Dating and god

What are some constructive ways of building healthier, more God-honoring patterns of relating?

What guidance does Scripture give concerning integrity in such opposite-sex relationships?

Dating may have the advantage of “screening” a prospective spouse before making any commitment to marriage. There is the tendency to become attached prematurely without wider exposure to the opposite sex (just think of a guy and a girl pairing up during university freshman orientation).

Also, if steady dating is begun too early and continued too rigidly, the development of friendship and true partnership—which is so important to a healthy marriage—may be eclipsed by increased attention to physical expression and emotional intimacy, which can blind a person to the shortcomings and character flaws in the other.

Maybe they’ll call each other “BFFs” and watch movies or have dinner together, but they do so in a detached way—as though their sexual identity doesn’t matter.

All the while, lines of propriety get blurred, resulting in unhealthy and often unintended emotional attachments.

This approach reverses the proper order of things, which should involve getting to know someone and building a friendship before engaging in physical expressions of affection that should be reserved for committed relationships.

24), though a couple’s mutual consent wasn’t necessarily excluded (see Song of Songs; Jacob and Rachel in Gen. In our culture, dating has traditionally been directed toward marriage, as it builds a deepened relational intensity and intimacy that can only be satisfied within marriage’s safe boundaries.

When a young man and woman spend a good deal of time together—whether via technology or face-to-face—emotional attachments are deepened.

Dating, however, isn’t mentioned in the Bible, and we shouldn’t try to find a “biblical basis” for dating, lest we superimpose our Western categories onto Scripture.

The Bible does typically refer to family-arranged marriages (e.g., Isaac and Rebekah in Gen.

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