Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States
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How does the Church interpret 1 Corinthians 7 where St. Paul contrasts the married life to the single life?

In this letter and chapter, St. Paul clarifies the church's position on the scriptural value of marriage, addresses the contemporary issue of the times regarding a newly believing spouse who is married to an unbelieving spouse, and proposes some personal guidelines for the unmarried and widows. St. Paul clearly valued the sanctity of marriage, but also had a higher regard for the life of celibacy as a route of expression of complete devotion to God. Although he cherished his life of celibacy and would encourage others to do the same, he understood that this calling is a gift from God. St. Paul explained how marriage is not only a holy union, but can also prevent someone from falling prey to sexual immorality.

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