A wife should not divorce her unbelieving husband (1 Cor. 7:13)

“If any woman

Has a husband

Who is an unbeliever,

And he consents

To live with her,

She should not divorce him.”

καὶ γυνὴ ἥτις ἔχει ἄνδρα ἄπιστον, καὶ οὗτος συνευδοκεῖ οἰκεῖν μετ’ αὐτῆς, μὴ ἀφιέτω τὸν ἄνδρα.

Paul said that if any woman (καὶ γυνὴ) has a husband (ἥτις ἔχει ἄνδρα) who is an unbeliever (ἄπιστον), but he consents (καὶ οὗτος συνευδοκεῖ) to live with her (οἰκεῖν μετ’ αὐτῆς), she should not divorce him (μὴ ἀφιέτω τὸν ἄνδρα).  Only the Pauline letters used this word οἰκεῖν, that means to inhabit or to dwell with.  Now Paul continued to give some pastoral advice about mixed marriages.  If a believing Christian woman was married to an unbelieving or pagan man, should she divorce him?  Paul responded that as long as he consented to live and stay with her, she should not send him away or divorce him.  Paul had the same advice for the believing sisters as he had for the believing brothers.  Do not divorce your unbelieving spouse as long he or she agrees to live with them.  This was an implicit consent to marriages between Christians and people with other non-Christian beliefs.  Perhaps Paul thought a conversion of the non-Christian man to a Christian belief was possible.  Do you know anyone who is in a mixed religious marriage situation?

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