Bible study on dating and relationships

Dating—the Benefits and Dangers—Lesson 7 in Understanding True Love series

bible study on dating and relationships

Getting caught up in a new relationship can be a truly exhilarating experience. As you grow closer together, remember to draw even closer to God. I want to suggest that we can make this whole dating thing a lot simpler and less the Bible doesn't actually say a whole lot about dating/courting relationships. Dating and Relationships. 7 Days. Getting caught up in a new relationship can be a truly exhilarating experience. As you grow closer together, remember to.

What is the difference between romantic desire and romantic intimacy? Romantic desire and attraction is the feeling and desire one has when he or she is attracted to someone of the opposite sex. Romantic intimacy is when those desires are expressed and shared with someone else with the same desires through dating experiences that develop a romantic closeness usually with some physical intimacy expressed. Where does romantic intimacy fit into these relationships God has described? The purpose for romantic intimacy and romantic expression is for marriage and that is where it is to come into full bloom.

It is like a flower bud that exists before marriage and is only opened up in a full way when it is time for it to bloom in marriage.

Let's talk about courtship...

Romantic intimacy involves the most fragile part of our being - our hearts. Once our feelings are expressed and shared, the deepest part of us becomes vulnerable to another. Without the commitment and resultant security of marriage, our hearts can easily be crushed. The bride of Solomon in the Song of Songs celebrates the unity of romantic and physical intimacy as she proclaims in 1: In God's beautiful plan for man and woman, romantic intimacy and physical intimacy come to full expression together only within the protective bond of marriage.

Based on the Scriptures we have seen thus far, we can draw some important conclusions that can give you guidance regarding dating. The first is that God desires for you to experience friendships with others before marriage.

bible study on dating and relationships

And it is a friendship-type relationship with romantic desire, but not romantic intimacy with a believer of the opposite sex that moves directly into engagement preparation for marriage. Third, romantic intimacy should not be experienced without the commitment of marriage to go with it. Romantic and physical intimacy is to be expressed only in marriage between a husband and wife. The Song of Songs shows us that romantic intimacy and physical intimacy are expressed together in marriage.

This brings us to how "dating" fits into God's Word. It all depends on one's definition and purpose of a "date. I have chosen to use the term "dating" and redefine it rather than not using the term and using a phrase such as "spending time together" because the term "dating" is such a powerful one in our culture which needs to be dealt with.

I define dating in two ways depending on the purpose and focus of the time together. The second is romantic dating where two people of the opposite sex who are attracted to each other romantic desire get together with the focus on building romantic intimacy with each other and also getting to know each other.

Which of these two fits within the Biblical Guidelines? They should focus on getting to know each other and relating together in a healthy way, giving their relationship time to develop and themselves time to grow in their care and concern for each other. They drive their relationship by their mutual care and concern for each other rather than their romantic feelings for each other. It allows you the time and opportunity to develop the kind of love that God desires in marriage if that is where the relationship leads.

A genuine care and concern resulting in self-sacrificial attitudes and actions to meet the needs of your spouse 2. A commitment to fulfill your God-ordained marriage responsibility to your wife or husband 3.

A romantic and sexual desire and attraction 4. A commitment to separate oneself from others of the opposite sex for exclusive and permanent romantic and physical intimacy "Being in love" is a phrase our culture uses for the romantic and sexual attraction that a man can feel for a woman or a woman for a man mixed in with care and concern which drives him or her to want to marry the other person.

True Biblical love is much more balanced and focused on genuine care and concern and faithful fulfillment of marriage responsibility. A key question for those wondering if they have real "love" as God defines it that will last a lifetime in marriage is "Am I ready to commit myself to this person to sacrifice myself for this person, to care for and be concerned about this person, to be exclusive with and united to this person, and fulfill my God-ordained responsibility to this person for life?

If a couple is ready to do this, then they are ready to love each other for a lifetime. To come to this commitment, a couple needs to focus their energy on developing this kind of love for each other based of a strong care and concern for each other and a commitment to fulfill their responsibilities in marriage rather than on strong passionate romantic feelings which eventually calm down and change after marriage.

Often a couple will make a marriage commitment based on very powerful romantic feelings fueled by romantic intimacy experienced in dating with or without sexrather than a strong and healthy loving relationship based upon a solid knowledge of each other. If they have built a foundation of genuine care and concern, they will have a solid foundation on which to build a marriage and drive their changing feelings.

How one views "dating" and how one "dates" a potential marriage partner establishes either a weak foundation or a strong foundation for a relationship that one wants to last for a lifetime. Our focus is on "how do a Christian man and woman develop the kind of love relationship which will lead to and make a strong marriage and thus last a lifetime? These principles are for those who are in their college years and beyond. You are permitted to reproduce and distribute this material in unaltered excerpts or articles, as long as you do not charge a fee and you give the following credit: Any exceptions to the above must be approved by the Titus Institute.

And it can produce wrong results—broken hearts and damaged emotions. Each time, as the pain caused from the last relationship fades into the background, the guy and girl develop a new romance with a different partner. The whole scenario of getting deeply involved romantically, breaking up, and doing the same thing over and over again becomes a dress rehearsal for divorce.

Is there a better way? Courtship is a relationship in which both guy and girl have the same long-term purpose in view. The requirement for courtship involves a commitment on the part of both guy and girl to certain guidelines: A "one man, one woman" commitment.

A restraint of affections. Lust is a getting proposition and it demands immediate satisfaction.

bible study on dating and relationships

Real love will wait for the right time and right circumstances. It is not unusual for two committed Christians to agree to refrain from all physical contact beyond holding hands until marriage. Some of the happiest married couples can testify to the fact that their first kiss was at the marriage altar! Respect for parents on both sides. In a God-ordained courtship, there should be the approval of the parents on both sides. If one or both sets of parents disapprove of the relationship, that is a danger signal which should not be ignored.

A successful marriage involves serious preparation on the part of both the guy and girl. Financial freedom is a necessity in a happy marriage. The couple should seriously consider a budget.

You may be madly in love with each other, but if you do not have a good education and financial freedom, you may not be ready for courtship. Ideally, both husband and wife should be committed Christians who love the Lord Jesus with all their hearts.

There will be serious problems if one partner is a fully-committed Christian and the other is complacent about the things of God.

Relationships and Dating in the Bible | Titus Institute

Under no circumstances should a born-again Christian marry an unbeliever. The Rewards of Courtship Courtship brings a new freedom in relationships with the opposite sex. You are focused on one person and not wondering about every guy or girl you meet. It avoids envy and jealousy. Courtship promotes self-control and moral purity. It promotes responsibility—you are seriously planning and preparing for life.

What does God say? God delights in the happiness of His children. Every command of God is an expression of His love and His desire that we enjoy the best He has in mind for us. Let us see what God says about sexual matters. Fornication Sexual intercourse between a man and a woman who are not married is called fornication. God hates this sin because it destroys the beautiful plan that God has in mind for you. For you are bought with a price: In business, defrauding is cheating—leading someone to expect certain benefits which you know are false.

When a guy professes to love a girl and talks about their getting married some day in order to entice her to have sex with him, that is defrauding. This means God will punish those who commit this sin. A good rule for guys and girls is this: Do not give or take that which may some day rightfully belong to another person. Homosexual sins God forbids all sexual intercourse between two members of the same sex. God does not hate homosexuals; He loves them!

He loves them so much that He gave His only Son to die for them. But God hates their sin. The Bible tells us that God destroyed the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah because of this sin. Marrying an unbeliever For a Christian to marry an unbeliever is a violation of the will of God. In no uncertain terms God warns us against this sin. Let this fact impress itself on your mind: Wait for the right person and the right time A researcher has discovered a way to forecast the future of four-year olds by watching how they interact with a marshmallow.

8 Best Bible Verses About Dating - Encouraging Scripture

He invites the children one by one into a plain room with nothing but a small table and a marshmallow. Through a one-way window he is able to watch what happens. Some children grab the marshmallow the minute he is gone. Some last a few minutes while others are determined to wait. They cover their eyes, sing to themselves, try to play a game, or even fall asleep. When the scientist returns, he gives these children their hard-earned two marshmallows. But that is not the end of the story.

By the time these children reached high school, the researcher found that those, who as four-year olds held out for the second marshmallow, grew up to be better adjusted, more popular, more confident and dependable teenagers than those who gave in to temptation early on.

We are composed of three parts—body, soul, and spirit.

Lesson 7: Dating—the Benefits and Dangers

Our soul is our self—composed of mind, emotions, and will. Our spirit is our innermost being by which we can know God and receive His life. They develop a deep friendship based on their common love for the Lord Jesus.

As they grow closer to God, they draw closer to each other. In the courtship period, as they grow closer to God, they again grow closer to each other. Finally, in marriage, they enjoy oneness of spirit, oneness of soul, and oneness of body. They become one in Christ.

The result is the deepest, happiest, most fulfilling relationship that can be known by two people in this life. I will save sex for marriage. I will not be involved in the sin of fornication, even if it means losing dates.

I want to wait until then. I will learn to say "No! Young people who are involved in sinful pleasures take delight in dragging others down to their level. If you make excuses, they will keep after you. I will learn to be content as a single person. The fact is, if I am not happy and content as a single person, I will not be happy and content as a married person.

I will guard my heart. I have given my heart to the Person who loves me so much that He died on a bloody cross for me so I could live in Heaven with Him. I will wait for the one of His choice. I will date only Christians. God has told me in no uncertain terms that it is never His will for me as a believer to marry an unbeliever.

If I do not date an unbeliever, I will not marry one. I will seriously consider courtship. Until I am ready for marriage, I will not be involved in a lot of pointless romantic relationships that create problems. I will turn away from flirting and playing the dating game. I will turn to courtship, which promotes self-control, moral purity, and responsibility. I will turn from living for myself and begin showing real love for my brother or sister in Christ.