Today's passage: 1 Corinthians 7:8-16
- Paul continues his argument from verses 1-7.
- Those who are presently single, it's good to remain single if you are comfortable to do so. If not, get married.
- Those who are presently married, don't leave your spouse in order to pursue the gift of singleness! What God has joined together, let not man separate (Matthew 19:6).
- Anyone who had already done this was not at liberty to marry anyone else. If they were going anywhere, it needed to be back to their spouse.
- If you have become a Christian and your spouse has not (Remains an unbeliever), you should not divorce them (God could use you to lead them and your children to Christ!). If the unbelieving spouse divorces the believing spouse, the believing spouse is freed (Meaning, they would be free to later marry a believer).
- In verses 10 and 12 there are two parenthetical statements: “Not I, but the Lord” and “I, not the Lord.” This does not mean that Paul was speaking on his own or that these verses aren't the Word of God. Paul was simply referring to the teachings of Christ.
- What Paul taught in verses 10-11 came from Jesus' teaching.
- What Paul taught in verses 12-16 were further details Jesus had not specifically addressed in his earthly ministry.
Questions to consider:
- Jesus lamented that divorce was a necessary evil in this sin cursed world (Matthew 19:8). What does this passage reiterate concerning the intended permanence of the covenant of marriage? If we begin reading passages like this looking for loopholes, what is already wrong with our thinking?
- How does this passage encourage those who are presently married to unbelievers? What might God do in their marriage? How can it also be an encouragement/instruction to a single Christian who desires a spouse? What should be the most important characteristic of a potential spouse for a Christian?
- How do Christian parents lead their children to be set apart from the world (“Holy”)? How can you point your children toward Jesus today? Or, based on where God has you in life (What relationships he has given to you) who is your primary mission field?