Similarly, 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8 warns us that we are to abstain from sexual immorality and to use our bodies in holiness and honor rather than lust, and that we should not "transgress or wrong" one another in these matters.Other translations render that word "wrong" as "defraud" (see the old RSV, among others).We get so many questions about dating, relationships, girlfriends and boyfriends, physical intimacy, and the whole list of awkward sex questions.And that's totally okay by us because we're glad you're looking for biblical answers to these questions rather than trying to figure out the whole dating thing on your own or basing your actions on what the world tells you to do (2 Peter ).So to take one of my examples above, the story of Jacob and Rachel is found in Genesis, a historical narrative.The author's main point in that part of Genesis is to describe the story of Jacob and Rachel as part of a larger narrative about God and His plan of redemption, not to "prescribe" (to endorse or instruct) anything about their conduct. It means that even though Jacob ended up taking two wives, that fact in a historical narrative does not override Paul's direct teaching on marriage in Ephesians, 1 Corinthians and elsewhere that marriage is to be between one man and one woman.(For instance, the story of Jacob and Rachel doesn't stand for the idea that seven years is the right length of time for a dating relationship — or that polygamy is OK!And the story of Ruth and Boaz is not an example of a woman "initiating" the equivalent of a modern dating relationship.) So where does all that leave us?
To borrow a favorite phrase of the apostle Paul, by no means!Be sure to read what we have to say in the articles below though; your question may already have been answered!Dating or courting or whatever you want to call it can be a great way to solidify an already super strong friendship if your parents have given their blessing, God is at the center, and you are both ready to step it up.How can we search Scripture on a topic that may be only indirectly addressed in the Bible (or evaluate what someone else has written on such a topic) without either being overly dismissive on the one hand or inappropriately "proof-texting" on the other?The most important idea to keep in mind is that as we read Scripture for "indirect" guidance, we must make sure that we are conscious about genre, context and authorial intent.
In the nearly 10 years since I first wrote the Biblical Dating series on Boundless, I and other Boundless authors have addressed some pretty nuanced and specific questions about dating relationships.