MYTH: You cannot divorce because you are one flesh and have a soul tie to your spouse.
TRUTH: Our bond with the Lord is eternal and cannot be ended. The Bible shows us how to break other bonds.
Some Christians may teach that you are eternally bound to your spouse (or anyone you’ve had sex with) due to the Bible passage 1 Corinthians 6:12-20.
These verses were written to the church in the city of Corinth. There was a lot of sexual immorality in the church, including a case of incest in 1 Corinthians 5 and the mention of prostitution in Chapter 6. This passage is warning believers in the new church in Corinth about rampant sexual immorality.
It warns that if you have sex with a prostitute, you are “one in body,” and in the next three verses (18-20) it gives the remedy for this:
. “Run from sexual sin!” (Running away, or “fleeing,” breaks the oneness)
. “Unite yourself with the Lord!” (Meaning drawing close to God)
Here's the passage:
The body, however, is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. 14 By his power God raised the Lord from the dead, and he will raise us also. 15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never! 16 Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, “The two will become one flesh.”[b] 17 But whoever is united with the Lord is one with him in spirit.
Flee [Run] from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. 19 Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. —NIV, emphasis mine
In other words, the act of leaving breaks the “one flesh” bond and any sort of "soul tie." We belong to Christ. We are united to him and are one with him in spirit.
Nothing will separate us from the love of God. And no one can snatch us out of his hand.
For a discussion of the myth that a wife's submission will automatically make her husband love her more, read THIS. Or the myth that being more sexually available will keep a husband from cheating or watching porn or molesting children, read THIS.
For first-person story of a woman: Adultery, prayer and the Bible, read THIS. Find out how the Lord set her free.
Audio interview: Shirley Fessel, author of Redemption from Biblical Battering tells her story of finding peace after divorcing an abusive husband HERE.
For Bible verses that show that every type of abuse qualifies as biblical grounds for divorce, see this overview of Bible verses online. For a chapter on all the key passages in the Bible on divorce, as well as the Jewish and Biblical background, see Chapter 6.
For a list of 5 types of abuse see HERE.
For a chapter giving examples of 150 examples of types of abuse (physical, emotional, sexual, financial, and neglect) and explaining the term "gaslighting," along with many first-person stories, read Chapter 4 in the Life-Saving Divorce.
For a diagram of the Duluth Wheel of Power and Control and The Abuse Cycle, read Chapter 4.
For a definition of life-saving divorces, read What is a Life-Saving Divorce?