August 25

1 Corinthians 7:1-24

1 Corinthians 7-The Corinthians had written a letter to Paul with questions for him.  He now addresses those questions.

1 Corinthians 7:1-9-Evidently, there were some who were promoting abstinence.  Paul agrees that there are merits to this lifestyle.  However, he does not say that it is a superior lifestyle to marriage.  Since men and women are physically drawn to each other...they should recognize marriage as God's answer to this attraction.  In the marriage, both spouses are to recognize the sexual drive of the other and be willing to submit to each other's needs.  This not only promotes the relationship, but it also protects against Satanic temptation.  He concludes by saying that he wishes that all men could be like he is (apparently he was abstaining from sex)...but, he recognizes that God has not called, nor gifted, all men to live that way.

1 Corinthians 7:10-11-Paul then admonishes Christian spouses to not "leave" (divorce) each other.  If it does occur, then they are not to remarry.

1 Corinthians 7:12-16-Paul addresses those in mixed marriages (believer to unbeliever).  The believer is not to send the unbeliever away (divorce).  The believing spouse sanctifies, brings holiness, into the relationship and to their family.  This is not saying that the family members are saved…but that there is a holy witness of God that is present (:14).  The presence of the believing spouse might even lead to the other family members accepting Christ as their Savior, as well (:16).  However, if the unbelieving spouse chooses to divorce...the believing spouse is not under "bondage"...does not have to remain.  They are free to leave.  Nothing is said here about whether they can then marry again, or not (however, see v. 28).

1 Corinthians 7:17-24-This principle of remaining in the status you were in before you were saved is then applied to other areas of life, as well.  For instance: circumcision (:18-20), and slavery (:18-23).  The point is that being saved does not necessitate that these things be changed.  But, if they do do not need to feel guilty, or as if you have done something wrong.  If you can make positive changes and advances in your life that is a good thing.  However, the guiding and dominant principle of the Christian life is our relationship to Christ…regardless of the situation of our life.

Prayer: Lord, please help me to be more sensitive to my wife's needs.  I can be very self-centered and focused.  Help me to think more of her...and less of myself.  She is such an awesome, wonderful lady...and I love her so much.  Please help me to honor her as my wife.  But even more, help me to honor her as Your child.

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