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1 Corinthians 7:7-40 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

[a]Yet I wish that all [b]men were even as I myself am. However, each has his own gift from God, one in this way, and another in that.

But I say to the unmarried and to widows that it is good for them if they remain even as I. But if they do not have self-control, let them marry; for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.

10 But to the married I give instructions, not I, but the Lord, that the wife is not to leave her husband 11 (but if she does leave, she must remain unmarried, or else be reconciled to her husband), and that the husband is not to [c]divorce his wife.

12 But to the rest I say, not the Lord, that if any brother has an unbelieving wife, and she consents to live with him, he must not [d]divorce her. 13 And [e]if any woman has an unbelieving husband, and he consents to live with her, she must not [f]divorce her husband. 14 For the unbelieving husband is sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified through [g]her believing husband; for otherwise your children are unclean, but now they are holy. 15 Yet if the unbelieving one is leaving, [h]let him leave; the brother or the sister is not under bondage in such cases, but God has called [i]us in peace. 16 For how do you know, wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, husband, whether you will save your wife?

17 Only, as the Lord has assigned to each one, as God has called each, in this way let him walk. And so I direct in all the churches. 18 Was any man called when he was already circumcised? He is not to become uncircumcised. Has anyone been called in uncircumcision? He is not to be circumcised. 19 Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but what matters is the keeping of the commandments of God. 20 Each person is to remain in that [j]state in which he was called.

21 Were you called as a slave? Do not let it concern you. But if you are also able to become free, take advantage of that. 22 For the one who was called in the Lord as a slave, is the Lord’s freed person; likewise the one who was called as free, is Christ’s slave. 23 You were bought for a price; do not become slaves of people. 24 Brothers and sisters, each one is to remain with God in that condition in which he was called.

25 Now concerning virgins, I have no command of the Lord, but I am offering direction as one who [k]by the mercy of the Lord is trustworthy. 26 I think, then, that this is good in view of the [l]present distress, that it is good for a man [m]to remain as he is. 27 Are you bound to a wife? Do not seek to be released. Are you released from a wife? Do not seek a wife. 28 But if you marry, you have not sinned; and if a virgin marries, she has not sinned. Yet such people as yourselves will have [n]trouble in this life, and I am trying to spare you. 29 But this I say, brothers, the time has been shortened, so that from now on those who have wives should be as though they had none; 30 and those who weep, as though they did not weep; and those who rejoice, as though they did not rejoice; and those who buy, as though they did not possess; 31 and those who use the world, as though they did not make full use of it; for the present form of this world is passing away.

32 But I want you to be free from concern. One who is unmarried is concerned about the things of the Lord, how he may please the Lord; 33 but one who is married is concerned about the things of the world, how he may please his wife, 34 and his interests are divided. The woman who is unmarried, and the virgin, is concerned about the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and spirit; but one who is married is concerned about the things of the world, how she may please her husband. 35 I say this for your own benefit, not to put a restraint on you, but [o]to promote what is appropriate and to secure undistracted devotion to the Lord.

36 But if anyone thinks that he is acting dishonorably toward his virgin, if she is [p]past her youth and it ought to be so, let him do what he wishes, he is not sinning; let [q]them marry. 37 But the one who stands firm in his heart, [r]if he is not under constraint, but has authority [s]over his own will, and has decided this in his own heart, to keep his own virgin, he will do well. 38 So then, both the one who gives his own virgin in marriage does well, and the one who does not give her in marriage will do better.

39 A wife is bound as long as her husband lives; but if her husband [t]dies, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord. 40 But in my opinion she is [u]happier if she remains as she is; and I think that I also have the Spirit of God.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Corinthians 7:7 One early ms For
  2. 1 Corinthians 7:7 Or people
  3. 1 Corinthians 7:11 Or leave his wife
  4. 1 Corinthians 7:12 Or leave her
  5. 1 Corinthians 7:13 One early ms any woman who has
  6. 1 Corinthians 7:13 Or leave her husband
  7. 1 Corinthians 7:14 Lit the brother
  8. 1 Corinthians 7:15 Or then he must leave
  9. 1 Corinthians 7:15 One early ms you
  10. 1 Corinthians 7:20 Lit calling
  11. 1 Corinthians 7:25 Lit has been shown mercy by the Lord to be trustworthy
  12. 1 Corinthians 7:26 Or impending
  13. 1 Corinthians 7:26 Lit so to be
  14. 1 Corinthians 7:28 Lit tribulation in the flesh
  15. 1 Corinthians 7:35 Lit for what is seemly
  16. 1 Corinthians 7:36 Or past puberty
  17. 1 Corinthians 7:36 I.e., the woman and her betrothed or fiancé
  18. 1 Corinthians 7:37 Lit having no necessity
  19. 1 Corinthians 7:37 Lit pertaining to
  20. 1 Corinthians 7:39 Lit falls asleep
  21. 1 Corinthians 7:40 Or more fortunate
New American Standard Bible (NASB)

New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995, 2020 by The Lockman Foundation. All rights reserved.

1 Corinthians 7:7-40 New International Version (NIV)

I wish that all of you were as I am. But each of you has your own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that.

Now to the unmarried[a] and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I do. But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.

10 To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband. 11 But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife.

12 To the rest I say this (I, not the Lord): If any brother has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to live with him, he must not divorce her. 13 And if a woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to live with her, she must not divorce him. 14 For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife has been sanctified through her believing husband. Otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy.

15 But if the unbeliever leaves, let it be so. The brother or the sister is not bound in such circumstances; God has called us to live in peace. 16 How do you know, wife, whether you will save your husband? Or, how do you know, husband, whether you will save your wife?

Concerning Change of Status

17 Nevertheless, each person should live as a believer in whatever situation the Lord has assigned to them, just as God has called them. This is the rule I lay down in all the churches. 18 Was a man already circumcised when he was called? He should not become uncircumcised. Was a man uncircumcised when he was called? He should not be circumcised. 19 Circumcision is nothing and uncircumcision is nothing. Keeping God’s commands is what counts. 20 Each person should remain in the situation they were in when God called them.

21 Were you a slave when you were called? Don’t let it trouble you—although if you can gain your freedom, do so. 22 For the one who was a slave when called to faith in the Lord is the Lord’s freed person; similarly, the one who was free when called is Christ’s slave. 23 You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of human beings. 24 Brothers and sisters, each person, as responsible to God, should remain in the situation they were in when God called them.

Concerning the Unmarried

25 Now about virgins: I have no command from the Lord, but I give a judgment as one who by the Lord’s mercy is trustworthy. 26 Because of the present crisis, I think that it is good for a man to remain as he is. 27 Are you pledged to a woman? Do not seek to be released. Are you free from such a commitment? Do not look for a wife. 28 But if you do marry, you have not sinned; and if a virgin marries, she has not sinned. But those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this.

29 What I mean, brothers and sisters, is that the time is short. From now on those who have wives should live as if they do not; 30 those who mourn, as if they did not; those who are happy, as if they were not; those who buy something, as if it were not theirs to keep; 31 those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them. For this world in its present form is passing away.

32 I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord. 33 But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world—how he can please his wife— 34 and his interests are divided. An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord’s affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world—how she can please her husband. 35 I am saying this for your own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.

36 If anyone is worried that he might not be acting honorably toward the virgin he is engaged to, and if his passions are too strong[b] and he feels he ought to marry, he should do as he wants. He is not sinning. They should get married. 37 But the man who has settled the matter in his own mind, who is under no compulsion but has control over his own will, and who has made up his mind not to marry the virgin—this man also does the right thing. 38 So then, he who marries the virgin does right, but he who does not marry her does better.[c]

39 A woman is bound to her husband as long as he lives. But if her husband dies, she is free to marry anyone she wishes, but he must belong to the Lord. 40 In my judgment, she is happier if she stays as she is—and I think that I too have the Spirit of God.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Corinthians 7:8 Or widowers
  2. 1 Corinthians 7:36 Or if she is getting beyond the usual age for marriage
  3. 1 Corinthians 7:38 Or 36 If anyone thinks he is not treating his daughter properly, and if she is getting along in years (or if her passions are too strong), and he feels she ought to marry, he should do as he wants. He is not sinning. He should let her get married. 37 But the man who has settled the matter in his own mind, who is under no compulsion but has control over his own will, and who has made up his mind to keep the virgin unmarried—this man also does the right thing. 38 So then, he who gives his virgin in marriage does right, but he who does not give her in marriage does better.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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