Change or Contentment
The passage is one of the most difficult passages in Scripture.
Background: Ch.1-6 - Paul deals with issues reported to him. From ch. 7 on, he answers specific questions raised in a letter form the Corinthian church. He mentions a particular crisis. Nero was coming to the throne and persecution was coming. They were also expecting the imminent return of Christ. Corinth was undergoing a famine.
1. Vv 17-24 Change of status on conversion. Some people moved to Corinth to change their status. Christian conversion should not necessarily be a call to change status. God needs people in every walk of life.
2. Vv 25-40 Advice to the unmarried. Paul focuses on the blessings of the single state. Both marriage and singleness are gifts of God's grace, and equally valid. There are factors that singles should consider before marriage.
• The current crisis.
• Called to live with Kingdom priorities. All God's gifts should be held in an open.
• How can you best live in wholehearted devotion to the Lord.
• Has God given us a gift of singleness or marriage? It is right to ask God for the gift of singleness if one has no immediate prospect of marriage.
• If one is widowed, one should not rush into re-marriage.
Married or single, God wants us to live in undivided devotion to him.