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I have to start by explaining the theological doctrine that drives the approach I want to outline (and advocate).
That doctrine is called the of Scripture (which states that the Bible is the authoritative Word of God, it’s true, and it contains no falsity or error).
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.
The Bible guides us in some areas by broader, more general principles and ideas we can build on as we strive to live the Christian life in practical ways.
In either case, no area of life falls totally outside of the guidance and authority of God’s Word.
(insert crickets, tumbleweeds, person whistling here)…. While the principles supporting biblical dating have their beginnings with the very structure of the family, modern dating has its origins with the sexual revolution of the 1960s.
Other messages have stressed that Christians need to be much more counter-cultural.This doctrine simply holds that the Bible is sufficient to guide and instruct us authoritatively in all areas of our faith and life, and that there is no area of life about which the Bible has no guidance for us.The sufficiency of Scripture is taught explicitly and implicitly in many passages, but perhaps the most obvious is 2 Timothy -17: So how does the sufficiency of Scripture apply to our coming discussions?Worse, it has brought great dishonor to the name of Christ and to the witness of individuals and the church. For Christians, the Lord has given us His Word, and the Holy Spirit helps us to understand it.We have brothers and sisters in Christ to hold us accountable and to help us apply the Word to our lives.
Scott Croft is an elder at Capitol Hill Baptist Church where he teaches a seminar on friendship, courtship and marriage.