1 Corinthians 7:16

For how knowest thou? (ti gar oida;). But what does Paul mean? Is he giving an argument against the believer accepting divorce or in favour of doing so? The syntax allows either interpretation with ei (if) after oida. Is the idea in ei (if) hope of saving the other or fear of not saving and hence peril in continuing the slavery of such a bondage? The latter idea probably suits the context best and is adopted by most commentators. And yet one hesitates to interpret Paul as advocating divorce unless strongly insisted on by the unbeliever. There is no problem at all unless the unbeliever makes it. If it is a hopeless case, acquiescence is the only wise solution. But surely the believer ought to be sure that there is no hope before he agrees to break the bond. Paul raises the problem of the wife first as in verse Matthew 10 .

Read 1 Corinthians 7:16