Hope you enjoy these Bible study notes.
1 Corinthians 7 – Marriage – by Pastor Don Moore
My Bible study notes from April 27, 2012
This chapter details the principles and situation of marriage. Some things here don’t line up with what we see in our culture today.
What you did is in your past – what matters is what you do now. Receive the truth and realize what Scripture says. Line your life up with what the Word of God says. Some things mentioned in Corinthians are cultural – for example today we don’t have slaves.
1 Corinthians 7:1 Now concerning the things of which you wrote to me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.
You can’t sell this in America today (Pastor Don laughed)
1 Corinthians 7:2 Nevertheless, because of sexual immorality, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband.
The devil has tried to turn this into something non-biblical. Marriage is not based on romantic desire. We are not to get married because of appearances, finances, etc. If you can “fall” into love, you can “fall” out of love. Marriage is a covenant relationship. In many cultures marriages are arranged and often the man and woman meet the first time when the covenant is agreed upon. These marriages are committed to forming a relationship after marriage, and often arranged marriages do not end in divorce.
Paul is saying that if you cannot live without sex, it is best to marry and have one wife.
1 Corinthians 7:3 Let the husband render to his wife the affection due her, and likewise also the wife to her husband.
The husband and wife have the responsibility to show affection to each other. In marriages affection often goes out of the marriage quick. Before marriage, husbands and wives date each other and go out together. They talk and share things with each other. Once married, that obligation does not dissipate. When one of the parties in the marriage stops being affectionate, the other follows. Affection isn’t just sex – it can be little things like complements, a touch on the cheek, etc.
1 Corinthians 7:4 The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does. And likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does.
This is a foreign concept in the United States. The wife often says to the husband, “Don’t touch me.” How can she refuse her husband sex? The problems in marriage are worse in the church than they are in the general public. People are uptight about sex and that is one reason the divorce rate is so high.
1 Corinthians 7:5 Do not deprive one another except with consent for a time, that you may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again so that Satan does not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.
Deprivation of sex in marriage leads to immorality. If your sex-drive isn’t fulfilled in the marriage, often people seek elsewhere for it to be filled. Starve a woman from affection and she looks elsewhere. As does a man. 47% of men have relationships outside of their marriage. 43% of women have relationships outside of marriage.
Paul says we are not to deprive one another except for a certain time to fast and pray.
If there are challenges in your marriage, seek counseling, begin to change your behavior so that you are able to offer affection to your spouse. Don’t let satan tempt you.
1 Corinthians 7:6-7 But I say this as a concession, not as a commandment. For I wish that all men were even as I myself. But each one has his own gift from God, one in this manner and another in that.
This is where some churches get their idea of Christian celibacy, especially in the ministry. As Paul states, not all men are able to do this. Paul was able to be celibate, but not all men are, and those who aren’t should seek a wife. We are all given gifts from God, and we are to go where God says to serve. We do not want to put someone in danger of sinning by forcing them into celibacy.
1 Corinthians 7:8-9 But I say to the unmarried and to the widows: It is good for them if they remain even as I am; but if they cannot exercise self-control, let them marry. For it is better to marry than to burn with passion.
Paul is not saying that everyone should marry or everyone should remain celibate. It is dangerous for someone in ministry to be unmarried if they are burning with passion.
1 Corinthians 7:10-11 Now to the married I command, yet not I but the Lord: A wife is not to depart from her husband. But even if she does depart, let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband. And a husband is not to divorce his wife.
Do not divorce
1 Corinthians 7:12-15 But to the rest I, not the Lord, say: If any brother has a wife who does not believe, and she is willing to live with him, let him not divorce her. And a woman who has a husband who does not believe, if he is willing to live with her, let her not divorce him. For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband; otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are holy. But if the unbeliever departs, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases. But God has called us to peace.
Paul makes what he is saying clearer. If a man or a woman is married to an unbeliever, and they get along – stay married. Because you are a believer, your presence sanctifies the relationship and the children. Sanctify means to set apart.
Pastor Don asked us, how do we know if the person won’t come to a point of believing some time in the future? We get impatient. God has a plan to save them. (If you are unmarried, do not marry an unbeliever – we are not to be unequally yoked, but if you are married to an unbeliever, don’t divorce.)
There is individual sin if you divorce – this sin is the same if you divorce a believer or an unbeliever. If a wife or husband don’t divorce, that is not the end of the story.
If you have divorced and repented, don’t forget 1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
We are forgiven. With God nothing is unreconcilable. The way out is to repent. Don’t give God a list of complaints and excuses before we repent. Just repent.
Adultery is not the way out. If you are divorced remain single. Don’t rush into the next relationship for unless you work on your stuff, you may end up in a relationship similar to the one you just got away from.
God is the God of the do-over.
If an unbeliever departs, let them depart. Let them go.
1 Corinthians 7:16 For how do you know, O wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, O husband, whether you will save your wife?
Your presence in the marriage relationship could be the thing that brings your spouse to salvation.
Have a blessed day,