1 Corinthians 7:38

38 So then, he who marries the virgin does right, but he who does not marry her does better.[a]

1 Corinthians 7:38 in Other Translations

KJV
38 So then he that giveth her in marriage doeth well; but he that giveth her not in marriage doeth better.
ESV
38 So then he who marries his betrothed does well, and he who refrains from marriage will do even better.
NLT
38 So the person who marries his fiancée does well, and the person who doesn’t marry does even better.
MSG
38 Marriage is spiritually and morally right and not inferior to singleness in any way, although as I indicated earlier, because of the times we live in, I do have pastoral reasons for encouraging singleness.
CSB
38 So then he who marries his virgin does well, but he who does not marry will do better.

1 Corinthians 7:38 Meaning and Commentary

1 Corinthians 7:38

So then he that giveth [her] in marriage doth well
Does that which is in its own nature good; that which is agreeable to the will of God, is of his institution and appointment, and therefore must be good, and answer many good ends and purposes. Such an one that marries his daughter, he seeing a necessity for it, and a propriety in it, does a very good thing; secures her chastity, and his own credit; prevents fornication, and other evils that might follow; consults the good of mankind, and the honour of religion.

But he that giveth [her] not in marriage doth better;
not a better action in itself, simply considered; but more profitable and advantageous under such and such circumstances, with such and such conditions and consequences; since hereby a single person is more fit to encounter with and endure persecutions, is freer from the cares of life, and more at liberty to wait upon the Lord, and give up himself to his service.

1 Corinthians 7:38 In-Context

36 If anyone is worried that he might not be acting honorably toward the virgin he is engaged to, and if his passions are too strong and he feels he ought to marry, he should do as he wants. He is not sinning. They should get married.
37 But the man who has settled the matter in his own mind, who is under no compulsion but has control over his own will, and who has made up his mind not to marry the virgin—this man also does the right thing.
38 So then, he who marries the virgin does right, but he who does not marry her does better.
39 A woman is bound to her husband as long as he lives. But if her husband dies, she is free to marry anyone she wishes, but he must belong to the Lord.
40 In my judgment, she is happier if she stays as she is—and I think that I too have the Spirit of God.

Cross References 1

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Or 36"If anyone thinks he is not treating his daughter properly, and if she is getting along in years" (or "if her passions are too strong" )", and he feels she ought to marry, he should do as he wants. He is not sinning. He should let her get married. " 37"But the man who has settled the matter in his own mind, who is under no compulsion but has control over his own will, and who has made up his mind to keep the virgin unmarried—this man also does the right thing. " 38"So then, he who gives his virgin in marriage does right, but he who does not give her in marriage does better."