Calvinist Wayne Grudem Listens And Believes!

The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood has begun to offer its Satanic, family-killing fruit. As Pastor Grudem recently explained, the trick to learning that Scripture permits frivorce is hearing wives complain about their husbands instead of just reading Scripture. I archived his explanation and will fisk it at the end:

But first, a more approachable explanation of his lies.

Wayne Grudem Changes Mind About Divorce in Cases of Abuse

By Rebecca Randall, 26 November 2019

Wayne Grudem, a leading Calvinist theologian and prominent complementarian, has changed his position to affirm a scriptural basis for divorce in cases of abuse and shared his new stance at a major gathering of evangelical scholars last week.

After hearing examples of real-life couples whose Christian beliefs led them to endure abuse rather than separate, Grudem said he looked closer at Scripture to conclude that abuse may be grounds for divorce, provided pastors and elders seek discernment from God in leading a couple to this outcome.

This revises his long-held view, published as recently as 2018 in his textbook Christian Ethics: An Introduction to Biblical Moral Reasoning. The historical view of most evangelicals provides two reasons for divorce: adultery (Matt. 19:9) or desertion by an unbeliever (1 Cor. 7:15).

That’s how it’s been for two millennia. Note that #2 is not applicable to believers, which is the why the reader may have been taught there’s only the divorce reason.

My wife Margaret and I became aware of some heartbreaking examples of such things as severe sexual humiliation and degradation that had continued for decades, and another case of physical battering that had gone on for decades,” he told CT. “In all these situations the abused spouse had kept silent, believing that a Christian’s duty was to preserve the marriage unless there was adultery or desertion, which had not happened.”

His wife is helping him discover new reasons to Biblically justify divorce? That can’t go wrong.

Grudem, a co-founder of the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, presented his new work on the topic at the Evangelical Theological Society annual meeting last week, in a talk entitled “Grounds for Divorce: Why I Now Believe There Are More than Two.”

Earlier proponents of accepting abuse as grounds for divorce have pointed to Paul’s use of the verb “separate” in 1 Corinthians 7:15, arguing that the verse applies to a spouse fleeing the home for protection. But Grudem previously was not convinced.

The verse reads: “But if the unbelieving partner separates, let it be so. In such cases the brother or sister is not enslaved. God has called you to peace” (1 Cor. 7:15 ESV, italics added).

TL;DR Grudem claims that the verse should be read as “In cases of abuse, of which an unbeliever leaving is only one example and not a representative one, either, the sister is not enslaved if the divorce is approved by the clergy.”


The Protestant world isn’t just dying, it’s going Catholic. Grudem is laying tracks for the clergy to grant divorces “as directed by God”. That sounds SO VERY familiar.

“Most commentaries assume that ‘in such cases’ refers only to cases of desertion by an unbeliever,” said Grudem. But upon further examination, he realized that the phrase appears nowhere else in the Bible. Grudem looked at 52 uses of the phrase in ancient Greek literature and found that “in such cases” usually does not just refer to the one scenario the writer already mentioned (i.e. an unbelieving partner) but to scenarios similar to that one.

The first rule of hermeneutics (“how to correctly interpret Scripture”) is that the Bible is the best interpreter of the Bible. For example, if we want clarification of whether that phrase in 1 Cor. 7:15 contains additional yet unmentioned reasons for legitimate divorce, we should look at the rest of Scripture for inspiration and guidance before resorting to fictitious characters in Greek tragedies written by fags worshiping Zeus. We might consider “I [God] hate divorce” in Malachi 2:16 or Jesus saying “Moses permitted divorce because your hearts were hard, but it was not so in the beginning” in Matthew 19:8. We could then go to that said beginning and read Genesis 2:24 about a man and woman becoming “one flesh”.

That sounds… permanent. If we would not treat a broken bone by amputating the arm then maybe we shouldn’t tear apart a marriage because the spouses are going through a hard spot, either, because GOD HATES DIVORCE.

You see, Wayne? I can play the “me so smart” game, too. The only differences between us are that I don’t get paid, I don’t speak Squiggle, I want to be understood by my readers and I fear what God will do to me if I mishandle Scripture. You? You take one clause, note that the original Greek phrasing isn’t used elsewhere and proceed to invent a completely new theology of divorce that has magically gone undiscovered for millennia… a theology that just happens to perfectly fit the modern feminist agenda.

Do you think God will be amused by your wordplay? Do you think God will nod approvingly and congratulate you on outwitting Him? On discovering the hidden truth of God’s Will for marriage that He wanted us to know for centuries but was too secret-squirrel to just tell us about? Can you really be that stupid? The evidence says:

“These examples led me to conclude that in 1 Cor. 7:15, the phrase “in such cases” should be understood to include any cases that similarly destroy a marriage,” said Grudem. Therefore, he concluded that abuse is such a case.

The evidence says Yes. Note Grudem’s fatal error in claiming that abuse destroys a marriage.

However, he clarified that restoration is still the first goal when the question of divorce comes up. If the abusing spouse is a Christian, then counseling and church discipline should be pursued, but if abuse doesn’t stop then a church leader should consider that this may be a case where the victim is free to seek a divorce.

Divorce should be safe, legal and rare. Just like abortion!

Just over half of evangelical pastors (55%) believe divorce may be the best option in cases of domestic violence, while only 4 percent say a couple should never divorce, even when violence is present, according to a LifeWay Reseach survey.

Over half of the clergy waiting to sit in judgment of your husband already believe that divorce is the best option. Barbie, you are pre-approved!

The response from the ETS audience was “overwhelmingly positive and appreciative,” Grudem said, and he received few objections. “One woman afterward told me she counsels abused women, and she wept with tears when she read my outline. More than one person said to me afterward, ‘I came prepared to disagree with you, but you persuaded me.’”

Ariel Bovat, a clinical counselor working in domestic violence rehab, tweeted that Grudem was the MVP of ETS for his presentation. “This information will give so many women freedom from their abusers!” she wrote.

The issue of divorce in the case of abuse has been a subject of conversation among evangelicals in the #MeToo and #ChurchToo era.

The 2018 controversy around Southern Baptist leader Paige Patterson began when a recording of him advising a woman to submit to her abusive husband recirculated online. CT reported at the time that Patterson said he had advised and helped women leave abusive husbands, but stood by his commitment to never recommend divorce: “How could I as a minister of the gospel? The Bible makes clear the way in which God views divorce.”

Patterson fought the good fight and the proof of it is his effortless ability to live rent-free in the minds of SBC’s new leadership, like a journalist ranting about GamerGate.

A few years before, Grudem and other complementarian theologians took part in a theological debate around the nature of the Trinity, which had implications for their teachings on gender roles and female submission. Female complementarians in particular have spoken out against an over-emphasis on submission that would lead wives to believe they must submit to abusive husbands.

On THAT note, the article ends.


I proceed to fisk some of Grudem’s linked justification.

Grounds for Divorce: Why I Now Believe There Are More Than Two
An Argument for Including Abuse in the Phrase “In Such Cases” in 1 Corinthians 7:15
Wayne Grudem
For ETS meeting in San Diego, 11-21-19

A. The position of my 2018 book Christian Ethics: only two biblically-sanctioned grounds for divorce (adultery and desertion by unbeliever, based on Matt. 19:9; 1 Cor. 7:15)

1. This has been the most common Protestant position since the Reformation
Westminster Conf. of Faith, Chapter 24, para. 6: nothing but adultery, or such willful desertion as can no way be remedied by the church, or civil magistrate, is cause sufficient of dissolving the bond of marriage:

So far, so good. He proceeds to list many founders of Calvinism in support of this position.

B. But during 2018-2019, I had an increasing conviction of need for re-examination of divorce for self-protection from abuse
1. My awareness of several horrible real-life situations, and thinking, “This cannot be the kind of life that God intends for his children when there is an alternative available.”
a. – arguments, disagreement repeated rape
b. – battered – no help when abused spouse went to pastor
c. — repeated threats of physical harm or even murder

Grudem became aware that Scriptural teaching was insufficient because women were unhaaapy. He needs to read about Original Sin again, and once again every time Eve complains that Adam never lets her eat ANYTHING.

And no, Grima Wormtongue Grudem, there is no such thing as marital rape.

C. Still, I was never quite persuaded by the “abuse is a kind of desertion” argument.
I did not think it right to say that “abuse is another kind of desertion” because I could not see it as something Paul intended to mean when he spoke of the abuser as the subject of the verb χωρίζω (the abuser is the one who leaves) in 1 Corinthians 7:15:
But if the unbelieving partner separates, let it be so [literally, “let him separate”]. In such cases the brother or sister is not enslaved. God has called you to peace.

Does this sound like the Hegelian dialetic to you?

It’s always a red flag when a high-level theologian begins to talk Squiggle to you. He knows the layman doesn’t have a clue what χωρί means… so he’s obviously taking advantage of the fact by diving deep into that dead language.

D. A new and more promising kind of argument: The uninvestigated phrase “in such cases” (ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις) in 1 Cor. 7:15
But if the unbelieving partner separates, let it be so. In such cases the brother or sister is not enslaved. God has called you to peace. (ESV)
BGT 1 Corinthians 7:15 εἰ δὲ ὁ ἄπιστος χωρίζεται, χωριζέσθω· οὐ δεδούλωται ὁ ἀδελφὸς ἢ ἡ ἀδελφὴ ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις· ἐν δὲ εἰρήνῃ κέκληκεν ὑμᾶς ὁ θεός.

1. Does it mean:
a. in only this case: desertion by unbeliever, or
b. in any cases that have similarly destroyed a marriage?
c. ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις does not appear elsewhere in the New Testament or LXX
d. I (and my teaching assistant Brett Gray) could find no commentator who ever searched for this phrase in Greek literature outside the Bible
2. I found that several examples from extra-biblical literature show that Greek ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις (“in such cases”) often includes more kinds of situations than the original example


Extra-Biblical literature is so vast that one can use it to prove ἐν δὲ εἰρήνῃ actually means ἀδελφὸς. If you don’t believe me then just ask… EURIPIDES???

PHILO JUDAEUS Phil. De vita Mosis 1.38, line 1 (lib. i-ii) {0018.022} (1 B.C.-A.D. 1)

[When the Egyptians discovered that their all their firstborn sons and firstborn cattle had been killed:] And, as so often happens in such circumstances (ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις ), they thought that their present condition was but the beginning of greater evils, and were filled with fear of the destruction of those who still lived.

Specific example: 10th plague on Egypt and death of the firstborn sons.
“in such cases”: any kind of sudden tragic event. (clearly broader than the specific example named)

EURIPIDES Trag. Troiades [The Trojan Women] {0006.011} Line 303 c. 480-c. 406 BC

What are they doing? Are they firing the chambers, [300] because they must leave this land and be carried away to Argos? Are they setting themselves aflame in their longing for death? Truly the free bear their troubles in cases like this (ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις ), with a stiff neck.

Specific example: captured people who are about to be carried into exile
“in such cases”: any case where someone faces a sudden loss of freedom or even loss of life

EURIPIDES Trag. Electra {0006.012} Line 426 c. 480-c. 406 BC

But go inside the house at once and make things ready there. Surely a woman, if she wants to, can find many additions to a meal. Really there is still enough in the house to cram them with food for one day at least. It is in such cases, . . . that I see how wealth has great power, to give to strangers, and to expend in curing the body when it falls sick

Specific example: needing food to feed to unexpected guests
“in such cases”: any case in which wealth provides the ability to meet unexpected needs

Yes, Euripides was quite the Bible commentator while writing his tragedies… when not worshiping his patron deity Zeus…. five hundred years before the Bible was written… in a different culture than the Israeli one that Jesus and the Apostles grew up in.

Oh for the love of scholarship, my brain is bleeding!

SOPHOCLES Trag. Electra {0011.005} Line 990 c. 497-406 BC

[990] In a crisis such as this (ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις ), forethought is an ally both to those who speak and those who listen.

Specific example: two sisters (Electra and Chrysothemus) considering whether to kill Aegisthus in revenge for their father’s death
“in such cases”: any plans that involve life-and-death risks

SOPHOCLES Trag. Electra {0011.005} Line 1338 c. 497-406 BC

Utterly foolish and senseless children! …. Be done now with your long speeches and this insatiable shouting for joy, and go inside. In dealings of this sort (ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις ), delay is harmful, but the time is ripe for being done.

Specific example: Orestes and Pylades, two friends who are plotting a double murder, are in danger of being killed unless they act quickly
“in such cases”: any time someone is carrying out a murder plan

Sophocles is the only other name (out of six) that my readers are likely to recognize. One wonders if Grudem ever did a thesis on the story of Electra.

10. In contrast to the plural phrase in 1 Corinthians 7:15, New Testament authors elsewhere used singular of τοιοῦτος when the reference was limited to one specific example (“in such a case” or “in this case”):

This is EXACTLY why I never trust squiggle-speakers. Remember reading above, how Grudem claimed the phrase for “in such cases” never occurred in Scripture? That that was why he tapped nonreligious writers living centuries apart from the young Church in the first place? Here, Grudem just admitted that the singular form of the phrase IS used in Scripture. Only the plural form isn’t.

Grudem had obviously gone on a jihad to find something, ANYTHING he could twist into justifying modern feminist beliefs.

b. If Paul had meant to refer only to desertion, another option would be to use ἐν τούτῳ (singular) “in this case”

And that’s “divorce by an unbeliever”, Wayne. Not “desertion by a believing husband”.

F. Additional reasons why abuse should be included in “such cases” in 1 Cor. 7:15 and considered a legitimate ground for divorce

But if the unbelieving partner separates, let it be so. In such cases the brother or sister is not enslaved. God has called you to peace. (1 Cor. 7:15)
εἰ δὲ ὁ ἄπιστος χωρίζεται, χωριζέσθω· οὐ δεδούλωται ὁ ἀδελφὸς ἢ ἡ ἀδελφὴ ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις· ἐν δὲ εἰρήνῃ κέκληκεν ὑμᾶς ὁ θεός.

1. If abuse by an unbelieving spouse forces the abused spouse to flee the home for self protection, the abuser has caused the separation just as much as if he or she had deserted the marriage
a. The result would be the same as desertion (no longer living together)
b. “in such cases” (ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις) would seem certainly to apply to this situation (very similar!)
[see this argument in Frame, Jones, PCA 1992 report, Chrysostom]:

I was too slow. Wayne’s already equating “desertion by an unbeliever” with “no longer living together”.

Priest: “Why should I grant you a divorce?”

Wifey: “I kicked him out of the house while he was at work.”

Priest: “Ah, you are no longer living together! Desertion has happened. Here’s your certificate of divorce but you should pay the fee before you sign, if you want to use a credit card in his name.”

G. Conclusion on 1 Cor. 7:15: “in such cases” should be understood to include any cases that similarly destroy a marriage
We could paraphrase,
But if the unbelieving partner separates, let it be so. In this and other similarly destructive cases (ἐν τοῖς τοιούτοις ) the brother or sister is not enslaved. God has called you to peace. (ESV)

Now Grudem is equating “no divorce” to slavery. That’s not how Scripture describes marriage.

1. This reasoning also explains why Paul felt freedom to add desertion as another ground for divorce in addition to adultery, which Jesus had specified. In both cases, the marriage has been very substantially, or even fatally, harmed.

His forktongue is working hard here. AGAIN, that is “desertion by an unbelieving spouse” not just “desertion”. The reason Scripture allows that is because God doesn’t hold unbelievers to the same standards as believers. He respects both the honest believer and the honest unbeliever.

2. Abuse is in some ways more harmful than desertion, because abuse includes repeated demonstrations of actual malice, not simply indifference. Abuse is actively and repeatedly malevolent.

In Malachi 2, God equates divorce with wife battery. Grudem’s little loophole doesn’t stretch this far so he’s completely without justification for believing this.

3. Other specific kinds of behavior that in some cases might be so severe that they would belong in the category of “in such cases” (1 Cor. 7:15), because they have similarly destructive effects in the marriage:

a. Extreme, prolonged, verbal and relational cruelty that is destroying the spouse’s mental and emotional stability

In cases of mental/emotional abuse, the determination of “substantial harm” is more difficult and more subjective, but not impossible

b. Credible threats of physical harm or murder of spouse or children

c. Incorrigible (or recalcitrant, or inveterate, or incurable) drug or alcohol addiction accompanied by regular lies, deceptions, thefts, and/or violence

d. Incorrigible gambling addiction that has led to massive, overwhelming indebtedness

e. Pornography addiction would also fit here, but it would also be included under meaning of “sexual immorality” (Gk. porneia) in Matthew 19:9

Boldfaces mine. So, in his quest to protect women whose bodies have been shattered in hubby’s drunken rages, Grudem has… oh, so accidentally… declared that a husband using porn is legitimate grounds for divorce. Unsaid: that a wife refusing her husband sex, which is the very definition of sexual desertion, is grounds for divorce.

At long last, after two thousand years, we may now properly state 1 Corinthians 7:15:

“But if the unbelieving partner separates, let it be so. Also, if a spouse–believer or not–has a foul tongue or gambling addiction, threatens any form of violence, uses recreational drugs to excess or if he looks at porn, then in such cases the spouse is not enslaved to the marriage. God has called you to empowerment.”

H. Suggested guideline on grounds for divorce:
1. Divorce for self-protection is morally permissible in situations where one spouse is repeatedly inflicting substantial harm on the other spouse, such that the abused spouse must leave the home for self protection, and also in other situations that are similarly destructive to a marriage.
2. This “substantial harm” could be physical or mental/emotional (from verbal and relational cruelty)

Exactly what the Godless feminists want. By their results ye shall know them.


12 thoughts on “Calvinist Wayne Grudem Listens And Believes!

  1. Let me fix this for you: “The Protestant world isn’t just dying, it’s going bureaucratic.” Or rather, it’s been on this path for some time and it’s just a continuing trend.


  2. If that’s the woman you married, good riddance. Now I gotta find in the bible where she pays ME most of her income for the rest of my life while I go find another woman to abuse until she leaves (biblically of course) and take her money as well. Sheesh


  3. Makes you question many things, if the author of “systematic theology” and an editor of the ESV can flip flop around on such a basic subject. I spent about 2-3 months on the issue. I expect to have my post on the issue back up eventually

    Liked by 2 people

  4. 100% religious professionals… also known as hirelings. Only people I personally know who work in the ministry part-time and part-time work to earn the bread they eat, are Ukrainian Orthodox leaders.
    Oh, and I knew a protestant part-time preacher… by some coincidence, he was also far more willing to give firm “uncomfortable” preaching.


  5. “Oh, and I knew a protestant part-time preacher… by some coincidence, he was also far more willing to give firm “uncomfortable” preaching.”

    Did he attend seminary? I’d guess no.


  6. Let me make my statement: divorce is not allowed to Christians for ANY ground, although it might be needed to temporarily separate in case of personal security.

    Let’s see the explicit text on this:
    10 To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband. 11 But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife.

    That’s it, a COMMAND to not separate or divorce to followers of Christ. Case closed.


  7. “This information will give so many women freedom from their abusers!”

    Yes, look up how abuse is defined, to understand that Grudem is hailed as finally given a theologically approved ground for no-fault divorce

    e.g. (
    – Monitoring your whereabouts.
    – Unilateral decision-making.
    – Financial control.
    – Lecturing.
    – Direct orders.
    – Treating you like a child.
    – Demanding respect.
    – Keeping you from socializing.
    – Codependence : You might be codependent if you:
    * are unhappy in the relationship, but fear alternatives
    * frequently seek out your partner’s approval

    Get ready for this, you Christian men!


  8. I already disliked the ESV translation when I saw how Wayne Grudem butchered 1 Cor 11, switching mid-way the section to translate the same ‘gune’ from ‘woman’ to ‘wife’.

    “But I want you to understand that the head of every man is Christ, the head of a wife[a] is her husband,[b] and the head of Christ is God. 4 Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head, 5 but every wife[c] who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head, since it is the same as if her head were shaven. 6 For if a wife will not cover her head, then she should cut her hair short. But since it is disgraceful for a wife to cut off her hair or shave her head, let her cover her head. 7 For a man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God, but woman is the glory of man. 8 For man was not made from woman, but woman from man. 9 Neither was man created for woman, but woman for man. 10 That is why a wife ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels.[d] 11 Nevertheless, in the Lord woman is not independent of man nor man of woman; 12 for as woman was made from man, so man is now born of woman. And all things are from God. 13 Judge for yourselves: is it proper for a wife to pray to God with her head uncovered?”

    All occurrences of ‘wife’ and ‘woman’ are the same Greek word: ‘gune’.


  9. “The historical view of most evangelicals provides two reasons for divorce: adultery (Matt. 19:9) or desertion by an unbeliever (1 Cor. 7:15).

    That’s how it’s been for two millennia.”

    Actually, no. In the Western Church, adultery as reason for divorce was only introduced by Erasmus and then Luther in the 16th century on a reinterpretation (and possible textual corruption) of Mat 19:9, and actually a fairly inconsistent one too. Before that the permanency of the marriage bond was adhered to.

    (Interestingly, the best defender against homosexual relationships, Robert Gagnon, uses the same scripture to defend the permanency of marriage)


  10. If it was for the RCC, divorce would not be legally allowed, and neither would adultery.
    It was Calvin who promoted the idea that government should regulate marriage. And eventually that was what happened across all protestant nations. And we all know where that went: first no-fault divorce, then abandonment of illegality of adultery, then make homosexual “marriage legal, followed by making using the incorrect gender pronouns a crime.


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