20 (A)Each one should remain in the condition in which he was called. 21 Were you a bondservant[a] when called? Do not be concerned about it. (But if you can gain your freedom, avail yourself of the opportunity.) 22 For he who was called in the Lord as a bondservant is (B)a freedman of the Lord. Likewise he who was free when called is (C)a bondservant of Christ. 23 (D)You were bought with a price; (E)do not become bondservants of men. 24 So, brothers,[b] (F)in whatever condition each was called, there let him remain with God.

The Unmarried and the Widowed

25 Now concerning[c] the betrothed,[d] (G)I have no command from the Lord, but I give my judgment as (H)one who by the Lord's mercy is (I)trustworthy. 26 I think that in view of the present[e] distress (J)it is good for a person to remain as he is. 27 Are you bound to a wife? Do not seek to be free. Are you free from a wife? Do not seek a wife. 28 But if you do marry, you have not sinned, and if a betrothed woman[f] marries, she has not sinned. Yet those who marry will have worldly troubles, and I would spare you that. 29 This is what I mean, brothers: (K)the appointed time has grown very short. From now on, let those who have wives live as though they had none, 30 and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy (L)as though they had no goods, 31 and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For (M)the present form of this world is passing away.

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  1. 1 Corinthians 7:21 For the contextual rendering of the Greek word doulos, see Preface; also verses 22 (twice), 23
  2. 1 Corinthians 7:24 Or brothers and sisters; also verse 29
  3. 1 Corinthians 7:25 The expression Now concerning introduces a reply to a question in the Corinthians' letter; see 7:1
  4. 1 Corinthians 7:25 Greek virgins
  5. 1 Corinthians 7:26 Or impending
  6. 1 Corinthians 7:28 Greek virgin; also verse 34

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