The book of Malachi 2:16 says( “For I hate divorce,” says the LORD, the God of Israel. “He who divorces his wife covers his garment with violence,” says the LORD of Hosts. So guard yourselves in your spirit and do not break faith.) Has been used by christians to discourage those who are in abusive marriages from getting divorce overlooking other Bible verses that also talk about the same topic. The following are four occasions where Bible allows divorce;
1. When a partner commits adultery.
(Matthew 19:9 (ESV) And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery.) In this verse, Jesus was teaching His followers about divorce and He clearly said that when a partner commits adultery, then the other partner is allowed to leave the marriage.
Appostle Paul while writing to the Corinthians, he said clearly that when one partner abandons the marriage, then the other partner is free to move on. This is found in the book of (1 Corinthians 7:14-15 (NIV)For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife has been sanctified through her believing husband; for otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy. Yet if the unbeliever leaves, let it be so. The brother or the sister is not bound in such circumstances;)
3. If the partner does not provide
(Exodus 21:10-11 (ESV)If he takes another wife to himself, he shall not diminish [the first wife’s] food, her clothing, or her marital rights. And if he does not do these three things for her, she shall go out for nothing, without payment of money.) This verse instruct polygamous husbands to provide basic needs to their first wife, failure to do this, leaves their wives with the liberty to move to the next relationship.
The Bible is against a husband abusing his wife or the vise versa even if the wife was taken from slaves, the Bible instructs the husband to treat her well or just leave her to move to the next relationship. This is found in the book of Deuteronomy 21:11-14 (…if you notice among the captives a beautiful woman and are attracted to her, you may take her as your wife. Bring her into your home and have her shave her head, trim her nails and put aside the clothes she was wearing when captured. After she has lived in your house and mourned her father and mother for a full month, then you may go to her and be her husband and she shall be your wife. If you are not pleased with her, let her go wherever she wishes. You must not sell her or treat her as a slave, since you have dishonored her." —Deuteronomy 21:11-14 (NIV).)
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