I Corinthians 7

I Corinthians 7:1-5 – The marriage bed

  • I Corinthians 7:1 – Some translations add quotes here to indicate this is something written to Paul. This is not a general rule that sexual relations are wrong.
  • I Corinthians 7:2 – God created mankind with a sexual appetite, which should be fulfilled within marriage as God designed it. See Proverbs 5:19-20 and Song of Solomon.
  • I Corinthians 7:3 – The responsibility here is mutual. It is the same for both husband and wife.
  • I Corinthians 7:4 – This must be done in love. Sex should never be used as a weapon or a bargaining chip in marriage. This verse is not a license for abuse.
  • I Corinthians 7:5 – The marriage bed is a blessing. Sex should not be withheld. Self-control is still required.

I Corinthians 7:6-16 – Instructions to the married and unmarried

  • I Corinthians 7:6-9 – Paul is not saying marriage in general is bad. He’s giving specific directions for the present time.
  • I Corinthians 7:10-13 – Jesus had already taught against divorce (Matthew 19:6). Jesus had not specifically addressed the case in I Corinthians 7:12-13 about Christians married to non-Christians. See I John 2:1. I Corinthians 7:11 is not implying that divorce is okay.
  • I Corinthians 7:14 – “Sanctified” or “made holy” here means the marriage and children are legitimate. This is different than how the Old Covenant worked for Jews in that Jews could not marry Gentiles.