If the unbeliever leaves, they are no longer bound (1 Cor. 7:15)

“But if the unbelieving partner

Desires to separate,

Let it be so.

In such a case

The brother

Or sister

Is not bound.

God has called us

To peace.”

εἰ δὲ ὁ ἄπιστος χωρίζεται, χωριζέσθω· οὐ δεδούλωται ὁ ἀδελφὸς ἢ ἡ ἀδελφὴ ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις· ἐν δὲ εἰρήνῃ κέκληκεν ὑμᾶς ὁ Θεός.

Paul said that if the unbelieving partner (εἰ δὲ ὁ ἄπιστος) desires to separate (χωρίζεται), let him or her be separated (χωριζέσθω).  In such a case, the believing brother (ὁ ἀδελφὸς) or believing sister (ἢ ἡ ἀδελφὴ) is not bound (οὐ δεδούλωται) to the marriage (ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις).  God (ὁ Θεός) has called us (κέκληκεν ὑμᾶς) to live in peace (ἐν δὲ εἰρήνῃ).  Paul said that this was another case, if the unbelieving partner does not consent to stay with the believing brother or sister.  If the unbeliever decides to leave, then the believer, whether husband or wife, would no longer be bound by the laws of marriage.  After all, God has called us to live in peace.  This later became known as the Pauline privilege.  In other words, a mixed marriage can be dissolved if the non-Christian person decides to leave the marriage.  Faith is more important than the marriage itself.  Does religion matter in a marriage?

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