THE FIRST EPISTLE OF PAUL
VI. Dealing with Marriage Life
A. Concerning the Gift Not to Marry
1 Now concerning the 1things of which you wrote: It is agood for a man not to touch a woman.
2 But because of 1afornication, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband.
3 Let the ahusband render to his wife that which is due, and likewise also the wife to the husband.
4 The awife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does; and likewise the husband also does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does.
5 Do not deprive each other, aexcept by agreement for a time that you may 1devote yourselves to prayer, and then be together again, that 2bSatan may not ctempt you because of your 3lack of dself-control.
6 But this I say by way of 1concession, not by way of 1acommand.
7 Yet I 1wish all men to be even as I am myself; but each has his own 2gift from God, one in this way, the other in that.
B. Concerning the Unmarried and the Widows
8 But I say to the unmarried and to the widows, It is 1agood for them if they remain even as I am.
9 But if they do not have 1aself-control, let them bmarry; for it is better to marry than to burn with desire.
C. Concerning the Married
10 But to the married 1I charge, 2anot I but the Lord, A bwife must not be cseparated from her husband
11 (But if indeed she is separated, let her 1remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband), and a ahusband must not leave his wife.
12 But to the rest 1I say, I, anot the Lord, If any brother has an unbelieving wife and she consents to dwell with him, he must not bleave her;
13 And a wife who has an unbelieving husband, and if he consents to dwell with her, must not leave her husband.
14 For the unbelieving husband is 1asanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the brother; otherwise your children are unclean, but now they are holy.
15 But if the unbelieving one separates, let him separate; the brother or the sister is 1not enslaved in such cases, 2but God has called us in apeace.
16 1For 2how do you know, O awife, whether you will bsave your husband? Or how do you know, O husband, whether you will save your wife?
D. Remaining in the Status of One's Calling
17 1However as the Lord has apportioned to each one, as God has acalled each one, so let him walk. And so I direct in all the bchurches.
18 Was anyone called having been circumcised? He need not 1efface it. Has anyone been called in uncircumcision? He need not be acircumcised.
19 1aCircumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the bkeeping of God's commandments is what counts.
20 Each one, in the acalling in which he was called, in this let him remain.
21 Were you called as a aslave? 1Let it not concern you; 2but even if you are able to become bfree, cuse your status as a slave rather.
22 For the slave who has been called in the Lord is the 1Lord's freedman; likewise the free man who has been called is 1Christ's aslave.
23 You were abought with a 1price; do not be 2bslaves of men.
24 Each one, brothers, in what status he was acalled, in this let him remain 1with God.
E. Concerning Keeping Virginity
25 Now concerning avirgins I have bno 1commandment of the Lord, but I give 1my copinion as one who has been shown dmercy by the Lord to be efaithful.
26 I consider then that this is good because of the 1present 2necessity, that it is agood for a man to be as he is.
27 Have you been bound to a wife? Do not seek a release. Have you been released from a wife? Do not seek a wife.
28 But even if you do amarry, you have bnot sinned; and if the virgin marries, she has not sinned; but such ones will have affliction in the flesh, and I am trying to spare you.
29 But this I say, brothers, the time is 1ashortened. Henceforth both those who have wives should be as though they had none,
30 And those who weep as though they did not weep, and those who rejoice as though they did not rejoice, and those who buy as though they did not possess,
31 And those who use the world as though they did not abuse it; for the fashion of this world is apassing away.
32 But I desire you to be without acare. The unmarried bcares for the things of the Lord, how he may please the Lord;
33 But he who has married acares for the things of the world, how he may please his wife,
34 And is 1distracted. Both the unmarried woman and the virgin care for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit; but she who has married acares for the things of the world, how she may please her husband.
35 But this I say for your own profit, not that I may 1put a noose upon you but that you may be comely and may wait on the Lord without adistraction.
36 But if anyone thinks that he is behaving unbecomingly to his virgin daughter, if she is past the bloom of youth and thus it must be so, let him do what he wishes, he does anot sin; let them marry.
37 But he who stands firm in his heart, 1being under no constraint, and has authority with respect to his own will and has 2decided this in his own heart, to keep his own virgin daughter, he will do well.
38 So then both he who gives his own virgin daughter in amarriage does well, and he who does not give her in marriage will do better.
F. Concerning Remarriage
39 A wife is abound for so long a time as her husband lives; but should the husband fall asleep, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, bonly to one in the Lord.
40 But she is 1more blessed if she so remains, according to my aopinion; but I think that I 2also have the bSpirit of God.