblivion.

    The advertisements for the “dating” site themselves mock the traditional tennets of marriage as a life long, committed relationship of one man and one woman, to the exclusion of all others. The latter part, “to the exclusion of all others”, is – aside from the desire for members of the same sex to wed – the main element that gay marriage advocates find laughable. While I’m sure there are some gay marriage advocates who are fond of the “to the exclusion of all others” marriage clause, such advocates are in the very small minority. Most gay marriage advocates want open marriages.

    Here’s one of the commercials for the Ashley Madison webiste:

    AshleyMadison.com commercial

    And as for Mr Biderman’s closing comment in the article, re: Tiger Woods’s marriage: he used the word “might”, indicating he can’t be sure that his service saves marriages, or even that helping to save marriages is a beneficial offshoot of his website (hint: it ain’t); he also implies that secrecy is the key in a long-lasting marriage – frankly, I’d like to see his research on that.

    Lastly, given his service, why marry at all? At the end of the day, if marriage is so hum-drum, oughtn’t he best be advocating people not marry and just use his site to hook-up? That way, people wouldn’t need to keep any niggling secrets from their pesky would-be spouses.

    Mathew Hamilton, Victoria

  • Matthew, looking at what gays themselves say, it seems that life-long commitment merely means life-long companionship, a commitment to support one another emotionally, leaving each of the partners free to treat sex as an extra curriculum activity, to be conducted outside the partnership. But what if life-long commitment also means the rearing of children together, not adopted children or those produced through IVF, but their own?

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2009/feb/07/family4

    David Skinner, UK

  • Bill,
    Adultery defiles the marital relationship between husband and wife. It can only weaken the relationship, not make it any stronger. God hates divorce but yet does permit divorce on grounds of adultery. It means God hates adultery. He knows adultery is an instant destroyer of the sacred marriage covenant. More than one person will get hurt. It’s the easiest way which the devil uses to destroy family units.
    Barry Koh

  • I think the saddest part about this is that the guy actually has a point when he says “don’t shoot the messenger”. At least in part. I don’t think excuses his promotion of evil in any way and I would quite happily shoot the messenger, but like all these things the only reason this guy is able to make money off of this is that a market exists for it. He is at the end of the day filling a market niche that sadly does exist.

    None of this excuses the evil nature of his enterprise, just as the fact that there exists a market for under age sex slaves doesn’t excuse the men who seek to profit by catering to that market.

    Still, it does raise the question. What does it say about our culture that such a market exists and that a guy like this can make money of catering to this market? I’m realistic enough to admit that adultery has always gone on but it is deeply depressing that what has changed is that the stigma of it has disappeared, or at least lessened to the point that this sort of behavior can be tolerated.

    Of course like most of these things, this is just a symptom of the problem and not the problem in itself. How do we reattach a stigma to this sort of behavior? Or to sexual profligacy in general? Apparently the disease and wreckage it leaves in its wake is insufficient (perhaps we just haven’t experienced enough of it yet as a culture)

    Jason Rennie

  • Hi Barry
    Whereas I totally agree with your sentiment in terms of the harm adultery can do to a marriage, and am appalled at what this guy is offering as a ‘service,’ I would disagree that God permits divorce on the grounds of adultery.

    The so-called ‘get-out’ clauses in Matthew are omitted in Mark or Luke. Furthermore, the Greek word ‘porneia’ used in Matthew has many meanings and there is a level of theology being imposed in the versions that translate it as adultery. For what it’s worth, there is a completely separate Greek word for adultery which would have made the clauses far clearer had it been used.

    When we consider what we do to God every day in our relationship with Him, we can get an understanding of what grace, and more to the point, forgiveness is supposed to mean and also what we are commanded to practice. We’re commanded to forgive – and not just once but 7 times 70 times.

    I should stress that I’m not trying to water down adultery nor, provide justification for it, or minimise its potentially devastating effects – but I would contend the only New Testament grounds for divorce is when the unbelieving spouse walks away. Equally, there is only one unforgivable sin – and that is not adultery!

    Having run a ministry for divorcees for a number of years, I have counselled countless singles and am fully aware of the devastating impact of adultery to a marriage. However, if the church was to teach more basics about Christian character (and some basic theology!) rather than trying to ‘be relevant’ or absorb worldly principles, there would be less Christians falling into adultery. Equally, if the church teaches compassion, then we should also be prepared, and able, to restore those who commit this particular sin.

    Roger Birch

  • Thankyou Bill, from me too, for highlighting this.

    Just a thought which came to my layman mind… In a court, a divorce can be attained due to adultery, which means that legally adultery is considered to be wrong… so then can’t there be any restraint brought on this website which is publicly advertising to cheat on one’s sposes?

    Saju Varghese

  • Thanks Saju

    Yes it is a good question and worth exploring. But I am not sure if adultery is a criminal offence anymore in most Western countries. Anyone else have some thoughts here?

    Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch

  • Thank you Saju,
    Amazing really isn’t it. Here is where we need a lawyer of some sort. Maybe it comes under one of those gray areas like radar detectors in cars to pick up the location of speed cameras or is it in the wording of his statements such as, im (helping) married people?
    Sand is heavy and rock is heavier still, but provocation from a fool is heavier than both. Proverbs.
    Daniel Kempton

  • Bill.

    What is so shameful about that newsreader going through the interview so flippantly and asking no hard questions is the very likely fact that it was a paid thing.

    She probably wasn’t allowed to ask any hard questions because he was paying the network for the “advertorial”.

    Happens all the time.

    Alister Cameron

  • Sadly, the passing of the Family Law Act back in 1975 has removed adultery or any other bad behaviour as a ground for divorce in Australia. Any marriage can now be formally dissolved on one ground only – that the husband and wife have lived “separately” (which can include living in separate beds under the same roof!) for 12 months. The Family Law Act was introduced by the late Senator Lionel Murphy when he was federal Attorney-General in the Whitlam government, apparently because Murphy wanted to divorce his first wife after having an affair with a beautiful younger model. His wife believed in the permanence of marriage and would not divorce him, even on the ground of adultery. As the guilty party under the old Matrimonial Causes Act, Murphy could not apply for a divorce except on the ground of five years’ separation. He thought that was too long – so now we have Murphy’s Law, which has been a disaster.

    Divorce rates soared following the new law. They have now plateaued somewhat, but part of the reason is that the Family Law Act has devalued marriage so fewer people are marrying. The law no longer protects innocent spouses.

    Ros Phillips

  • Hi Roger,
    Thanks for your explanation. My comments based on Mt 5: 32 and Mt 19:9 was mainly to emphasise that God hates infidelity just as much as He hates divorce, not so much that infidelity is a ‘valid’ reason for divorce. Marriage is a sacred comittment between a man and a woman and is for life, till death do us part (Mt 19 : 6). I fully agree with you that every effort must be made for husband and wife to forgive and reconcile with one another, for their own sake and that of the family and most important of all, to honor God. There are different views on the subject of divorce but the trend in churches today is to treat the subject lightly and fail to teach that God HATES sin and adultery and that God ADHORS divorce. So is it any wonder that infidelity and divorces are such common happenings in churches today, even among pastors and leaders.
    Barry Koh

  • G’day Bill,
    It’s not surprising that a dating site such as this one finds a receptive market in our sex obsessed ethos. Look at the exposure recently received on Tiger Woods and now on Sandra Bullock’s misfortune.
    But it was refreshing last night to see a Thai editor say that he does not report personal issues. He was being explicitly provoked by a western journalist to comment on why he had not reported on the promiscuous behaviour of some Thai royalty.
    How far we have fallen! – and will continue to fall if we are not arrested by the fear of God. Not unlike the Laodiceans, we need to be rebuked; keep stirring.
    Tony Morreau

  • Hang in there, Bill. Many in the USA are just out enjoying the post Easter, Spring weather and getting ready for final exams and summer schedules. Others cling to the ‘it is a shame to speak of the things done in secret’ but not so secret these days. I noticed most if not all your blog respondents on this one are men. In one sense that is good as this opportunist apparently is a man. Most single parent struggling situation is the mother alone with the children. It would be great to hear from some of these as well. As always, your perspectives are very close to mine. You are not alone. Thanks.
    Joe Whitchurch, Indianna, USA

  • Thanks Joe

    Keep up your good work as well.

    Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch

  • “Life is short. Have an affair” or rewording the lie “There is no eternal life in heaven, so fornicate”

    I am sure Noel Biderman will end up divorced because he treats marriage with contempt “what you preach you will reap”

    Professing ministers/elders plus others who allow divorce, plus preach and teach that remarriage (adultery) is acceptable are also treating marriage with contempt. Creational Covenant Marriage is a moral absolute.

    Matthew 5:32 and Matthew 19:9 – While the other scriptures (Mar 10:11, 12; Luk 16:18, Rom 7:2, 3; 1Cor 7:11, 39) are very clear on divorce and remarriage to most people Mat 5:32 and Mat 19:9 leave them puzzled.
    But once you are clear that Mat 19:9 is a exclusion to divorce and Mat 5:32 is a exception to blame not an exception to divorce and remarry it all fits together like a puzzel.

    Watch the awesome marriage testimony recovery from adultery of Jeff & Cheryl Scruggs at http://www.WiseReaction.org

    Brother Dean Taylor has written a fantastic small booklet on Marriage, Divorce & Remarriage download free at http://www.WiseReaction.org

    Michael Whennen

  • Hi Roger

    I understand you wrote an award winning thesis on Divorce/Remarriage. I would be very interested to read a copy, and perhaps make it available for others to read.

    MIchael Whennen, WiseReaction

  • Hi Michael
    Sorry, I have only just seen this post.

    My thesis is now 11 years old and I have developed my theology quite significantly since then writing several theology, ethics and NT interpretation courses from a creationist perspective. One article on Christology was recently published on the CMI site.

    I will forward my thesis to you but would prefer to bring it up to date before it was published more widely.

    My basic views, however, have not changed and the thrust of what I wrote back then is still valid. As such, I disagree with your statement above that “Professing ministers/elders plus others who allow divorce, plus preach and teach that remarriage (adultery) is acceptable are also treating marriage with contempt.”

    As I indicated in an earlier post, I am very anti-divorce and am very pro-marriage and my biblical interpretation is from a very conservative, creationist perspective.

    However, I also strongly believe there is a pastoral perspective that needs to be included into ones basic theology, which again, I believe, is fully in line with biblical teaching. We always need to seek biblical truth but be careful not to step over what can be a very fine line and become Pharisaic.

    My personal theological perspective is that man is in a fallen state and I do not believe in perfectionism. I strongly believe in the biblical teachings on grace and forgiveness but without crossing another very fine line into ‘greasy grace’.

    A brief response here can easily be misinterpreted and my 15,000 word thesis expands the issue far more, but my belief is, as per my earlier post, that there is only one biblical ground for divorce in the NT, namely when the unbelieving spouse leaves (1 Cor 7:15). I also agree with your comment that Matt 19:9 is an exclusion to divorce, not permission for it.

    However, given the NT teaching of grace, forgiveness and restitution, things are not always quite so black and white as we might like to think.

    Furthermore, I would suggest that Deuteronomy 24:1-4 indicates that the OT Law (when covenant was probably understood slightly better than it is today) catered for both divorce AND remarriage. By implication, remarriage in the OT was NOT adultery. My reading of the exclusion in that passage of not being able to remarry ones first wife is to prevent the legalism that was rampant in Pharisaic circles which could, by a twisted legal argument, effectively legitimise adultery by having what amounts to a ‘temporary’ marriage (akin to some Islamic teaching on Mut’ah).

    Moving back into the NT and extending the concept of grace, forgiveness and restoration, I would also cite 1Cor 7:9 “But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.”

    Space – and Bill’s rules! – precludes a full exegesis of this passage, but suffice to say that I believe Paul here is recognising the problems faced by divorcees who have previously become sexually active during their married years. He is looking at ‘reality’ whereby other sins can creep in for people finding themselves in that situation.

    Also, it is important to realise that the Greek word translated above as “they should marry” which sounds fairly weak in the English is in fact a 3rd person plural imperative aorist, something that doesn’t translate easily into English as we only have a 2nd person imperative. However, simplisticly, it is saying “If you cannot exercise self-control, you “MUST remarry.”

    I believe the NT teachings are VERY strongly anti-divorce and it is incumbent on pastors etc to do everything they can to keep marriages together. However, the Bible is also anti-sin, but, equally, the NT is all about grace, forgiveness and restitution. If not, we’d all be dead!

    So, whereas the Bible may be anti-divorce, it can also be pro-remarriage! However, this again should be dealing with an extremely small minority of Christians who find themselves in this situation, not the vast numbers we have today.

    As I said, a response this brief is open to criticism and misinterpretation, and there are many other verses that need to be harmonised into a theological unity (which I believe I have done in my thesis). However, suffice to say for this forum that I hold an extremely high view of Scripture and marriage, but disagree that anyone teaching remarriage is wrong is somehow holding marriage in contempt.

    Roger Birch

  • Why not call this service “marriage abortion” – it’s certain to kill marriages, but apparently most people think that people should be able to do whatever they please. Apparently, from the website “Public opinion is clearly in favor of a free and democratic society that lets people do as they wish we should still have the right as a free society to make up our own minds”.
    That same argument is used by the abortionists to advocate murder. It seems appropriate this guy uses it to advocate the destruction of marriage.
    It seems to me too many people have forgotten the vows they made on their wedding day.
    Marcus Anderson

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