Pride is often the root issue in any conflict situation, and pride is fueled and puffed up by knowledge that is disconnected from application. The Corinthians lived in a Greek culture that prized knowledge as the ultimate possession and leveraged any knowledge they gained to control and manipulate others. This love for knowledge devoid of practical application caused many of the conflicts within the early church at Corinth and made them susceptible to false teaching.
For this reason, as Paul prepares to address a second topic that the Corinthians wrote to him about, he prefaces this section with a quick teaching on the danger of empty knowledge.
Is it better to be single or married? The answer varies depending on which culture and church era you live in. At one point, singleness was exalted as extra spiritual and a better way to serve and glorify God while marriage was looked down upon and viewed as only fit for the weaker brother. However, today that perspective has flipped. In most Christian circles, marriage is now supreme and lifted up as the ultimate life calling and the best way (and in some perspectives only way) Christians can serve God and build His kingdom on earth. But what does the Bible say on the matter?
In the middle of Paul’s thorough discussion on marriage and singleness, he seems to break off onto a tangent that is unrelated to the topic. However, while the principles in this section are applied to all areas of life, they are especially pertinent to the question of which is best, marriage or singleness. Paul answers this question by saying that the best is whatever life God calls you to live. Don’t compare your life with others or analyze whether or not marriage would be better for your future or if singleness would be more advantageous. Simply live the life God has set before you, seeking Him first in all things and then allowing Him to lead and direct your steps.
Here’s what Paul writes on this matter.
Paul tackles a lot of tough subjects in 1 Corinthians, which is why many churches and pastors tend to avoid teaching out of this book. However, while some of these topics may make people uncomfortable, they are extremely relevant for us today. Up to this point, Paul has addressed issues of disunity within the church, blatant sin by professing Christians and how such a person cannot remain in the church without repentance, and sexual immorality and God’s intended purposes for our bodies.
These were issues that Paul saw within the church at Corinth and were the top priorities to address. Now as we dive into 1 Corinthians 7, Paul begins to teach on topics that the Corinthians had written him about, asking for instruction and clarification. The first of these questions that Paul writes about is God’s design for marriage and that unique relationship.
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