Summary: Singles are a larging growing population in our country and a population that needs ministering too. Paul in our text today address this group specifically and gives them words of wisdom to take with them in life.
Keeping the Home Fire Burning Series
GOD’S WORD TO SINGLES
1 Cor. 7:6-9; 25-41
Singles are a swiftly growing portion of our society. In fact, only 42% of all households in the US are headed by single adults. Nearly 20 % of the adult population of the United States have never been married. The singles population increased 385% between 1950 and 1982, from 4 million in 1950 to over 19 million in 1982. The last Census Bureau noted that 39.9 million singles over the age of 18 had never been married. When you add to this the fact that 50 % of all currently single women have been previously married and that 50% of all marriages will eventually end in divorce, you begin to see that those who are single comprise a significant portion of our population. You can see that there a whole bunch of people who are not living the married life today.
There used to be a time when people who reached their adult years in a single condition were looked down on, and considered inferior to others. However, that perception has begun to change. Many are making a conscious decision to remain single. They have a special place in the kingdom of God and there is a special word here for them this evening. This passage speaks only to those who have never married, who are ready for marriage, or to those who are widows or widowers. So let’s dive in and see what God’s Word to Singles is.
I. THE BLESSINGS OF THE SINGLE LIFE (vv. 7-8; 26-35)
Some fell that there aren’t any!
A. In Regard To the Will of God
• It is not God’s will for everyone to be married!
o There is no shame or reproach in choosing to remain single if that is the Lord’s will for your life.
• There have been times when being single was a badge of shame.
o In ancient Greece, unmarried girls were thought to be prostitutes.
o The Jews considered unmarried girls to be a shame and a disgrace to the family name.
o The Jews were particularly harsh on the unmarried.
o Jewish men who were single were said to have "slain their posterity and to have lessened the image of God in the world."
o The Jewish belief in marriage was so strong that they even taught that "a Jew who had no wife; or who had a wife but no children," was automatically forbidden from entering Heaven.
o Now, with all that in mind, we must remember that it is alright for a person to be single if that is the Lord’s will for their life.
o I believe that we can say with all honesty that it is not God’s will for most, but for those whom it is, God will give the necessary tools to meet the need.
o You see, to live a clean, faithful, godly and satisfied Christian life as a single, requires the gift of celibacy.
o If the Lord wants you to be single, you can be sure that He will "gift" you for that lifestyle.
B. In Regard To the Work of the Lord (vv. 26-35)
1. Singles Generally Have Less Distress
• Singles typically face fewer demands physically, emotionally, materially and financially.
• The word "distress" speaks of one’s needs.
• Generally speaking he needs of singles are less that those of their married counterparts.
• Two can not live a cheaply as one!
• Then, in verse 32, Paul uses the word "carefulness."
• This word speaks of stress and strain.
• Married couples have stress in their lives that singles simple do not.
• To say the least, singleness is not without its stresses and strains, but when a husband, a wife or children are factored in, the stresses become greater.
2. Singles Generally Have Less Distractions
• There is no one to please or to answer to but the Lord.
o When two people are married, they are mutually responsible to provide care, love, intimacy and to meet the physical needs of their mate.
o Just ask anyone who was single for a number of years and then got married!
o Singles, however, are free to focus on the Lord and his will for their lives.
o There are simply less distractions in the life a single individual!
• Now, less anyone misunderstand, neither lifestyle is more spiritual that the other.
o Each has its place in the work of God and each has its advantages and its disadvantages.
o The secret is finding God’s will for your life and then exercising the gifts He has given to you!
II. THE BURDENS OF THE SINGLE LIFE (vv. 9, 36-40)
When one is single, there may be certain needs that cannot be legitimately met. These can include physical needs, the need for companionship, the need for emotional support, etc. Those who have been gifted by God with the gift of celibacy have been given special control over their sexual drive and urges. Those who have net been called to a life of singleness do not have this special control in their lives. For those who have not been gifted in this manner, Paul advises marriage. In these verses, Paul speaks of the special burdens singles face.