(From: 1 CORINTHIANS #8 - 7:25-40)
F. 7:25-40 ADVANTAGES OF SINGLE LIFE, VIRGINITY AND WIDOWHOOD
1. 7:25-35 ADVANTAGES OF A SINGLE LIFE
a. 7:25 PAUL WRITES CONCERNING VIRGINS
PeRI de ton parTHEnon  e-pi-taGEN  KuRIou ouk Echo:
Now concerning the virgins I have no commandment of the Lord:
GNOmen  de DIdo-mi, hos e-le-eMEnos  huPO KuRIou, pisTOS  EInai.
but I give judgment, as one that has obtained mercy of the Lord, to be faithful.
b. 7:26 RECOMMENDATION: THAT A MAN MAINTAIN HIS STATE
NoMIzo  oun TOUto kaLON huPARchein diA ten e-neSTOsan  aNAGken :
I think therefore that this is good because of the distress :upon us:
HOti kaLON anTHROpo to HOUtos EInai.
that it is good for a man to be as he is.
c. 7:27a Are you bound unto a wife? seek not to be loosed.
DEde-sai gu-naiKI ? meZEtei LUsin .
d. 7:27b Are you loosed from a wife? seek not a wife.
LElu-sai aPO gu-naiKOS? meZEtei guNAIka.
e. 7:28a But should you marry, you have not sinned; and if the virgin marry, she has not sinned.
eAN de kai gaMEses , ouch HEmar-tes ; kai eAN GEmeheparTHEnos, ouch HEmar-ten.
f. 7:28b Yet such shall have tribulation in the flesh: and I am sparing you.
THLIpsin de tesarKI Exou-sin hoi toiOUtoi: eGOde huMON PHEIdo-mai .
g. 7:29-31 PROPER GENERAL ATTITUDE IN TROUBLOUS TIMES
Touto DE phe-mi, a-delPHOI, ho kaiROS su-nes-talMEnos esTIN,
But this I say, brethren, the season is shortened,
to loiPON HIna kai hoi EchonTES guNAIkas hos meEchon-tes Osin;
that henceforth both those having wives maybe as though not having;
kai hoi KLAIon-tes , hos meKLAIon-tes; kai hoi CHAIron-tes, hos meCHAIron-tes;
30and the weeping, as though not weeping; and the rejoicing, as though not rejoicing;
kai hoi a-goRAzon-tes , hos mekaTEchon-tes ;
and the buying, as though not possessing;
kai hoi CHROme-noi ton KOSmon, hos meka-taCHROme-noi :
31and those using the world, as not using it to the full:
paRAgei gar to SCHEma tou KOSmou TOUtou.
for the fashion of this :world passes away.
h. 7:32a But I would have you to be free from cares.
THElode huMAS a-meRIMnous EInai.
i. 7:32b-33 CONTRAST BETWEEN UNMARRIED AND MARRIED MEN
ho Aga-mos me-rimNA ta tou KuRIou, pos aREsetoKuRIo:
The unmarried cares for the thingsof the Lord, how he may please the Lord:
ho de gaMEsas me-rimNA ta tou KOSmou, pos aREsetegu-naiKI, kai meMEris-tai .
33but the married cares for the thingsof the world, how he may please the wife, and is divided.
j. 7:34 CONTRAST BETWEEN UNMARRIED AND MARRIED WOMEN
kai heguNEheAga-mos kai heparTHEnos me-rimNA ta tou KuRIou,
Also the unmarried :woman and the virgin cares for the thingsof the Lord,
HIna ehaGIa kai toSOma-ti kai toPNEUma-ti :
that she be holy both in :body and in :spirit:
hede gaMEsa-sa me-rimNA ta tou KOSmou, pos aREsetoanDRI.
but the married cares for the thingsof the world, how she may please the husband.
k. 7:35 HE THAT IS ABLE TO HEAR, LET HIM HEAR
TOUto de pros to huMON auTON SUMpho-ron LEgo;
And this I say for your own :profit;
ouch HIna BROchon huMIN e-piBAlo, alLA pros to EUsche-mon ,
not that I may cast a snare upon you, but for what :is fitting,
kai euPAre-dron toKuRIoa-pe-risPAstos .
and attentive toward the Lord without distraction.
2. 7:36-38 THE ADVANTAGES OF REMAINING A VIRGIN
a. 7:36 A CONCESSION ON BEHALF OF VIRGINS
Ei de tis as-che-moNEINePI ten parTHEnon auTOU noMIzei ,
But if any thinks he behaves improperly toward his :virgin,
eAN ehuPErak-mos , kai HOUtos oPHEIlei GInes-thai,
if she be past the flower of age, and if need so requires,
ho THElei poiEIto; ouch ha-marTAnei; gaMEItosan .
let him do what he will; he sins not; let them marry.
b. 7:37 THE BETTER PART CONCERNING A VIRGIN
hos de HESte-ken en tekarDIa auTOU heDRAIos , meEchon aNAGken ,
But who stands stedfast in his :heart, having no necessity,
e-xouSIan de Echei peRI tou iDIou theLEma-tos , kai TOUto KEkri-ken en teiDIa karDIa,
but has power as touching hisown :will, and has decided this in his own :heart,
teREIN ten he-auTOU parTHEnon, kaLOS poiEsei.
to keep his own :virgin, he shall do well.
c. 7:38 THE CONTRAST BETWEEN THE TWO POSSIBILITIES
HOSte kai ho gaMIzon ten parTHEnon he-auTOU kaLOS poiEI;
So then both who gives his own :virgin in marriage does well;
kai ho megaMIzon KREISson poiEsei.
and who gives not in marriage shall do better.
3. 7:39-40 ADVANTAGES OF MAINTAINING WIDOWHOOD
a. 7:39 THE LAW FOR WIDOWS
GuNEDEde-tai eph' HOson CHROnon zeho aNER auTES; eAN de koi-meTHEho aNER,
A wife is bound for so long time as the husband lives; but if the husband be fallen asleep,
e-leuTHEra esTIN hoTHElei ga-meTHEnai; MOnon in KuRIo.
she is free to be married to whom she will; only in theLord.
b. 7:40 THE HIGHER LAW FOR WIDOWS
ma-ka-ri-oTEra DE es-tin eAN HOUtos MEIne,
But she is more blessed if she abide as sheis,
kaTA ten eMEN GNOmen : doKOde ka' 'GOPNEUma TheOU Echein.
after my :judgment: and I think that I also have God's Spirit.
NOTE: Some years ago two of our grandsons were in Bible Quiz. That year they were required to memorize the entire book of 1 Corinthians, and enter county, state and national contests. One of our 7 grandchildren progressed to the national level a number of times.
But 1 Corinthians 7 for young teen-agers poses a number of challenges: for contestants are not only required to memorize all such, but must also understand what they have memorized! On one occasion my wife (their grandmother) and their mother were in the front seat of a car, and the two boys were in the back seat trying to figure out and understand what Paul was talking about in 7:36, when he refers to his virgin, if she be past the “flower of age.” It was a little difficult for mother and grandma up front to keep sober and not let on that they had overheard.
One of the many nice things about God is that He remembers our frame, that we are but dust, and speaks by His Spirit through His writers on our level; and also that God and His Bible writers have no false modesty. Some readers have been troubled about the “Song of Solomon” and its frankness concerning the physical aspects of love. Solomon wrote this book when he was yet young as kingly successor to his father David. Proverbs he wrote, guided by the Spirit, in mid-age for a son; and Ecclesiastes, in old age after he had “blown it” by disobeying God and marrying a multitude of heathen wives.
In all other 13 letters God led and inspired Paul to write, Paul wrote by command. It is not Paul, but the Lord commanding (1Corinthians 14:37). The one chapter of exception is 1 Corinthians 7: - partly given by the Lord, partly by Paul by the Lord's permission. I have no doubt of the great wisdom of God in permitting this exception.
Paul here is answering very practical questions on marriage, directed to him by the Corinthian believers. In their former unsaved state, they had been exceedingly sinful and promiscuous in this area. Now as apostle to the Gentiles, Paul with his high rabbinical background, is answering their questions with a clarity and simplicity, that really no other comment is necessary.
Perhaps not even Moses and the other Old Testament writers come up to Paul's level of clarity and simplicity in this area.
May we in the 21stCentury Church of Jew and Gentile, the “One New Man” mystery of the book of Ephesians, walk in God's wisdom given here through His servant and apostle Paul. - J.A.W.