Divorce has always been a tough topic for me as a pastor. There are several different ways to interpret what the Bible says about divorce and remarriage, ranging from no divorce and remarriage allowed to it being allowed in certain situations to it being allowed in any situation.
I’ll be honest and say that I’ve struggled greatly over the years of what is right and wrong. I want to to biblical, but at the same time sensitive to people who have come through hard marriages.
What we’re looking at in this passage is what Paul says about divorce. You’ll notice that he addresses two different situations. In the first, he addresses Christians married to other Christians, whom he is more tough on.
Then, in verse 12, he says, “to the rest,” meaning the rest of the believers in the church who are married. These are believers who are married to unbelievers. To them he has something different to say. In the end, however, his goal is keeping marriages together. Let’s read the text—
10 And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from her husband: 11 But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried, or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife.
12 But to the rest speak I, not the Lord: If any brother hath a wife that believeth not, and she be pleased to dwell with him, let him not put her away. 13 And the woman which hath an husband that believeth not, and if he be pleased to dwell with her, let her not leave him. 14 For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband: else were your children unclean; but now are they holy.
15 But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart. A brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases: but God hath called us to peace. 16 For what knowest thou, O wife, whether thou shalt save thy husband? or how knowest thou, O man, whether thou shalt save thy wife? (1 Corinthians 7:10–16) Continue reading