1 Corinthians 7:24 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Corinthians 7:24, NIV: Brothers and sisters, each person, as responsible to God, should remain in the situation they were in when God called them.

1 Corinthians 7:24, ESV: So, brothers, in whatever condition each was called, there let him remain with God.

1 Corinthians 7:24, KJV: Brethren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.

1 Corinthians 7:24, NASB: Brothers and sisters, each one is to remain with God in that condition in which he was called.

1 Corinthians 7:24, NLT: Each of you, dear brothers and sisters, should remain as you were when God first called you.

1 Corinthians 7:24, CSB: Brothers and sisters, each person is to remain with God in the situation in which he was called.

What does 1 Corinthians 7:24 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul concludes this section, repeating for the third time that the Christians in Corinth should remain in whatever condition or situation they had when they came to faith in Christ. This includes being married or single, being circumcised or uncircumcised, and being slave or free. This is not phrased as a command: "you must remain as you are." Rather, it is Paul's reassurance that Christians are not obligated to seek any of those statuses for spiritual reasons.

In fact, Paul has included circumstances under which it is sensible for a Christian to seek out a change their status. Single people who "burn with passion" should, in fact, get married (1 Corinthians 7:9). Those married to unbelievers should not fight their change in status if their spouse demands a divorce (1 Corinthians 7:15). Slaves with the opportunity to be freed should take it (1 Corinthians 7:21). In other words, Scripture's command here is not a blanket restriction on changing from one situation to another, ever.

Instead, the Bible discourages believers from seeking radical change out of a wrongheaded idea that marital status, or social status, or even religious status will make them more spiritual or more acceptable to God. In a similar way, God doesn't want them to attempt to change their status for the approval of other people.

Paul adds the words "with God" to his statement about remaining. God is with Christians, no matter their current status in the short time we will exist on earth before eternity. Believers should not seek out radical, self-driven changes in their lives in an attempt to get closer to God. He is already fully with them.

It is not, however, that our time on this side of eternity does not matter. Paul shows in the following verses that it matters a great deal how we serve Christ, how we are used by God, whatever our situation might be.