What the bible says about dating
The aspect of dating is one of the most questioned aspects of Christian walk. Much of the questioning comes from the modern forms of dating as compared to the contextual traditions of biblical times. Although some biblical testimonies of marriage are culturally different than today, the Bible is relevant in providing foundational pieces of truth for a Godly marriage.
When we read our bible from Genesis, we can recollect that the first relationship instituted by God was the relationship between man and God. That is to say that right from the beginning of time, God has placed genuine importance on relationships. However when God created the first in the bible, God said in Genesis 2;18 “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” God created a partner for Adam and called her Eve, a woman who formed the second relationship known to history with Adam. God intended from the dawn of time that man not walk alone. It was also the intention of God to make a helper suitable for Adam, one who would truly complement him.
Reading further in chapter 2, it says: “But for Adam no suitable helper was found. So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and then closed up the place with flesh. Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man. The man said, ‘This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man.’ That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh. Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.”
God sent Adam on a very deep sleep so that he could make his own bone of bone and flesh of flesh. The rib has many functions within the body. Each rib has a mate, just as Adam was given his mate, Eve. Ribs serve as a method to keep the body upright; a wife’s duty is not only to pursue an upright life but to work alongside her husband, as he leads by example. A rib also serves to protect the lungs and the heart. God did not merely create Eve to be in service of Adam but to help him serve God. He created both man and woman to “feel no shame” with each other and to form a vulnerable and safe place within marriage.
WHAT SHOULD RELATIONSHIPS LOOK LIKE?
The Word of God is unchanging and for all of His Creation to hear and know, but the time in which it was written provides certain guidelines for the culture of the day. Many marriages were conducted by the authority of God, take for example Isaac and Rebecca who came together by God’s revelation to Abraham’s maid servant. It is important to realize that even in marriages that were arranged by man, God had to be the One to allow such a marriage. It was truly by His hand that such a marriage took place.
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF DATING?
Ultimately the purpose of dating should be whatever God deems. For some, He will call a season in which two people date with the hope or intention of marriage, but it could result in a lesson to be learned or friendship. This is vital to recognize, as many will fall into the trap of believing that the person he or she is dating must and can only be his or her spouse. The goal and hope, of course, will be marriage, but not every relationship is meant to result in marriage. Some relationships are meant to further a character, teach a lesson, or be for a season. The hope and intention ultimately for a dating relationship should be marriage. Marriage is the second most important relationship one will have, the most important being with the Lord. With this weight given to such intention, the precursor of dating, therefore, must be given considerable thought, care, and respect.
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