Ask Your Preacher

Ask Your Preacher

“Digital Dating”

Categories: DATING/COURTING, RELATIONSHIPS
     I have been struggling with this for some time now.  I could make this a much more detailed question, but I will try to shorten it the best way I can.  When it comes to dating and meeting someone we hope to spend the rest of our lives with, is it wiser to allow things to happen on their own or to engage in things such as online dating?  I realize that God allows us to help ourselves, but I often feel doing things such as online dating is perhaps just a way that individuals try to speed up the process and that it might inhibit natural occurrences (i.e. the real deal) from happening.  Any feedback would be great.

Sincerely,
Patient

Dear Patient,

The Bible gives no specific statements about how to look for a future spouse. Online dating is neither condemned nor endorsed by God’s Word.  Rather than advocate one particular way to find a spouse, God instead speaks to the attitudes we must have and the dangers that exist in the world of romance.

  1. Don’t force it.  Song of Solomon is an entire book devoted to romance and marriage.  The chorus of that book is the same over and over (Songs 2:7) – it is a warning to avoid forcing relationships merely for the ‘fun’ of romance.
  2. Avoid all appearances of evil (1 Thess 5:22).  Make sure to never put yourself in a situation with someone of the opposite sex that would compromise your (or their) reputation or morals.
  3. Who they are matters more than how they look.  The Bible praises godly spouses for their character (Pr 31:10).  Beauty fades, but one’s values endure.  Make sure you are spending your time getting to know the person for who they are and for what they find important.
  4. Treat them with respect.  The Scriptures tell us to treat people of the opposite gender like brothers and sisters (1 Tim 5:2).  How would you want your siblings to be treated?  Make sure you are behaving in a godly way toward anyone you are dating or courting.
  5. Surround yourself with godly advice.  When we are in the here and now of a romantic relationship, we often get caught up with our emotions and lose perspective.  That makes it especially important to get the advice of those around you who are wiser and less biased.  Parents, grandparents, and other trusted advisors should be sought out as you search for a mate.  Surrounding yourself with many good counselors protects you from making a emotional decision that has lifelong consequences (Pr 11:14).
  6. Last, but not least, we are told to pray without ceasing (1 Thess. 5:17).  God wants us to bring our concerns to him, and our desire for a godly spouse is no different.  Pray that God sends you someone to faithfully be your mate for life.

Marriage is one of the greatest blessings that God gives mankind.  If we do it God’s way, finding a spouse can be a joy and lead to a lifetime of happiness.