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    Should Christians Date? Part I: The Difference Between Courting And Dating

    The process by which unmarried persons of the opposite sex get to know each other has evolved over the years. Modern dating seems to have replaced the courting process that was standard in decades past.

    Many Believers think that Christians should be courting and NOT dating. Others don’t see anything wrong with modern dating as long as there are constraints. Before you formulate your opinion about dating versus courting, let’s take a minute to review the differences between the two:

    What is dating?

    Wikipedia describes dating as a ritual “consisting of social activities done by two persons with the aim of each assessing the other’s suitability as a partner in an intimate relationship or as a spouse.”

    When I read this definition, this is what sticks out to me:

    • Social encounter
    • Possible intimate relationship

    What is courtship?

    Wikipedia describes courting as a ritual that “precedes (a couples’) engagement and marriage or establishment of an agreed relationship of a more enduring kind. In courtship, a couple get to know each other and decide if there will be an engagement or other such agreement.”

    When I read this definition, this is what sticks out to me:

    • Mutual agreement
    • Purposeful (determining if an engagement/marriage is eminent)

    It seems that modern dating has become more of a sport or hobby and less of a purposeful activity. Unmarried people are engaging in kissing, foreplay, and even sex outside of marriage. The enemy has done a great job at infiltrating the courting process and people now think this behavior is okay!

    Of course, we know that sex outside of marriage is NOT God’s will. But what about dating with limitations? Is that okay?

    Many Christians assert that we are set apart as God’s people and shouldn’t conform to the ways of the world–including dating. These Christians believe that our “courting” process shouldn’t resemble the “dating” process the world uses.

    However, other Christians think that that some social outings and limited physical contact is okay. These Christians believe that dating should be permitted as long as the two people demonstrate restraint in their interactions with one another.

    What do you think? Check back soon for the second article in this series: Should Christians Date? Part II to read what the Bible says about courting versus dating.

    Aysha Ives
    Aysha Ives loves God with her whole heart and has a desire to help hurting people. With a Masters Degree in Psychology, she combines her education and experience with her love for God to help people live whole and fulfilled lives. Aysha is an Author, Mental Health Provider, Youth Church Teacher, and the mother of one gifted little boy whom she absolutely adores. Aysha is honored to be able to share her love of God with Project Inspired readers. Aysha is also the author of God Cares About Your Stuff: How To Believe For Tomorrow When Things Look Utterly, Completely, And Totally Impossible Today, released February 2013- Available at Amazon.

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