ImmerseMessiah NLT - Page 146


The husband should fulfill his wife’s sexual needs, and the wife should
fulfill her husband’s needs. The wife gives authority over her body to her
husband, and the husband gives authority over his body to his wife.
Do not deprive each other of sexual relations, unless you both agree to
refrain from sexual intimacy for a limited time so you can give yourselves
more completely to prayer. Afterward, you should come together again so
that Satan won’t be able to tempt you because of your lack of self-control.
I say this as a concession, not as a command. But I wish everyone were
single, just as I am. Yet each person has a special gift from God, of one
kind or another.
So I say to those who aren’t married and to widows—it’s better to stay
unmarried, just as I am. But if they can’t control themselves, they should
go ahead and marry. It’s better to marry than to burn with lust.
But for those who are married, I have a command that comes not from
me, but from the Lord. A wife must not leave her husband. But if she does
leave him, let her remain single or else be reconciled to him. And the husband must not leave his wife.
Now, I will speak to the rest of you, though I do not have a direct command from the Lord. If a fellow believer has a wife who is not a believer
and she is willing to continue living with him, he must not leave her. And
if a believing woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to continue living with her, she must not leave him. For the believing
wife brings holiness to her marriage, and the believing husband brings
holiness to his marriage. Otherwise, your children would not be holy,
but now they are holy. (But if the husband or wife who isn’t a believer
insists on leaving, let them go. In such cases the believing husband or
wife is no longer bound to the other, for God has called you to live in
peace.) Don’t you wives realize that your husbands might be saved because of you? And don’t you husbands realize that your wives might be
saved because of you?
Each of you should continue to live in whatever situation the Lord has
placed you, and remain as you were when God first called you. This is my
rule for all the churches. For instance, a man who was circumcised before
he became a believer should not try to reverse it. And the man who was
uncircumcised when he became a believer should not be circumcised now.
For it makes no difference whether or not a man has been circumcised.
The important thing is to keep God’s commandments.
Yes, each of you should remain as you were when God called you. Are
you a slave? Don’t let that worry you—but if you get a chance to be free,
take it. And remember, if you were a slave when the Lord called you, you
are now free in the Lord. And if you were free when the Lord called you,
you are now a slave of Christ. God paid a high price for you, so don’t be

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