March 2016 (25)

1 Corinthians 7:5-9

1Co 7:5 Do not be depriving one another, except in those times when you both agree to it, so that you can devote yourselves to prayer, then come back together again, so that Satan might not tempt you both because of your lack of self-control.

1Co 7:6 I am saying this as an allowance, not as a command,

1Co 7:7 because I wish all men were like I am.  But each one has his own gift from God, one going this way, but another this way.

1Co 7:8 But I am saying to the unmarried and to the widows, it is good to remain unattached like me.

1Co 7:9 But if they do not have that kind of self-control, they should marry, because marrying is better than burning with lust.


I get the impression that Paul is responsible for that original quote (regarding it being better for a man not to touch a woman) and now he has to make an allowance to the Corinthians because they were misapplying his words.  It happens to all teachers. A stray comment is snatched out of its context and turned into the whole message.

In this case (if I am reading it right) Paul had been expressing his view that given the present circumstances, marriage is not the best choice.  Staying celibate helped Paul get the gospel message out more efficiently, so he saw it as the best choice.  But he concedes here that it is not the best choice for those already married!  He also concedes that if an unmarried person does not have the gift that he has, marriage is preferable to burning with lust.

LORD, may those who listen to our teachings understand them clearly and apply them appropriately.


About Jefferson Vann

Jefferson Vann is pastor of Piney Grove Advent Christian Church in Delco, North Carolina. You can contact him at marmsky@gmail.com -- !
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