You may remember an account in the Bible of Jesus' meeting with a Samaritan woman at a well near a town called Sychar. (It's in John 4, if you need to refresh your memory.) When Christians recount this story, the fact that this unnamed woman had five husbands and was currently living with a man who was not her husband, is pointed out as proof that this woman was a sinner. After all, the Bible says divorce is a sin, right. And praise is given to Jesus for even speaking to this woman.
By picking out and highlight her past on a national level, CBS managed to both question her Christianity and simultaneously paint Christians as hypocrites. Oh, they were careful enough not to do it in the article. But making her marital history the focus of the title, they made a subject that was not really relevant to her fight to live as her conscience dictated, suddenly relevant. At least in the eyes of the world.
If you read the stories carefully and without prejudice, you glean these details. At the age of 18, Davis married her first husband. (Mack dug up and published all four of her marriage licenses.) Her second marriage wasn't until she was 30. Upon her third marriage she was 42 and roughly a year later she remarried her second husband. Without these details you could assume (and people do) that she thought nothing of the institution of marriage and was merrily wedding and discarding husbands on a whim.
For this the world has mocked both her stated beliefs on marriage and her Christianity. And like the Samaritan woman Jesus talked to, the world, Christians included, have judged her harshly while only knowing the bare bones of her relationship histories.
No one has considered why these marriages were ended. And if Mrs. Davis is wise (and yes, she is married right now) she will continue to consider her marriage nobody's business. Marriages can end for all kinds of reasons, and in this day and age, even in the church, they do.
Spouses commit adultery, violating the marriage covenant. Abuses happen, harming the marriage. People make poor choices as to whom to marry in the first place. People are even encouraged, in our day, to leave marriages that just aren't making them "happy." And we are all 'people.' We've all made decisions, or had decisions made for us, that turn the course of our lives.
I'm sure the Samaritan woman never said when she was young, "What I'm really hoping for in life is 5 failed marriages followed by a live-in lover." That she believed in marriage strongly enough to continue to seek it as a course for her life tells us something about her. And it must be noted that she believed in God, followed the light of the Scriptures as she understood it, and was looking forward to the Messiah even before she met Jesus. She wasn't a sinful pagan who got "saved."
What both news stories on Davis point out, but fail to highlight, is that when Mrs. Davis came to her faith in 2011, it was two years after she reunited with and remarried her present husband, Joe. I would like to remind us all that it was at the moment of salvation that all her past sins were forgiven (by God. Both non-Christians and Christians seem at this point unwilling to forgive her).
When Peter challenged the new church's detractors in Acts 3, He told them, "Repent, then, and turn to God, so that you sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord..." I would like to remind my brothers and sisters in Christ that, as far as God is concerned, Kimberley Davis' sins prior to her salvation have been wiped out. They are off the heavenly record. Ka-put! And it is not our place to drag them out in the eyes of the world and press charges against her faith.
Kimberley Davis deserves our support and prayers because she, knowing her past and possibly knowing it could be revealed, still would not deny her God. Would you?