In the late 1990’s what seems like a movement “back” to courtship began. Since I wasn’t very interested at the time, I don’t recall the timeline, but titles such as “I Kissed Dating Goodbye” certainly played a large role in bringing the issues to light. Unfortunately, as with many movements, there were also rash responses and saddening statements made by both sides. Generally when I read the literature I try to maintain an open but discerning mind, digging deep to unearth what nuggets are to be had. Unfortunately in some cases there is real junk to sift out. Case in point:
Suggested Prayer: My Heavenly Father, I confess as sin believing the philosophies and traditions of dating which hindered my fellowship with You. I ask You to renew my mind with the mind of Christ and reveal to me a fresh new vision of a godly male/female relationship for my life. Strengthen my trust in You regarding my future relationships. Thank You for lovin and forgiving me. In the name of Jesus. Amen.
or perhaps this:
Dating creates more problems than it solves: broken hearts, illegitimate children, abortions… and feelings of guilt or shame that can last a lifetime.
Personal responsibility for sin must factor in at some point, since it is not the institution that can be blamed. If sexual impurity is the issue, then address it as sin. If pride and selfishness are the issues, then deal with them as sin. Eventually I’d like to compare some of the book’s assertions with the unbiblical tenets of pop psychology to show it for what it really is. For the book from which these quotes come, its agenda was obviously to promote courtship, but I don’t believe that peddling misinformation or presenting straw-man arguments is any way to promote a cause, no matter how truthful.
I asked a friend today why there are no end to books on relationships, and they fly off the shelves faster than books on theology or any other study of Scripture. His response is that people want answers. We’re training a whole generation of people who don’t know how to read the Bible, let alone understand it, and who know all sorts of catch phrases and slogans but have not the Word hidden in their hearts.
Read this over nice and slow:
“And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes.”
(Ephesians 4:11-14 ESV)
The bottom line: dating is sin only when the couple themselves are in sin.