Stages of christian dating

* * * If you're reading this, you're interested in dating. In our society, dating has become something of an obsession. It's just something you do if you're single and of age (and that age is quickly dropping) in America. In fact, depending on which statistics one believes, the divorce rate for professing Christians may actually be than for Americans as a whole.

You've done it, you're doing it, you'd like to do it, or you need to teach somebody else how to do it. It is considered the natural precursor to marriage, and is generally considered something to be desired, whatever form it might take. If you were to Google the word "matchmaker," you would receive something in the neighborhood of 21,200,000 responses — with a few of these outfits claiming to be Christian, but most making no such claim. As evangelical Christians, we're called to be distinct in the ways we think and act about all issues that confront us and those around us. Granted, not all of these people are evangelicals, but we're not doing so well either.

If you're a Christian, that's the biblical life you're called to.

That's what I hope this column will be about — applying God's Word to dating, finding a spouse and getting married.

Joshua Harris, for instance, has promoted a model of courtship that harkens back to a model used broadly before modern dating evolved.

People attempting to follow a courtship model within today's culture, however, often run into a lot of practical questions, such as, "What if her dad is unavailable or uninterested in being involved?

It is brand new, and yet, seemingly, it is all we know. Here are some fundamentals: Modern dating philosophy assumes that there will be several intimate romantic relationships in a person's life before marriage.Many want to know how they can go about getting to know someone and eventually getting married without getting hurt or compromising their faith.At Focus on the Family, we've offered a range of resources and expert advice bringing biblical principles to bear in this area.The answers he brings may be different from anything you've heard before.The topics he's going to be dealing with are ones in which equally committed Christians have found different biblical interpretations.

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