Singleness Vs Marriage: The Bible's Point of View
Should Christians remain single or get married? Is it a must for a Christian to get married? What if a Christian chooses to remain single for the rest of his life, is it a sin? What does the Bible say concerning singleness? Is it acceptable? Is it true those who have decided to be single (or are singles) are suffering from some kind of a disease?
Christian singles find themselves in a hot seat. They feel left out, that is, isolated from the rest of the members of the church who are married. Most teachings in churches concentrate on married people with little dedicated to singles. In fact, the teachings targeted towards the singles are geared to teenagers and youths below twenty years.
As Christians we do believe the Word of God, The Bible, is the final authority. As such, there are Bible verses that touch on marriage and singleness. Well, God in his infinite knowledge and wisdom has provided a guide or advice to both the married and the single. Below are scriptural verses which tap on the issue of singleness.
First Scriptural Point Of View: 1 Corinthians 7:32-35
We are advised we should be free from worries. A married man is anxious to please God and at the same time to please his wife. The same case applies to a married woman. It is noted in the above verses a married man’s interest or loyalty is divided into two – to God and his spouse. A married man cannot offer his dedication wholly to God. He should consider his wife to whom he should also be loyal to. Therefore, married people’s devotion is partly directed towards God and partly directed towards their spouses.
In the case of single people, they are anxious to please God – how he/she can best serve God and how to remain holy in body and thought. This indicates they are concerned how they can remain pure by not engaging in pre-marital sex. Sexual temptation is the most single factor that disadvantages most of the singles.
In no way does it mean a person should limit himself if what he feels or desires is not the case with his limitation. We should not limit ourselves against what we desire. If a Christian wants to get married well and good. If he wants to remain single no problem. The most important factor is to devote our lives as Christians to the service of God whether it is wholly (for singles) or partially (for married). This is the reason why we are advised not to be anxious. Whether we are married (or we will) or not we should aim to live a life that pleases God, and not to be swayed in our devotion to God.
Second Scriptural Point Of View: 1 Corinthians 7:1-2; 8-9; 36
A Christian is counseled she/he should get married if she/he finds it hard to fight or control sexual temptations. If a Christian finds it hard controlling his sexual desires, then he should not remain single for the rest of his life. If he does so, he might be involved in sexual immorality (pre-marital sex, pornography and masturbation) which is strictly prohibited by God. If he wants to remain single he should be sure he is in a position to control his sexual desires and should ask God to help him.
Unlike married people, a single person has control of his/her body. He will not be told by his wife, “Why are you denying me my connubial rights?” Also, he won’t be bothered (frustrated) of why his wife is denying him sex until he is forced to ask his wife, “Why are you denying me my conjugal rights?” In the case of a married couple, a husband’s body belongs to his wife and a wife’s body belongs to her husband.
This indicates a single person who decides to remain single is able to control his sexual desires. This is unlike married people whom the majority get married because they find it hard to escape from sexual temptations. In today’s world it is hard for many people who are singles not to give in to sexual temptations. It is better to get married than to be involved in sexual immorality.
Third Scriptural Point Of View: 1 Corinthians 7:26-28
“I think in the view of the present distress it is good for a person to remain as he is.” There is a high rate of divorces and separations all over the world. There are a lot of problems couple faces than single people. It is better to remain single to avoid complications in marriage life which can otherwise be avoided by not getting married. You will spare yourself from facing such tribulations which might lead to divorce or separation.
“Are you free from a wife? Do not seek a wife.” It is better to be single. Nevertheless, if you are married work hard in ensuring your union is not severed. “Are you bound to a wife? Do not seek to be free.”Apostle Paul remarks in the above verses it is better for a person not to get married in order to be out of danger of the tribulations that faces many couples. “Yet those who marry will have worldly troubles, and I would spare you that.”
Gift Of Singleness
“I wish everyone could get along without marrying, just as I do. But we are not all the same. God gives some the gift of a husband or wife, and others he gives the gift of being able to stay happily married.”
Not everyone is the same. Some can bear to live a solitary life while for others it is next to impossible. For those who cannot live a single life, they have been gifted as husbands and wives while for those who can live a single life, they have been gifted with that gift of singleness. Some people are genetically single. They have never been in any relationship and are satisfied of that fact. Then, there are those who have been in relationships but have later come to the recognition they were meant to be single. It would be worth noting for those who have been destined to be single there are reasons as to why they were meant to be so. It is up to them to know why they were designed to live a single life.
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As a final point, the Bible explicitly support singleness for three major reasons: to avoid the troubles faced by married people, single people are able to serve God wholly – their allegiance is not partially devoted to God and to their other half, and they are meant to live a single life for specific reasons. Single people shouldn’t hurry to get married. It is better to devote a considerable amount of time examining as to whether you want to get married (if not sooner, later in your life) or to remain single for the rest of your life. Seek God as to whether to live a single life or get married. If a single person feels the need to get married, he should not restrain himself from doing so. It is a person’s choice. It is not a sin to remain single neither is it a sin to get married. “But if you do marry, you have not sinned, and if a betrothed woman marries, she has not sinned.” Ultimately, “To the unmarried and the widows I say that it is good for them to remain single as a I am,” and “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.”