Sunday, January 17, 2010

You call THAT an Argument?

So, last Wednesday I went to a new youth group to hear a friend of mine preach. His topic was emotional purity, and needless to say, there was a lot of fire -- from even the grown-ups! Specifically, we were discussing how one-on-one dating is NOT a good idea, even when you are trying to find a spouse. (I'll post his lesson if you want background.)

The floor was open for debate, questions, and arguments. One girl "for" dating said: "When you're dating for a spouse, it's like when you get saved. God only did half the work, you still had to do half the work. It's not fair to let God try to bring the right person to you; you half to look." (keep in mind, I just quoted her.)

HOLD IT! WAIT! STOP!!!!!!!! Did you even just hear yourself? Shall I take it from the top?
  1. You said God only did half the work for you to get saved. WRONGO! God did 100% percent of the work. There is one and ONLY one thing that you must do to receive it: say yes.
  2. Using the new example; then yes, finding your spouse is a lot like getting saved: God is doing 100% of the work arraigning the meeting and forming the person for you. There is one and ONLY one thing that you must do to receive it: say yes.
  3. Lastly, what in the world do you mean, "it's not fair to let God do all the work"? HE'S GOD! All we have to do is follow His instructions and be obedient. Who are we to start telling God, "Oh, here, let me do this for You"?
Some of the adults' arguments (with all due respect to them) were just as flimsy. One gentleman said, "Come on girls, date as many guys as you want to find the right one. See if you can get a free meal out of them!"

Once again, Excuse me? Are you suggesting that I date so that I can get free food?!? Well let me see then, if I date a new guy every day for 365 days, I could get an entire year of meals paid for? Never mind that it would be manipulative, usurping, using, and selfish! Not only would it be wrong of me to date just for the meal, but "date as many guys as I want"? Why should I waist time trying to "fish out" the one for me by my own power, when I could be spending time learning about the God that created me? helping in church ministries? volunteering for charity? Why in the would should I put myself in that situation?

I'm sorry, but if you want to convince me that dating is a good thing BY GOD'S STANDARDS you'll have to come up with much better arguments. :)


Christine Ericson said...

Hi guys, sorry it's been so long. I just haven't thought any of my posts of late were fit for this blog! XD

D.B. said...

Great post, Christine. It's ok if it has been a long time. I have sometimes gone a month without posting, and I'm the guy that formed this blog. :-) So, no worries.

I like that you recognize that God does a whole lot more than 50% in terms of our salvation AND something as important as our spouse.

I remember reading "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" by Joshua Harris. A great book. In it he talks about taking dating a bit more seriously than the guy that said to date for the free food. Not to mention the ministry opportunies (you mention)that are there that, do, very often, cease once you are starting a family.

One thing I heard Greg Koukl from Stand to Reason say before may give you something else to think on. He was not necessarily talking about dating, but just how we do work for the Kingdom; anyway, I thought it was interesting.

He said this: That the work involves 100% God and 100% man. You'll have to read his article for the full perspective, but here is what I think he's trying to say.

God has given us certain gifts, personality, wisdom, friends to talk with, etc. And we are to use those gifts the best we can to serve and love our neighbor.

Koukl: ""Let Jesus do it." What does that mean? When my alarm goes off, do I get out of bed? Do I stand up, brush my teeth or do I say, "Okay, Jesus, do it for me." Do I get up and pray or does Jesus pray for me? Sometimes that very one dimensional kind of response, which ultimately tells us nothing and teaches us nothing, and equips us in no way, is something that Christians often fall back on when faced with difficult ethical decisions. Though I understand the motivation in many cases is to honor God, I think that often substitutes not only for clear thinking but also for genuine Christian thinking and a genuine Biblical response."

To bring this home, Tracy, my now wife, was the first to tell me she was interested in me. Now, at the time, I had no interest in her like that, but as I considered it more, I began to see that she could be worth keeping. :-)

We often hung out as a group and our friendship was established well before any romantic pursuit and the next steps were fairly clear. I don't believe in love at first sight and I don't think that God has only one person for me and if I don't get the message, then I've ruined life for a lot of people (Because I am pretty obtuse sometimes :-))

I think to some degree, we act together, because in marriage, as with our relationship with Christ it is not a matter of God doing all the everyday work.

[God still holds the salvation key], but in the daily stuff, God works AND we work, thankfully not to the same level. Because, well, I'm me. And God is God.

Here's the article if you are interested.

Kwame E. said...

Per the apostle Paul's teaching in 1 Corinthians 7, it may be a good idea for some people to actively seek a wife or husband.

So my question is this: If you're not going to date people in order to find a good match for a spouse, what other practical means is there? (And again, I'm asking about a means which is real, practical, and doesn't involve a non-existent distinction between courtship and dating.)

Or should we return to the days of arranged marriages (which wouldn't be categorically bad, actually)?