What is biblically appropriate in a before marriage relationship?
There are several different ways we could approach this question. If we consider the Hebrew culture their solution to this issue was prearranged marriages before children were even in their teens (Genesis 24). (I have three teens and another fast approaching those difficult years and am not altogether sure this is not such a bad idea!)
Or we could look at what the Word of God says about relationships in general to get a good idea of how God would have us conduct ourselves in what is implied as a “dating” relationship in this question.
It seems I am forever at times answering a question with a question in order to answer so here goes: What is the purpose of this relationship? Is it to merely spend time with a friend? Is it because we are in the market for a spouse? Is it because we feel incomplete if we are not in a relationship with someone?
Surely I have overcomplicated this, so quickly I will say that a platonic and friendship based relationship rarely needs such defining. And if I don’t feel complete without being in a relationship then I’ve not allowed God to work His wholeness in my life. II Peter 1:3 ” His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue.”
But if I am looking for a spouse and have chosen to use a “relationship before marriage”, dating, then as a Christian I am called to walk in holiness and uprightness.
One definite problem is when believers go into relationship with unbelievers. ” Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness?” II Corinthians 6:14
Another issue that Paul addressed back in I Corinthians 6:18 was premarital (and extra marital) sex. ” Flee sexual immorality….” It is not something to be toyed with or entertained in any from but to be absolutely fled from! Those are some strong words.
Recently I had a “discussion” with one of my teens about what constitutes sex. I won’t go into it but needless to say we did not see eye to eye on this. Neither does the Bible go into explicit detail on this. But we can be assured that if our actions in our bodies don’t honor God then we should not do those actions.
I Thessalonians 4:4-5 ” that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in passion of lust, like the Gentiles who do not know God;” If an action stirs up a passion for lust ( defined = to look upon with intention to possess) then we should flee from that action.
And to wrap this up could be no more fitting admonition than that of Peter in II Peter 1:5-8 ” But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, and virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are your s and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
In His Love, Crystel
At the heart of this question is most likely the question, ” Is it OK for a man and a woman to be sexually involved with one another before they are married?”
The Bible tells us that the sinful nature manifests itself in such things as fornication etc., fornication being defined as consensual sexual intercourse between two persons not married to each other (Galatians 5:19). We as God’s children are not to allow the sinful nature to control our lives, but, rather, we are to present ourselves to God as instruments of righteousness (Romans 6:12-14). We are to always be aware of who we are (God’s child, a Christian), and we should live our lives in such a way as to bring glory to our Heavenly Father, not disgrace (Matthew 5:16; 1 Corinthians 10:31). Keep in mind, also, that, not only would it be wrong for a man and a woman to be sexually involved with one another before marriage, but it would also not be appropriate for a man and a woman to be living together (even though they are not sexually involved with one another). Why? because others might construe that they are sexually involved. The Bible says of God’s children, ” But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people.” (Ephesians 5:3)
Jim Futral http://www.biblepath.com (Answers to questions from a Biblical perspective)
The Bible doesn’t actually come out and give word for word guidelines for courting, or dating, but scripture pretty much spells it out. The following are scriptures that will help show this.
“Do not be yoked together with unbelievers…” (2 Corinthians 6:14). This scripture lets us know that we should search to find someone that is a believer in the Holy word.
“Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character.” (1 Corinthians 15:33). This scripture is telling us that we should look for someone of upstanding character, because one of bad character can corrupt us.
“Put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof” (Romans 13:14). This is telling us that we should stand strong in the Lord and not give in to sexual desire.
“Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body. Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own.” (1 Corinthians 6:18-19). This particular scripture is saying that when we give into sexual desire before marriage, we are sinning against the temple of the Holy Spirit. Our bodies are temple that we must guard and keep clean and pure.
“Gods plan was seen from the beginning of creation, for ‘He made them male and female.’ ‘This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.’ Since they are no longer two but one, let no one separate them, for God has joined them together.” (Mark 10:6-9). This particular scripture should spell out the fact that sex before marriage is not condoned by the Lord. Once married, man and woman are united as one, and love making then becomes a bond between those two. “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” (Proverbs 4:23). This scripture shows that we should be very careful about giving our heart to another. Make sure the other is of a Godly nature and a follower of the Lord’s word.
1Corinthians 13:4-7) defines real love. Ask yourself these questions: Are you patient with each other?
Are you kind to each other?
Are you never envious of each other?
Do you never boast to or about each other?
Is your relationship characterized by humility?
Are you never rude to each other?
Are you not self-seeking?
Are you not easily angered with each other?
Do you keep no record of wrongs?
Are you truthful with each other?
Do you protect each other?
Do you trust each other?
Hopefully you answered yes to all these questions. If not, then maybe you should think twice about the person that you are seeing. The Lord doesn’t want us dating for fun. He wants us to find a life partner. To do that, we need to be strong in faith and be lead by the Lord. MAY ALL BE BLESSED!
Love And Blessings DeeDee