In these verses, the Apostle Paul addresses the issue of marital relationships and provides instructions regarding marriage and separation. He specifically focuses on the responsibility of both husbands and wives to remain committed to their marriage vows.
Paul begins by stating that his command regarding marriage comes from the Lord. He emphasizes that a wife should not leave her husband, and if she does choose to separate, she should either remain unmarried or seek reconciliation with her husband. Likewise, Paul instructs husbands not to leave their wives.
These verses highlight the importance of commitment and the seriousness of the marriage covenant. Paul encourages spouses to work towards reconciliation and preserving their marriage rather than hastily pursuing separation or divorce. The goal is to maintain the unity and integrity of the marital bond.
Paul's teachings align with Jesus' instructions regarding divorce in other passages. They emphasize the value of commitment, faithfulness, and the pursuit of reconciliation within the marital relationship. While divorce may be a concession in certain circumstances (as Jesus Himself taught), it is not to be taken lightly or pursued without serious consideration.
It is important to note that Paul's instructions are given within the context of a Christian marriage, where both spouses are believers. He is addressing the Corinthian church, urging them to uphold the principles of faithfulness and reconciliation in their marital relationships.
In the broader context of 1 Corinthians 7, Paul provides guidance on various aspects of marriage, including issues such as sexual relations, separation, and the importance of mutual consent and respect. His teachings aim to bring harmony and understanding within marital relationships and promote the well-being of both spouses.
While these verses specifically address the issue of separation, they do not provide an exhaustive treatment of all the complexities surrounding divorce and remarriage. Other biblical passages, such as those found in Matthew and 1 Corinthians 7:15, address scenarios where divorce may be permissible.
In summary, 1 Corinthians 7:10-11 emphasizes the importance of commitment and reconciliation within the marital relationship. Paul urges wives not to leave their husbands, and if separation does occur, he encourages them to either remain unmarried or seek reconciliation. Likewise, husbands are instructed not to leave their wives. These teachings reflect the biblical value of marriage and the pursuit of unity and reconciliation in the face of marital challenges. While divorce may be permitted in certain circumstances, Paul's primary exhortation is to preserve and reconcile the marriage bond. Christians are called to approach marriage with a deep sense of commitment, working towards reconciliation and honoring the covenant they have made with one another.
See also: vs 12-13
1 Corinthians 7:10-11. To the married I command—not I, but the Lord—that the wife not leave her husband (but if she departs, let her remain unmarried, or else be reconciled to her husband), and that the husband not leave his wife.