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To Marry or not to Marry?

Re: To Marry or not to Marry?

Postby Singalphile » Sun Nov 12, 2017 11:43 am

dwight92070 wrote:Singalphile,
...
Had I the chance to do it over again, I would have married in my early twenties. Personally, I believe it was a mistake to wait that long. ... Basically, I set aside almost 15 years of my life, which could have been spent in rich service to God and my wife and children, had I gotten married. Instead, those years were largely spent in recreational activities with other singles with little or no dating, and I'm afraid little or no spiritual fruit to show for it.

Today, the trend of the world is to not marry, and of course, to sleep around. So the message to remain single comes from both in the church and outside the church. But God said that it is not good for man to be alone. So, generally, most people should get married. Remaining single should be the exception, not the rule. I truly believe God's will for you is whatever desire he has put in you. If you desire a wife and children, then you should marry. If not, then He has another work for you to do. As a practical matter, if you do get married, you probably would have fewer issues if you marry a woman who has not been married before, but, obviously that is between you, her, and God. If you haven't already done so, Steve's teaching on divorce and marriage is well worth listening to. I wish I had heard that back when I was a new Christian.

Again, don't get me wrong. I love my wife and children. I do not believe they are God's "second best", just because I waited so long to marry. But I do believe the church sends out wrong messages, unintentionally, that don't always line up with what the Bible says, which greatly changed my life.


Hi, dwight92070. Thank you for your thoughts. I appreciate it very much.

Marriage is still pretty much the norm among people I know, I think. I haven't felt any pressure from any Christians one way or the other. (It was a non-Christian who first kind of embarrassed me about not being married.)

I noticed the other day that although Paul advised the unmarried Corinthians to stay unmarried if possible (1 Cor 7:8), he also wrote in 1 Cor 9 that, unlike himself, "the other apostles and the Lord's brothers and Cephas" were married.

I think TruthInLove pointed me in the right direction. I have not been using my time and abilities fruitfully. I don't see how I could attribute that to my singleness, though. I just got too busy with work. I've always figured that since I'm not getting married (b/c I never had interest in dating/marriage), I'd be able to retire early and then do my service/ministry "later". That was/is not very wise of me, I think, and I'm now taking steps to see what I can start doing as soon as possible. For various reasons, I mistakenly substituted marriage in for that lack of Church ministry/service, I think. My sudden, unexpected, and unwelcome impulse to seek marriage is subsiding, thankfully.
... that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. John 5:23
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Re: To Marry or not to Marry?

Postby Paidion » Sun Nov 12, 2017 6:15 pm

I noticed the other day that although Paul advised the unmarried Corinthians to stay unmarried if possible (1 Cor 7:8), he also wrote in 1 Cor 9 that, unlike himself, "the other apostles and the Lord's brothers and Cephas" were married.


Yes, Paul stated that he was unmarried. However, he never stated that he had never been married.

Here is some possible evidence that Paul had been married at some point in his life:

1. Paul was a member of the Sanhedrin. It was required that members of the Sanhedrin be married.
2. Though Paul stated that he was unmarried, he never referred to himself as a παρθενος (virgin).
3. In none of his letters did Paul state that he had never been married at any time.
4. Some think that Paul was addressing his wife in Philippians 4:3, when he addressed someone as his "true companion."
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Re: To Marry or not to Marry?

Postby steve » Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:35 pm

The belief that Paul was once a member of the Sanhedrin seems very questionable. At the time of his association with the Sanhedrin, he was "a young man"(Acts 7:58). It is my understanding that the Sanhedrin consisted of elders in Israel. Saul's mentor Gamaliel was a ranking Sanhedrist, and Saul was probably his protege being trained for possible membership. I am of the opinion that Saul left Judaism before he would have become a member. It is notable that he did not personally take an active part in the Sanhedrin's stoning of Stephen. He was relegated to the role of "coat monitor."

The only suggestion that Saul might have been a member of the Sanhedrin comes from Paul's telling of his testimony that he "cast [his] vote" (Acts 26:10) against the Christians. This suggests to some that he was a member of the Sanhedrin, though it might have been in other settings—as something like a witness or a "jury" member—that he had occasion to do this. He might even be speaking of casting a mental "vote" since the scripture said that Saul "was consenting" to Stephen's death (Acts 8:1).

On several occasions, Paul gave a summary of his faithful and prestigious life in Judaism prior to his conversion (e.g., Acts 22:3-5; 26:4-11; Gal.1:13-14; Phil.3:4-6). He does not ever mention being on the Sanhedrin. This, it seems, would have been one of the top credits on his resumé, had he once sat on that Supreme Court and ruled Israel.
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Re: To Marry or not to Marry?

Postby Paidion » Tue Nov 14, 2017 6:17 pm

Yes, it is not certain that Paul was a member of the Sandhedrin; it is a wide-spread opinion that possibly has some basis.

Also by writing the sentence, "1. Paul was a member of the Sanhedrin. It was required that members of the Sanhedrin be married," I didn't mean to imply that this is true information or that it is a personal belief of mine. I was merely using it as one of four sentences that I offered as possible evidence that Paul had been married at one time, one that several times I have heard others express .
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