Copy of WY 2008 006Paul offers instructions to those who have never had a sexual experience.  This dialogue is not lesser in quality.  Nor is it contrary to Jesus’ teaching.  Rather, it is expanded inspired Scripture.  He merely notes that Jesus did not address the issue during His time on earth.

Present status is important.  Change during a time of stress is not advisable.  It will alter a person’s focus on spiritual matters.

This is a matter for wisdom.  Marriage is good.  But, it must be entered into with understanding.  Responsibilities increase with marriage. 

We all have less time than we think.  The world is temporary, it is terminal and our values must adjust accordingly.  Marriage is included in this real-time reality.

Marriage forces concern for our partner.  Those who are single can focus their attention on the things of God.  Rightly a husband gives a great deal of his attention to his wife’s concerns and what will please her.  That is effort and energy that a single person can give to the things of the Lord.

Similarly, a wife is thinking about how to please her husband.  Paul’s interest is to help believers avoid undue stress and concern.  He wants to help Christians enjoy the concentration of pleasing God and not being distracted from that expression.

A practical reality superceded Paul’s advice on remaining single.  If passion is a distraction when someone is in love then, marriage is the right option.  That decision is a good one.  There is no sin involved when decisions are between what is preferred and what is necessary.  Marriage is a good choice.

Some are gifted with a settled matter in their minds.  They have no compulsion to marry.  His choice to remain celibate is also a right choice.  How God has wired a person is individually determined. 

While both decisions are good, that is, to marry or not to marry, the one who is able and chooses to remain single in order to concentrate his attention on the Lord has made the better choice.

Marriage is a binding relationship dissolved by death.  When death dissolves a marriage, then the surviving spouse is free to marry again. However, the instruction is to marry a fellow believer.

The apostle points out that someone who is now single due to the death of a spouse now has the option to choose singleness.  That is a good choice, in fact the preferred choice.  Paul admits that a special gift of celibacy is necessary to make this choice viable.  He claims that he is so gifted.

1 corinthians 7.25-40

photo credit: brucefong photography

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