Bible: 1 Cor 7:17-40

The Circumstances of Your Calling

7:17 Nevertheless, 1  as the Lord has assigned to each one, as God has called each person, so must he live. I give this sort of direction in all the churches. 7:18 Was anyone called after he had been circumcised? He should not try to undo his circumcision. 2  Was anyone called who is uncircumcised? He should not get circumcised. 7:19 Circumcision is nothing and uncircumcision is nothing. Instead, keeping God’s commandments is what counts. 7:20 Let each one remain in that situation in life 3  in which he was called. 7:21 Were you called as a slave? 4  Do not worry about it. But if indeed you are able to be free, make the most of the opportunity. 7:22 For the one who was called in the Lord as a slave is the Lord’s freedman. In the same way, the one who was called as a free person is Christ’s slave. 7:23 You were bought with a price. Do not become slaves of men. 7:24 In whatever situation someone was called, brothers and sisters, 5  let him remain in it with God.

Remaining Unmarried

7:25 With regard to the question about people who have never married, 6  I have no command from the Lord, but I give my opinion as one shown mercy by the Lord to be trustworthy. 7:26 Because of the impending crisis I think it best for you to remain as you are. 7:27 The one bound to a wife should not seek divorce. The one released from a wife should not seek marriage. 7  7:28 But if you marry, you have not sinned. And if a virgin marries, she has not sinned. But those who marry will face difficult circumstances, 8  and I am trying to spare you such problems. 9  7:29 And I say this, brothers and sisters: 10  The time is short. So then those who have wives should be as those who have none, 7:30 those with tears like those not weeping, those who rejoice like those not rejoicing, those who buy like those without possessions, 7:31 those who use the world as though they were not using it to the full. For the present shape of this world is passing away.

7:32 And I want you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the things of the Lord, how to please the Lord. 7:33 But a married man is concerned about the things of the world, how to please his wife, 7:34 and he is divided. An unmarried woman 11  or a virgin 12  is concerned about the things of the Lord, to be holy both in body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the things of the world, how to please her husband. 7:35 I am saying this for your benefit, not to place a limitation on you, but so that without distraction you may give notable and constant service to the Lord.

7:36 If anyone thinks he is acting inappropriately toward his virgin, 13  if she is past the bloom of youth 14  and it seems necessary, he should do what he wishes; he does not sin. Let them marry. 7:37 But the man who is firm in his commitment, and is under no necessity but has control over his will, and has decided in his own mind to keep his own virgin, does well. 7:38 So then, the one who marries 15  his own virgin does well, but the one who does not, does better. 16 

7:39 A wife is bound as long as her husband is living. But if her husband dies, 17  she is free to marry anyone she wishes (only someone in the Lord). 7:40 But in my opinion, she will be happier if she remains as she is – and I think that I too have the Spirit of God!

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