Will God allow me to divorce my abusive husband? Would it be a sin if I remarried?
Divorce and emarriage are major pastoral issues facing every church. Yet when we turn to Scripture for guidance, we often hear conflicting messages about its teachings. Some say divorce is never allowed. Others say it is permitted under certain circumstances. Some say remarriage is never allowed, while others teach that it is permitted under certain circumstances. If divorce is only allowed for adultery and if remarriage is forbidden, then many believers are placed in a desperate situation. But what does the Bible really teach?
Making use of new research into the background literature of the Bible, David Instone-Brewer shows that biblical teaching is actually consistent and not subject to conflicting interpretations. A consistent and not subject to conflicting interpretations. A consistent and informed interpretation of the relevant texts shows that the original hearers of these teachings would understand that:
Jesus and Paul emphasized that divorce should be avoided if at all possible.
First-century Jewish men and women could get divorced for neglect or abuse as well as for adultery. Jesus did not reject these grounds and Paul specifically affirmed them.
In the first century, remarriage was the right of every divorcee, and neither Jesus nor Paul taught otherwise.
David Instone-Brewer shows how, when properly understood, the New Testament provides faithful, realistic and wise guidance of crucial importance and practical help for the church today.