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Dictionary of Bible Themes – 5736 singleness
5736 singleness

5736 singleness

Not being married; the state prior to betrothal or following separation or the death of a spouse. In Scripture, an unmarried woman generally lives with, and is the responsibility of, her family. Whilst the unmarried are freer of worldly concerns and may devote themselves more fully to God, those already married should not separate, and those without the gift of celibacy should not remain single.

Responsibility for an unmarried woman

An unmarried woman is responsible to her father Dt 22:16 See also Ex 2:21; Nu 30:3-5; Jdg 1:12-13; 1Sa 18:17,21

An unmarried woman is dependent on her brothers Lev 21:3 See also Ge 24:51; Ge 34:14-15; Eze 44:25

Widowed or divorced women could return to their parents’home Ru 1:8-13 See also Ge 38:11; Lev 22:13; Jdg 19:2

Regulations relating to the unmarried

Dt 20:7; Dt 22:20-21,28-29

The unwelcome prospect of remaining unmarried

Jdg 11:37-39; Isa 54:6 See also Ge 19:31-32; Isa 49:20-21; Isa 62:4; Hos 2:2; Gal 4:27; Isa 54:1


Celibacy is a calling from God 1Co 7:7 See also Jer 16:2; Mt 19:10-12 It is better to marry than to burn with passion: 1Co 7:9,36; 1Ti 5:11-14

Believers should remain as they are when called 1Co 7:25-28 See also 1Co 7:10,12-13,17,24

Sexual abstinence within marriage is strictly limited 1Co 7:2-6 See also Ex 19:15; 1Sa 21:4-5

The desirability of being unmarried 1Co 7:8 See also 1Co 7:1,11,37-38

The unmarried may devote themselves to God 1Co 7:32-35 See also Lk 14:20,26; Ac 21:9; 1Ti 5:5

Marriage belongs to a passing order Mt 22:30 pp Mk 12:25 pp Lk 20:35 See also 1Co 7:29-31

See also

5709marriage, purpose
6236sexual sin

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