1 Corinthians 7:35 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Corinthians 7:35, NIV: 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.

1 Corinthians 7:35, ESV: I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord.

1 Corinthians 7:35, KJV: And this I speak for your own profit; not that I may cast a snare upon you, but for that which is comely, and that ye may attend upon the Lord without distraction.

1 Corinthians 7:35, NASB: I say this for your own benefit, not to put a restraint on you, but to promote what is appropriate and to secure undistracted devotion to the Lord.

1 Corinthians 7:35, NLT: I am saying this for your benefit, not to place restrictions on you. I want you to do whatever will help you serve the Lord best, with as few distractions as possible.

1 Corinthians 7:35, CSB: I am saying this for your own benefit, not to put a restraint on you, but to promote what is proper and so that you may be devoted to the Lord without distraction.

What does 1 Corinthians 7:35 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Previous verses described why Paul—personally, not as a matter of faith (1 Corinthians 7:25)—sees an advantage for a Christian to remain single. That person, man or woman, will be able to remain undivided in their service to Christ. The married person will be divided in their efforts: between their obligation to please Christ and their additional spiritual obligation to please his or her spouse.

Paul adds once more, for the sake of clarity, that he is not writing this as a command. He is not using his authority as an apostle of Jesus Christ to tell unmarried people not to marry. He offers this instruction to his readers in order to be helpful to them in considering whether to get married or not.

He says he wants to promote good order among them. Given what's been said in prior verses, this likely means Paul wants Christians to make marriage choices for appropriate reasons. Whether they marry or stay single, his intent is for believers to do so for the right reasons. Of course, Paul has his personal preference. He probably hopes more Christians will choose to remain single and take advantage of the opportunity to experience undivided devotion to the Lord.