Summary: “Jesus was never married,” writes Fred Hartley, “and He was normal. Paul was not married, and he was normal. John the Baptist was single, and he was normal. History is full of normal men and women who were never married. We need to understand that one
THE BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE OF SINGLENESS
“Jesus was never married,” writes Fred Hartley, “and He was normal. Paul was not married, and he was normal. John the Baptist was single, and he was normal. History is full of normal men and women who were never married. We need to understand that one is a whole number.18
In fact, an often-overlooked passage in the Word of God makes it clear that singleness possesses many advantages for the man or woman of God:.
Now about virgings: I have no command from the Lord, but I give ajudgment as one who by the Lord’s mercy is trustworthy. Because of the present crisis, I think that it is good for you to remain as you. Are you married? Do not seek a divorce. Are you unmarried? Don not look for a wife. 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.
What I mean, brothers, is that the time is short.
From now on those who have wives should live as if they had none; those who mourn, as if they did not; those who are happy, as if they were not; those who buy something, as if they were not theirs to keep; those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them. For this world in its present form is passing away. 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. But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world-How he can please his wife-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. I am saying this for your own good, not to testrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.19
Barry St. Clair and Bill Jones offer a helpful and concise perspective on this passage:
Spared of Trouble.
Not to put marriage down, but it is a lot of trouble to be married. The apostle Paul says, “But those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this” (I Corinthians 7:28) . Caring for one person is easier than caring for an entire family....
Released to Minister.
Single people have much more free time to give to God’s work. Paul points out that the Lord is coming soon and the opportunity to win people to Christ is getting shorter and shorter: “The time is short......[and]this world......is passing away” (I Corinthians 7:29-31). When you marry, the time you have to give in minstry to other people gets cut drastically.
Freed from Concerns for a Family.
When you marry you have what Paul calls “concerns” (I Corinthians 7:32:34).
As a married person, one of your major concerns is for the welfare of your family.
Are their physical needs being met?......... Taking care of the physical needs of a spouse and children is much more complicated (not to mention more expensive) than providing for one.
What about your family’s spiritual welfare? Many hours are invested in helping our wives and children spiritually. They need constant attention so that they can grow up to love Jesus and follow Him.
The emotional welfare of your family merits concern too. A husband and wife work at meeting the emoterional needs of each other. It is the parents’ responsibility to “fill up” their children with love, attention and lots of time. And the time fathers invest is practically nothing compared to what moms invest......
Paul summarizes the advantage of singleness in I Corinthians 7:35. He says that singleness enable you to live in “undivided devotion to the Lord.” Unfortunately, many singles do not see that as a high calling........ But according to I Corinthinans 7:7, singleness is as much a gift of God as marriage is. Marriage is great and so is being single. Since as a single, you can be devoted to Christ without distraction, it is wise to consider whether God wants you married before you even consider who God wants you to marry.20