7:1 Now concerning the matters about which you wrote. See Introduction: Date and Occasion.
It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman. Very possibly this saying was used by an ascetic group among the Corinthian Christians who condemned sexual promiscuity and argued that Christians should avoid marriage and abstain from sexual relations even in marriage. The apostle had to be careful lest his teaching be distorted in one direction or another. Paul does not simply dismiss the slogan; he too opposes sexual immorality, and he recognizes a certain value in remaining unmarried (vv. 7, 8). He can give specific and valid reasons why a Christian may decide to stay single (vv. 29–35). But he must correct those who demand celibacy. In different contexts, Paul will speak of marriage in only positive terms (e.g., Eph. 5:22–33; 1 Tim. 3:2) and he condemns those who forbid marriage (1 Tim. 4:3).