Sometimes we need a little balance in our Bible study.
The Bible was always meant to be taken in its entirety, studied from cover to cover, over and over again throughout the course of our lives. I heard a pastor once warn; “Never base your theology on just one verse. Always look for at least two portions of scripture to confirm that what you think the Bible is saying is what its really saying.”
That’s especially important advice when reading portions of scripture like we find in 1 Corinthians 7. Paul says some things, that if we take them out of context or put more weight on them then they were meant to have, would really leave us confused. For example, in verse 27, he tells men, “Are you unmarried? Do not look for a wife.”
In verse 28 he seems to advise women not to marry either and says, “But those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this.”
When a woman is widowed, Paul says, “In my judgment, she is happier if she stays as she is.”
In verse 8 Paul says of all unmarried people, “It is good for them to stay unmarried as I am.”
My goodness! Is the Bible telling us not to get married? Of course not! Paul is simply adding some balance to a tradition that believed that a person absolutely had to be married.
In this same chapter, Paul tells slaves, “Where you a slave when you were called? Don’t let it trouble you (vs. 21).” Was Paul condoning slavery as an institution? Certainly, he wasn’t. He was speaking to individuals who were trapped in a situation that they couldn’t change.
Any of these verses, when taken by themselves and without the context of the rest of scripture, can be heard to say things that they didn’t actually mean. We are such fortunate people. We have access to the scriptures like never before in history. We ought to know what they say. All of it. If we don’t, we may become confused, unbalanced, or legalistic. Studying the whole Bible frees us from that and allows us to be healthier and more effective Christians.
We are so glad to have you in Bible study with us! If you miss a devotion, you can find them archived at http://comethirstyministry.com/blog/
Reading Plan–Week Twenty-Seven
Day One–1 Corinthians 3
Day Two–1 Corinthians 4
Day Three–1 Corinthians 5
Day Four- 1 Corinthians 6
Day Five- 1 Corinthians 7