1 Corinthians 7:30 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Corinthians 7:30, NIV: those who mourn, as if they did not; those who are happy, as if they were not; those who buy something, as if it were not theirs to keep;

1 Corinthians 7:30, ESV: and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy as though they had no goods,

1 Corinthians 7:30, KJV: And they that weep, as though they wept not; and they that rejoice, as though they rejoiced not; and they that buy, as though they possessed not;

1 Corinthians 7:30, NASB: 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;

1 Corinthians 7:30, NLT: Those who weep or who rejoice or who buy things should not be absorbed by their weeping or their joy or their possessions.

1 Corinthians 7:30, CSB: those who weep as though they did not weep, those who rejoice as though they did not rejoice, those who buy as though they didn't own anything,

What does 1 Corinthians 7:30 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul is urging Christians to live as if our eternal future with God is more important than temporary lives and relationships in this mortal life. He has written in the previous verse that time is short, most likely referring to the events that will trigger the return of Christ, which could happen at any moment (1 Corinthians 7:28–29).

Paul has written about how an eternal perspective should influence our view of marriage. Now he builds on this idea in other ways. Believers should mourn as if we are not mourning and rejoice as though we are not rejoicing. We should buy products as if we had no products or, maybe better, as if we had received nothing for our purchase.

Just as with his remark about marriage, Paul does not literally mean a Christian should not experience the emotions of mourning and rejoicing. Paul writes elsewhere about his own mourning and weeping (2 Corinthians 2:4) and joy (Philippians 4:10). In fact, believers are commanded to share in these emotions with each other (Romans 12:15).

Instead, he is asking Christians to experience both pain and joy for what they are: quickly passing moments in our quickly passing lives on this side of eternity. We must not allow emotions, tied to things which are passing away, to keep us from serving Christ. We must not base our decisions about how to live on fear of mourning, or desire for rejoicing. We serve Christ first, even above our own emotions.

Next, Paul instructs us to shop as if it does not matter what we have purchased. We must still go about the necessary functions of life. Christians, however, must not be so tied to their possessions or desire to acquire temporary goods that we miss the opportunity to serve our eternal Lord.