The bell rings! Another school week is over. You and your classmates are rushing out of the classroom. Then as you make your way out, she called out your name and said: “Hey, see you in church this Sunday!” You feel your heart skipping a beat, but then you managed to reply with a shy smile and a brief “Yes.”
Your mind keeps playing in that passing moment (albeit a very quick one), now you just can’t sleep. Tossing and turning! Smiling! Grinning! It’s as if your heart is going to burst. You just can’t help yourself. All you know is that you have this admiration for her for as long as you could remember, and now, she noticed you. You now had rumbling thoughts in your mind. Should I ask her out? Will she say yes? Is she dating someone?
When adolescence hits you hard, and you can’t explain (nor control) all those feelings for someone, what do you do? You might want to share these roaring thoughts with someone – your parents, or a friend, or your youth pastor – but you’re somehow reluctant to open up for some reason. Maybe they just wouldn’t understand. Worse, perhaps you’re mom will tease you in front of the girl. Or your friend will continue to badger you and will find that your secret is out, your friend decided to tell the “confession” for you. You just want Christian dating advice for teenage guys like you. You long to seek biblical wisdom. But how?
Is dating a sin? Is it okay to date at your age? If yes, how do I know if I’m ready for dating?
What Does the Bible Say About Dating?
Dating is an exclusive and committed friendship between a guy and a girl. Exclusive and committed in a way that they are not to entertain other parties while they see each other.
The Scripture did not specifically talk about dating or going out, girlfriend or boyfriend stuff. Dating is somewhat a modern concept. The culture or practice before (Old and New Testament times) was that the parents pre-arrange marriages – this is still observed in some parts of the world even today. Traditionally, children worked until their parents deemed it time for them to marry, they then select their kid’s partner, and their child (and chosen mate) will begin a new home for themselves.
Though a new concept, the Bible does not neglect the dating issue. In fact, there are passages in the Scriptures that can readily be applied to this thing called dating department.
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of others. In your relationship with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus.” Philippians 2: 3-5
Yes, dating is not prohibited in the Bible. It is the time where you get to know someone else in a fun and different setting. It is a time to get to know yourself, too. Time spent with someone you like, sharing new ideas, hopes, and plans, a time to do interesting things to someone special.
However, before entertaining any dating notions, here are the questions you need to ask yourself first. Why do you want to date? What is the motive behind asking someone out?
Dating to “feel good” and “look cool” is a big NO! The Bible clearly says to do nothing out of selfish ambition. It means you are considering others first before you. Think about what is best for the other person. Bear in mind that love is never self- seeking (1 Corinthians 13:5).
Always treat others with absolute purity. There should never be even just a hint of hidden agendas. Never take advantage of someone else. If you want to access the dating arena, you need to stay pure and honest first – in your thoughts, words, and actions.
Dating can be an excellent idea if done in the right way, and with no hidden motives. Remember, deciding to make the right thing with wrong motives is still a “bad thing.” Bear in mind, positive multiplied by negative will still be negative. As simple as that, you do the math.
“Treat younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity.” 1 Timothy 5: 1b-2
The Right Time To Date
You don’t need to follow the crowd. What others think as “normal” does not necessarily mean you have to do it, too. You may have somewhat a semblance of what is right and wrong. You might think of yourself as sophisticated enough to make your decision. But is it the right time for you to enter the dating room? When is the right time to date?
“There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under the heaven… A time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing… A time for love…” Ecclesiastes 3:1, 5b, 8a
God has promised that He has and knows his blueprint for us and His plans are always the best (Jeremiah 29:11). He is also very clear that everything has its own time. In Songs of Solomon (verses 2:7, 3:5, 8:4) we are repeatedly reminded “not to arouse or awaken love until it so desires.”
Again your mind is shouting the same question: “So, when is the RIGHT TIME?”
Dating or courtship is a modern concept where one is trying to figure out if the other person is “the one.” Meaning you are contemplating commitment and eventually marriage.
So let us say your purpose of dating is marriage. Another (and yes, harder) question to be answered is, “Are you ready for the wedding?” Are you ready for a lifetime commitment? Can you support and raise a family?
And you’re saying “Whoa! What are these talks and thoughts? Lifetime? A family? I’m only fifteen, dude!”
That is exactly the point here. If you are not yet ready for those kinds of things, it is best to take time and consider better things than dating. Focus first on your relationship with Jesus, your family, and your friends. Try different sports (test your horizon), socialize more and meet new friends. Be healthy – spiritually, physically and emotionally. Take your time. And while you are doing that, enjoy your intimacy with God, spend time with your loved ones. Believe me; you will just be fine (and better off) not entering the dating room. Yet.
In God’s perfect time, He will lead you to the right person He has prepared for you.
Wait Until You Are Ready
Wait for the right time. Waiting does not only mean being patient for what you are waiting for but trusting God’s timing. Yes, His timing, not yours. Hold on to His word that God works out all things for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28).
While you are being molded, serve God. Use your time doing things for His kingdom and His glory. Join your praise and worship team. Attend a campus ministry. Volunteer on social work in your local area. You might even encounter someone asking the same questions you are asking now. The Christian dating advice for teenage guys (like you) could very well be shared with them.
Lastly, know that your future is in God’s hands and he has it planned for you – most definitely, including your future wife.