Bubbling to the surface was months of bitterness. They stood opposite each other, not willing to look each other in the eye. Eye contact, if any, was minimal. The conversation was brief and terse. There were some protestations and justifications, but, in the end, they decided to breakup. They had run headlong into a romantic relationship, only to end with broken hearts.
Is dating biblical? This word certainly did not appear in the Bible, and Scripture does not describe how a man and a woman can proceed from friendship to marriage. So how do we go from one to the other?
As Christians, we are “not to be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of [our] mind” (Romans 12:2). The way we date or court—or however one defines it—must be different from the ways of the world.
In worldly dating, intimacy often doesn’t lead to commitment. It tends to skip the friendship stage of a relationship and isolates the couple from other vital relationships. Additionally, the dating couple can become so enamoured with each other that they are distracted from their studies. Worldly dating centres on the self and on instant gratification.
Christian dating, on the other hand, is others-centred and is patient. It is much more than just abstaining from sex before marriage; it requires wisdom. We must realize that the one we are interested in and go out on a date with may not eventually end up being our spouse. Hence we are careful not to leave behind us a string of broken hearts. We are level-headed, making sure that our levels of intimacy don’t race ahead of what we are willing to commit to.
At the end of the day, let us remember: Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31).
Written By Sean Tong for YMI