Summary: How should we date and if we do date, what is the purpose? What are teh pitfalls of dating and how do we avoid them? What doeis teh Bbile say about dating?


I found this sermon one of the most difficult of all the ones I have prepared

- Perhaps it was so difficult

- For the same reason

- That people, particularly our young people

- Have with dating

- It isn’t something God wrote directly into the Bible

- If I were to preach on immorality

- That would be much easier

- The Bible has clear teaching on that

- But there is no clear statement in the Bible

- “Thou shall not date”

There are some principles I think can be applied to dating

- And we will be looking at some of them

- I suppose the first task is to define dating

- I was not really surprised

- To discover some young people have a different definition of dating

- Than older adults might have

- Dating used to be simply a guy asking a girl to go out to do something together

- If you were dating each other

- It might have been an exclusive relationship

- Or going steady

- But now dating has a whole new context

- It seems that young people think in terms of

- Single, dating and married

- Single means not seeing anyone

- Not dating or not going steady

- Dating means involved in an exclusive relationship

- It is like being married without the paperwork or the wedding

- Or without the responsibility

- You don’t support the girl you are dating

- But the other activities and expectations of marriage

- May be freely engaged in

- Many dating couples are now sexually involved with each other

Our culture has changed the norm and the expectations of young people

- In the process attitudes and activities have changed

- So while dating might not be wrong

- Some of the activities of dating couples might be wrong and damaging

Having watched and counseled several young men and a few young ladies about broken relationships,

- Expectations and such

- That go with dating

- I have found there are some serious issues

- That need to be discussed

- There have been too many tears, too much pain

- And a few unexpected babies and marriages

- Because people went into dating

- Without understanding what could happen

If dating was just a group of young men and women

- Going out to a movie

- Or to eat

- Even if they were paired up

- I don’t think there would be reason for much concern

- If people simply liked each other’s company

- And asked them to do something together

- There would not be much of a problem

- If relationships weren’t exclusive

- But the couples were loosely grouped

- As a part of a larger group of friends

- There would be entirely different expectations

- And entirely different outcomes

But when two individuals, a boy and a girl, decide to date each other exclusively

- And limit their social contact largely to themselves

- Things change

- They begin to look for more than companionship and friendship

- In the relationship

- Romance becomes a part of the expectations

- And part of the activities

- Expressions of love, real or imagined, appear

- Emotions and feelings begin to rule

- Things change

- They are fundamentally different

- The problem is that these emotions nad feelings

- Are not a good place to build a relationship

- Ask any married couple

- If they haven’t felt unloved or like leaving the relationship

- At one time or another

- See a permanent relationship is built

- On something other than emotion or feeling

- On something other than sex or attractiveness

You see

- Dating doesn’t train young people for marriage

- Not the way it is done now any way

- It prepares them for divorce

- You see, dating typically involves

- A series of short-term relationships

- Some intensely emotional and involved

- Those who end up with a solid marriage out of this process

- Often have to deal with a lot of painful emotional baggage

- From previous dating relationships

- Baggage from the breakups

- From the betrayal of trust

- From the fickleness of youth

- From boredom and wanting to be free

- Young people are learning to break off

- Relationships that don’t work out

- Or are stale

- Or when someone new, better comes along

- The practice of falling emotionally in love

- And then falling out of love with each other

- Can cause a great deal of pain and scarring

- And establish bad relationship habits

- In the Army we always said you will fight the way you train

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Richard Laraviere

commented on Oct 28, 2008

Awesome message and content!

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