It’s tough being a single person dating in today’s singles environment. Being a Christian single adds even more layers of complexity, considering potential conflicts in morals, values, spiritual goals, etc..
There will be lots of hits, complete misses and close calls in terms of finding ideal candidates for your heart. But my recommendation is not to just jump into dating and figure things out as you go along. Before you begin dating, you should be firm on these two key decisions.
1. Sex Can Wait…Maybe
That’s the heavy decision that more of today’s Christian singles are considering. Why? Because sex is a common visual theme in everyday life. And the expectation for premarital sex is now the norm. According to a Public Health Report study, more than 75 percent adults had premarital sex by the age of 20, and 95 percent by the age of 44.
So in order to stay faithful to your the pledge of abstinence before marriage, you have to map your dating plans.
For example, how will you respond to the question of sex when everybody’s doing it—even so-called “the saints?” How/when will you bring it up? Abstinence is also an uncomfortable subject to broach in the dating/courting stage, but an answer is necessary (and probably the sooner the better, right?).
Some would suggest abstaining before marriage is about as foolish today as buying a car without first test driving it. And there are thousands of other arguments against it. But if you plan to stay dedicated to your goal while still actively dating, you must hold on tight to your counter arguments. For example: for virgins who marry, their spouses are the best they have ever had. They have the God-blessed luxury of discovering their sexual pleasures together.
“Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge.” (Hebrews; 13:4)
2. Unequally Yoked
Who should a Christian even consider dating? That seems like it should be a rhetorical question, but unfortunately some don’t seem to consider what the Bible says or the inherent problems when making the wrong dating choice.
If you make the choice to date a non-Christian or a non-religious person, be fully aware of all the problems that will arise down the line. Understand that a God-centered foundation makes marriages stronger.
“Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever?” (2 Cor. 6:14-15).
“When the Lord your God shall bring you into the land where you are entering to possess it, and shall clear away many nations before you, the Hittites and the Girgashites and the Amorites and the Canaanites and the Perizzites and the Levites and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and stronger than you, and when the Lord your God shall deliver them before you, and you shall defeat them, then you shall utterly destroy them. You shall make no covenant with them and show no favor to them. Furthermore, you shall not intermarry with them; you shall not give your daughters to their sons, nor shall you take their daughters for your sons. For they will turn your sons away from following Me to serve other gods,” (Deut. 7:1-4).
“For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God, as was the heart of David his father.” (I Kings 11:4).
The reason God instructs believers not to be “unequally yoked” with unbelievers is because he/she can influence and turn you away from the Lord.
If you choose to seek partners who are equally yoke, make a decision to put God first in that relationship. And choose to pray together through any struggles.
Most importantly, pray to God and study His Word for guidance in choosing who you will date and during dating. Paul has much to say that will benefit those couples who date for the purpose of marriage in I Corinthians 7. Proverbs 31 has some great nuggets. The Word of God is a mind field. Use it to prepare yourself for a healthy Godly relationship that leads to a Godly marriage.
BMWK, what other major questions should Christian singles consider?