MONDAY BIBLE STUDY (STUDY 16)
TEXT: I Corinthians 7:25-40
POINT 1: THE SOLEMN CONSIDERATION OF THE PRESENT DISTRESS.
I Corinthians 7:25-31
As it is happening today with disease, suffering, pressure, restrictions, there was distress with the Corinthian Christians at that time though it was local and temporary. Apostle Paul made it known to them that he knew all that they were going through, and even though he had received nothing from God about the situation, yet, he would give his counsel.
I. The Apostle’s Concern For The Present Distress
I Corinthians 7:25-26; II Samuel 7:3-5; I Samuel 16:6-7; Isaiah 55:8-9
When Paul spoke about faith in Christ, holiness, salvation by grace, he did not use the word, ‘suppose’, but because he did not get anything from the Lord, He used “I suppose” concerning certain aspects of marriage. Note, whenever a prophet says anything that is not anchored on the solid and unchangeable word of God, if that prophet, apostle, servant of God listens to the Lord, He will bring him back to where the word of God stands on the issue.
Nathan had not received anything from the Lord but he gave a go-ahead to David who planned to build a house for God because it looked good in his sight. But in the night, the Lord told him a contrary instruction and he had to go back to the king to give him the direct and clear message from the Lord which was that David must not build a house for Him. All personal opinions had to be pushed aside.
When Samuel gave his opinion concerning the choice of Jesse’s eldest sons as king for Israel, God corrected him immediately and warned him not to look at the face because He the Lord looks at the heart. Samuel saw the eldest sons as fitting for the throne, but that was not what God wanted because He doesn’t see as man sees, even during pandemic and other perplexities. Whenever we don’t have any instruction from God, we must learn to always defer taking a decision or saying anything specific on any issue.
II. The Appropriate Counsel And His Prevailing Declaration
I Corinthians 7:27-28; Exodus 18:19,23; Joshua 9:14,22; Psalm 33:11; Proverbs 19:21; Acts 20:26-27.
Whatever God and Christ said which were written by Apostle Paul must prevail. Are you married? Don’t look for excuse to divorce and be loosed from your partner despite all the problems and perplexities in the home.
Always come back to the word of God. There are people who will sympathize with you on whatever unpleasant conditions and situations you are going through in your marriage, whatever they say, they may mean well, but ensure you go back to the counsel of the Lord which shall stand forever.
III. The Appreciated Concentration On Our Preferred Destiny
I Corinthians 7:29-31; Matthew 10:37-39; Luke 9:61-62; 14:26-27
Difficulty in the life of man is like a rope tied around a goat’s neck, his attention is always focused on the problem, just as the attention of the goat is focused on the rope around its neck. His decision and focus will be controlled by the ‘rope’. If a good, lively, goal-getting and loving person has a challenge, and he concentrates on the pain, the tendency is that the difficulty will get the best of him and he will no longer laugh, be loving, happy or hopeful as before.
Even when things are going well with you, and you have a good marriage, you must never allow it to distract your attention from Heaven. You must continue to love and serve God. You must love God more than anything else. In your office, or place of work, you may be a very respected person due to your contributions and the promotions keep coming, yet, that should not take the place of God. Your relationship with God must always take paramount place.
POINT 2: THE SINGLE-MINDED CONSECRATION WITHOUT PERPLEXING DISTRACTIONS. I Corinthians 7:32-35
You will not allow any perplexities local or global to distract you from focusing on God. Nothing must distract you from giving your best to God at all times. Nothing must distract you from having a profitable devotional life with God. Taking care of the family may bring you into perplexities which are distracting but Apostle Paul is here admonishing that you must organize your personal and marital life properly. Nothing must take your attention and focus away from God, you must always give your best to Him at all times. Your consecration must always be single-minded.
I. Our Single-minded Devotion: Pleasing God Without Disaffection
I Corinthians 7:32; John 8:29; Romans 15:3; II Timothy 2:4; I Thessalonians 2:4.
You must never lessen your devotion to God, you must always please Him. No worry, anxiety, divided heart, or misplaced priorities. How to please God with your skill, energy, strength, education, talent, experience, etc must be paramount in your heart. As a child of God, follow Christ, and when there are alternatives, and there is considerations to please yourself, your spouse, or God, you or your spouse must not take the place of God or the place of getting to heaven. You must remember that even Christ did not please Himself.
You must continue to please the Lord regardless of your status. Joining this or that assembly, group or corporations have their distractions. A good soldier of Christ will not allow entanglements of any type. The gospel, ministry, peculiar service or soul winning which has been entrusted into your hands must not be allowed to suffer.
II. Our Spousal Duty: Practical Godliness Without Division
I Corinthians 7:33-34; I Timothy 5:8; Ephesians 5:28-31; I Corinthians 12:25-26; I John 2:15-17.
You must not be divided in heart and consecration to God in your marriage. God must always take number one position, though you must still fulfill your responsibility to your spouses.
You have roles to play in the family. As a married man, you have to take care of your wife and children.
These are things we will not do in heaven – making provisions for the family, going to the market, cooking, washing of husband and children’s clothes, etc – are things we do here on earth so that the home can be a home indeed, and every member can be well taken care of. Anyone who does not care for his home has denied the faith and is worse than an infidel.
III. Our Steadfast Dedication: Preaching The Gospel Without Distraction.
I Corinthians 7:35; Luke 10:40-42; 21:34-36; II Timothy 2:4; Philippians 3:14-15
Look at your life spiritually, physically, and in the family, have you been able to follow the vision, ideal, and aspirations? If there are no distractions, wouldn’t you have moved forward and done better? In this New Year, make up your mind to do better and focus on your responsibility towards God without distraction. Concentrate on your calling without distractions.
Distractions can be sinful, and at times they may not, they may be visible or not. They usually start in little ways until you cannot escape them. At times, they kill your interest and enthusiasm towards all that you are supposed to do.
POINT 3: THE SELFLESS CONFIRMATION OF HIS PERFECT DOCTRINE.
I Corinthians 7:36-40
God has declared His will and word on marriage from the beginning. When Christ came, He confirmed it and you as a child of God must selflessly confirm His doctrines. Whatever you are going through, you will not use your situation, predicament or perplexities to misinterpret the word of God.
I. Proper Comprehension Avoiding Corrupting Misinterpretation
I Corinthians 7:36-37; Luke 11:52; II Corinthians 2:17; 4:2; Luke 24:45
Many people misinterpret these two verses (verses 36 and 37). They interpret it to mean that here is a single man wanting to get married to a lady and that the man has the liberty to do whatever he pleases with her. But this is not the proper interpretation. May God give us understanding of His word in Jesus name. This is what happens when the word of God is corrupted and misinterpreted, when the scribes, Pharisees and church leaders take the key of knowledge, revelation and divine wisdom of the word of God away from the people.
II. Parental Consent In Their Children’s Marriage
I Corinthians 7:36-38; Genesis 24:1-7; Deuteronomy 7:3-4; I Corinthians 7:9,28; I Timothy 5:14-15.
The proper interpretation of these verses is that if a daughter in the house requires that she be allowed to marry, the father must allow her, but if the she wants to complete her studies and do some other things before marriage, the father must also support her, and give her time regardless of what people say or the volume of pressure being put on him.
It was the father who first saw the need for Isaac to have a wife and he set about putting plans in place to get him one. It is the responsibility of the father to give and not give his daughter in marriage.
III. Perpetual Command From His Changeless Message
I Corinthians 7:39-40; Mark 10:5-12; 13:31; Romans 7:2-3; II Corinthians 6:14-18; Psalm 119:89-90; I Peter 1:24-25
As long as her husband lives, the wife is bound to him. But if he dies, she is at liberty to remarry, but only in the Lord.