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“The Great Guiding Principle for Marriages”
1 Corinthians 7:32-35
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 restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.
Thoughts for Today:
Do the relationships and ties to this world control your life or does Christ? Your answer is the key to understanding Paul's instruction in our passage today. Let me add a little to Paul's very practical observations: The unmarried person doesn't have to worry about working to put food on the table for the family, or saving for college educations. He or she can give all of his or her time to serving the Lord.
On the other hand, a married man or woman places a high value upon pleasing their spouse. It's a marital perspective that is both natural and normal. And Paul is not saying there is anything wrong with being devoted to our spouses. However, he does make it clear how critical it is to place God first: "...live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord." This should be the great guiding principle for every marriage.
Paul makes another very important yet subtle point in our passage today: It doesn't matter how spiritual we think we might be; if God is not placed first, then any marriage is potentially at risk and not the ideal Christian marriage.
Questions to Ponder:
Even as married people it is critically important to make the Lord's business our first priority. Do you need to reorder your concerns? Is your spouse or the Lord at the top of your list? Is your marriage governed by the Lord?
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About the author
Pocket Devotions are written by Mike Brooks. A retired businessman, he is Moderator of South Shores church, leads the Deacon Board, serves on the finance committee, and he teaches a Men's Bible study and the Men's Ministry. Mike has a passion for evangelical missions. He is the husband of Sherry; the father of Ryan, Natalie, Krissy, Rebecca, and Amanda; the father-in-law of Ariel; and the grandfather of Conner and Christian.