and if they have not continence -- let them marry, for it is better to marry than to burn;
1 Corinthians 7:9 Additional TranslationsClarke's Commentary on the Bible
But if they cannot contain - If they find it inconvenient and uncomfortable to continue as widowers and widows, let them remarry.
It is better to marry than to burn - Bishop Pearce translates the original thus: For it is better to marry than to be made uneasy. Πυρουσθαι, says he, "signifies primarily to burn; but in a metaphorical sense, to be troubled, vexed, or made uneasy. So in 2 Corinthians 11:29 : Who is offended and I burn not, και ουκ εγω πυρουμαι, and I am not troubled. So in Terence, Uro hominem, is I vex him." It would be well to soften the sense of this word in reference to the subject of which the apostle speaks. He cannot mean burning with lust, no more than Virgil means so when he says, Aen. iv. ver. 68: Uritur infelix Dido, the unfortunate Dido is tormented; and in Eccl. ii. 68: Me tamen urit amor, love torments me. All this may be said with the strictest truth in such cases where the impure fire referred to above has no existence.
A curious story, which certainly casts light on the phraseology of this place, is related by Dr. Lightfoot, from the tract Kiddushin, fol. 81. "Some captive women were brought to Nehardea, and disposed in the house and the upper room of Rabbi Amram. They took away the ladder (that the women might not get down, but stay there till they were ransomed.) As one of these captives passed by the window, the light of her great beauty shined into the house. Amram (captivated) set up the ladder; and when he was got to the middle of the steps (checked by his conscience) he stopped short, and with a loud voice cried out Fire! Fire! in the house of Amram! (This he did that, the neighbors flocking in, he might be obliged to desist from the evil affection which now prevailed in him.) The rabbins ran to him, and (seeing no fire) they said, Thou hast disgraced us. To which he replied: It is better that ye be disgraced in the house of Amram in this world, then that ye be disgraced by me in the world to come. He then adjured that evil affection to go out of him, and it went out as a pillar of Fire. Amram said: Thou art Fire, and I am Flesh; yet for all that I have prevailed against thee." From this story much instruction may be derived.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
1 Corinthians 7:2,28,36,39 Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband...
1 Timothy 5:11,14 But the younger widows refuse: for when they have begun to wax wanton against Christ, they will marry...
1 Corinthians 7:9 Parallel CommentariesAflame Better Burn Burning Contain Control Desire Exercise Fever However Life Maintain Marriage Married Marry Means Passion Self-Control ThemselvesAflame Better Burn Burning Contain Control Desire Exercise Fever However Life Maintain Marriage Married Marry Means Passion Self-Control ThemselvesTHE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica®.
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