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PreachParsly
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Joined: 2005/1/14
Posts: 2164
Arkansas

 Dating


Here is a thought the Lord gave me: A woman is not a trophy, you do more than just look at her. You have to live with her.

There is some wisdom. (It could also go for guys too) I've seen people get so wrapped in dating that it will carry them from one church to another and then eventually when the relationship is over the person either leaves the church and doesn't find another one or stops going, all because of the uncomfortablness.

My personal belief is that dating is an epidemic that is sweeping singles in the church, which will build lust. What I mean by dating is the casual "dating" of another person with any physical intimacy at all (yes even kissing). So many people are like " I will not kiss on the first date" but then 2 months later they are sleeping with the other person. What good is that? You may say that you have self control but if you sit around with someone of the opposite sex and lay around on each other while watching movies alone you will see that self-control leave. Temptation, lust, then sin. You will watch it form before your eyes if you do not watch yourself.

1 Timothy 5:2 The elder women as mothers; the younger as sisters, with all purity.

This is far from the mindset of church-people today. It’s closer to treat the women as a game so maybe you can win the prize. Do you treat others in the faith as brothers and sisters or playboy playmates? God is not impressed with the game so many singles play.

And I am by far saying that being with someone of the opposite sex is wrong. What I am saying is that it should be more of a courtship. I see nothing wrong with intimacy, but only in conversation and pouring out your soul to the other, but not physical! Sex and intimacy is for marriage. It should be something that strengthens the relationship after marriage because marriage is more challanging than a courtship.



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Josh Parsley

 2005/6/20 16:36Profile
PreachParsly
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Joined: 2005/1/14
Posts: 2164
Arkansas

 Re: Dating

What does everyone thing about dating vs courtship? I would like to hear thought about it. What about scripture? Does scripture rule out what is called "dating?"


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Josh Parsley

 2005/6/20 16:38Profile
KingJimmy
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Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC

 Re:

Check out Josh Harris's "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" as well as the sequel that followed it. Take his advice with a good pinch of salt though. The principles behind his advice are pretty sound.


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Jimmy H

 2005/6/20 16:52Profile
KingJimmy
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Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC

 Re:

Josh Harris can be a little confusing sometimes, but basically he advocates that one "date with intent." That is, you should only consider dating somebody if you think it has the potential for marriage. If you are just dating for the sake of dating, then Josh Harris says you are basically playing a game with somebody's heart, which is not a Christian thing to do.

To some degree, I have personally embraced Josh Harris's philosophy. I have only sought relationships with girls that I first had friendships first. Of the female friends I've had, and having tried to be "more than friends" once, I've only had one official girlfriend, my current girlfriend.

I think one major downside of Josh Harris's books are what he says on hugging and kissing, and in general, showing affection. He almost comes across as saying that there should be as little emotion and affection shown in these "courtships" as possible, because if the relationship doesn't work out, then you will protect your girlfriend from being seriously hurt and having to recover from a painful breakup.

Such seems like good advice, but I think a little naive perhaps. If a couple comes to truly love eachother, then there are going to be emotions involved. There is always an risk involved with love. The Lord loved Judas Isacriot even until the very end, yet in the end Judas betrayed Him. I bet that hurt bad.

Also, there is nothing wrong with kissing, even deeply, before marriage. Not all arousal and passion is lust. Don't get me wrong though, I'm not advocating inappropriate touching. Mere physical attraction is a form of arousal, only differing in degree. As is romantic feelings. Holding hands, hugging, and kissing are simply forms of this. Such is one topic I don't think Josh Harris handles too well. One crosses the line from arousal to lust only when one starts imagining what that person you are deeply attracted to would look like naked. In fairness to Josh Harris though, he does make some pretty strong arguments that are highly profitable to meditate on and consider. Harris doesn't say all hugging and kissing is wrong, he simply raises a very high standard, and makes some room for personal convictions.

However, the principles he advocates are good. Christian dating should be one of serious intent built on friendship and respect for the other person. One should not aimlessly date, and should look to honor the Lord and their girlfriend, as well as involving their parents and Church as much as possible in the relationship. He's highly concerned with integrity within relationships... so few are these days.


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Jimmy H

 2005/6/20 19:02Profile
KingJimmy
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Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC

 Re:

By the way, the method of dating/courting most people in the Bible practiced is if a man were interested in another woman, he would approach he father and essentially buy her from him. Such is never something taught as the command of God, it was simply the culture of much of the ancient world, and still many cultures today.


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Jimmy H

 2005/6/20 19:04Profile









 Re: dating

I have a take on an aspect of this topic, which at one time I would have said was only for the ears of [i]men[/i] in the Church, with regard to their conduct with women.

Now I would have to add that women in the church have just as much responsibility in the way they bring up both their sons and their daughters (by which I mean how they how they treat them and what they tell them to do or to expect with and from the opposite sex) as the men and fathers in the church do to their sons and daughters, and those of other men.

There is also the matter of demonstrating purity in one's relationships with all other adults and dealing with any chemistry which arises between people for whom it would be inappropriate to respond to that 'chemistry'.

First, it is good to be discussing this openly, as I believe sexual mores are seriously missing in the mindset of the gospel as it is being preached. Like the discussion on whether hell should be mentioned, (and it should), the fact that God has specific commands relating to sexual behaviour, should not be neglected in the defining of the gospel.

At the same time, it is unrealistic to suggest to unbelievers that the moment they turn to faith in Christ, they will no longer have a battle with their sexual desires or to overcome previous thought patterns or behaviour. However, that there are standards and that these are for the promotion of emotional and sexual health, should be clearly understood.

However, because all this is much easier to discuss realistically with some degree of failure in one's past, let it never be that we are unforgiving of one another's confusion and experience. The whole point is, that God can restore your soul. The [i]last[/i] thing He is planning, is to cut you off from His supply of grace and the Spirit, because of sexual sin.

He knows better than us all, that this area of human experience is at the heart of the effect of the Fall. That's why sexual practices form the bulk of the list of 'do nots' in Leviticus 18 - which is not to say that apparently abstract sins such as the perversion of justice or avarice, are [i]less[/i] sinful; those also are aspects of idolatry associated with cultish sexual behaviour and attitudes.

Within the context of this whole discussion, the thing that amazes me most (as a woman) is that men (whether Christian or not) engage in wrong behaviour with women whom they know they do not want to marry.

For some reason I cannot fathom, it seems to be [i]accepted[/i] between men (and now, women) that it is ok to pollute the future bride of some other man. Even though the same men harbour hopes of marrying a virgin and living happily ever after, the damage they do to their own and the potential for others to find a suitable life partner / soulmate, is not a great enough prize for them to do whatever it takes to preserve this mutual aspiration [i]respectfully[/i], as they search.

Secondly, I'd like to leave a phrase with you, (which may not be original) but which crystallises into a few words, all that is wrong with going too far, physically, in a relationship before marriage, especially in any relationship in which one has taken part, [i]knowing[/i] that marriage is never going to come of it.

This should bring whizzing to mind, the ultimate aim of the Lord to be married to the Church as His Bride, and what He had to do that He might present her to Himself, a pure and spotless spouse. That phrase is 'erosion of virginity'.

 2005/6/21 6:10
PreachParsly
Member



Joined: 2005/1/14
Posts: 2164
Arkansas

 Re:

Very good posts. Thanks for the replies. I guess my next question is are there any scriptures that promote a certain way of finding a mate? Dating vs courtship? I know for sure that both must be in the faith. But is there more?


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Josh Parsley

 2005/6/21 15:46Profile









 Re: dating

I guess I must know a dozen stories of people who either knew or someone else did, who they would marry, but, for a long time the other person did not know or, was determined to wait for their own confirmation from the Lord, before even beginning to talk to the first person. From people who were in love with each other for years before the first conversation to a couple of whom I read who were convinced the other one didn't like them and left the room every time they entered - there is a rich vein of Christian experience to tap. Over all these, 'wait' is written loud and clear. There are scriptural parallels, too, which one or another may adopt as the Lord lays it on their heart. For example, one young man came to believe that he was not to move church to find a wife. God would bring her to him, just as He had brought Eve to Adam. (He did, by the way.) This cannot happen when you meet the girl of your dreams at a conference and both of you are from somewhere else... Sorry. This is not much about scripture, but I hope it is encouraging.

 2005/6/21 17:38
roman
Member



Joined: 2005/4/18
Posts: 41


 Re: Dating

Quote:

wrote:
"I think one major downside of Josh Harris's books are what he says on hugging and kissing, and in general, showing affection. He almost comes across as saying that there should be as little emotion and affection shown in these "courtships" as possible, because if the relationship doesn't work out, then you will protect your girlfriend from being seriously hurt and having to recover from a painful breakup."

"Also, there is nothing wrong with kissing, even deeply, before marriage. Not all arousal and passion is lust. Don't get me wrong though, I'm not advocating inappropriate touching. Mere physical attraction is a form of arousal, only differing in degree. As is romantic feelings. Holding hands, hugging, and kissing are simply forms of this. Such is one topic I don't think Josh Harris handles too well. One crosses the line from arousal to lust only when one starts imagining what that person you are deeply attracted to would look like naked."




My opinion in the above view is this, "Yes, there is nothing wrong in simple kissing, holding hands, hugging and even watching movies together (what happens in the cinema is another thing) [b][font=Arial]BUT WHY PUT YOURSELF IN A PLACE WHERE YOU COULD FALL."[/font][/b]

Let's be honest, male have a different hormones... you know what I mean.

Webster defines courtship - "to seek the affections of; especially : to seek to win a pledge of marriage from"

Such a high standard the "world" defines courtship; [b][font=Arial]should we not have a higher standard than the world?[/font][/b]

This calls for maturity, strength in God & patience, it is best that you hear from God who is the life partner (if He have one) He prepared for you. This will spare anyone from emotional rollercoaster of hurts & pains; ups & downs.

I would suggest that any B&G relationship should be committed to God in words, heart, soul & spirit. Meaning, speak it out before God committing that relationship to Him.

If I may put it this way "Submit to God, resist the devil (temptation), then, it will flee."

How I wish I was a mature & strong Christian before I went to B&G relationship:oops:. It's too late now, I am married :-).

In Christ,
Roman

 2005/6/28 5:08Profile
KingJimmy
Member



Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC

 Re:

Quote:

My opinion in the above view is this, "Yes, there is nothing wrong in simple kissing, holding hands, hugging and even watching movies together (what happens in the cinema is another thing) BUT WHY PUT YOURSELF IN A PLACE WHERE YOU COULD FALL."



Harris brings this up too. It's something to seriously consider. However, I believe if both the guy and girl are truly commited Christians, who have purposed in their own hearts not to defile themselves, then it's not really an issue. Such was the case of Christ when the HolY Spirit drove Him into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.

In the case of my girlfriend and I, we are both deeply commited Christians who strive as ministers of the gospel to live a life above reproach in the sight of God and man. We both know that even should the other one decide they want to give into temptation and take things further than hugs & kisses, then the other person would very likely stop the advance. The Holy Spirit has spoken to us both on what is acceptable and not acceptable in our relationship. We love God and eachother enough to know that things such as sex would only hurt the relationship we are in, not help it.

Quote:

This calls for maturity, strength in God & patience, it is best that you hear from God who is the life partner (if He have one) He prepared for you. This will spare anyone from emotional rollercoaster of hurts & pains; ups & downs.



Indeed. My girlfriend and I both diligently sought the face of God concerning eachother when she had a crush on me, and I on her. It was only after having prayed for a month or so before I finally asked her out, and even then it was only as friends until after another month of prayer, we decided to become a couple. The intent behind the entire relationship has been to look into the possibility of marriage one day, something that looks like it very well may happen. We both believe that we are in this relationship together by the guidance of the Holy Spirit.


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Jimmy H

 2005/6/28 6:44Profile





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