Day 69…1 Corinthians 7:25-28
I Corinthians 7:25-28: Questions about singles
Throughout this chapter, Paul has been telling the believers at Corinth to not change their situations but to serve the Lord where they are. Paul wanted the believers to focus on sharing their faith so that many would become believers before Christ’s return. In these few verses Paul answers some questions people had about being single. As always he didn’t want anything to hinder their work of the advancement of God’s Kingdom.
v.25, At this point in Paul’s letter he decides to answer a question the Corinthian church had asked him about “young women who are not yet married”, probably in a letter he was sent.
In the culture then, a young woman’s parents usually would make decisions about whether or not their daughter(s) would get married.
As Paul writes to answer this question he specifically says “I do not have a command from the Lord for them” which means he didn’t have a direct teaching from Jesus to draw from. However this doesn’t mean that Paul’s words should be taken less inspired then the rest of this letter. Paul was giving advice because “the Lord and his mercy has given [him] wisdom that can be trusted.”
v.26, Paul advises that the young women should “remain as [they] are” which is unmarried. The reason was that it would be easier on them to be single during the “present crisis” I believe the present crisis was not so much the 2nd coming of Jesus (some scholars believe this) but more so the impending persecution that the Roman government would soon bring on the Christians.
v.27, Now Paul expands his advice to everyone and says “if you have a wife, do not seek to end the marriage. If you do not have a wife, do not seek to get married” which is to say don’t seek to divorce if you are married but don’t get married if you are not married. But why? Paul’s reasoning again was what he said in v.26, it would be difficult to be a Christian in the Roman empire’s coming persecution, so wherever you are stay focused on the Lord and sharing the Gospel and not on your personal life.
v.28, Paul doesn’t want to be misunderstood so he goes on to say “if you do get married, it is NOT a sin.” Same for young women if they get married it is not a sin. He doesn’t want those reading his letter to think it was sinful to get married, this would be inconsistent with all the other Scriptures. Paul was simply trying to “spare [them] those problems” and “trouble” that come with marriage. We all know that people who are single have just as many problems, so Paul is not saying only married people have all the problems, or more problems, no he was talking again about the impending persecution and he wanted all the believers at Corinth to be able to let go of everything in their faithfulness to God–it would be much easier without the attachment of marriage, so he advised those who were not yet married to stay that way, but if they chose to get married it was not a sin or wrong.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN TO ME? I think this is Paul again making us realize that we need to stay where God has us, not just married or unmarried (but other lots in life) and focus all our energy on serving him wherever we are. So it comes back to being content where I am but more importantly focussing my energy and time on serving God and telling others about Christ.
WHAT AM I GOING TO DO ABOUT IT? I need to pray for my unsaved friends, in the meantime continue to serve God where he has me, but pray for opportunities where God opens doors for me to share the Gospel with my unsaved friends and family.