No matter what church you attend, you’ve probably heard that about half of Christian marriages end in divorce. The pastor citing this statistic probably had a good motive—-namely, that we take seriously the covenant of marriage. But as Glenn Stanton recently clarified for TGC in his most recent FactChecker column, the statistic isn’t true. Christians divorce significantly less often than their unbelieving neighbors if they observe their faith by attending church, studying the Bible, and praying.

Stanton, director for family formation studies at Focus on the Family, joined Mark Mellinger and me for our second Going Deeper with TGC podcast to answer several of your lingering questions about divorce and bad statistics. Many of you who read his article wondered how researchers identify non-practicing or nominal conservative Protestants, who do in fact divorce at distressingly high rates. I also ask him why evangelicals in particular so eagerly quote statistics that put us in a bad light and reflect poorly on the God who saved us. Other topics of discussion with Stanton include marriage as a gospel icon, practical steps to protect your marriage, and warning signs that a marriage will end even before it begins.